ACRE Reading Group

Fall 2018:

The Role of Government in a Free Society

Monday nights, 5 – 7 p.m. September 10 – November 19

Participants in this group will read and discuss works from some of the most influential thinkers of the past few centuries including Adam Smith, Jean Jacques Rousseau, John Stuart Mill, Frederick Douglas, Angelina Grimké, Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels, Friedrich Hayek, Milton Friedman, Robert Nozick, John Rawls, and many more that look at the role of government in a free society. We will explore questions such as: What is freedom? What is the legitimate role of government? For what purposes are we willing to forcibly extract tax revenue from members of society? Where and how do we draw the line? These questions will allow us great room to debate and discuss. We will look at these questions from the perspectives of economists, political philosophers, policy experts and others.

Additionally, students who participate in this reading group will also attend an all-expenses paid trip to Dallas for a weekend summit with students from other universities participating in parallel reading groups hosted by the O’Neil Center at Southern Methodist University on October 12 – 13. Participation in this event is mandatory and occurs during UCA’s Fall Break.

Institutions and the Constitution

Thursday nights, 5:30 – 7:30 p.m. September 13 – November 15

What is the proper role of government? What should its primary function be? What role should government play in the lives of everyday citizens? How do legal and social institutions increase or decrease the power of government? In this reading group, students will explore these questions in relation to the creation of the United States Constitution. Students will read works from scholars like Dennis Mueller, James Buchanan, and Joyce Appleby, as well as a wealth of primary source documents.

As part of this reading group, students will spend a weekend at a mock Constitutional Convention where they will debate issues and write a Constitution.

Students will have the opportunity to ask interesting questions as well as learn from some of the most influential thinkers from the past and the present.

For each reading group, sessions are weekly. Dinner is provided each night. Upon completion of the reading group, students will receive $500. Deadline to apply was August 31st.

Want to check out our past reading group topics? Click here!