Faculty of Arts

PHIL 345

Power, Critique and Emancipation

Please note: this is archived course information from 2020 for PHIL 345.


An examination of support for political struggles for freedom, justice and recognition through the philosophical critique of modern society. Topics include science and technology, bureaucratisation, social control, social alienation, mass communication, the commodification of culture, and the idea of critique.

A central theme of the course is the phenomenon of power. What is power? How does power emerge and how does it impact upon social relationships? What are power structures and why do they matter? Are relations of power always illegitimate? How should we understand concepts such as domination, subordination and oppression? Are such concepts relevant to a theory of justice? Finally, how can illegitimate power be resisted in order to achieve a more just society? What role should be played by democratic politics, activism and social critique?

Availability 2020

Semester 1


Lecturer(s) Dr Matheson Russell


Coursework plus Exam


PHIL 345: 15.0 points


30 points at Stage II in Philosophy


PHIL 225

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