Course Summary

We will discuss some key ideas in five classics of political thought: 

  • Aristotle’s Politics, in which he supports many arrangements and practices because they are ‘natural’;
  • Machiavelli’s The Prince, in which he holds that the ruler must learn ‘how not to be virtuous’;
  • Hobbes’ Leviathan, in which he argues for a very powerful sovereign, to keep us out of the dreadful ‘state of nature’;
  • Rousseau’s The Social Contract, in which he advances his famous concept of the ‘general will,’ which means that we may be ‘forced to be free’;
  • Marx and Engels’ The Communist Manifesto, in which they maintain that class struggles and other social ills will end when capitalism is overthrown and replaced by communism.

Brief notes, with excerpts and commentary, will be distributed ahead of each class. 

Delivered by: Dr Douglas Adeney

Doug lectured in philosophy for many years at Melbourne State College and then the University of Melbourne. Since 2011 he has greatly enjoyed teaching numerous CAE philosophy courses. A non-academic friend of his was once asked by his wife what Doug did for a living. On hearing that he was a philosopher, she said ‘Oooh, he must be very intelligent … Or is he just weird?’ Come and decide for yourself.

Course Sessions

Tuesday, 20th August - 5 classes

Session ID DNBA5401C
20 Aug - 17 Sep 10:30am - 12:30pm
Location CBD
Session Fees
$335 / $318 (conc)
Douglas Adeney
Last updated: June 14, 2024 04:58pm