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Spring 2020

semester status
Active
Semester dates
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African American Political Thought

Level
Semester
Instructor(s)
Units
4
Section
1
Number
217
CCN
33464
Times
Th 3-5:30
Location
749 Barrows
Course Description

This graduate seminar explores central themes and concepts in the history of African American political thought. It takes up the major philosophical questions that shaped the tradition from the early nineteenth through the mid twentieth century by reading seminal texts as works of moral and political theory. Students are therefore expected to dive beneath the rhetorical and polemical surface to the analytical and normative substratum of these works. The seminar is organized
historically and thematically into four parts. Each part addresses a historical conjuncture and a set of political and normative questions that predominated. Part I looks at slavery through works by Frederick Douglass, Harriet Jacobs, and Martin Delany to ask, among other questions: What is the nature of slavery? How does each author’s account shape his or her understanding of political freedom? Part II takes up white supremacy by reading works by Booker T. Washington, W. E. B. Du Bois, Ida B. Wells, and James Weldon Johnson. In this section, we focus on social domination, exclusion, and inequality. Part III looks at the international and Marxist turn in black political thought in the interwar years, specifically, writings by Marcus Garvey, Harry Haywood, and others in the black radical tradition. Part IV concludes the course by asking how that global turn, namely decolonization, influenced the struggle for civil rights in the United States. To answer this question, we read Frantz Fanon, authors of Black Power, and Martin Luther King Jr.

Introduction to Empirical Analysis and Quantitative Methods

Semester
Instructor(s)
Units
4
Number
W3
CCN
33250
Times
ONLINE
Location
ONLINE
Course Description

This course provides an overview of some of the methods employed in political science research. Its purpose is to familiarize you with the scientific study of politics, and to teach you how to pose and answer empirical research questions using appropriate evidence and arguments. Along the way we will learn about how to formulate and evaluate theories, how to design research to discover whether a particular theory holds up empirically, and some basic research strategies. By the end of the course you should have the tools to critically evaluate the kinds of social science arguments found in everyday life. The lectures for this course are pre-recorded and accessible through the course website. We recommend viewing each week’s lectures some time before you attend the weekly section.  

American Government Field Seminar

Level
Semester
Units
4
Number
271
CCN
24237
Times
Tu 12pm-2pm
Location
202 Barrows
Course Description

This seminar is designed to acquaint students with current research approaches in various subfields of American Politics. Particular attention will be given to debates over theory, methodology, and substance. The seminar is not designed to provide a complete survey of the field. Students planning to be examined in American Politics are expected to master recommended readings on their own and should review additional readings included in versions of this seminar offered in the past years.

Introduction to Computational Tools and Techniques

Level
Semester
Units
4
Section
1
Number
239T
CCN
22928
Times
W 2-4 and W 4-6
Location
BARR110 (Wed); BARR122 (Thurs)
Course Description

This course will provide graduate students the technical skills necessary to conduct research in computational social science and digital humanities, introducing them to the basic computer literacy, programming skills, and application knowledge that students need to be successful in further methods work.

The course is currently divided into four main sections. In the first section, students learn how their computers work and communicate with other computers using git and bash. In the second, we turn our attention to the structure, analysis, and visualization of data, with an emphasis in R. In the third, students learn applications to collect new data (e.g., using APIs and webscraping). In the fourth, students learn additional means of analyzing and visualizing data, including tools like text analysis and machine learning.
 

Instructor: Anustubh Agnihotri 

    Selected Topics in Comparative Politics: Women in Politics in Comparative Perspective

    Semester
    Units
    4
    Section
    1
    Number
    140M
    CCN
    31389
    Times
    MWF 10-11
    Location
    126 Barrows
    Course Description

    Women make up around 49.5% of the global population, yet they are strikingly underrepresented when it comes to political office. Looking at the global average, women only hold 24% of seats at the parliamentary level. The percent of women in office varies drastically between countries. For example, quota-based countries like Rwanda have 60% women in parliament, whereas countries with unique electoral systems like Lebanon only have 4.7%. This course looks to explain this variation, and further understand the consequences of it. We will focus on questions such as: How do electoral systems affect women’s access to elected office?  What, if any, are the negative effects of imposing gender quotas? If elected, do women promote greater substantive representation? We will look into the potential for gender-based discrimination among socialized gender roles, voters, political parties, campaign policies, and the media. Please be advised that this is not a course on feminist theory, but rather an investigation of the barriers to women’s representation and political participation.

    Instructor: Melanie Phillips

    Selected Topics in International Relations: Conflict, Security, and Political Psychology

    Semester
    Instructor(s)
    Units
    4
    Number
    123
    CCN
    23140
    Times
    TuTh 1230-2
    Course Description

    This course explores international and sub-national conflict and security issues from the perspective of political psychology.  The first part of the course introduces several frameworks from psychology that can be applied to the study of conflict and security.  The second part of the course uses these frameworks to explore both historical and contemporary topic.

    Note: The course ID will be updated later this semester with a specific suffix.

    HISTORY OF POLITICAL THOUGHT: EARLY MODERN (RENAISSANCE TO FRENCH REVOLUTION)

    Level
    Semester
    Instructor(s)
    Units
    4
    Section
    0
    Number
    212B
    CCN
    32361
    Times
    791 Barrows
    Location
    W 11-2
    Course Description

    This semester's version of the course in Renaissance and Early Modern Political Thought will focus on three broad approaches to politics: Absolutism, Republicanism, and Radicalism.  We will focus on a handful of individual primary texts, however, rather than secondary literature or historiographical themes.  Texts will include some of the following: Erasmus' Education of a Christian Prince, Machiavelli's Prince, and More's Utopia; Hobbes's Leviathan, Henry Parker's Observations, Leveller and Digger pamphlets; Federalists and Antifederalists, the Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen, de Gouges'  Declaration of the Rights of Woman and the Female Citizen, Paine's Rights of Man, and Wollstonecraft's Vindication of the Rights of Woman.

    HISTORY OF POLITICAL THOUGHT: EARLY MODERN (RENAISSANCE TO FRENCH REVOLUTION)

    Level
    Semester
    Units
    4
    Section
    0
    Number
    212B
    CCN
    32361
    Times
    791 Barrows
    Location
    W 11-2
    Course Description

    In this iteration of the course in Renaissance and Early Modern Political Thought, we will focus on a close reading of The Elements of Law (1640) by Thomas Hobbes.  This work has a similar range to that of Hobbes's 1651 Leviathan, though with much less attention to theological and ecclesiastical matters.  The earlier weeks of the course will be devoted to a consideration of background materials that are also of intrinsic interest, including Jean Bodin's Six Books of the Republic.