Category: Political Philosophy

Libertarianism by Matt Zwolinski

This article provides a comprehensive overview of libertarianism. While the article as a whole is complex, two sections are especially accessible. The opening section is especially accessible. Teachers might present this to students as a way of introducing the topic to them. The concluding section – ‘Libertarianism as an Overlapping Consensus’ – could help to […]

New Freeland

This proposed constitution for New Zealand outlines the principles that some libertarians think should govern a state. Libertarianism is a political system that holds that freedom, or liberty, is the primary political value. Libertarians oppose big government, and many of the benefits that governments purport to offer. Teachers might present students with extracts from this […]

Poverty and Political Freedom by Rajeev Bhargava

This article addresses the relationship between poverty and democracy. The author argues that political freedoms are important for the poor, and for a number of reasons. He argues that while authoritarian governments can sometimes provide for the immediate, more pressing needs of their citizens, it is democracy which fully addresses those needs in the long-term. […]

Liberalism by Gerald Gaus

Title: Liberalism Author: Gerald Gaus Location: This article provides a nice account of the distinction between negative liberty (section 1.2) and positive liberty (section 1.3). These two sections could be used to introduce the topic of freedom, and to get students thinking about what it means to be free. Some people think, for example, […]

Confucius and the Golden Rule

Title: Confucius: The Golden Rule Editor: Freedman, Russell Publisher: Scholastic Press Location: New York ISBN: 0439139570 A short illustrated introduction to the life and philosophy of Confucius which is suitable for both teenagers and adults. Confucius was the most influential Chinese philosopher in history.

I Met the Walrus

In 1969, a 14 year old Beatle fanatic named Jerry Levitan snuck into John Lennons hotel room in Toronto and convinced him to do an interview. 38 years later an animated short film was made called I Met the Walrus using the original interview recording as the soundtrack. During the interview Lennon makes some interesting […]

Immigration by Christopher Wellman

This article discusses, in detail, the various issues that pertain to immigration. The article is broad in scope, and is, for this reason, quite long. It does, however, contain some accessible passages. Teachers might pull certain passages out of the article, and present them to students. Alternatively, they might use the ideas presented in the […]

In Praise of Migration by Kofi Annan

This short article, by Kofi Annan, former Secretary General of the United Nations, presents some of the issues pertaining to immigration. Annan offers an eloquent defense of migration, and details some of the problems that migration engenders. This excellent article might be given to students as an introduction to the subject.

Is Immigration a Human Right by Philip Spiegel

This article reports on Kieran Oberman, a post-doctoral scholar looking at some of the issues surrounding immigration. Oberman argues that immigration should be a right, and that it is a necessary component of freedom of movement, which, like other freedoms, is exceedingly important. He suggests that certain limits on immigration can be justified, and concedes […]