Spring 2022

Education for Democracy

Listed in: , as EDST-301  |  Philosophy, as PHIL-301


Jyl Gentzler (Section 01)
Lauren J. Leydon-Hardy (Section 01)


(Offered as PHIL 301 and EDST 301) In the past decade or so, public support for liberal democratic institutions has waned significantly all over the world. The solution, some argue, is to educate our citizens better so that they understand the value of liberalism and democracy and so that they develop the knowledge and character required to exercise the rights of a citizen in a liberal democracy responsibly and well. In this class, we will consider and assess philosophical arguments for and against both liberalism and democracy. In light of this inquiry, we will consider what it would mean to educate for citizenship in a liberal democracy. Readings will be drawn from the works of Plato, John Locke, John Stuart Mill, Horace Mann, John Dewey, Alexander Meiklejohn, John Rawls, Amy Guttman, David Estlund, Thomas Christiano, Elizabeth Anderson, Danielle Allen and Martha Nussbaum, among others.

Limited to 25 students. Spring semester. Professors Gentzler and Leydon-Hardy.

Students who enroll in this course will likely encounter and be expected to engage in the following intellectual skills, modes of learning, and assessment: emphasis on written work, readings, independent research, oral presentations, group work. Students with documented disabilities who will require accommodations in this course should be in consultation with Accessibility Services and reach out to the faculty member as soon as possible to ensure that accommodations can be made in a timely manner.


2023-24: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Spring 2022