Current Debates in Social and Political Philosophy (PHIL*4230) | College of Arts

Current Debates in Social and Political Philosophy (PHIL*4230)

Code and section: PHIL*4230*01

Term: Winter 2019

Instructor: Omid Payrow Shabani


In recent years the chants of “the end of progress” have grown more vexatious. Generally, critics charge that the historical idea of progress and development have worked to rationalize and legitimize colonialism and imperialism. They further charge that universalism of the liberal theories was in fact Eurocentrism in disguise, justifying the domination and exploitation of non-European as a civilizing mission. They, then, boisterously declare “the end of progress,” has come. The aim of the course is to critically assess the history of this debate and try to answer whether progress is real or illusory.


Course Outline

The University of Guelph resides on the land of the Between the Lakes Treaty No. 3, the territory of the Mississaugas of the Credit. This land is part of the Dish with One Spoon, a covenant between Indigenous nations to live peaceably on the territories of the Great Lakes region. We recognize that today this gathering place is home to many First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples and acknowledging them reminds us of our collective responsibility to the land where we learn, live and work.