Political parties and interest groups’ influence on government policy

Political parties and political interest groups are both intermediaries through which people can make their views known to government and through which they can try to influence public policy. Continue reading Political parties and interest groups’ influence on government policy

The Indelible Stamp Of Our Humble Beginnings: Darwin and Nietzsche

In The Descent of Man, Charles Darwin writes that “Man still bears in his bodily frame the indelible stamp of his lowly origin”. Here, I compare Darwin’s views to those of Friedrich Nietzsche. Continue reading The Indelible Stamp Of Our Humble Beginnings: Darwin and Nietzsche

Historical progress: Karl Marx and Gustave Flaubert

What is the role of historical progress in the ideas of Karl Marx (1818-1883) and Gustave Flaubert (1821-1880)? Progress can be defined as “an improvement or an advance in a desirable direction” (Rotenstreich, 1971), and thus historical progress as those advances made through historical events. Marx and Flaubert similarly use historical progress as a tool for providing us with a snapshot their respective realities, but ultimately have fundamentally different ideas about how they are represented. Continue reading Historical progress: Karl Marx and Gustave Flaubert

When the Winds of Winter return: Game of Thrones episode running time

The new season of Game of Thrones premiers in a little over a month on July 16th; it is set to have seven episodes instead of the usual ten. We do get longer episodes, with the last two – S07E06 and S07E07 – both breaking the show’s record for longest episode. Continue reading When the Winds of Winter return: Game of Thrones episode running time

A Government of Four Institutions: Major Strengths

This essay discusses the major strength of each of the four government institutions examined in the course: Congress, the presidency, the bureaucracy, and the Supreme Court. Without dismissing the obvious notion that each of these institutions has multiple functions, strengths and weaknesses – and each of which worthy of debate – I will here focus on one strength per institution. Continue reading A Government of Four Institutions: Major Strengths

Was Jean-Jacques Rousseau an Enlightenment figure?

This essay compares some of the ideas expressed by Immanuel Kant countered by those expressed by Jean-Jacques Rousseau with regard to enlightenment. More specifically, it considers whether Rousseau can be classified as an enlightenment figure according to the definition of enlightenment proposed by Kant. Continue reading Was Jean-Jacques Rousseau an Enlightenment figure?

A Government Of Laws, Not Of Men

John Adams’ description of the ideal form of government as “a government of laws, not of men” refers to a situation in which all citizens have to be regarded as equals by the government, endowed with equal opportunity, and equally held accountable for their actions, regardless of class, race, wealth and other personal characteristics. Continue reading A Government Of Laws, Not Of Men