PLSC 118 - Lecture 3 - Natural Law Roots of the Social Contract Tradition

Lecture 3 - Natural Law Roots of the Social Contract Tradition

Overview

Before exploring the three Enlightenment traditions in particular, Professor Shapiro examines the Enlightenment holistically, using John Locke as the foundation for the discussion. The first tenet of the Enlightenment is a commitment to science as a way of ordering politics, and Professor Shapiro introduces the Cartesian philosophy of science and segues into an elucidation of the workmanship ideal, a central feature of Enlightenment thinking. Corollary to the workmanship ideal, the second tenet of the Enlightenment is the equality of men, ergo an emphasis on individual rights. Does this latter tenet give the basis for the resistance of authority? Throughout the lecture, Professor Shapiro uses a number of primary sources to depict the foundations of Enlightenment thought. Although Locke's thinking is deeply rooted in theology, these topics will reemerge time and time again in different contexts during the course of the semester.

Resources

Assignment

Locke, Second Treatise of Government, chapters 1-8
Locke, First Treatise of Government, chapters I-II, VI-VII [optional]
Shapiro, Moral Foundations of Politics, chapter 1 [optional]

Course Media

Transcript

html

Audio

mp3

Low Bandwidth Video

mov [100MB]

High Bandwidth Video

mov [500MB]