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Lecture 6

Soc203-Lecture 6

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University of Toronto St. George
Irving Zeitlin

Lecture 6 * The idea of Authority --> different forms of authority --> political, intellectual and religious. * * Iraq: in US 2003, more than 100 people killed everyday because of the US violence. Surveillance, kidnappings, tortures. * 2005 - 6: people in Iraq are complaining that the situation is even worser than the time which Saddam control the government. * Indiscriminating mass killing of people by the U.S. (Saddam) * The idea by the U.S. at the first is to conquest and leave fast (withdraw), however, the U.S. made few mistakes. At least 3 from the point view of authority after they conquest the Iraq. * 1. Widespread of ........; the ministry is damaged, universities were damaged, hospitals, museums...etc. ---> lost the respect towards the U.S. military --> not in the good way to conquest them and people hate them. * 2. Ruling party. US gave order to the government, and people in the government such as experienced administer and minister lost their jobs. US government fired many experienced, intelligent but angry people. * 3. the U.S. do not want to use the former soldiers and police officer, many people lost their jobs. The question is "who will take over when the US leaves?" It takes years to create army. * Conclusion is: the U.S is all about the military power. * Military power --> create the authority in conquest country --> problem of authority is consequential. * Authority is multi-dimensional. * Authority: Political authority. * Words in 1721. The author is Montesquieu. --> Persian Letters. * The letter about a experience in The Paris Theatre --> Not about the acting on the stage, but more about the Acting among the audience. Acting around people on balcony. Show-off stuff. Noticing others' wearings. Posing. People are greeting each other. The acting is going on everyday. * Church --> people gather together to talk. * Prince left the country, the other princesses are encourage other ministers and other people to do something that is absolutely forbidden when the prince is here. * Prince left the country, and his wife fell in love with another man. Prince’s wife betrayed him and the letter is from prince to the man. * People in the society have some fundamental responsibility toward other people. * Positive Law Approach: the justice system (the laws) are socially constructed. The conceptions of what is right and wrong varies across the society. * Natural Law Tradition: there are fundamental rights, fundamental justices and fundamental injustices which transform all societies. The U.N. laws. Statement that universal rights and obligations of all societies. * Religious Authority / Moral Authority * What is Right?? it is always socially constructed. Nihilism Etymology: nihil = Latin work for “nothing” “The belief in nothing, as opposed to absence of belief. The word has been used in English since as least 1817, but gained currency later on account of the Russian nihilists.” “... the nihilist hero, a terrorist, without property, identity, morality or attachments” “The basic idea was that, since society is founded on lies, and all moral, religious and humanitarian beliefs are just instruments of concealment, all beliefs and values must be torn down and the disposition to hope and worship be eliminated, so that the world could be seen as it really is. For some reason it was though that things would then be better for the people.” -- Roger Scruton, A Dictionary of Political Thought, p. 379. * Nihilism --> Believing in nothing. “For some reason it was though that things would then be better for the people, is not believing anything. Believing in nothing.” * Young people around 16 think that: People are denying. Seeing the laws and authorities all as lies and ways of manipulating people. All forms of repressing individuals, and taking away their freedom, manipulating, taking advantages from people. * “Crime and Punishment” (Fyodor Dostoevsky)--> very shocking images that he tries to convince reader, believe in God. God is good and fair. Religious Belief. * A young student that preoccupied with murdering a woman. But the time he murder the woman, her daughter entered at the wrong time. --> dramatic act. -- > historical greatness of men. Finally, he changed his heart.He opened his heart to a prostitute and fell in love with her. Love is power that cannot deny. * Religion and the idea of unified people. * Associating the spirit of science and education, individualism and social order. * The science and knowledge in associated to intellectual understanding. * Direction of life, and how to keep the society together. * Lost of the authority. * Authority might not be a good thing (too much) sometimes. Alexis de Tocqueville “What sort of despotism democratic nations have to fear” 1. Democracy as value 2. Democracy as system of rule 3. Social contract theories: * Hobbes * Rousseau 1. Tocqueville on the authority of public opinion in the United States Alexis de Tocqueville “What sort of despoti
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