Freedom by Design: An Introduction to Modernity

New School for Social Research: Politics

Liberal Arts
Graduate Course
Degree Students (with Restrictions)
Freedom by Design
Spring 2024
Taught By: James E Miller
Section: A

CRN: 14651

Credits: 3

Organized as a survey of texts and artifacts epitomizing core beliefs and practices typical of the modern world, even among contemporary critics of liberalism and capitalism, this seminar brings students with a primary interest in writing, publishing, and design together to explore a variety of themes and texts that epitomize some of the critical concerns of our age. A recurrent concern will be the paradox of trying to discern patterns in social interaction and history, and then, in accordance with these forms, to design a freer and more just society. Among the issues discussed are freedom and the ironies of institutional efforts to promote and protect freedom; emancipatory visions and the paradoxes of progress; the end of chattel slavery and European colonialism and the rise of subtle new forms of liberal subjugation; materialist views of human nature and the limits of rational freedom vis-à-vis animal instinct; the idea of the avant-garde and the picture of modern culture as a veiled civil war; the continuing challenges posed by power politics, total war, and totalitarianism. Among the authors read are Rousseau, Smith, Kant, Goethe, Olaudauh Equiano, Madison, Robespierre, Condorcet, Hegel, Marx, Emerson, Nietzsche, Dostoevsky, Joseph Conrad, Freud, Darwin, Ernst Junger, Georg Lukacs, Marinetti, Tristan Tzara, Andre Breton, Kafka, Jean Amery, Walter Benjamin, Hannah Arendt, and Michel Foucault. The class in addition will be discussing various pieces of music and works of art, including several films.

College: New School for Social Research (GF)

Department: Politics (POL)

Campus: New York City (GV)

Course Format: Seminar (R)

Modality: In-Person

Max Enrollment: 13

Add/Drop Deadline: February 4, 2024 (Sunday)

Online Withdrawal Deadline: April 16, 2024 (Tuesday)

Seats Available: Yes

Status: Closed*

* Status information is updated every few minutes. The status of this course may have changed since the last update. Open seats may have restrictions that will prevent some students from registering. Updated: 7:36am EDT 4/21/2024

Meeting Info:
Days: Tuesday
Times: 11:55am - 1:40pm
Building: 6 East 16th Street
Room: 902
Date Range: 1/23/2024 - 5/7/2024