HIST 2086 Modernity and its Critics (HA-AS)(HNU)(HEU)
Tuesday and Thursday: 10:10-11:25
Professor Paul Friedland
From at least the 18th century, the western world has had an almost unshakable faith in the idea of progress, that each generation improves on the accomplishments of the last, and that the pursuit of economic development, technological innovation, and scientific discovery will inevitably lead to a better life for everyone. But what if none of this is true? This seminar explores the concept of modernity through the eyes of some of its greatest critics. Among the authors that we will read and discuss are: Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Edmund Burke, Mary Shelley, Fyodor Dostoevsky, Friedrich Nietzsche, Karl Marx, Max Weber, Franz Kafka, Sigmund Freud, Frantz Fanon, and Michel Foucault.