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Fundamentals of Politics

POL 101 Fundamentals of Politics

Class hours: 42

Credits (ECTS): 6

Interdisciplinary Foundations in Culture of Unity

Year: 1st

Terms: 1st–2nd

Course held in Italian

The course carries out a critical examination of some of the main foundational concepts of Western political thought. The starting point is given by ancient narratives, by symbolic cultures and by the “original words” transmitted through the relationship between politics and the sacred. We follow the historical and theoretical path that leads to the different definitions of “politics”, up to the rise of the modern concept of “social” and horizontal political relations. Starting from the ancient archetypes, we study the relationships between authority and power, the tension between the search for truth and the exercise of politics, the theories of conflicts and their rules, the anthropological and political structures of the “pact” and the “contract”, the intertwining of politics and ethics. The course aims to contribute to a rethinking of the idea of politics in the current era, through a critical work of understanding and reinterpretation of its foundations, comparing new experiences and contemporary political resources.

Bibliographical references:

1. Authors’ texts: for the study of selected texts

  • PLATONE, Teeteto; Leggi; Repubblica; Lettera VII; Gorgia; Politico, in Tutti gli scritti, a cura di G. Reale, Bompiani, Milano 2000.
  • ARISTOTELE, Etica nicomachea, a cura di C. Mazzarelli, Bompiani, Milano 2000; ID., Politica, a cura di C. A. Viano, Rizzoli, Milano 2002.
  • MACHIAVELLI N., Il Principe; Discorsi sopra la prima deca di Tito Livio.; ID., The Prince, Ed. by Jonathan Bennet, 2017.
  • AGOSTINO, La Genesi alla lettera (De Genesi ad litteram), in Id., La Genesi, Città Nuova Editrice, Roma 1989; ID., La città di Dio (De civitate Dei), Città Nuova Editrice, Roma 1997.
  • TOMMASO D’AQUINO, Summa Theologiae
  • MARX K., Tesi su Feuerbach, in K. Marx, F. Engels, Opere complete. V. 1845-1846, Roma 1972, pp. 3-5; ID., Theses on Feuerbach, in ID., The German Ideology: Including Theses on Feuerbach and an Introduction to the Critique of Political Economy, Prometheus Books, New York 1998.
  • WEBER M., Economia e società. I. Teoria delle categorie sociologiche, Milano 1995; ID., La politica come professione, in Il lavoro intellettuale come professione, Torino 1976; ID., Economy and Society. An Outline of Interpretive Sociology. I: Conceptual Exposition. 1. Basic Sociological Terms, University of California Press, Berkeley – Los Angeles – London, 1978, pp. 3-63.
  • SCHMITT C., Le categorie del “politico”. Saggi di teoria politica, il Mulino, Bologna 1972; ID., The Concept of the Political, Expanded Edition, University of Chicago Press, 2007.
  • MARITAIN J., L’uomo e lo Stato, Marietti, Genova-Milano 2003; ID., Man and the State, Catholic University of America Press, Washington, 1998.

2. Critical literature:

  • BAGGIO A.M., Trinità e politica. Riflessione su alcune categorie politiche alla luce della rivelazione trinitaria, in “Nuova Umanità” XIX (1997/6) 114, pp. 727-797.
  • ID., Introduzione a : Il principio dimenticato. La riscoperta della fraternità nell’epoca del terzo ’89, in BAGGIO A.M. (ed.), Il principio dimenticato. Percorsi e prospettive della fraternità nella riflessione politologica contemporanea, Città Nuova, Roma 2007, pp. 5-23. Si veda anche il sito del docente.
  • ID., “The Cultural-Historical Roots and the Conceptual Construction of Laicity”, in Creemers Jelle and Geybels Hans (edd.), Religion and State in Secular Europe Today. Theoretical Perspectives and Case Studies. Series: Annua Nuntia Lovaniensia, no. 79. Leuven-Paris-Bristol, CT: Peeters Publishers, 2019: 35-71.
  • ZANGHÌ G. M., “Il sociale come liberazione dell’utopia. L’attesa di oggi”, in “Nuova Umanità” XXV (2003/6) 150, pp. 655-672.

3. Recommended reference texts:

  • D’ADDIO M., Storia delle dottrine politiche, ECIG, Roma 2002.
  • PEZZIMENTI R., La società aperta e i suoi amici, Roma 2008 (Una parte concordata col docente).
  • GENTILE G., RONGA L., BERTELLI M., Sképsis. La filosofia come ricerca, 3 voll., Il Capitello Ed., Torino 2016.
  • RYAN A., On Politics: a History of Political Thought from Herodotus to the Present, Penguin, London 2013.
  • COHEN M. (ed.), Princeton Readings in Political Thought: Essential Texts from Plato to Populism, Princeton University Press, Princeton (NJ)1996.

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