DEMOCRACY IN AMERICA

Alexis de Tocqueville wrote Democracy in America in order to examine the effects of the “democratic revolution” that had swept “the entire Christian universe,” the end of aristocratic hierarchy and the birth of democratic equality. Tocqueville regarded this revolution as a fait accompli. But he observed that this new age could take better or worse forms, and he argued that human agency could make some difference in how democracy manifested itself in a given society. Democracy in America examines the most thoroughly democratic society of Tocqueville’s time, the United States of the 1830s, as an example of the distinct benefits offered and challenges posed by the new democratic era. We approach Tocqueville’s magnum opus in order better to understand ourselves, for good and for ill, as democrats and as Americans, and to see what we might learn from him about how to cultivate freedom and pursue excellence in an age of equality.

THIS COURSE HAS CONCLUDED. THE FOLLOWING LESSONS ARE PRE-RECORDED VIDEOS FROM THE SUMMER OF 2022.

Alexis de Tocqueville, Democracy in America. Translated, edited, and with an introduction by Harvey C. Mansfield and Delba Winthrop. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2000. ISBN: 978-0226805368

Course Content

Week One - 7/14 - Volume I: Introduction (pp. 3–15), I.1.2–4 (27–55) I.1.5 (pp. 56–75, 82–93 only), I.2.1–5 (pp. 165–186)

Week Two - 7/21 - I.2.6–9 (pp. 220–295 only)
Week Three - 7/28 - I.2.10 (pp. 302–348, 379–396 only)
Week Four - 8/4 - Volume II: Notice; II.1.1–10, 15–18, 20 (pp. 399–439, 450–464, 469­–472)
Week Five - 8/11 - II.2.1–20 (pp. 479–532)
Week Six - 8/18 - II.3.1–14 (pp. 535–581)
Week Seven - 8/25 - II.4.1–8 (pp. 639–676)

About Instructor

Pavlos Papadopoulos

Pavlos Papadopoulos is Assistant Professor of Humanities at Wyoming Catholic College. He holds a B.A. in Liberal Arts from St. John’s College, Annapolis, where he was first introduced to liberal education through the great books, as well as an M.A. and Ph.D. in Politics from the Institute of Philosophic Studies at the University of Dallas, where his dissertation was on Plato’s conception and practice of philosophic authorship. At Wyoming Catholic, his teaching focuses on courses in the great works of literature, history, rhetoric, and political philosophy.

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Course Includes

  • 7 Lessons
  • Course Certificate