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Graduate Program in Social and Political Thought

Current update as of March 24, 2015

The Graduate Program in Social and Political Thought has made the decision to suspend its own graduate courses until the strike is over. Academic integrity is not possible to sustain under conditions of student absence from seminars due to their membership in CUPE 3903. Attempting to teach graduate students in this climate will result in inequalities in the delivery of education and the activity of learning, and the exacerbation of an already divisive and uncollegial situation. We are part of the “community of faculty, students, staff, alumni and volunteers committed to academic freedom, social justice, accessible education, and collegial self-governance” that allows York University to make “innovation its tradition,” and we work by the principle of “Tentanda Via: The way must be tried.” As a program whose international reputation is built on the commitment to the deeper, wider, critical, creative and progressive aspects of social and political thought, our view is “Tentanda Via Novo” in theory and in practice.


Our program........

Founded in 1973, York University's unique interdisciplinary Graduate Program in Social and Political Thought (SPTH) undertakes to encourage, develop and advance the analysis of social and political ideas with the aim of integrating intellectual interests common to the humanities and social sciences. It leads to the M.A and Ph.D degrees. The Program is not associated with any particular school of thought, and stresses both historical and systematic study of social and political ideas. In cooperation with the participating academic disciplines from across the university, the program’s curriculum is structured around three flexible areas of study:

  • History of Social and Political Thought
  • Society and Economy
  • Consciousness and Society

The Graduate Program in Social & Political Thought is fundamentally a doctoral program, with a small master's program. Students are encouraged to become creative scholars and teachers and to work independently. For this reason, only those students who indicate that they wish to complete such a program of independent study will normally be admitted. In selecting their courses, students will be expected to acquire a broad, balanced knowledge of the field as a whole, as well as pursue their own specialized interests. In all cases students will have to take considerable personal initiative to develop an intellectually coherent pattern of study which will lead to the writing of an original doctoral dissertation in Social and Political Thought. Students will be required to be adequately prepared in those languages essential to their dissertation research. 

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Our Work

Ontario Graduate Scholarship Deadline

for SPTH

is March 1, 2015 for application and all supporting documents.


Strategies of Critique
Conference of the Graduate Program in Social & Political Thought  Forthcoming in early April

GS News & Events