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Political Science

Sander Kruse

BSc in Political Science

‘History is alive and kicking: it informs political judgements and is used and abused to further current political agendas.’

Sander Kruse is a lecturer in Political History.

Photographer: Jeroen Doomernik

Which course(s) do you teach?

‘I teach the opening course of the BSc program on the history of the modern world since 1750. During the course, you will gain knowledge and critical understanding of the socio-political and economic structures, the cultural repertoires and practices which underlie the transnational historical genesis and development of modernity. Current political behaviour, conflicts and their structures in our globalising world have developed from these specific historical backgrounds. Furthermore, the theories, concepts and methods that political scientists use to understand the world are rooted in these histories as well and cannot be understood outside the historical context in which they were born.’

What do you want students to learn?

‘As a teacher, I believe that an important quality of our academic education lies in sharing and appropriating theories and narratives about the world in which we live and the world that used to be. History is alive and kicking: it informs political judgements and is used and abused to further current political agendas.

“TANTO NOMINI NULLUM PAR ELOGIUM”, “so great a name cannot be given adequate praise”, is written on the cenotaph of the Florentine politician and thinker Niccolò Machiavelli. Machiavelli can be considered one of the founders of modern political science; his view of politics, although both praised and criticised, has kept its relevance through the ages. It also relates to my own fascination for the world of politics: applying power to bridge the gap between the world that ought to be and the world that is.’

What do you think is the most important task of a teacher?

‘By taking this historical journey, I want to entice you constantly to heed the dictum sapere aude: dare to know and dare to think about the political scientist that you will become and the view on politics which will be yours.’