The Oxford Handbook of the History of Political Philosophy

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The Oxford Handbook of the History of Political Philosophy

The Oxford Handbook of the History of Political Philosophy, ed. by George Klosko, Oxford University Press 2011. ISBN: 0199238804; 9780199238804.


The Oxford Handbook of the History of Political Philosophy presents fifty original essays, each specially written by a leading figure in the field, covering the entire subject of the history of political philosophy. They provide not only surveys of the state of research but substantial pieces that engage with, and move forward, current debates.

Part I addresses questions of method. Contributors discuss the contextual method, classically articulated by Quentin Skinner, along with important alternative methods associated with Leo Strauss and his followers, and contemporary post-modernism. This section also examines the value of the history of political philosophy and the history of the discipline itself.

Part II, Chronological Periods, works through the entire history of Western political philosophy. While most contributions address recognizable chronological periods, others are devoted to more specialized topics, including the influence of Roman Law, medieval Arabic political philosophy, Socialism, and Marxism.

Aspects of the history of political philosophy that transcend specific periods are the subject of Part III. Essays on topics such as democracy, the state, and imperialism trace theoretical developments over time.

The histories of major non-Western traditions-Muslim, Confucian, and Hindu-are discussed in the final Part, with special reference to their relationships to Western political thought.

Table of Contents

I Approaches
1. The Contextual Approach , Mark Bevir
2. The Straussian Approach , Catherine Zuckert
3. Postmodern Approaches to the History of Political Thought , Joshua Dienstag
4. The Value of the History of Political Philosophy , Terence Ball
5. History of Political Philosophy as Discipline , John Gunnell
II Chronological Periods
6. The Origins of Political Philosophy , Danielle Allen
7. Classical Political Philosophy: Plato & Aristotle , Daniel Devereux
8. Hellenistic Political Theory , Phillip Mitsis
9. Early Christian Political Philosophy , Sophie Lunn-Rockliffe
10. Influence of Roman Law , Donald Kelley
11. Arabic Contributions to Medieval Political Theory , Charles Butterworth
12. Medieval Political Theory c. 1000-1500 , Janet Coleman
13. Renaissance Political Philosophy , Mikael Hornqvist
14. Political Thought in the Age of the Reformation , Michael Baylor
15. The School of Salamanca , Anthony Pagden
16. The Early Modern Foundations of Classic Liberalism , Jeffrey Collins
17. Absolutism , Mark Goldie
18. Enlightenment Political Philosophy , Richard Whatmore
19. Scottish Enlightenment , Neil McArthur
20. Early Nineteenth-Century Liberalism , Jeremy Jennings
21. German Idealism , Paul Redding
22. Socialism , Jonathan Beecher
23. Marxian Tradition , Terrell Carver
24. Nineteenth and Twentieth Century Liberalism , David Weinstein
25. Political Philosophy and the Idea of a Social Science , Peter Lassman
26. Contemporary Political Philosophy: Anglo-American , George Klosko
27. Contemporary Continental Political Thought , Stephen White
28. Political Philosophy in a Globalizing World , Terry Nardin
III Themes
29. Democracy , Mark Warren
30. Rights , Kenneth Pennington
31. The State , Christopher W. Morris
32. Sovereignty , Daniel Philpott
33. The Social Contract (Contract of Government) , Johann Sommerville
34. Citizenship , Richard Bellamy
35. Property , David Schmidtz
36. Equality , Jonathan Wolff
37. Freedom , Raymond Plant
38. Douglass and Hobbes on Fear, Imagination, and Slavery , Bernard Boxill
39. Imperialism , Krishan Kumar
40. The Idea of the Welfare State , Donald Moon
41. Libertarianism , Eric Mack
42. Religious Toleration , Perez Zagorin
43. Republicanism , Richard Dagger
44. Political Obligation , George Klosko
45. Anarchism , Marshall Shatz
46. Feminism , Nancy Hirschmann
47. Animal Rights and Political Theory , Julian Franklin
IV Non-Western Perspectives
48. Confucian Political Philosophy , David Wong
49. The Muslim Tradition of Political Philosophy , Shahrough Ahkavi
50. Hindu Political Philosophy , Dennis Dalton

George Klosko is Henry L. and Grace Doherty Professor of Politics at the University of Virginia. He works in both normative political theory and the history of political theory.