Readings in Political Ideology

After a longish hiatus, the Fantin Reading Group has returned for 2018 with a course of readings in classical political ideology. The texts have been chosen both to provide a general introduction to modern political thought, as well as a grounding in the broader philosophical context with which anarchism must contend. Discussion will aim to subject the texts to anarchist critique, as well as improve participants’ understanding of anarchism by situating it amongst its siblings and rivals.

The seven readings selected here are presented with a gesture of gratitude to Verity Burgmann, who delivered her excellent course on Modern Political Thought at the University of Melbourne from 1981–2012, and from whose reader from that subject the following excerpts were taken.

The Enlightenment (and Romanticism)
Jean-Jacques Rousseau, “A Discourse on the Origin of Inequality” [1753]
(2pm, Sun. 13 May)

Liberalism
John Stuart Mill, “On Liberty” [1859]
(2pm, Sun. 10 June)

Classical Marxism
Karl Marx and Frederick Engels, “The Communist Manifesto” [1848]
(2pm, Sun. 8 July)

Anarchism
Mikhail Bakunin, “State and Society” [1867–1871]
(2pm, Sun. 12 Aug.)

Leninism
V. I. Lenin, “The State and Revolution” [1917]
(2pm, Sun. 9 Sept.)

Fascism
Benito Mussolini, “The Doctrine of Fascism” [1932]
(2pm, Sun. 14 Oct.)

Socialism
Oscar Wilde, “The Soul of Man Under Socialism” [1891]
(2pm, Sun. 11 Nov.)

All welcome.

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