A new political science professor has begun teaching at the university this semester with a focus on political theory and will begin his research on utopian socialism.
“Most students probably won’t agree with [utopian socialism] and maybe I wouldn’t agree with it at the end of the day either, but it would definitely spark a lot of discussion and thought,” professor Sam Arnold said.
According to Arnold, utopian socialists were Marxists and Marxism is usually seen as a scary alternative to Capitalism. People also automatically associate Marxism with the Soviet Union.
Joanne Connor Green, head of the political science department, said she is excited to have someone who focuses on political theory.
“Political theory to some people seems very abstract and students don’t understand how relevant it is for policy discussions today and for everyday life and different decision-making processes,” Green said. “Professor Arnold is able to discuss really abstract political theories and apply in such a way that students understand the immediacy and relevancy and I think that is really quite exciting.”
Green said Arnold's research presentation for his job included ways to make the work environment more productive, more fair and about redistributive politics in the work force.
In addition to more fairness in the work environment and work productivity, Green said that Arnold also talked about different theories in underlying ways in which the work environment could become more supportive and more egalitarian, and therefore increase productivity.
Adam Schiffer, another political science professor here at the university, said that Arnold was hired for his Ph.D. from Princeton University and because he worked with many top scholars in his field.
“His teaching interests span a wide array of important questions in the field of political theory,” Schiffer said about Arnold. “His students will find his classes to be challenging, thought-provoking and relevant to many important public policy questions in the United States and around the world.”