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"Teach Yourself®: Political Philosophy - A Complete Introduction" by Dr. Phil Parvin & Dr. Claire Chambers

First book reviewed of the "Teach Yourself" series about a topic many are still discussing today, in reaction to the issues going on.

Been taking in lots of topics related to politics lately. Why is that? Thanks to Author Ray Kurzweil, seems like automation will not only make a huge dent in our human population, but also....receive rights? Currently, at this writing in 2019, it's hard to wrap your mind around. With that being said, I went back to remind us of the goings-on in our modern society and what we constitute to our own living arrangements, along with easing the injustices brought by our fellow citizens.

Authors Pavin and Chambers both did wonderful, covering the major topics that are still being discussed and debated over. Perhaps my favorite was the question if rights are individualistic, which makes sense since some groups/classes demand rights that only benefit themselves and not for the people as a whole. Yeah, that's a tough say but it seems to be happening a lot.

The writing was very gentle and not too rigorous, especially for someone, like me, who isn't too injected in the political landscape (that will soon change though). The book runs like an actual textbook without making you feel bad for not answering the questions, or shaming you into failing the entire course. No, this book runs nicely even if you skip the test questions; Those are there to cater to those who want a gentle introduction to the subject, whether your major requires it or if you want to be more knowledgeable in the subject.

If you had to know, these authors have subscribed to covering the areas of interest from John Rawls's political theories—a liberalist approach to political philosophy. Saying that may concern some people who aren't Left-leaning. In this case, approach the book with an open mind and study the topics as normal. Nevertheless, the authors also point out which topics are the most highly controversial, and one mention of it can start an argument that may last until bedtime. (Be wary of those people, as the authors made mention that some people base their claims/voices on emotivism—demanding justice over one's emotions.) Along with big topics like democracy, global justice, you also learn what the veil of ignorance is.

To those who want to venture into the philosophical side of politics—highly recommended, given who others debate based on what they see on TV as facts—this introductory book is as gentle as you can get. There really isn't much critique to this, other than some topics covered require re-reading it again due to the precise, yet sometimes wordy, explanation on it. Besides that, it's not too bad.

Also available in digital form (ebook), I highly recommend this!





  • Areas of study covered gently in this book.
  • A recommended book for students and professors of the subject.
  • Something every person ought to read before engaging in political discussions (log on to social media to see what people are saying, if you don't believe us).
  • Respectfully and discreetly considers the liberalist point of view in this book (what about the other sides and their points of view?).
100% (A+)
Fan Rating
Title Teach Yourself®: Political Philosophy - A Complete Introduction
Author(s) Dr. Phil Parvin and Dr. Claire Chambers
Description Understand political philosophy faster
Master the subject step by step
Test your knowledge to help you succeed

Includes new BREAKTHROUGH METHOD for easy learning

Political Philosophy: A complete introduction is the most comprehensive yet easy-to-use introduction to understanding Political Philosophy.

Written by a leading expert, this book can help you whether you are studying for an important exam or simply want to improve your knowledge.

The first half of the book introduces the reader to the essential concepts within political philosophy, such as freedom, equality, power, democracy, rights and the state.

The second half of the book looks at how influential political philosophers, such as Plato, Rawls and Mill, have used these fundamental concepts in order to tackle a range of normative political questions such as whether the state has a responsibility to alleviate inequalities, and what role liberal and democratic states should play in regulating the cultural or religious beliefs of citizens.

• A range of quotes and viewpoints

• Key ideas are highlighted, to aid understanding

• Case studies, to provide practical and relevant examples

• End-of-chapter questions, to ensure you've understood everything

• Ideas for further reading, to help you dig deeper
Dedication "For Harley and Caspar"
ISBN 978-1-4441-6706-1
Book Dimensions Width: 5″
Height: 7.88″ (7 7/8″)
Depth: 0.88″ (7/8″)
Page Count 336
Contents Introduction: What is Political Philosophy?, PART ONE: Essential Concepts - 1 Freedom (1) Negative Freedom, 2 Freedom (2) Positive Freedom, 3 Equality (1) The concept of equality, 4 Equality (2) Equality of opportunity, 5 Power, 6 Democracy, 7 Rights, 8 Political obligation, PART TWO: Contemporary theories and debates - 9 Utilitarianism, 10 Rawls's justice as fairness, 11 Libertarianism, 12 Luck egalitarianism, 13 Communitarianism, 14 Political liberalism, 15 Perfectionism and state neutrality, 16 Multiculturalism, 17 Feminism, 18 Global justice, 19 Intergenerational justice, Index, Answers to Fact-checks
Cover Image © JustImagine - Fotolia
Author Photograph --
Published 2012
Publisher Hodder & Stoughton (An Hachette UK company) / The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
Copyright © 2012 Phil Parvin and Clare Chambers

The right of Phil Parvin and Clare Chambers to be identified as the Authors of the Work has been asserted by them in accordance with the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988.
Printed in / Bound in Great Britain by CPI Group (UK) Ltd, Croydon, CR0 4YY.

Wildwood House edition published 1984
Corgi edition published 1985
Black Swan edition published 1991
Book Format Paperback, Kindle (ebook)
Quoted Reviews "Phil Parvin and Clare Chambers have produced a state of the art textbook, which provides students with a comprehensive and bang up-to-date introduction to comtemporary political philosophy. Topics are introduced in a clear and eminently readable fashion, using accessible real world examples whilst drawing on sophisticated scholarly literature. There is no comparable book which covers such a wide range of topics in such a student-friendly manner." — Dr. Daniel Butt, Lecturer in Political Theory, University of Bristol.

"A lively, accessible and engaging read. Comprehensive and well organized, it provides an updated account of key concepts in comtemporary political philosophy, and highlights their relevance to political life in the 21st century. A valuable book for anyone taking their first steps in the world of political philosophy, or anyone who seeks to understand the normative challenges faced by our society today." — Dr. Avia Pasternak, Lecturer in Political Theory, University of Essex.

"Written in a clear and accessible style, it is an engaging introduction for those who are newto political philosophy and wish to think through some of its most important questions. In addition to offering outlines of key arguments, each chapter also contains a summary of main concepts, self-test questions, a wonderful selection of quotations and some attention-grabbing 'nuggets.'" — Dr. Zosia Stemplowska, University of Lecturer of Political Theory, University of Oxford.
Best Seller's List --
Other The Teach Yourself name is a registered trademark of Hachette UK.

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You must not circulate this book in any other binding or cover and you must impose this same condition on any acquirer.

British Library Cataloguing in Publication Data: a catalogue record for this title is available from the British Library.

Library of Congress Catalog Card Number: on file.
10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1

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