Liberty, Equality, and Democracy: The Defining Documents


1:10 PM – 2:50 PM

9/18, 9/25, 10/2, 10/16, 10/23, 10/30, 11/6, 11/13  

Defining American democracy has been a jolting and unremitting process – a product of continuous and sometime rancorous debate. This course follows that evolving debate over periods that did most to shape our beliefs and system of government. To do this we engage with the core texts of American democracy; not only the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution but also selections from Jefferson, Madison, Hamilton, de Tocqueville, Douglass, Lincoln and others. Through reading and conversation, we ask the same questions they asked and explore the ideas they explored. All required materials are made available by the instructor.

Click here for complete Syllabus.

Facilitator: Steven Phillips

Steven Phillips was educated at Washington University, the University of Chicago, and NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts, earning an MA in English Literature from Chicago and an MFA in Filmmaking from NYU. He spent the bulk of his career as a partner and creative director of a production company for film, video, live events, and branding. Since retiring, he has worked with community-based and higher-education nonprofits, as well as earning an MA in American Studies from Columbia University.