Level of Study
Objectives and Content
Political philosophy involves the analysis and evaluation of political institutions, practices, and ideals. This introductory course focuses on literature from the second half of the 20th century onwards, and covers topics that are of relevance to contemporary political life, for example: justice in the distribution of wealth, equality of opportunity, just taxation, the limits of individual freedom, gender equality, racial equality, the rights of cultural minorities, the value of democracy, and the extent of political obligation.
After completing the course, the student should have
- a general overview of key concepts, theories and controversies in political theory
- a general understanding of similarities and differences between different theoretical approaches, argumentation ways and ways of presentation
After completing the course, the student should be able to
- recognize and critically evaluate theoretical main positions, argumentation ways and ways of presentation in philosophical literature and in public policy discussions
- convey feature of these main positions and reasoning methods in academic as well as in public contexts
- reflect on the relevance of different directions in contemporary political theory for understanding the current social, cultural and institutional change processes
After completing the course, the student should be competent to
- independently identify and evaluate the key literature in contemporary political theory
- to impart knowledge about this literature and the perspectives it provides on current issues both to a professional and a general public
- to assess the relevance of central concepts and theories in the analysis of and reflection on key political controversy
- identify and critically evaluate argumentation ways and ways of presentation in both professional and general texts on social, cultural and institutional change processes
The course can be part of a bachelor's degree with a specialization in philosophy. In combination with other topics and subjects may be included in an education that qualifies for teaching philosophy in high school or college. The course may also be suitable to support specialization in fundamental questions in connection with the study of other subjects.
Recommended Previous Knowledge
Approved first semester studies. A good proficiency in English is necessary since it ought to be assumed that much of the prescribed reading will be in English.
Credit Reduction due to Course Overlap
Access to the Course
The course is open to students admitted at the University of Bergen
Teaching and learning methods
Teaching is offered in the form of lectures and/or seminars.
The number of gatherings may be reduced if the number of students attending the course is less than 4. In that case, the students will be compensated with individual or group tutoring.
Compulsory Assignments and Attendance
Passing grade in two end-of-course tests
Forms of AssessmentIn the fall semester 2020, the form of assessment has been changed from school exam to 5 hour home exam, as a measure to prevent transmission of the corona virus.
From A to F
The teaching will be evaluated from time to time.
For written exams, please note that the start time may change from 09:00 to 15:00 or vice versa until 14 days prior to the exam. Autumn 2020 written exams will be arranged either at home or on campus. Please see course information on MittUiB.
Type of assessment: Written examination at home
- 22.09.2020, 09:00
- 5 hours
- Examination system
- Digital exam