All Western philosophy is said to be a “series of footnotes to Plato.” For the inaugural week of the Political Studies Program, fellows will have a choice between two seminars devoted to close reading of the Republic or the Gorgias.

In discussing each Platonic dialogue, fellows will reflect on the ethical dilemmas implied by the pursuit of power, in politics and other realms, and on how we should conduct ourselves in a world in which the demands of justice and the demands of political necessity often seem to conflict.

Image Credit: Acropolis of Athens by Leo von Klenze, 1846, Wikipedia Commons

Ben Storey on Why We Are Restless, Moderated by Ryan Hanley

Faculty

Ryan P. Hanley

Ryan Patrick Hanley is Professor of Political Science at Boston College. His research in the history of political philosophy focuses on the Enlightenment. He is the author of Our Great Purpose: Adam Smith on Living a Better Life and Love’s Enlightenment: Rethinking Charity in Modernity.

Benjamin Storey

Benjamin Storey is Associate Professor of Politics and International Affairs at Furman University. His interests focus on the history of political philosophy. He recently co-authored a book with Jenna Silber Storey entitled Why We Are Restless: On the Modern Quest for Contentment.

Preview the Syllabus by Week/Session

Other Courses You Might Be Interested In

Shakespeare’s Henry V

Explore Shakespeare’s insights into the exercise of power.

Dostoevsky’s The Brothers Karamazov

Meditate on Dostoevsky’s final – and greatest – novel.

Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall Apart & No Longer at Ease

Reflect on two great novels from the father of modern African literature.

Foundations of Political Philosophy

Delve into the principles of political rhetoric or explore Shakespeare's lessons for politics.

The Limits of Politics

Explore the boundaries of politics from the perspective of the household and the divine.

Aristotle

Engage in close study of Aristotle’s Nicomachean Ethics and Politics.