ELTS 202: Studies in History: Arendt’s Solidarity

Instructor: David D. Kim

The aim of this seminar is to introduce students to Hannah Arendt’s vexing conception of solidarity. Within different historical contexts of the Anglo-European world, she wondered how solidarity posed a political challenge of the first order, bringing the dissolution of contemporary sensus communis into much sharper relief. Students will examine her lifelong inquiries into solidarity across the Atlantic, including her repeated failures to stand with fellow Jews, German exiles or African and Native Americans in the United States. They will analyze Arendt’s major publications, unpublished archival records, and hardly known essays to investigate one of the most challenging political concepts in modernity. Other writers and thinkers whose works play prominent roles in this seminar include, among others, Augustine, Machiavelli, Tocqueville, Marx, Heidegger, Jaspers, Benjamin, Kafka, Thomas Mann, Gershom Scholem, and Hermann Broch.

Wed. 3-5:50         Royce 152