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Lecture 18

POLS 1000 Lecture Notes - Lecture 18: Paul Claudel, The Principle


Department
Political Science
Course Code
POLS 1000
Professor
Martin Breaugh
Lecture
18

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February 27, 2019
POLS 1000 Introduction to Politics Lecture Week 18
Review on Last Week
The composition of the few who ruled in society; homogenous white property owners.
Compare ruling class today to 19th century, what you have today is a much more complicated
situation.
o Today ruling class is divided between many different individuals; voters, CEOs, etc.
o Composition is much more heterogenous today than it was in the past.
o In 19th century, working class was unified unlike today
Contemporary crisis of ideologies:
o First newfound complexity:
o Second newfound complexity:
o Third newfound complexity: immergence of new social groups
Re-emergence of forgotten figures; e.g. aboriginal people
o Fourth newfound complexity: creation of a truly inclusive middle-class
Transformation that affects us the most today
Pierre Manent
Goal of The World Beyond Politics: offer an impartial reading of contemporary society.
o To do so, mobilize the resources of history, philosophy and political science
o Impartial reading attempt to treat fairly and equally all of the different perspectives
He will begin his book with poetry: Paul Claudel (French poetry, ambassador of France to the
US).
Double Foundation of Contemporary Life
Manent will argue the two foundations of contemporary life are: science and liberty
To arrive at this answer, Manent has to ask a question: What is it that holds authority for us?
o With this question, Manent wants to uncover the elements that remain important in
contemporary society despite the complexities of our societies.
The Anamology of the Term Authority
o Two Latin terms that make up the word authority:
Auctor an author/founder
Augare to augment/increase
o Contained within the term authority is the notion of something that is foundational,
therefore important but that which is important and foundational must be increased or
augmented.
o The term is dynamic that which is foundational must constantly be augmented.
o That which has authority must be reinforced, pursued and expanded.
o The pivotal social role played by authority needs to be reinforced by both society and the
state.
o Authority is something that is foundational and needs to be increased.
o A founder does not control that which he has founded.
What is it that holds authority for us?
o Science will be our authority in the theoretical domain and in the practical domain our
authority will be liberty.
o In contemporary society, there are other great authorities.
o Science and liberty will be our most widely recognized authorities.
He will even tell us our societies are organized by and for science and liberty.
o We must know or understand what science and liberty actually represent, how do they
deploy themselves.
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