Class Notes (839,092)
Canada (511,185)
POL101Y1 (1,148)


3 Pages

Political Science
Course Code
Jeffrey Kopstein

This preview shows page 1. Sign up to view the full 3 pages of the document.
POL101Y1 - Lecture 2 September 19, 2011 Constant and the Rise of Liberalism -Benjamin Constant (1767-1830) -Swiss born French intellectual and politician -Fervent liberal - context, French revolution and its aftermath Question: How should free people govern themselves? (autonomous self-rule) -Political modernity -Stock taking, how did we live? What conditions did we live in? Compared to how we live today -Constant says freedom is the freedom from constraint, not the freedom to do things Model Rejected -Liberty of the ancients, -participatory, humans should take part in ruling and being ruled -not simply you HAD to do it but that you wanted to -what it meant to be a citizen meant to participate -as a citizen you did not have people representing you, people were directly involved in public life - Constant saw that the ancients did not view public” not “private liberty” – freedom meant not to be dominated -freedom of community as a whole collection notion, not an individual one -freedom of the community means self-government -Greece is free if Greeks govern Greeks -old view, freedom is collective, not individual -Canada is not free in the sense that we have a representative government, foreign rule (Britain), dominated by American, people are not directly involved legislation -dependent upon a class of people who didn’t engage in commerce or even work -big decisions were decisions on war at that time -Constant said that all this was rejected -when the F.R. happened, there was no political freedom for 2000 years, so Europe looked towards the Greeks and did not agree with their view Liberty of Moderns -“The fundamental sense of freedom is freedom from chains, from imprisonment, from enslavement by others. The rest is extension of this sense or else metaphor.” – Isaiah Berlin, “Two Concepts of Liberty” -“be very wary of any decree claiming to achieve the reconciliation of liberty and equality: it is either a lie or a tyranny.” –Berlin, The Hedgehog and the Fox -freedom from - Legal protections -Limited government -Freedom is individual rather than communal -all driven by “commerce” and private property instead of war -war is spoken in the context of commerce, cast in terms of economics -liberty and equality are two very different things -liberalism, or neo-liberalism, the order that we’ve chosen and now have - in a liberal society, we are rights-bearing people -voting is a pretty small influence, a small aspect of freedom Contradictions of Constant -modern liberty is better both than ancient liberty and pre-modern “despotism” (French kings) -moderns care more about “freedom from” -we prefer “representative” to “direct government” that just leaves us alone to be happy and get rich -BUT he hedges his bets at the end of the lecture (this is a lecture on a lecture by the way) -“The danger for modern liberty…. broader our knowledge and develop our faculties.” Constant (search up the entire quote) -know thyself, broaden
More Less
Unlock Document

Only page 1 are available for preview. Some parts have been intentionally blurred.

Unlock Document
You're Reading a Preview

Unlock to view full version

Unlock Document

Log In


Join OneClass

Access over 10 million pages of study
documents for 1.3 million courses.

Sign up

Join to view


By registering, I agree to the Terms and Privacy Policies
Already have an account?
Just a few more details

So we can recommend you notes for your school.

Reset Password

Please enter below the email address you registered with and we will send you a link to reset your password.

Add your courses

Get notes from the top students in your class.