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Democracy, War, and Peace - Lecture 2: Constant and the Rise of Liberalism

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Political Science
Jeffrey Kopstein

POL101 Lec 2 11-09-26 7:32 PM Constant and the Rise of Liberalism Who was Constant? Swiss born, French intellectual and politician during the french revolution Fervent liberal Context: French Revolution and its aftermath After French revolution, main question: How should free people govern themselves? Clicker question: Which is freedom better characterized as? A) Freedom from tyranny B)Freedom to pursue your life plan C) Neither Constant tells us that the modern version of freedom is freedom FROM tyranny. Models of the ancients that were rejected (by moderns). Liberty of ancients (Greek perspective): Participatory (in legislation, in public life, you wanted to do it, part of the great republic) Direct (no people smarter than you representing you as a citizen, you were directly involved.) Public not Private liberty (freedom of the collective, freedom of Athens, not individual) Freedom of the community self government (Greece is free if Greeks govern Greeks, do they govern themselves?) Freedom is collective Canada is not free according to the Greeks because 1) We are not directly involved, we have people representing us 2) We are dominated by the United States. 3) Allegiance to the queen (foreign dependence) Dependent upon a class of people who didnt engage in commerce or even work. Big decisions were decisions on war. 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
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