Social Philosophy

Macquarie University

Course Description

  • Course Name

    Social Philosophy

  • Host University

    Macquarie University

  • Location

    Sydney, Australia

  • Area of Study

    Philosophy, Sociology

  • Language Level

    Taught In English

  • Prerequisites

    39 credit points

  • Course Level Recommendations


    ISA offers course level recommendations in an effort to facilitate the determination of course levels by credential evaluators.We advice each institution to have their own credentials evaluator make the final decision regrading course levels.

    Hours & Credits

  • Credit Points

  • Recommended U.S. Semester Credits
    3 - 4
  • Recommended U.S. Quarter Units
    4 - 6
  • Overview

    Continuing the inquiry commenced in PHL254, this unit explores in more depth how social transformations might both foster and hinder the realisation of our freedom and human potential. Economic growth is generally taken to be an unquestionable good but what are its costs at a social and environmental level? Modern technology is taken to be the key to the future but what impact does it have on our relationships with nature? A successful career is often accepted as essential to happiness but is contemporary work a fully rewarding experience? Are the economic inequalities generated by contemporary social and economic transformations justifiable in a democratic society? This unit addresses these questions first by examining the social philosophy tradition (the Frankfurt School of critical theory), focusing on key themes such as the economic rationalisation of society, the effects of this rationalisation on individuals and communities, and the prospects for social freedom in an economically rationalised world. The second part of the unit then turns to contemporary approaches in social philosophy (Axel Honneth) that offer critical analyses and possible alternatives to some of the most pressing issues we face, including economic and social injustice, the environmental crisis, and social pathologies arising from new work conditions and career demands.

Course Disclaimer

Courses and course hours of instruction are subject to change.

Credits earned vary according to the policies of the students' home institutions. According to ISA policy and possible visa requirements, students must maintain full-time enrollment status, as determined by their home institutions, for the duration of the program.