What does a sociological understanding of politics offer that older disciplines of political science or political philosophy do not?
Without seeking to replace them, it starts from a recognition that, since the 19th century, politics in modern states has been not just about the business of rule, but also about social questions - health, housing, education, even lifestyle choices. The more the state can take an interest in our lives the more our lives are bound up with politics. This means that terms like 'democracy' or 'republic' or 'monarchy' refer not only to technical matters like parliaments or the separation of powers, but also to the lives people lead.
In this module we will try to capture some of that approach to politics. Topics examined will include: the scope of state action, the meaning of totalitarianism, the relationship between religion and politics in Europe and the Middle East, the link between types of regime and types of class structure, the social origins of revolution, and the place of politics in a human life.
Timing and CATS
This module will run in the Spring Term and is worth 15 CATS. INFORMATION TBC