- Combining political theory and historical practice;
- insight in the nature of citizenship in ancient Greece, both as a system in its own right and in comparison with political systems of other times and places;
- improving writing skills and quality of oral discussion;
- grasping the core ideas of complicated primary and secondary texts;
- practice oral presentation.
Studying the political structures of a historical society invites analysis by comparison of similarities and differences of such systems in various historical societies. Can we understand ancient and modern democracies better by comparing the two systems? This course will try to answer such questions, combining an analysis of ancient Greek polis-systems in their own right with a comparative approach.|
In archaic and classical Greece, political ideology and political theory took it for granted that all citizens should participate actively in the life of the polis. Opinions diverged quite strongly, however, on the question who were qualified to be citizens and what participation should entail. Generally speaking, political movements and political theories tended to favour either the selection of a small group (an aristocratic or oligarchic approach) or the inclusion of the entire male citizen population (a democratic approach). The meaning of these two basic approaches to politics needs to be analysed against the background of historical, social and political relationships. Topics include: the comparative analysis of political systems; the idea of justice in archaic Greece; the divide between rich and poor and its impact on politics; the role of religion in the polis; pro and contra democracy in classical Athens; the political theories of Plato and Aristotle.
Awareness of relevance of ancient world for modern society; skills of oral and written presentation
The entrance requirements for Exchange Students will be checked by the International Office and the Programme coordinator. Acceptance is not self-evident.