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Modern Political Thought II.doc

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University of Ottawa
Political Science

Modern Political Thought IIJanuary 12 2012Liberalism in political thought1freedom and equality Rawls 1970 liberalism bible of contemporary liberalism allows for concern of equality and justice2 Individual3 rule of law having law rule individuals instead of people ruling in the community4 right to property private5 limited government Distinction between political and economic liberalism So one can have some of these values and be a political liberal but doesnt necessarily have to be economic liberalism6 positive and negative freedoms you have some freedoms are negative in sense that they prevent govt encroachment on your private spacechoices neg no one will bother you in your private sphere positive freedoms sometimes govt can intervene to help the individualall of these values that help political liberalism that make way for economic capitalism but others say vice versa capitalism makes ppl think in terms of exchangeindividuals success in private lives therefore dont want govt to encroach about their successes no necessary link between capitalism and political liberalism not automatic can be political liberal but not be a fan of capitalismfree market but in history we can see that one can facilitate the other what is this link of facilitation between the two Which one is priorLiberalism in the History of Political Thought The contrast between Ancient and Modern Thought can be subsumed under two main pointso The modern idea of liberty constanto The keyrole of ideas in modern political life Manent Thesis of class The contrast btw ancient and modern pol thought can be subsumed with the previous two points Background1762 Rousseau Social Contract died before french revolution1784 Kant What is enlightenment few years before French rev1816 Constant LALMFranceth Louis the 16 ended 1789 was not interested in politicso Ridicule french movie aristocracy corrupted not interested in politics balance of power btw two worlds 1789 revolution 1792st 1792 1 republic was not a positive experience regime of terror does not recognize minority fall into violence quickly towards the end Naploean rises 1804 reign of Napoleon 1814 Restoration of monarchy different kings not quite a parliamentary monarchy but not a monarchy of absolute divine rights constitutional monarchy restoration doesnt work that well second republic GermanyPrussia Frederick the Great enlightened Absolutism king powerful but wants to put forward more modern ideas about reasonenlightenmentrule of lawallowing more villagers freedom than in other places in western Europe liked the company of philosophers like Voltaire Rousseau etc this type of regime is not that freedemocratic but gave impression of opening up 1786 F willliam II more conservative 1797 Frederick William III US 1776 US becoming independence 1787 US constitutionBenjamin ConstantMain Points speech under the restoration of monarchy looking back at French revolution and empire1 KeyDistinctiono liberty of the ancients versus liberty of the moderns 2 This distinction is linked to representative govtpresence or absence of rep govto modernity has rep govt ancients did not and they could not even imagine such thingo in ancient Greece the magistrates were just there to get the job done but didnt have representing constituencyo representing constituency is modern3 CommerceCapitalism has changed our social environment and our own personal lives making the political values of the Ancients anachronistico with capitalism the world we live in has changed thus the way we think and practice politics has changed as well4 Rousseau and the French Revolutionaries by taking the Ancient Republics as models were misguided and led to despotismo error of matching system with the wrong context Eg Arab spring Egypt worry of corrupt govt Islamic govt5 Instead both liberties should be combinedo liberty of modern is important and fits at the time but we should not forget liberty of ancients
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