Topics in Political Theory: War, Revolution, and Empire

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4
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0
Number: 
116M
CCN: 
76055
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Course Description: 

War, revolution, and empire are outliers in political time, but they are exceptions that establish what the ordinary rules mean. They are subject to endless conceptual revisions, which is the analytical focus of this course. They take on different colorations in different historical environments and with different temporal expectations. For instance, assigning a meaning to the American Revolution requires deciding whether it was a modest rip in the fabric of time, securing independence from the British taxing authority, or an open-ended invitation to future democratic transformations. (The Tea Party and Occupy movements may offer contemporary versions of these views.) For Americans, empire is also an issue. Can a republic become an empire? Is this hybrid self-sustaining or unraveling; benign or predatory? Wars, too, have unsettled the nation, in part because they have always debatable rationales, justifications, and strategies, but also because they make and unmake cultures and nations. For Purchase: Sun-Tzu and Karl von Clausewitz, The Book of War: Sun Tzu’s “The Art of War” and Clausewitz’ “On War”, Hannah Arendt, On Revolution, Herfried Munkler, The Logic of World Domination from Ancient Rome to the United States, plus a course reader.

 

 

 

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