Course Descriptions

Additional information regarding the courses can be found on the web pages of individual faculty members who are scheduled to teach the classes.

American Politics

debate_hall_6113. American Government and Politics. (3h) The nature of politics, political principles, and political institutions, with emphasis on their application to the U.S. (D)

210. Topics in U.S. Politics and Policy. (3h) Intensive study of one or more major problems in contemporary U.S. politics and policy. Course may be retaken for credit if topic varies.

211. Political Parties, Voters, and Elections. (3h) Examines party competition, party organiza­tions, the electorate and electoral activities of parties, and the responsibilities of parties for governing.

212. U.S. Policymaking in the 21st Century. (3h) Examines the contemporary U.S. policymak­ing process. Special attention to ways issues become important and contributions of different politi­cal actors, institutions, and ideologies in the passage or rejection of policy proposals. Considers a range of social, economic, and regulatory policies.

POL 214 Latina/o Politics.
(3h) Examines the contemporary role of Latinos as a minority group in the U.S. with emphasis on U.S. immigration policies, Latina/o political participation and identity, and interracial coalition formations. Service-learning course. (CD)

215. Citizen and Community. (3h) Examines the role and responsibilities of citizens in demo­cratic policymaking. Includes discussion of democratic theory, emphasis on a policy issue of national importance (i.e. poverty, crime, environment), and involvement of students in projects that examine the dimension of the issue in their community. Service-learning course.

216. U.S. Social Welfare Policy. (3h) Analysis of U.S. social policymaking and policy outcomes on issues such as welfare, education, health care, and Social Security, with emphasis on historical development and cross-national comparison.

217. Politics and the Mass Media. (3h) Explores the relationship between the political system and the mass media. Two broad concerns are the regulation of the mass media and the impact of media on political processes and events. Also listed as JOU 277.

218. Congress and Policymaking. (3h) Examines the composition, authority structures, external influences, and procedures of Congress with emphasis on their implications for policymaking in the U.S.

219. Political Participation. (3h) Examines political participation in the U.S., with emphasis on electoral and non-electoral avenues through which individuals and groups wield influence in politics and government, including voting, interest groups, and social movements. Service-learning course.

220. The American Presidency. (3h) Emphasizes the office and the role; contributions by contem­porary presidents considered in perspective.

221. State Politics. (3h) Examines institutions, processes, and policies at the state level, with emphasis on the different patterns of governance in the various states and the consequences of the recent revitalization of state governments.

222. Urban Politics. (3h) Political structures and processes in American cities and suburbs as they relate to the social, economic, and political problems of the metropolis. Service-learning course. (CD)

223. Blacks in American Politics. (3h) Surveys selected topics, including black political participa­tion, political organizations, political leadership, and political issues. Shows the relationship of these phenomena to American political institutions and processes as a whole.

POL 224 Racial and Ethnic Politics. (3h)
Analysis of the impact and interactions of African Americans, Latinos, Asian Americans, American Indians and Whites in U.S. politics, with special emphasis on racial identity development, minority representation, and the U.S. criminal justice system. Service-learning course. (CD)

225. American Constitutional Law: Separation of Powers and the Federal System. (3h) Analysis of Supreme Court decisions affecting the three branches of the national government and federal/state relations.

226. American Constitutional Law: Civil Liberties. (3h) Judicial interpretations of First Amend­ment freedoms, racial equality, and the rights of the criminally accused. Not open to first-year students.

227. Politics, Law, and Courts. (3h) Analysis of the nature and role of law in American society and the structure and procedure of American courts. Questions of judicial organization, personnel, and decision making, as well as the impact of law and court decisions on the social order, are explored at local, state, and national levels.

228. The Politics of Public Education. (3h) Introduces students to some of the most popular and contentious contemporary education policy debates and discusses what the U.S. school system tells us about the country’s fundamental political commitments.

229. Women and Politics. (3h) Examines classical and contemporary arguments regarding the participation of women in politics, as well as current policy issues and changes in women’s political participation.

Comparative Politics

114. Comparative Government and Politics. (3h) Analysis of political institutions, processes, and policy issues in selected countries. Case studies are drawn from Africa, Asia, Europe, and Latin America. (CD, D)

231. Western European Politics. (3h) Comparative analysis of political institutions, processes, and policy issues in selected West European countries. Special attention is given to case studies involving Great Britain, France, Germany, Italy and to the process of European integration.

232. Politics in Russia and Eastern Europe. (3h) Analysis of the political, economic, and social patterns of the region, emphasizing the internal dynamics of the political and economic transition processes currently underway.

233. The Politics of Modern Germany. (3h) Study of the historical legacy, political behavior, and governmental institutions of contemporary Germany (newly unified Germany).

234. United Kingdom Politics in a Global Age. (3h) Introduces the nature and content of con­temporary United Kingdom politics by placing those politics in a wider analysis of United Kingdom history, society, and international positions. (CD)

235. European Integration. (3h) Combines different approaches to the study of Europe by exam­ining European integration—as highlighted by the development of the European Union—through the lenses of history, politics, culture, and economics.

236. Government and Politics in Latin America. (3h) Comparative analysis of the institutions and processes of politics in the Latin-American region. (CD)

237. The Comparative Politics of Welfare States. (3h) Examines the various ways in which the U.S. and other advanced industrial societies respond to a number of shared “welfare issues,” and craft public policy in areas such as pensions, health care, anti-poverty programs, family stability, and immigration.

238. Comparative Economic Development and Political Change. (3h) Overview of the relationship between economic development, socio-structural change, and politics since the creation of the international capitalist system in the 16th century. Organized around case studies of indus­trialized democracies, evolving Communist systems and command economies, and “Third World” countries.

239. State, Economy, and International Competitiveness. (3h) Introduces a range of impor­tant case studies of national economic performance and does so in such a manner as to illustrate the role of public policy in economic performance in a number of leading industrial economies (the U.S., United Kingdom, Germany, Sweden, and Japan).

240. Human Rights in Latin America. (3h) Looks at the policy dilemmas that both restored and new democracies face when dealing with past human rights violations and how they engage in restructuring the domain of human rights in a changed global environment. Case studies focus primarily on Latin America within a comparative framework. (CD)

242. Topics in Comparative Politics. (3h) Intensive study of one or more major problems in contemporary comparative politics. Course may be retaken for credit if topic varies.

244. Politics and Literature. (3h) Examines how literature can extend knowledge of politics and political systems. Considers the insights of selected novelists.

245. Ethnonationalism. (3h) Concerned with the role of ethnicity in world politics. Focuses on both theoretical and substantive issues relating to: (a) nature of ethnicity and ethnic group identity; (b) sources of ethnic conflict; (c) politics of ethnic conflict; (d) policy management of ethnic conflict; and (e) international intervention in ethnic conflict.

246. Politics and Policies in South Asia. (3h) Surveys major issues relevant to politics and policy in India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Sri Lanka. (CD)

247. Islam and Politics. (3h) Explores the interrelationship of Islam and politics in the contempo­rary world. Deals with Islam as a political ideology which shapes the structure of political institu­tions and behavior. Looks at Islam in practice by examining the interaction between Islam and the political systems of Iran, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, and others. (CD)

248. Chinese Politics. (3h) Surveys the political institutions and processes in China (People’s Republic of China and Republic of China). Emphasizes group conflict, elites, ideology, as well as current policy changes in the process of modernization.

International Politics

116. International Politics. (3h) Surveys the forces that shape relations among states and some of the major problems of contemporary international politics. (CD, D)

251. The Politics of Forced Migration. (3h) Addresses major questions about forced migra­tion in international politics, such as: What causes people to flee their homes? What are the effects of forced displacement on the host communities? How should considerations of human rights and international law affect our understanding of forced migration?

252. Topics in International Politics. (3h) Intensive study of one or more major problems of contemporary international politics. Course may be retaken for credit if topic varies.

253. International Political Economy. (3h) Analyzes major issues in the global political economy including theoretical approaches to understanding the tension between politics and economics, mon­etary and trade policy, North-South relations, environmentalism, human rights, and democratization.

254. U.S. Foreign Policy: Contemporary Issues. (3h) Examines the most pressing issues in U.S. foreign policy today, with attention to the historical and institutional context in which U.S. foreign policy is determined.

255. Group Identity in International Relations. (3h) Examines the impact on international poli­tics of nationalism, supranationalism, and globalism, with attention to the origins of group identities and to contemporary trends.

256. International Security. (3h) Explores various theoretical approaches to security studies and contemporary security issues, with special attention to domestic variables, the use of force, strategic culture, weapons of mass destruction, the political economy of national security, and terrorism.

257. Interamerican Relations. (3h) Examines the history and contemporary challenges of rela­tions among the nations of the Americas, including intervention and sovereignty, migration, drugs, economic relations, and contemporary foreign policy.

259. The Arab-Israeli Conflict. (3h) Analysis of factors influencing the relationship between Israel and its neighbors relative to fundamental aspects of U.S., Israeli, Palestinian, and Arab states policies.

260. U.S. and East Asia. (3h) Analytical survey of U.S. interaction with East Asia, with emphasis on the strategic security and the political economy of the region. (CD)

261. International Law. (3h) Analyzes major issues in public international law including sources of international law, state sovereignty, territorial jurisdiction, treaties, peaceful settlement of disputes, human rights, and the relationship between international law and domestic law.

262. International Organizations. (3h) Surveys the philosophy, principles, organizational structure, and decision-making procedures of international organizations. In addition to the United Nations system, this course analyzes various international organizations in issues such as collective security, trade, economic development, human rights protection, and the environment.

263. U.S. Foreign Policy in the Middle East. (3h) Critical analysis of U.S. foreign policy with respect to the Middle East since the second World War. Utilizes a case study method of instruction.

264. Moral Dilemmas in International Politics. (3h) Examines moral dilemmas in international politics with reference to theories and cases. Topics include just war doctrine, responsibility of rich countries toward poor countries, exportability of capitalism and democracy, and legitimacy of humanitarian intervention.

266. Civil Wars: Causes and Consequences. (3h) Examines and assesses competing theories of civil war, including economic, ethnic, religious, and ideological explanations. Addresses dilemmas raised by civil war such as the spread of HIV/AIDS, the proliferation of private security companies, and the abuse of humanitarian aid.

267. America in Vietnam: Myth and Reality. (3h) Analysis of American policy toward Vietnam, with special emphasis on the period of 1954-75. Focus is on the relationship between American poli­cies and the problems posed by Vietnamese and American cultures.

268. International Conflict Resolution. (3h) Explores various approaches to conflict resolution through readings, case studies, and simulations. Issues include negotiation and mediation, dealing with war criminals, tradeoffs between justice and peace, and the role of the international community.

Political Theory

115. Political Theory. (3h) Introduces the central concepts (democracy, liberty, equality, and power) and ideologies (liberalism, conservatism, and socialism) as they have been formulated within some of the main schools of political thought. (D)

269. Topics in Political Theory. (3h) Intensive study of one or more major topics in political theory. Course may be retaken for credit if topic varies.

270. Ethics and Politics. (3h) Investigates the relationship between ethical reasoning and political theory. Representative philosophers include Hume, Kant, Nietzsche, Mill, Sidgwick, Green, Ayer, Hare, and McIntyre.

271. Classical Political Thought. (3h) Examines the nature and goals of classical political theoriz­ing, with attention to its origins in ancient Athens and its diffusion through Rome. Representative writers include Plato, Aristotle, and Cicero.

272. Democratic Theory. (3h) Examines the theoretical underpinnings of democracy and some of the critiques of those foundations. Focuses on understanding some of the major theories of democ­racy and on how key democratic concepts are defined differently within these various traditions.

273. Marx, Marxism and the Aftermath of Marxism. (3h) Examines Marx’s indebtedness to Hegel, his early humanistic writings, and the vicissitudes of 20th-century vulgar Marxism and neo- Marxism in the works of Lenin, Lukacs, Korsch, Horkeimer, Marcuse, and Sartre.

274. Religion and Politics in Medieval Thought. (3h) Investigates the medieval encounter be­tween philosophy and revealed religion (Islam, Judaism, and Christianity). Topics include the nature of political community and its role in cultivating virtue; relations between knowledge and power, and between politics and salvation; and the origins of modern ideas of law and freedom.

275. American Political Thought. (3h) Examines the republican, civic humanistic tradition vs. the liberal, juridical tradition in American political thought from the founding to the present. Read­ings from Locke, Sidney, the Federalists and anti-Federalists, Spencer, Dewey, Rawls, and Sandel.

276. Modern Political Thought. (3h) Political thought from Machiavelli to the present, including such topics as moral and natural rights, positive and negative freedom, social contract theory, alien­ation and citizenship. Selected writings from Machiavelli, Locke, Rousseau, Mill, Marx, and Rawls.

277. Feminist Political Thought. (3h) Introduces feminist thought and its implications for the study and practice of political theory. Topics include feminist critiques of the Western political tradi­tion and schools of feminist political theory. (CD)

279. Varieties of Philosophical Liberalism. (3h) Study of 20th-century philosophical liberalism such as libertarianism, utilitarianism, liberal utilitarianism, Kantian liberalism and communitarian­ism with special focus on rival conceptions of freedom and on utilitarianism and its critics.

POL 280 Research Methods.
(3h) Overview of the qualitative and quantitative methods prominent in studying political science. Attention is given to the relationships between theory, method and findings by focusing on the need to make systematic empirical observations. P-MST 109 must be taken before or concurrently with this course.

Seminars and Additional Courses

Please note that the requirement for Political Science Methods will change for incoming majors. For further information please consult.

282. Gandhi. (3h) Explores the life, political philosophy, and the method of non-violent coercion (satyagraha) of Gandhi. Students define and implement group projects designed to promote change within the context of Gandhian methodology. Service-learning course.

286: Topics in Political Science. (1, 2, 3h) Intensive study of one or more topics in the discipline. May not be used to meet one of the four area requirements.

287. Individual Study. (2h or 3h) Intensive research leading to the completion of an analytical paper conducted under the direction of a faculty member. Students initiate the project and secure the permission of an appropriate instructor. May be repeated for a maximum of 6 hours, only three of which may count toward the major. P—POI.

288. Directed Reading. (2h or 3h) Concentrated reading in an area of study not otherwise avail­able. Students initiate the project and secure the permission of an appropriate instructor. P—POI.

289. Internship in Politics. (2h or 3h) Field work in a public or private setting with related read­ings and an analytical paper under the direction of a faculty member. Students initiate the project and secure the permission of an appropriate instructor. Normally one course in an appropriate subfield is taken prior to the internship. P—POI.

291. Research Design and Qualitative Analysis. (1.5h). Introduces students to the construction of a research design and the uses of qualitative methods such as survey methods, content analysis, field research and literature reviews.

292. Quantitative Analysis. (1.5h) Focuses on problems political researchers choose to address quantitatively, and how to measure and analyze concepts relevant to politics quantitatively. (NOTE: Students who have already completed successfully an equivalent quantitative methods course outside the political science department may petition the department chair for excusal from POL 292. It will remain the responsibility of such students to meet the full number of credit hours required for the politics major.)

300. Senior Seminar in Political Science. (4h) Readings and research on selected topics.