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Summer 2019

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TOPICS IN AREA STUDIES: DICTATORSHIP AND ITS DISCONTENTS

Level
Semester
Summer 2019
Instructor(s)
Units
4
Number
149W
CCN
13961
Times
MTW 9a-12p
Course Description

The overwhelming majority of governments throughout history have been dictatorial. Even the recent spread of democracy has not extirpated authoritarian rule: as of 2012 roughly one quarter of all countries are considered full-blown autocracies. Whatever the benefits of democracy, it seems dictatorship is here to stay. This course explores the characteristics and dynamics of non-democratic regimes: how and why they come about, what sustains them, why some people resist them and others do not, and how and why they decline and fall. We will explore a variety of examples from Africa, Asia, Europe, and Latin America. Using films and novels in addition to political science literature, we will investigate how dictators maintain their power, how ordinary people react to repression, and the links between dictatorship and security and economic development.

Subfield: Comparative Politics

 

Note: Course description is from Summer 2014

HISTORY OF POLITICAL THOUGHT: ANCIENT & MEDIEVAL

Level
Semester
Summer 2019
Instructor(s)
Units
4
Number
N112A
CCN
14492
Times
MTWT 12p-2p
Location
Dwinelle 145
Course Description

This course will study the major texts of political theory in Classical Antiquity and the Middle Ages, including (but not limited to) Plato’s Republic, Aristotle’s Politics, Cicero’s De Re Publica and De Legibus, Augustine’s De Civitate Dei, Aquinas’ Summa, and Marsilius’ Defensor Pacis.  Topics for study and examination will include the theory of the state in Antiquity and the Middle Ages; the concept of law and its relation to justice; theories concerning the source and scope of legitimate political authority; pre-modern ideas of democratic and non-democratic forms of rule; the nature of citizenship; pre-modern systems of political values.

The Politics of European Integration

Level
Semester
Summer 2019
Units
4
Section
1
Number
122A
CCN
15916
Times
MTWR 10-12
Location
390 Hearst Memorial Mining Building
Course Description

For more than sixty years, the European Union has represented the world’s most advanced experiment in governance beyond the nation-state. More recently, however, this experiment has become mired in financial turbulence and growing social protest, and for the first time faces the withdrawal of a member. This course takes a broad view of the promise as well as the challenges of European integration. It looks at the EU’s institutional components, the events leading to the single currency in the 1990s, enlargement eastward into the post-socialist world, and the major crises that have been challenging Europe since 2008: the financial crisis, the rise of populism, and Brexit. These topics allow us to assess Europe’s ability to craft adequate responses to the challenges posed by economic transformation, terrorism, multiculturalism, and worldwide financial interdependence, and to come to a better understanding of the EU’s current and future role on the world stage.

Instructor: Matthew Stenberg

 

 

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

Semester
Summer 2019
Units
4
Section
1
Number
140M
CCN
15863
Times
MTWR 2-4
Location
Leconte 4
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

Special Topics in American Politics: Conservatism, From Burke to Bannon

Level
Semester
Summer 2019
Units
4
Section
1
Number
109D
CCN
15844
Times
MTWR 12pm-2pm
Location
Dwinelle 145
Course Description

What is conservatism?  Is it distinct from liberalism—that is, is conservatism a body of ideas contrary to liberalism, or is it a branch of liberalism?  In other words, is conservatism in fact an “ism”?  What are the fundamental differences between conservative and liberal perspectives today?  Is conservatism the most significant challenge to the liberal idea today, or its erstwhile ally?

This course will explore these and related questions, such as the range of conservative perspectives on human nature, authority, religion, social change and progress, science and technology, race and ethnicity, economics and markets, equality, individual rights, the State and civil society, and ethics.  The first half of the course will explore the philosophical, historical, and trans-Atlantic roots of conservative philosophy and social thought before turning to the specifically American variants of conservatism. The subdivisions of modern conservatism—libertarianism, traditional/“paleo,” neoconservatism, religious conservatism, etc.—will be defined and contrasted with each other. 

The second half of the course will transition to contemporary issues of social policy, the debates over economics, “neoliberalism,” equality, race, sex, class, national identity, immigration, and social justice. Ultimately the course is about what it means to be a free human being, and what are the requirements and institutions of a free society that support a free human being.

Instructor: Steven F. Hayward

Special Topics in International Relations: U.S. Policy in Latin America

Level
Semester
Summer 2019
Units
4
Section
1
Number
123W
CCN
15849
Times
MTWR 2-4
Location
Dwinelle 145
Course Description

The longest government shutdown in U.S. history occurred in early 2019 in large part due to policy differences over how to secure the Southern border. Pundits debate rhetoric over migrant caravans, coast-to-coast walls, and the rights of asylum-seekers, while empirical facts seem to conflict.  Is there an immigration crisis, and to what extent have the actions of the United States fueled it?  What have U.S. policymakers tried to achieve in the hemisphere, and how successful have they been?  Conversely, what factors drive Latin Americans to the U.S., and how have they changed over time? In this course, we will examine U.S. foreign policy towards Latin America through the lens of migration.  Themes covered in lecture and class discussion will include major U.S. foreign policy objectives as well as the role of American business interests in the region, and their impact on migration, particularly economic development and human rights.  More specific topics will include the Monroe Doctrine, Roosevelt’s Corollary, Dollar Diplomacy, the Washington Consensus, the Iran-Contra affair, the Bracero program, NAFTA and its revisions, and the growth of MS-13 and other trafficking gangs.   Previous coursework in International Relations and/or Comparative Politics is recommended, but not necessary or required for success in the course.

 

Instructor: Dr. Wendy Sinek

Introduction to Empirical Analysis and Quantitative Methods

Level
Semester
Summer 2019
Instructor(s)
Units
4
Number
W3
CCN
15767
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 and be able to conduct your own independent research.

Psychology of Politics

Level
Semester
Summer 2019
Units
4
Number
N164A
CCN
14462
Times
MTWT 4-6
Location
LeConte 4
Course Description

The purpose of this course is to provide students with a basic framework for understanding howpsychological processes impact citizens’ political decision-making, attitudes, behaviors, and identities.
Over six weeks, we will look at theories and evidence from social, cognitive, behavioral, anddevelopmental psychology, which will we then apply to modern and historical political conflicts and
dilemmas. Throughout the course, we will also consider how well psychology explains various political phenomena, relative to approaches from economics and other fields.

Instructor: Sean Freeder

INTRODUCTION TO AMERICAN POLITICS

Level
Semester
Summer 2019
Units
4
Number
001
CCN
14472
Times
MTWT 4-6
Location
Leconte 4
Course Description

This course provides an overview of the U.S. political system from the nation's founding to the present. In addition to examining the core structures of our federal system, we will also explore a number of
special topics, such as the evolution of civil rights and the causes of partisan gridlock. The course will pay particular attention to the role institutions play in shaping political conflict and, ultimately,in determining who wins and who loses.

Instructor: Sean Freeder

 

 

 

UNDERSTANDING POLITICAL DEVELOPMENTS IN INDIA

Level
Semester
Summer 2019
Instructor(s)
Units
4
Number
W145A
CCN
13959
Times
Online Course
Location
Online Course
Course Description

This class, which will   focuses mostly on the domestic politics of India, has multiple aims.   In addition to providing an overview of political developments in India since independence, this online course assesses the nature of democratic participation and representation in contemporary India-the world's largest democracy. Course is scheduled to run  Session C (June 18 - August 10).

 

Please note you will NOT be able to take Political Science W145A, if you are enrolled or have completed Political Science 145A. This is an on-line variation of the course.

 

Note: Course description is from Summer 2013