The Polis of Springfield: The Simpsons and the Teaching of Political Theory

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When students commence the study of political theory, they often lack the vocabulary necessary for that study and any specific examples of political societies other than their own. As a result, this article examines The Simpsons for examples that might help teachers of political theory to communicate key themes in political thought to undergraduates. In particular, this article suggests that Springfield is a model of a deliberative and participatory democracy, and therefore can be used as a model of these ideals, as well as providing examples of some of the challenges that they may face. In addition, it examines how The Simpsons may be used in teaching Mill's 'Harm Principle' and Plato's Republic.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)192-199
Number of pages8
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sep 2006


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