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Liberalism: Ancient and Modern Leo Strauss
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Liberalism: Ancient and Modern Leo Strauss


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  • 1. Liberalism Ancient and Modern Leo Strauss (1968)Cristina Varela, Ciencia Política (2009-1) 1 of 15 10-2011
  • 2. Contents 1. Concepts 2. Power of education 3. Ideal of democracy and democracy as it is 4. Perspectives of liberalism: classic and modern doctrine 5. Preface to Spinozas critique of religion: Teologico- Political predicament 6. Critical view 1.What is liberal education 2.Liberal education and responsibility 3.The liberalism of classical political philosophy 7. Index 4.On the Minos 5.Notes on Lucretius 6. How to begin to study the guide of the perplexed 7.Marsilius of Padua 8.An Epilogue 9.Preface to Spinozas critique of religionCristina Varela 2 10. Perspectives on the good society
  • 3. Concepts Liberalism Conservatism CommunismLiberal democracy Progressivism Classical andModern Political PhilosophyCristina Varela 3 G.Almond
  • 4. Liberal Education Liberal Liberal education is education education is towards culture. liberation from Will consist in studying with vulgarity the proper care the great apeirokalia books which the greatest for the greeks minds have left behind. A study which the more experienced pupils assist the Lack of experience in less experienced pupils, things beautiful including the beginners.Cristina Varela 4
  • 5. It cannot be simply indoctrination Liberal education is education in a variety of cultures. Culture is any pattern of conduct common to any human group. Liberal education is literate education: education in letters or through letters.Cristina Varela 5
  • 6. Ideal of democracy & democracy as it is Modern Democracy: Far from being universal aristocracy, would be mass rule were it not for the fact that the mass cannot rule, but is ruled by elites. Democracy is then not indeed mass rule, but mass culture. Mass Culture is a culture Elites: groupings of which can be appropriated men who for what by the meanest capacities ever reason are on without an intellectual an top. moral effort, at a very low monetary price.Cristina Varela 6
  • 7. "Liberal education is the ladder by which we try to ascend from mass democracy to democracy as originally meant. Liberal education is the necessary endeavor to found an aristocracy within democratic mass society." La educación liberal es la escalera por la cual ascendemos de la democracia de masa a la democracia como fué originalmente concebida. La educación liberal es el esfuerzo necesario para fundar una aristocracia dentro de la sociedad democrática de masas.Cristina Varela 7
  • 8. "Philosophy is quest for wisdom or quest for knowledge regarding the most important, the highest or the most comprehensive things; is virtue and is Education in the happiness". However, Monologues into Noesis highest sense is "Wisdom is a Dialogue Noeseos philosophy. Plato inaccessible to man, and hence virtue and understanding of understanding happiness will be Metatheory always imperfect." Philosophy vs Politics Liberal Education demands "By becoming aware of the the complete break with the dignity of the mind, we Noise, Rush, cheapness, thoughtlessness of therealize the true ground of the Vanity Fair of thedignity of man and there with intellectuals as well as of their enemies. the goodness of society." Strauss 8
  • 9. The word Liberal always have had a political meaning, is almost opposite to its present political meaning.Justice of a societyruled by gentlemenruling their own right? Gentlemans vs Philosophers Just government is government who rules in the interest of the whole society, and not merely of a part. 9
  • 10. Modern Doctrine Starts from the natural equality of all men. Sovereignty belongs to the people. Sovereignty as to guarantee the natural rights of each. It achieves this result by distinguishing between the sovereign and the government and by demanding that the fundamental governmental powers be separated from one another. " Veo hombres piadosos que querrían sofocar la libertad, como si la Classic Doctrine libertad, ese gran privilegio del hombre, no fuese una cosa casi santa. Más allá veo otros que piensan llegar a ser libres atacando todas las creencias; pero no veo a nadie que parezca percibir el vínculo estrecho y necesario que une la república, la religión y la libertad." Alexis de ToquevilleCristina Varela 10
  • 11. The liberal temperPOSITIVISM in Greek Politics Sartre EXISTENTIALISM "Siempre habrá una diferencia no pequeña entre sujetar a una muchedumbre y gobernar Havelock a una sociedad." Natural Law: Descartes the great principles of reason and "The men who will hold power will be the men of equity. Burkethe learned professions." "En toda comunidad tiene que Hamilton haber una obediencia, bajo el mecanismo de la constitución estatal según leyes de coacción, pero al mismo tiempo un espíritu de libertad, puesto que cada uno aspira a ser Harm Principle convencido por la razón de que esa coacción es conforme al derecho, a fin de no caer en contradicción consigo misma." Mill 11
  • 12. Aristotelian Political Science & New Political Science1. For Aristotle, political science is identical to political philosophy. New political philosophy argues the distinction between philosophy and science.2. No natural awareness is genuine knowledge. New political science is no longer based in political experience, only scientific knowledge is genuine knowledge.3. According to the Aristotelian political science, views political things in the perspective of the citizen, it follows that language. The new political science cannot speak without having an elaborated technical vocabulary.4. Aristotelian political science evaluates political things. The new political science conceives of the principle of action as values which are merely subjective.5. Aristotelian man is the rational and political animal: zoonpolitikon/ connection between morality and law. The whole consist of essentially different parts. The new political science in the other hand is based on the fundamental premise that there are no essential differences: there are only difference of degree. According to the universal science of which the new political science is part, to understand a thing means to understand it in terms of its genesis or its conditions. New political science cannot admit that the common good is something that it is. 12
  • 13. Theologico-Political Predicament"Theologico-political predicament" refers to the ultimate results of the early modern attempt to separate theology from politics.Spinoza: natural difference between nature and morality. Everything that is, is natural. For Spinoza there are no natural ends, there is no natural end to man. A man end is not natural, but rational. 13
  • 14. Theologico-Political EpicureanismTreatise Is hedonism, the classic form of the critique of religion. Is so radicallySpinoza cannot legitimately deny the mercenary that itpossibility of revelation. Philosophy, the conceives of theoreticalquest for evident and necessary doctrines as the meansknowledge, rest itself on an unevident for liberating the minddecision, on an act of will, just as faith. from the terrors of religion. EpicureanismHence the antagonism between Spinoza fights the religiousand Judaism, between unbelief and delusion because of itsbelief, is ultimately not theoretical, but terrible character.moral. Modern Unbelief Modern unbelief is no longer Epicurean. Fights because it is a delusion: regardless of wether religion is terrible or comforting, qua delusion it makes men oblivious to the real goods, of the enjoyment of the real goods, and thus seduces them into being cheated of the real. 14
  • 15. Critical View"The success of liberal politics and liberaleconomics frequently rests on irrational forms ofrecognition that liberalism was supposed toovercome. For democracy to work, citizens need todevelop an irrational pride in their own democraticinstitutions, and must also develop what Tocquevillecalled the “art of associating,” which rests onprideful attachment to small communities. Thesecommunities are frequently based on religion,ethnicity, or other forms of recognition that fallshort of the universal recognition on which theliberal state is based. The same is true for liberaleconomics. Labor has traditionally been understoodin the Western liberal economic tradition as anessentially unpleasant activity undertaken for thesake of the satisfaction of human desires and therelief of human pain." The end of history, FrancisFukuyama. 15
  • 16. State of World Freedom in 2009 Free (89) Partly Free (58) Not Free (47)Map reflecting the findings of Freedom Houses 2010 survey, concerning thestate of world freedom in 2009, which correlates highly with other measuresof democracy . Some of these estimates are disputed. 16
  • 17. Index of Recommended Names Bibliography Índice Onomástico Bibliografía recomendadaAristotle Ackerman, Bruce: La justicia social en el Estado liberalBacon, Francis Aristóteles: La política., Ética a NicómacoBurke, Edmund Bentham, Jeremy: Anarchical FallaciesCohen, Hermann Buchanan, James: Social choice, Democracy and freeComte, Auguste markets.Democritus Constant,Benjamin: De la liberatad de los antiguosDescartes, René comparada con la de los modernos.Epicurus Gardner, Ron: The strategic inconsistenciy of ParetianGoethe Liberalism.Hamilton, Alexander Habermas, Jürgen: The structural transformation of the publicHavelock, Eric A. sphere., Conciencia moral y acción comunicativa.Hegel, Georg Hume, David: Enquiry Concerning Human Understanding,Heidegger, Martin Treatise of Human Nature.Herzl, Theodor Herlz, Theodor: The Jews State.Hobbes, Thomas Kant, Emmanuel: Teoría y Praxis., Fundamentación para unaKant, Emmanuel teoría de las costumbres.Kojève, Alexandre Locke, John: Some Thoughts Concerning Education.,Locke, John Federalist PapersLucretius Mill, John Stuart: Sobre la libertad.Machiavelli Nietzsche, Friedrich: Also Sprach Zarathustra.Maimonides Nozick, Robert: Anarquía, Estado y Utopía.Marx, Karl Platón: La República.Mill, J. St. Polanyi, Michael: Lifes irreductible structure.Montesquieu, Charles de Secondat, Baron Rawls, John: La justicia como equidad., Teoría de la justicia, ElNietzsche, Friedrich liberalismo político.Plato Rousseau, Jean Jacques: El Contrato Social.Protagoras Spinoza, Baruch de: Tratado Teológico Político., La ÉticaRosenzweig, Franz Strauss, Leo: On tyranny: Tyranny and wisdom, AlexanderRousseau, Jean Jaques Kojéve., leostrausscenter.uchicago.eduSpinoza Toqueville, Alexis de: La Democracia en América.Thomas Aquinas Wollstonecraft, Mary: A vindication of men rights.Thucydides 17