Do you trust your government? Or your representative? Or your neighbor?
“Trust” and “distrust” have become important terms when discussing the state of democracies. A lack of citizens’ trust in the political system and its representatives has been seen as a factor that significantly contributes to phenomena such as the decline in political participation or the rise of populist movements all over the world.
The reasons for the decline of the public’s trust are manifold. However, it would be to easy to assume that trust as such is always valuable and appropriate. To trust blindly is not a good idea in a polity where different ideas and interest collide. Quite the contrary, a democracy - with its checks and balances (elections, courts, the press etc. pp) - is based on the institutionalization of distrust. It is this ambiguous relationship between trust and distrust that will be in the center of our seminar. For that, we will, for instance, consult classic authors, such as John Locke, but also more modern ones, such as Piotr Sztompka or Pierre Rosanvallon. We will also engage with the empirical side of the issue. Among others we will explore how trust/distrust is actually measured and what factors (e.g. corruption) influence it. Lastly, trust-building is on the agenda. We will discover, on the one
Sztompka, Piotr. 1999. Trust: A Sociological Theory. Cambridge, UK; New York, NY:Cambridge Univ. Press.
Ankersmit, Frank R., and Henk Te Velde, eds. 2004. Trust: Cement of Democracy?. Leuven [u.a.]:Peeters.
Rosanvallon, Pierre. 2008. Counter-Democracy: Politics in an Age of Distrust. Cambridge [u.a.]:Cambridge Univ. Press.
Nye, Joseph S., Philip Zelikow, and David C. King. 1998. Why people don't trust government. Cambridge, Mass. [u.a.]:Harvard Univ. Pr.
„Wer die erste Sitzung der Lehrveranstaltung versäumt, ohne sich vorher schriftlich oder persönlich zu entschuldigen, kann den Anspruch auf einen Platz in der LV verlieren, wenn es mehr Interessenten als Plätze gibt. Dies gilt ungeachtet der Platzzuweisung durch Friedolin und ist im Einklang mit der grundsätzlichen Aufhebung der Anwesenheitspflicht.”