POLS-Y121: Capitalism and Democracy

POLS-Y121 — Fall 2021

protest banner that states System Error Capitalism has failed
Timothy Hellwig
WH (Wylie) 005
Days and Times
Tuesday and Thursday, 4:55–6:10 p.m.
Course Description

This course examines the connections between economics and politics through the lens of capitalism and democracy. Once deemed the ideal economic and political systems, today both have been criticized. Many claim that the rules of capitalism are at odds with equality, sustainability, and especially democracy. And the tenets of democracy’s one person one vote has been questioned as the rise in the number of democratic countries world-wide appears to have stagnated or even reversed. The course is structured in four parts. Part 1 introduces essential concepts in the study of politics and markets. We ask if there is there a connection between the economic system and the political system. Part 2 is an introduction to capitalism as a system of production and exchange. Part 3 explores the political system. We ask whether democracy is the best system and if so, what type of democracy is most amenable to welfare-enhancing outcomes. Lastly, Part 4 probes the connections between capitalism and democracy.