Principles Of Social And Political Theory Pdf
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Political philosophy , branch of philosophy that is concerned, at the most abstract level, with the concepts and arguments involved in political opinion. The meaning of the term political is itself one of the major problems of political philosophy. Broadly, however, one may characterize as political all those practices and institutions that are concerned with government. The central problem of political philosophy is how to deploy or limit public power so as to maintain the survival and enhance the quality of human life. Like all aspects of human experience, political philosophy is conditioned by environment and by the scope and limitations of mind , and the answers given by successive political philosophers to perennial problems reflect the knowledge and the assumptions of their times.
Political theory is the study of political ideas and values like justice, power and democracy that we use to describe, understand and assess political practices and institutions. Undergraduate education in political theory at Vanderbilt approaches this study in two ways: by introducing students to the historical tradition of political theory and by educating students in the debates of contemporary political theory. Many of our courses combine both perspectives so that students can, for example, learn about important concepts like justice or democracy as we have understood them historically and as we view them today. In keeping with requirements for the political science major link or minor link , students may choose to focus in political theory as a specialty, but we also welcome students from other departments to take as many of our courses as they wish. Students who are interested in beginning a course of study in political theory should take PSCI Justice, a class that introduces students to a major theme in historical and contemporary thought and to the ways of approaching political problems using theory. From there, students can select from a range of level courses and we encourage students to take both lecture classes and small seminars.
Political Theory (Principles of Political Science)
This introductory article explains the theme of this book, which is about political theory. It evaluates the impact of literature that proved especially influential in framing debate through the last decades of the twentieth century and opening years of the twenty-first and examines the historical work on political thought. It describes the combination of concerns that runs through the work of John Rawls, Ronald Dworkin, and the liberal egalitarian tradition and identifies areas of debate that have proved particularly fruitful over the last thirty years. It analyses political theory from a global perspective and discusses body politic. Keywords: political theory , political thought , John Rawls , Ronald Dworkin , egalitarian tradition , body politic. Lukes , As Lukes suggests, political theory has often been a battleground where competing theorists pursue their mutally exclusive positions, either ignoring or denying the insights they might derive from considering alternative approaches.
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After distinguishing political theory from related fields, such as political science, moral philosophy, and legal theory, the article discusses the analysis of political concepts. It then turns to the notions of principles and theories, as distinct from concepts, and reviews the methods of assessing such principles and theories e. Finally, it looks at a recent debate on how abstract and idealized political theory should be, and assesses the significance of disagreement in political theory. The discussion is carried out from an angle inspired by the philosophy of science.
Today, the concept of social justice often refers to human rights, centered around improving the lives of groups historically marginalized based on race, ethnicity, nationality, gender, sexual orientation, age, religion and disability. Typically, those who strive for social justice seek the redistribution of power to enhance the well-being of individuals through equal access to healthcare, justice and economic opportunity.
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