Nietzsche, Mandeville en Bolkestein

Nieuws | de redactie
26 oktober 2007 | Frits Bolkestein gaat een reeks van tien lezingen houden over het onderwerp van zijn al eerder aangekondigde magnum opus: ‘Intellectuals and Politics’. Bolkestein bezet sinds 2004 de gezamenlijke Leids-Delftse leerstoel Intellectuele grondslagen van politieke ontwikkelingen. Zelf geeft hij in zijn uitvoerige voorbeschouwing al enkele pregnante gedachten die hij aan de orde wil stellen. 'What interested me was the influence of intellectuals upon real politics – politics at street-level, as it were. In particular with respect to the three defining events of the twentieth century: the rise and fall of totalitarian dictatorships, decolonisation and the unification of Europe.'


I am neither an historian nor a political scientist. All my life I have been engaged in practical affairs. After my studies I went abroad to sell oil. Having done so for sixteen years I became a Member of Parliament in The Hague. Ministry of Foreign Trade, Ministry of Defence, leadership of the Liberal Party followed. In 1999 I chose to become a member of the European Commission, in charge of the Single Market, Taxation and the Customs Union. All this very much nose to the grindstone.

At the end of my studies, in 1959, I thought of writing a doctoral thesis on “the antidemocratic intellectual”. The Cold War was then in full swing. Instead I went to Mombasa. It was probably a good choice. But the subject stayed with me. It broadened into “Intellectuals and Politics”. Not, therefore the influence of intellectuals upon other intellectuals. That is the History of Ideas. No, what interested me was the influence of intellectuals upon real politics – politics at street-level, as it were. In particular with respect to the three defining events of the twentieth century: the rise and fall of totalitarian dictatorships, decolonisation and the unification of Europe.

What has been the influence that intellectuals have brought to bear on these developments? What, in general, can we say about the interface of intellectuals and politics? These lectures restrict themselves to actual politics – politics at streetlevel, as it were. The lectures begin in the eighteenth centuries because there then was a confluence of three mighty currents: Classicism, the Enlightenment and Romanticism. They end with observations of some modern trends.


De lezingen zullen de volgende onderwerpen behandelen:

1. Introduction – What is the subject of these lectures?
The importance of ideas. What is an intellectual? Tocqueville and the “hommes de lettres”. The Dreyfus-affair. Enlightenment. Rousseau and the French Revolution. Bernard Mandeville and Adam Smith.

2. The Radicalisation of Romanticism.
Sturm und Drang. Hamann, Fichte and Herder. Nationalism

3. The Russian Intelligentsia between 1825 and 1875.
Herzen, Turgenev, Chernyshevski and Dostoïevsky

4. The hatred of the bourgeoisie. The Philosophy of Action.
Nietzsche, Bergson and Sorel.

5. The Climate of Opinion before the first World War.
Intellectuals and Austro-Hungary. Stefan Zweig. The conservative revolution in Germany

6. The First World War as a Catalyst in the world of ideas.
The demise of the aristocratic worldview. The end of  pacifist optimism. The birth of revolutionary optimism. Ortega y Gasset.

7. Ideologies in the Interbellum.
Communism, fascism, national socialism

8. Utopia and the Totalitarian Temptation
The treason of the intellectuals

9.The Intellectual Background of the European Union
 
10. Modern Trends
Development aid. 1968. Multiculturalism. Postmodernism. Media and the Middle East. Intellectuals and Capitalism. Europe’s self-confidence.

Cursusdagen
15, 22 en 29 november en 6 en 13 december 2007, 14, 21 en 28 februari en 6 en 13 maart 2008

Tijd
17.15 tot 19.00 uur

Locatie
Universiteit Leiden Campus Den Haag, Lange Voorhout 44, Den Haag

Kosten
€ 400,-; kosteloos voor studenten van Universiteit Leiden en TU Delft

Studiepunten
voor het bijwonen van de colleges en het schrijven van een werkstuk: 5 studiepunten




Schrijf je in voor onze nieuwsbrief
«

ScienceGuide is bij wet verplicht je toestemming te vragen voor het gebruik van cookies.

Lees hier over ons cookiebeleid en klik op OK om akkoord te gaan

OK