Brandeis University, Philosophy Department
Fall 2007
Brandeis University Web Stite

Philosophy 20A

Democracy & Disobedience

Professor Andreas Teuber
Prof. Teuber


PAPER TOPIC II

What Does It Mean To Be an American Citizen?

Drawing on the reading and your own considered opinion and good judgment, answer the question(s) on the following pages. In arguing for your position, think of the arguments that might be made against it, and respond to them. In defending your position, offer what you believe are the most principled arguments you can make.

In thinking of objections to your argument, think of the best possible objections that someone on the other side might be able to come up with, i. e., give yourself a hard time. If you can respond to the other side at its strongest rather than at its weakest point, that can only help to strengthen your own opinion and make it that much more persuasive.

The paper will be graded pass/fail or credit/no credit. In order for a paper, your paper, to receive "credit" or a "pass," the paper (your paper) must show some signs of thought, some sign of thinking about the democratizing democracy, making democracy stronger. In concrete terms this means you need at the very least to take a position, make an argument for or against it, offer some powerful objection to your argument, and respond to them.

If you receive "credit" or a "pass" on the paper, the percentages for weighing the three other writing exercises will be as follows: 40% for your strongest essay, 30% for your next best effort and 20% for the one which is least successful of the three. If you fail to get "credit" or a "pass," the papers will be broken down as follows: 30% for your strongest effort, 25% for your next best effort, 20% for your next best effort after that, and 15% for the one which is least successful of the four. In either event the remaining 10% will be covered by your participation grade and grade your grade on the quiz. You may also pursue and receive "extra credit." The explanation for how to go about pursuing and receiving "extra credit" and what the receipt of "extra credit" could mean can be found at the end of the paper topic on the following pages.

Papers should be five to six (5-6) pages in length or longer, if you prefer, and double-spaced.

Please number pages.

We would like to have two copies, marked COPY ONE and TWO.

Papers should be stapled, not held together by
Paper CLIP, Elmer's GLUE, Dentyne GUM,
SPIT, James BOND or Origami FOLD.

The paper is due, in class, on Monday, October 22nd, 2007.

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