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Fall 2010

Intersectionality in Education Research

Level
Semester
Fall 2010
Units
4
Section
3
Number
279-3
CCN
72938
Course Description

This course is designed to explore the theoretical and methodological questions raised by the concept of intersectionality – the idea that human beings possess multiple identities simultaneously and that the intersection of those identities has important implications for their beliefs, attitudes and experiences.  Thus far, most of the work in this area has been theoretical.  This course is designed to acquaint students with that theoretical literature, but also to take steps towards applying those theories in empirical work.  The first portion of the course deals with bringing together the theory on how race, class, gender and sexuality are understood to affect individual attitudes and experience. We also explore the epistemological questions surrounding this work.  The second portion entails an exploration of how scholars from different fields have applied these theoretical ideas in empirical studies.  What can we learn from them about how to operationalize these concepts?  What are the strengths and weaknesses or their approaches? Are there methodologies that are more or less amenable to doing this kind of work?  What are the tradeoffs? The goal will be to leave students with the background and concrete knowledge necessary to incorporate intersectionality into their future research.

Requirements

This course is cross listed with  Education 288 ccn# 24171 

Junior Seminar: Accountability for International Human Rights Violations

Semester
Fall 2010
Units
4
Section
4
Number
191
CCN
71825
Course Description

This interdisciplinary course explores the different approaches taken by individual countries and the international community to violations of international human rights. It focuses in particular on the challenges raised by the demand for accountability during periods of political transition, as countries move from authoritarian regimes and civil wars to societies based on democracy and the rule of law.  It examines current principles of accountability as well as the various mechanisms for enforcing these principles, including truth and reconciliation commissions, international criminal tribunals, legal actions by third-party countries under the theory of universal jurisdiction, “lustration” laws that bar perpetrators of human rights abuses from holding public office, and reparations for victims of human rights violations.  The course also considers the obstacles to achieving accountability for international human rights violations, including domestic political instability, national amnesty laws, institutional weaknesses, and geopolitical concerns. 

Requirements

The Junior Seminars are intense writing seminars which focus on the research area of the faculty member teaching the course. The seminars provide an opportunity for students to have direct intellectual interactions with faculty members while also giving the students an understanding for faculty research.

Prerequisites

Political Science Majors of Junior and Senior status, with a minimum overall GPA of 3.3. Students must place themselves on the waitlist through TeleBEARS. Selection and notification will occur around August 9, 2010

Selected Topics in American Government : Social Policy

Level
Semester
Fall 2010
Units
4
Section
1
Number
279
CCN
72133
Course Description

This course will examine the major theoretical arguments that seek to account for the development of social policy, including arguments about the power of social forces such as business and labor, the role of racial and ethnic division, the influence of ideas, and the organizational features of the state. The course readings examine developments in the United States with some comparison to other countries.

 This course is a room share  with --  Sociology  280Z

Requirements

 

California Politics

Semester
Fall 2010
Units
4
Section
1
Number
171
CCN
71806
Course Description

This course provides an overview of California politics, with a focus on contemporary issues and an analysis of who wields power and why. Specifically, the course will focus on : the demographic, social and economic forces that shape the State’s politics- the three official branches of state government (executive, legislative and judicial)- the three unofficial branches (the media, lobbyists and interest groups)- campaigns (candidates, initiatives, consultants, pollsters, political parties and money), local government, the state budget and education policies.

This course falls within the American Politics subfield.

Requirements

Students are required to write a short paper, participate in a group project and presentation and take a final exam.

The Welfare State in Comparative Perspective

Semester
Fall 2010
Units
4
Section
1
Number
147G
CCN
72863
Course Description

The welfare state is widely regarded as an endangered species. To some, it has become an unaffordable luxury. Heavy social spending may have been acceptable during boom times, but in today's competitive, globalizing environment, "economic" concerns must take precedence over "social" concerns, the "production" of wealth over its "redistribution." To others, the welfare state is not just expensive, but pernicious. Social spending fuels a "culture of dependency," encouraging idleness and setting "poverty traps" from which recipients cannot (or will not) escape. Thus, it is time to "end welfare as we know it."

This course, operating from a comparative, cross-national perspective, presents a different understanding of the welfare state. First, the welfare state is not an "it," but a "they." Welfare states vary tremendously from one country to the next, whether measured in terms of size, instruments, or objectives. Second, although social and political considerations shape welfare policy, economic considerations are no less critical. In other words, rather than operating on parallel tracks, "social policy" and "economic policy" are tightly coupled. Third, "ending welfare as we know it" is not synonymous with ending the welfare state. Social spending is fueled by powerful forces, including economic, so that contemporary welfare reform is as much
an exercise in reallocation and reorganization as in budget-cutting.

Prerequisites

PS 147G is open to all upper-division undergraduates. Familiarity with political economy and/or European politics is recommended, but not required.

Graduate Student Instructor Training Seminar

Level
Semester
Fall 2010
Units
2
Number
301
CCN
72497
Times
Fridays 2-4 pm
Location
791 Barrows
Course Description

This course is intended for all new Graduate Student Instructors (GSIs) in the Political Science department, and is meant to be taken simultaneously with your first semester of teaching as a GSI. The course functions as a participatory workshop, meets for two hours each week, and must be taken on a Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory basis. Although the course is intended for first-time GSIs, it is not a course in "how to be a GSI," but rather how to be an effective political science teacher, now and at later steps in your professional career. Workshop time will be divided among presentations by the instructor, discussion of required readings, and discussion of weekly assignments in relation to challenges encountered by GSIs in the course of their teaching.

Ethnicity, Nationalism, and Violence in the Contemporary World

Semester
Fall 2010
Units
4
Number
149C
CCN
71758
Course Description

What is the nature of ethnicity? How is ethnicity politicized into nationalism? What is the nature of nationalism? How does nationalism often lead to political violence? What are the dynamics of political violence? Finally, what strategies can the central state use to deal with violent ethnonationalist movements? This course seeks to answer these types of questions both conceptually and within a comparative framework. Particular emphasis will be placed on understanding and critically assessing competing descriptive and explanatory theories for these phenomena. In addition, we will analyze the comparative origins, dynamics, and trajectories of several ethnonationalist movements within the context of the thematic readings. The primary goal of this course is to provide students with a critical understanding of the complex phenomena of ethnicity, nationalism and political violence, and to spark their intellectual curiosity into areas for future explanatory research.

Middle East Politics

Semester
Fall 2010
Units
4
Number
142A
CCN
71734
Course Description

The Middle East in world affairs, international relations and domestic policies of contemporary states in the Middle East: policies and strategy of major powers; supranational movements, regional political and security organizations.  The area comprises Turkey, Iran, Afghanistan, Israel, and the Arab countries.