This page features a collection of the best resources on political philosophy. To get started, simply choose the type of resource that best suits your learning style.
If you want an academic overview of political philosophy:
- Read the Routledge Encyclopedia of Philosophy article on Political Philosophy. Here’s a short excerpt that introduces political philosophy:
“Political philosophy can be defined as philosophical reflection on how best to arrange our collective life – our political institutions and our social practices, such as our economic system and our pattern of family life. (Sometimes a distinction is made between political and social philosophy, but I shall use ‘political philosophy’ in a broad sense to include both.) Political philosophers seek to establish basic principles that will, for instance, justify a particular form of state, show that individuals have certain inalienable rights, or tell us how a society’s material resources should be shared among its members. This usually involves analysing and interpreting ideas like freedom, justice, authority and democracy and then applying them in a critical way to the social and political institutions that currently exist….”
If you’re looking for a somewhat shorter and more engaging introduction:
If you’d prefer a video introduction:
If you prefer audio and podcasts:
- Listen to Raymond Guess discuss Realism and Utopianism in Political Philosophy on the Philosophy Bites podcast [16 mins]
While these resources are a great starting point, there’s only so much you can learn by using free online resources. If you want to learn more, check out this list of the best books on Political Philosophy.
The Daily Idea collects and organizes the best philosophy resources from across the internet to help make learning about philosophy as easy as possible. You can find an organized collection of introductory readings and free philosophy resources here. Or get started below by signing up for a free philosophy quote delivered to your inbox each day!