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Modern Theories of Politics


Evangelia Sembou

Everything you ever wanted to know about modern political theory, but never dared to ask …
This book offers a concise introduction to the main ideas and arguments of the major political thinkers of modernity. It considers the following key thinkers: Hobbes, Locke, Bentham, J. S. Mill, Rousseau, Burke, Hegel and Marx.
Perhaps the best way to understand the ideas of a thinker is to read from their work. This book devotes each chapter to the main writings of a single thinker, providing excerpts from their work and explaining their views in detail. Readers are not expected to have any previous knowledge of the writings of these eight political philosophers, but by the end they should have a solid grasp of their central ideas. This book serves as an essential guide to some of the most important writings on political philosophy of modern times.


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American Declaration of Independence 222 American Revolution 161, 222 Aristotle 2, 7, 49, 166, 168, 197 Bauer, Bruno 207, 210–211, 212 Bentham, Jeremy Chapter 3, biography 49 every act of disobedience 59 attitude towards community 52 attitude towards power 62, 67–68 and critics 52–53 and female suffrage 65 on inequality 67–68 limits to Bentham’s view of politics 66–67 mandates 61–62 as materialist 51 methodology 49 and James Mill 71 and John Stuart Mill 71, 73, 78 parliamentary reform 63ff, 67 and pleasure and pain as motivations 52, 54–57 and political society 58–60 political theory 57–69 punishment 57 role of legislators 53–54, 63–65, 67 role of judiciary and law 60–61, 66, 68–69 role of people 62–63 and the sovereign 61–62 and state of nature 58–59 tasks of government 67 utilitarianism 50–57, 60–61, 74 defined 51–52, 53n on wealth and power 68 writings 2, 3, 49–50, 63 Bible, the 25. 31 body politic 142, 143, 144 bourgeois 13, 30 Marxists and 30, 222–223 Burke, Edmund 2, Chapter 6, biography 161 and British Constitution 182 and chivalry 169, 171 on civil rights 166 conception of the state 167, 168 and constitutional king 180 criticism of natural rights 164–167, 174 and doctrine of expediency 167 and Established Church 172–173 on feudalism 169–171 on French Revolutionary Government 163, 177, 178–182 on government 175 and Hobbes 165 and modern Conservatism 171...

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