One of the most original political thinkers of the Enlightenment, Montesquieu utilized his passionate belief in toleration and the moral benefits of science to construct a naturalistic system of political science based on the study of history, comparative government, and human behavior. This volume reveals Montesquieu's purpose by exploring the range of his literary output, focusing on his scandalous novel, The Persian Letters (1721), his philosophical history, Considerations on the Greatness and Decline of the Romans (1734), and his magnum opus, (...) The Spirit of the Laws (1748). (shrink)
A political philosophy classic from one of the foremost political thinkers of the twentieth century After Utopia was Judith Shklar’s first book, a harbinger of her renowned career in political philosophy. Throughout the many changes in political thought during the last half century, this important work has withstood the test of time. In After Utopia, Shklar explores the decline of political philosophy, from Enlightenment optimism to modern cultural despair, and she offers a critical, creative analysis of this downward trend. She (...) looks at Romantic and Christian social thought, and she shows that while the present political fatalism may be unavoidable, the prophets of despair have failed to explain the world they so dislike, leaving the possibility of a new and vigorous political philosophy. With a foreword by Samuel Moyn, examining After Utopia’s continued relevance, this current edition introduces a remarkable synthesis of ideas to a new generation of readers. (shrink)
A compelling set of lectures on political obligation that contributes to ongoing debates in political theory and intellectual history This stimulating collection of lectures by the late Judith Shklar on political obligation is paired with a scholarly introduction that offers an overview of her life, illuminates the connections among her teaching, research, and publications, and explains why her lectures still resonate with us and contribute to current debates in political theory and intellectual history.