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Welfare State

Class at Faculty of Arts |


What is the welfare state? Why did it emerge in the 20th century and how has it developed to this day? Is it helpful or harmful? Is it growing or shrinking? Is it working fine or collapsing? These are some of the questions we will address in the course. We will also pay attention to the relation between welfare state and family, globalization, and European integration. Finally, we will talk about selected welfare/social policies, primarily in the Czech context. The course as a whole will address welfare state in the Western, i.e. European and North-American space. It does not cover particularities of welfare states in other cultural areas such as Asia or Africa.


The course is intended for both regular and visiting (e.g. Erasmus) students. The course is designed for students with background in social sciences. It may be a bit more challenging for students with other background (without knowledge of the social-science context) but they are also allowed and encouraged to join. It is expected that the students in this course are ready to work through ca 30 pages of English text per week. In the past, there were students who claimed the course was too difficult and required too much home preparation compared to other courses. Others enjoed it.