December 2009

The Indispensability of Political Theology
By Thaddeus Kozinski on December 01, 2009

Political philosophy requires political theology for its fullest intelligibility and justification, particularly when treating of fundamental political questions, such as: “What is the ideal political order?” I think this is a true statement, and here are some supporting interlocutors.

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Hey, little kids, do you want some candy? Part II
By Gerson Moreno-Riano on December 02, 2009

For those who read Part I of this post, you may recall that a fellow academic or “lead assessor” was conducting a meeting in which I was present. This lead assessor colleague of mine decided to deploy a positive reinforcement technique through the handing out of Hershey Chocolate Bars to all contributing participants.

I sat in complete horror and disbelief. All of the sudden I realized that this elementary technique of positive reinforcement, one that has been tried on little children and canine mutts everywhere would be deployed on all of my colleagues and myself.

“What would happen next?” I wondered. How would this candy be given out? What were the rules of this game?

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Newman and/versus Pieper
By Gabriel Martinez on December 04, 2009

At my university, every Fall the freshmen sit down with faculty, the day before classes start, to discuss a famous book: Pieper's Leisure, the Basis of Culture. This year, I was struck by the, well, inconsistency between what Pieper holds and what John Henry Newman held in The Idea of a University (or, for that matter, JPII in Ex Corde Ecclesiae).

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Moral Imagination and the Point of Education
By RJ Snell on December 07, 2009

Intellect or Imagination? What ought we primarily train?

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Active Learning in Comparative Politics
By Steven McGuire on December 09, 2009

I’m a political theorist, but I teach comparative politics as well. Instead of canvassing the whole subfield in my introductory class, rapidly moving from topic to topic, I focus on the varieties of democracy and the possibilities for democratic consolidation in traditionally non-democratic societies. I’m sure it’s more usual to offer a full survey of the subfield, but I’ve heard too many grad students (and professors) say they don’t remember their introductory courses in comparative, so I try to give the students a chance to sink their teeth into something.

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Western Civilization and World War Two
By Anonymous on December 11, 2009

I am looking to connect the two title themes in a more explicit way, and I am soliciting suggestions for sources and methods.

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Teaching Liberty: It Don’t Come Easy
By Anthony Gill on December 14, 2009

Teaching about liberty should be an easy task, right? After all, who doesn’t love freedom?

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En Memoriam: Paul Samuelson (1915-2009)
By Gary Scott on December 14, 2009

One of history’s most accomplished economists—Paul Samuelson—died Sunday in Belmont, Massachusetts at age 94.

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Introducing The Subfields of Political Science: Big Questions for Contemporary Politics, Part VII
By John von Heyking on December 17, 2009

For our discussion of Islamic politics, I assign readings on radical political Islam. Many of these consider the difference between radical political Islam and the way politics has traditionally been understood by Muslims over the centuries. Even so, the focus is on the radical side in order to gain a deeper understanding of it.

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Economic Rhetoric
By Gabriel Martinez on December 18, 2009

In this post I pick up a thread left behind long ago, and offer some initial reflections on the pedagogy of economic rhetoric.

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