Listed in: Political Science, as POSC-325
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Andrew Poe (Section 01)
Is there the possibility of an anarchic politics, a politics without rule? Political science has often read anarchy as a political problem: The end of sovereign government through civil war, corruption, or collapsing institutions becomes the end of politics itself. But how necessary is government to social collaboration and political action? Is a radical anarchic politics—a politics without government, without domination and without rule—possible today? This course explores anarchism’s contemporary possibility, attempting to explicate the politics that might come from resistance to rule. Anarchism has historically taken many forms—from organized resistance to state authority and police to the shared “commons” and mutual aid societies, from experimental communes to the general strike. In this advanced political science seminar, students will be asked to think experimentally about these anarchist political ideas and practices. Through close engagement with anarchist political pamphlets, as well as key texts in late modern and contemporary political theory—including Proudhon, Kropotkin, Goldman, Benjamin, Deleuze, and Rancière, amongst others—this course will explore the variations of anarchist political thought. In this way, this course will offer a tracing of anarchism’s developments as a constellation of resistant theories and techniques, as well as their place in contemporary politics.
Requisite: Prior coursework in POSC or LJST. Limited to 20 students. Not open to first-year students. Admission with consent of the instructor. Fall semester. Professor Poe.
If Overenrolled: Preference to juniors, and then a mix of seniors and sophomores. No first year students will be permitted to enroll in this course.