Module Identifier IP32220  
Academic Year 2003/2004  
Co-ordinator Professor Howard L Williams  
Semester Semester 1  
Other staff Professor Howard L Williams  
Course delivery Lecture   11 Hours (11 x 1 hour)  
  Seminars / Tutorials   11 Hours (11 x 1 hour)  
Assessment TypeAssessment Length/DetailsProportion
Semester Exam3 Hours  100%
Supplementary Exam Students may, subject to Faculty approval, have the opportunity to resit this module, normally during the supplementary examination period. For further clarification please contact the Teaching Programme Administrator in the Department of International Politics. 

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module students should be able to:
To ensure that the student:

Brief description

This module provides an advanced introduction to political theory and a close analysis of specific ideas and thinkers.


The aims of this course are to introduce the student to the use and critical appraisal of some of the principal texts in political thought. This will be done through the study of key classical writers and the investigation of a number of ideologies such as liberalism, nationalism, conservatism, fascism, socialism, and anarchism.


These are the anticipated lecture topics:

1. Plato's Republic
2. Augustine and the City of God
3. Machiavelli's The Prince
4. Liberal political ideology - Hobbes and Locke
5. Liberalism and Utilitarianism - John Stuart Mill, James Mill & Bentham
6. Conservatism - contemporary and classical
7. Fascism - is there a coherent ideology?
8. Anarchism - Bakunin, Godwin and Kropotkin
9. Feminism - classical and contemporary
10. Socialism - is there a non-marxist socialism?
11. Nationalist Political Thought

Transferable skills

This module will provide the opportunity for students to develop their oral, intellectual and communication skills. In the lectures emphasis will be placed on understanding, following the argument and summarizing it concisely. In the seminars emphasis will be placed on developing clear, cogent and persuasive arguments. The seminars offer the opportunity for students to show independent reasoning and judgement. Essay writing will encourage students to carry out research on their own initiative and to develop their IT presentation skills. The examination will test knowledge retention, comprehension and skills of analysis under conditions of time constraint.

10 ECTS credits

Reading Lists

L Strauss & J Cropsey (1963) History of Political Philosophy Chicago
** Recommended Text
A Vincent (1995) Modern Political Ideologies Blackwell
B Goodwin (1997) Using Political Ideas Wiley
H Williams (1991) Political Theory in International Relations Open University Press


This module is at CQFW Level 6