“A comfortable, smooth, reasonable, democratic unfreedom prevails in advanced industrial civilization, a token of technical progress” (Marcuse, 1991: 3) One- Dimensional Man by Herbert Marcuse is one of my favourite books offering powerful critique of growing conformity, new modes of domination and social control. In particular, Part I One- Dimensional Society gives very good perspective… Continue reading Conformity of our times. One- Dimensional Man by Herbert Marcuse
Aristotle claimed that Plato, who focused on ideal political system, failed to provide accessible form of knowledge that statesmen need. Aristotle applied inductive and rationalist approach to studying human beings as political animals, unity of polis and the best practicable political regıme. Aristotle aim was to limit social conflicts and advise how to advance the… Continue reading The best practicable regime according to Aristotle
Recently, during PhD course Liberalism and Its Critics (Political Theory course) we discussed Hannah Arendt’s The Human Condition. Those who are familiar with her work know that Arendt was very demanding political thinker (she was not a philosopher, as she said herself). Arendt claimed that modernity destroyed participation in the public affairs. We do not… Continue reading Existential Questions
There are numerous critics of Hayek’s theory of minimal state and his justification of social and economic inequalities in the name of progress of civilization. He also claimed that social redistribution was wrong because redistributing taxes from the rich to the poor is a violation of individual liberties. In other words, he was a proponent… Continue reading Liberalism and Democracy: Marriage of Convenience? Constitution of Liberty by F. Hayek
Berlin discusses distinction between negative and positive concepts of liberty. Negative liberty covers the area within which the individual can act without interference by other persons (169). Person is free when is unobstructed by other to do what he/she wish to do. Negative liberty is a “normal” sense of liberty. The positive concept of liberty… Continue reading Review: Two Concepts of Liberty by Isaiah Berlin
In The Liberalism of Fear, Shklar develops her view on political liberalism. Firstly, the author argues the main aim of liberalism is to secure political conditions that are necessary for exercise of political freedom (p.3). Liberalism does not have any particular doctrine and does not depend on specific religious or philosophical system of thought. On… Continue reading Response to Liberalism of Fear by Judith N. Shklar
“…if you are not like everybody else, then you are abnormal, if you are abnormal , then you are sick. These three categories, not being like everybody else, not being normal and being sick are in fact very different but have been reduced to the same thing” Michel Foucault, (2004) “Je suis un artificier”.
Democracy in America by Tocqueville has been the best book that I have read in 20016. It is beautifully written book on democracy and its perils. Through insightful observation of American democracy Tocqueville understood not only American system but also political situation of European countries. Tocqueville is one of the few philosophers, who offered unbiased… Continue reading What kind of despotism we should fear?
First semester of PhD in Political Science and International Relations absorbs me completely and I do not have time to write book reviews regularly. Therefore, today I am going to share with you a bit of my world instead. Devotion and loyalty of citizens to the state have always been the subject of political philosophers’… Continue reading Civil Religion
“A born king is a very rare being” J.J. Rousseau