All Courses

Courses offered in the past four years. Courses offered currently are as noted.

Course Description

Guns, Drugs, People: The Illicit Economy in the Global Perspective In this course, we will focus on patterns of illegal activity in the international economy. Students will study phenomena such as illegal trade in arms, animals, and drugs, and the trafficking and smuggling of human beings. The purpose of this course is to introduce students to the systematic analysis of the illicit global economy. Students will be taught to examine the causes of illicit markets, the actors involved (entrepreneurs, consumers, governments), and how markets respond to efforts to combat them. The objective is for students to understand the phenomenon and its drivers, and to translate this understanding into a critical evaluation of current policy approaches.

Terms Taught

Fall 2023, Fall 2024

Requirements

CMP, SOC

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Course Description

Introduction to Political Philosophy
What is politics and how should it be studied? Is there a best regime? A best way of life? How are these two things related, if at all? Can we gain knowledge of such topics? We will examine these questions through a study of the some or all of the following texts: Plato, Apology of Socrates, Republic; Aristotle, Nicomachean Ethics, Politics; Thucydides, The Peloponnesian War; St. Augustine, Confessions; St. Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologica, Summa Contra Gentiles; Machiavelli, The Prince; Hobbes, Leviathan; Locke, Second Treatise on Government; Rousseau, Discourse on the Origin and Foundations of Inequality Among Men; Marx, The Communist Manifesto, The German Ideology, Capital; and Weber, “Science as a Vocation.” 4 hrs. lect./disc. (Political Theory)

Terms Taught

Spring 2020, Fall 2020, Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Spring 2023, Fall 2023, Spring 2024, Fall 2024

Requirements

EUR, PHL, SOC

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Course Description

The American Political Regime
This is a course in American political and constitutional thought. The theme, taken from de Tocqueville's Democracy in America, is the problem of freedom. The first half covers the American founding up through the Civil War and the "refounding." This includes de Tocqueville, Madison's Notes on the Debates in the Federal Convention, the Federalist-Anti-Federalist ratification debate, Supreme Court decisions (Marbury, McCulloch), writings of Jefferson, Calhoun, and Lincoln. The second half considers basic problems in American politics, such as race, gender, foreign policy, and education. Readings include a novel, de Tocqueville, and Supreme Court decisions (Brown, Frontiero, Roe, Casey, Grutter, Lawrence). 4 hrs. lect./disc. (American Politics)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2020, Spring 2021, Spring 2022, Spring 2024, Spring 2025

Requirements

AMR, NOR, SOC

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Course Description

Introduction to Comparative Politics
This course offers an introduction to the comparative study of political systems and to the logic of comparative inquiry. How are different political systems created and organized? How and why do they change? Why are some democratic and others authoritarian? Why are some rich and others poor? Other topics covered in this course include nationalism and political ideologies, forms of representation, the relationship between state institutions and civil society, and globalization. The goal in this course is to use comparative methods to analyze questions of state institutions -- how they arise, change, and generate different economic, social, and political outcomes. 3 hrs. lect. disc. (Comparative Politics)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2020, Fall 2020, Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Spring 2023, Fall 2023, Spring 2024, Fall 2024, Spring 2025

Requirements

CMP, SOC

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Course Description

Introduction to American Politics
This course introduces the institutions and practices of American government and politics. The aim is to give students a firm understanding of the workings of and the balance of power among the American Congress, President, bureaucracy, and court system. We begin with the Constitution, which provides the set of founding principles upon which the American government is based. We then look at how American citizens make decisions about politics. Finally, we examine how political institutions, interest groups, parties, elections, and legislative bodies and rules aggregate diverse, often conflicting preferences and how they resolve or exacerbate problems. 3 hrs. lect./disc. (American Politics)/

Terms Taught

Fall 2020, Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Fall 2022, Spring 2023, Fall 2023, Spring 2024, Fall 2024, Spring 2025

Requirements

AMR, SOC

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Course Description

International Politics
What causes conflict or cooperation among states? What can states and other international entities do to preserve global peace? These are among the issues addressed by the study of international politics. This course examines the forces that shape relations among states, and between states and international regimes. Key concepts include: the international system, power and the balance of power, international institutions, foreign policy, diplomacy, deterrence, war, and global economic issues. Both the fall and spring sections of this course emphasize rigorous analysis and set theoretical concepts against historical and contemporary case studies. 3 hrs. lect./disc. (International Relations and Foreign Policy)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2020, Fall 2020, Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Spring 2023, Fall 2023, Spring 2024, Spring 2025

Requirements

CMP, SOC

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Course Description

Social Capital, Social Networks and Trust: in Israel and in the United States
This course will introduce students to Social Capital, and the components that go along with it: Social Networks, Trust, and Social Norms. Additionally, we will discuss the role of social capital in various substantive areas including Democracy, Civic Engagement, Community, Education, Economy. Based on academic literature, videos and lectures we will explore various perspectives, manifestations and effects of Social Capital, mainly in Israel and in the US. The ultimate aim is to enable students to understand the theoretical definitions, conceptualizations, and typologies of social capital and its components, and how to relate theory to the real world by learning to use the practical side of it and to develop and use it according to needs of individuals, communities, and organizations. (Comparative Politics)

Terms Taught

Spring 2024, Spring 2025

Requirements

CMP, SOC

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Course Description

African Politics
This course surveys the challenges and possibilities that Sub-Saharan Africa presents in our era of globalization. We will look at the process of state formation to appreciate the relationships between historical legacies and political and economic development. Themes include state formation, democratic governance, sustainable development, and Africa in world affairs. Topics such as colonial rule and national responses, authoritarian rule, ethnic politics, the debt burden, the HIV/AIDS pandemic, and natural resource politics will be discussed. Case studies from English-, French-, and Portuguese-speaking Africa will be used to illuminate such relationships. 3 hrs lect/disc. (Comparative Politics)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2022, Spring 2023, Spring 2024

Requirements

AAL, SAF, SOC

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Course Description

Left, Right, and Center
In this course, we shall examine liberalism, conservatism, socialism and their competing conceptions of freedom, equality, the individual, and community. We shall consider the origins of these ideologies in early modern political theory and shall afford special attention to the connection between thought and politics. Authors may include John Locke, Adam Smith, Edmund Burke, Alexis de Tocqueville, Karl Marx, Friedrich Nietzsche, John Rawls, Michel Foucault, Michael Oakeshott, and Friedrich Hayek. 3 hrs. lect. (Political Theory)

Terms Taught

Fall 2020, Fall 2021, Fall 2022, Fall 2023, Fall 2024

Requirements

EUR, PHL, SOC

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Course Description

The American Presidency
This course examines the development and modern practice of presidential leadership. Focus is on presidential decision-making, changes in the structure of the presidency as an institution, differences among individual presidents, and the interaction of the president with other major actors, including national governing institutions (executive branch, Congress, courts), interest groups, media, and the public. The course includes an historical overview of the evolution of the presidency, and examines changes in the electoral process. (PSCI 0102 or PSCI 0104 or waiver) 3 hrs. lect./disc. (American Politics)/

Terms Taught

Fall 2022, Fall 2024

Requirements

AMR, SOC

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Course Description

The Politics of the U.S. Congress
Introduces students to the analysis of Congress and congressional policy-making. Considers how congressional elections, institutions, and policy hang together roughly in equilibrium. Focuses on the internal organization of Congress-committees, parties, House and Senate leadership, rules and norms, and congressional staff. Analyzes the power of Congress relative to the president, the bureaucracy, and the courts, specifically in the policy process. Investigates how unified and divided party control of the government affects legislation in the House and Senate. Finally, applies congressional theories to determine the fates of specific policy proposals in Congress. (PSCI 0102 or PSCI 0104 or waiver) 3 hrs. lect./disc. (American Politics)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2020, Fall 2023

Requirements

AMR, NOR

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Course Description

Local Green Politics
How do local communities manage their natural resources? How do they navigate global forces that often work against them? Through systematic comparisons of cases of successful and unsuccessful community resource management efforts, we will assess under what conditions local communities are likely to be successful environmental stewards. The course will draw on experiences from Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America, and the USA. Students will compare the cultural contexts in which resource management decisions are made. By the end of the course, students will be expected to describe and critically analyze cases of resource (mis)management. They will also learn to offer solutions to situations of resource mismanagement. 3 hrs. lect./disc./(Comparative Politics)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2020

Requirements

AAL, CMP, CW, SOC

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Course Description

Frontiers in Political Science Research
Nothing is more controversial among political scientists than the topic of how to study politics. In this course, we consider a variety of advanced techniques for studying political phenomena, including statistical methods, game theory, institutional analysis, case study techniques, experiments, and agent-based modeling. We will work with concrete examples (drawn from major political science journals) of how scholars have used these techniques, and consider the ongoing philosophical controversies associated with each approach. Students will have the opportunity to conduct original research using a method and subject of their choosing. (Any political science courses) 3 hrs. lect.disc (Methods)

Terms Taught

Fall 2020, Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Spring 2022, Spring 2023, Fall 2023, Spring 2024, Spring 2025

Requirements

DED, SOC

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Course Description

Conservation and Environmental Policy
This course examines conservation and environmental policy in the United States. In order to better understand the current nature of the conservation and environmental policy process, we will begin by tracing the development of past ideas, institutions, and policies related to this policy arena. We will then focus on contemporary conservation and environmental politics and policy making—gridlock in Congress, interest group pressure, the role of the courts and the president, and a move away from national policy making—toward the states, collaboration, and civil society. 3 hrs. lect./disc. (American Politics)/

Terms Taught

Fall 2020, Fall 2021, Fall 2023, Fall 2024

Requirements

AMR, NOR, SOC

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Course Description

Qualitative Methods in Political Science
This seminar offers a broad introduction to qualitative methodology with a focus on comparative methods for the analysis of a relatively small number of cases (small-n). This course will enable students to create and critique qualitative research designs in political science. The course focuses on recent methodological writings and includes several substantive examples from various subfields. Topics covered include causal inference, case studies, cross-case comparison, typological theory, case selection, process tracing, counterfactual analysis, and set theory. We will also discuss approaches to multi-method research and the use of mixed methods in political science. 3 hrs. lect. (Methods)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Spring 2023, Fall 2023, Spring 2024, Fall 2024, Spring 2025

Requirements

DED

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Course Description

International Environmental Politics
What happens when the global economy outgrows the earth's ecosystem? This course surveys the consequences of the collision between the expanding world economy and the earth's natural limits: shrinking forests, falling water tables, eroding soils, collapsing fisheries, rising temperatures, and disappearing species. We will examine how countries with different circumstances and priorities attempt to work together to stop global environmental pollution and resource depletion. 3 hrs. lect./disc. (International Relations and Foreign Policy)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2024, Fall 2024

Requirements

CMP, SOC

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Course Description

Federalism, State and Local Politics
What are the unique political opportunities and constraints facing state and local governments? How have these changed over time? In this course we examine the relationships between different levels of government in the U.S. federal system, considering the particular tasks and dilemmas facing states and cities, and scrutinizing the complex interactions between governments that characterize federalism in the United States. Topics include local political culture, intergovernmental grants, state parties, and state political economy. Vermont, New York, and California will receive special scrutiny. 3 hrs. lect./disc. (American Politics)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2021, Spring 2022, Spring 2023, Spring 2025

Requirements

AMR, SOC

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Course Description

Politics of the Middle East and North Africa
This course is an introduction to important themes, concepts, and cases in the study of Middle Eastern and North African politics. We will examine key political issues in the region, focusing primarily on developments since World War II and issues of relevance to the region today. For the purposes of this course, the region is defined as the countries of the Arab world, Israel, Turkey, and Iran. The first half of the course introduces major themes in Middle Eastern politics. These include state development, nationalism, revolution, authoritarian rule, the petro-state, the Arab-Israeli conflict, conflicts in the Persian Gulf, civil conflict, the rise of Islamism, and attempts at liberal reform. The second half of the course examines how these themes have affected political development in a number of key cases. Primary cases include Egypt, Israel, Iran, Morocco, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, and Iraq. Students will have the opportunity to individually assess other countries of personal interest in the region. 3 hrs. lect./disc. (Comparative Politics)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Spring 2023, Spring 2024

Requirements

MDE, SOC

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Course Description

What Can I Say? Free Speech v. Racist Speech in the United States and Europe
In this course we will delve into the politics and law surrounding issues of racist speech in the United States and Europe. We will look at the development of speech doctrines in the post-World War Two era, drawing on well-known case studies from American constitutional history, as well as European examples such as the Danish Cartoon Controversy and Holocaust denial cases. Through comparison across time and countries, we will debate the appropriate limits on racist speech in different contexts. (Not open to students who have taken FYSE 1510 or PSCI 1023) 3 hrs. lect./disc (Comparative Politics)

Terms Taught

Fall 2020, Spring 2023, Spring 2024, Spring 2025

Requirements

CMP, SOC

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Course Description

Contemporary Chinese Politics
This introductory course provides students with a background in how the party-state political system functions, and then investigates the major political issues in China today. We will focus first on economic reform issues, such as income inequality, the floating population, and changes in the socialist welfare model, and then on political reform issues, such as the liberalization of news media, NGO and civil society activity, protest and social movements, environmental protection, and legal reform. China is a quickly changing country, so students will focus on analyzing current events but also have an opportunity to explore a topic of interest in more detail. 3 hrs. lect./disc. Comparative Politics

Terms Taught

Spring 2021, Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Fall 2023, Spring 2025

Requirements

NOA, SOC

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Course Description

Soviet and Russian Politics
This course seeks to introduce the student to a major phenomenon of 20th century politics, the rise and decline of the Soviet Union and the emergence of Russia as its successor state. The first part of the course provides an overview of key factors that influenced Russian and Soviet politics under communism, including history, economy, ideology, institutions of the communist party, and the role of political leadership from Lenin to Gorbachev. The second part surveys radical political and social transformations in the 1990s and analyzes Russia's struggle with the twin challenges of democratic and market reform under Yeltsin and Putin. 3 hrs. lect./disc. (Comparative Politics)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2020, Spring 2022, Spring 2023, Spring 2024

Requirements

EUR, HIS, SOC

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Course Description

Central and East European Politics
This introductory course surveys the key stages in the political development of East and Central Europe in the 20th century, including the imposition of communist rule, crises of de-Stalinization, the revolutions of 1989, the politics of post-communist transitions, the Balkan wars, and democratization. It focuses on those factors that either promote or impede the development of stable democratic regimes and assesses East Europe's prospects in the context of EU enlargement and NATO expansion. 3 hrs. lect./disc. (Comparative Politics)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2021

Requirements

EUR, HIS, SOC

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Course Description

Introduction to Text as Data
Computational tools that identify patterns in language and text increasingly help us understand the world. In this course we will explore several of the most common types of text-as-data analyses, such as collocations, keywords in context, topic modeling, and sentiment analysis. Students will work in teams throughout the semester to apply these tools to understand media coverage of a group or topic of their choice. This course is designed to be accessible to students in the social sciences, humanities, and arts as well as being of interest to computer science, math, and science students. 3 hrs. sem. (Methods)/

Terms Taught

Fall 2023, Fall 2024

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Course Description

The Politics of Diversity in Western Europe
Contrary to common perceptions, most West European populations are no longer overwhelmingly white and Christian. The new diversity prompted by post-World War II immigration has generated opportunities and challenges for European societies. In this course, we will examine how ethnic diversity is affecting contemporary West European politics. We will cover the topics of citizenship, immigration, immigrant integration, the rise of far right parties, and state policies toward Europe's new ethnically, racially, and religiously diverse societies. 3 hrs. lect./disc. (Comparative Politics)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2020

Requirements

EUR, SOC

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Course Description

Globalization: Change and Continuity
In this course we will examine globalization and the extent to which it is causing change, yet perpetuating some patterns in the international system. We will delve into the different views of globalization, distinguishing it from liberalization, Westernization and Americanization. We will explore cultural identities and distinctiveness, national sovereignty, transnational institutions, and power. We will also discuss widening global inequality and impoverishment, as well as how different genders are affected. We will approach these topics from individual, local and global perspectives. 3 hrs. lect./disc. (International Relations and Foreign Policy)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2020

Requirements

CMP, HIS, SOC

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Course Description

International Law
In this course we will analyze how legal principles operate at the international level and how those principles intersect with national laws. We will examine a variety of legal issues and concepts including but not limited to sovereignty, human rights, trade and investment law, use of force, and environmental treaties. Throughout the class, we will pair those issues and concepts with real-world cases. 3 hrs lect. (International Relations and Foreign Policy)/

Terms Taught

Fall 2020

Requirements

SOC

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Course Description

The Future of Great Power Relations
Will America’s global preeminence endure in the 21st century? Will Russia, Japan, and the European Union decline while other powers grow more influential? In this course we will explore the future global balance of power and prospects for cooperation and conflict among the world’s great powers. Topics include the rise of China and India; the changing nature of American power; the causality of global power shifts and their implications for cooperation or competition on issues such as energy security, cyber security, nuclear nonproliferation, UN Security Council reform, intervention in the Middle East, and Sino-American relations. (PSCI 0109) 3 hrs. sem. (International Relations and Foreign Policy)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2020, Spring 2021, Spring 2022, Spring 2023, Spring 2024

Requirements

CMP, SOC

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Course Description

International Politics and WMD
In this course we will examine the international ramifications of nuclear, biological, and chemical weapons use. What is a weapon of mass destruction (WMD)? How have WMD changed the way states behave toward international conflicts and within international crises? How has the development of these weapons influenced the policies states have adopted in response? Beyond these questions, major course themes include the threats of proliferation and the highs and lows of weapons reduction initiatives. 3 hrs. lect./disc. (not open to students who have taken PSCI 1159) (International Relations and Foreign Policy)/

Terms Taught

Fall 2022, Spring 2024

Requirements

SOC

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Course Description

Pan-African Political Philosophy
In the late 1890s and early 1900s, a network of intellectuals from the Black Diaspora, horrified by the continued expansion of European colonialism into Africa, emerged to explain major developments in world politics. As they argued, colonialism replaced indigenous systems with European-style states, structured the international political economy, and shaped the emergence of contemporary racial divisions. We will read philosopher Charles Mills’s The Racial Contract, The Philosophy and Opinions of Marcus Garvey among others to ask: How did racism shape capitalism? What are the metaphysics of racial identity? Can Black people find liberation in post-colonial states? We will see how pan-African philosophy adapted to international events, such as the end of WWI, WWII, the UN, and eventual independence from colonialism. (Not open to students who have taken FYSE 1308.) Political Theory

Terms Taught

Spring 2024

Requirements

CMP, CW, PHL

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Course Description

Politics of International Migration, Borders, and Migration Controls
Currently, both forced and voluntary migration is at historic highs. Simultaneously, immigration control is becoming a global phenomenon. The rise of border control contrasts with the vulnerability of many migrants today. This course will give an overview of migration and forced migration, and then look at issues and rationales in migration control from a comparative perspective. The questions we will ask are: What drives migration? What are the historical roots of migration? What is the purpose of immigration control? What are the politics of migration control in comparative perspective? This course incorporates various levels of analysis (international, national, subnational, transnational) and draws on interdisciplinary theoretical frameworks. Students will gain an understanding of migration and the legal frameworks governing the process. Students will then explore how migration relates to state sovereignty, human rights, and international law. Students will also interrogate the process of creating immigration policies, and the actors and stakeholders driving this process. (International Relations and Foreign Policy)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2025

Requirements

SOC

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Course Description

International Diplomacy and Modern South Asia
In this course we will examine current political and economic issues in the countries of South Asia - Afghanistan, Pakistan, India, Nepal, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Maldives and Bhutan. We will first examine the background of the South Asian region in general (pre-colonial and colonial eras) and of South Asian countries after independence. We will look at specific interstate and intrastate issues, focusing on the combined quests for political stability and economic development. Students will look at topical issues from the perspective of an officer working in a U.S. Embassy or in a U.S. foreign policy agency. The course will combine rigorous academic understanding of the region with current policy issues. Readings will include both academic studies and contemporary policy/issues papers. 3 hrs. lect./disc. (International Relations and Foreign Policy)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2020, Spring 2022, Fall 2023

Requirements

AAL, SOA, SOC

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Course Description

Identity and Conflict in South Asia
In this course we will examine political development and conflict in South Asia through the concept of identity. South Asians take on a variety of identities -- ethnic, religious, linguistic, caste, national, etc. These identities often form the basis of political mobilization and both inter- and intrastate conflict. We will study the general concept of identity, including how identities are constructed and used, and then specific manifestations in South Asia. We will also examine the question of whether these identities were constructed during colonial or post-colonial times, or have an earlier basis. (International Relations and Foreign Policy)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2021, Spring 2023

Requirements

SOA, SOC

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Course Description

Game Theory for Political Science
How do candidates for political office choose their platforms? Why do some conflicts lead to war while others do not? What legislation will legislators introduce? These and many other compelling questions of political behavior often use game theory as a tool to study strategic, or interdependent, decision-making. Students will learn basic concepts of game theory and how to apply them to a range of political phenomena. To succeed, students need only a solid background in algebra. Students who have taken ECON 0280 cannot register for this course. (Any political science course) (formerly PSCI 0393) 3 hrs. lect./disc. (Methods)

Terms Taught

Fall 2020, Fall 2022

Requirements

DED, SOC

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Course Description

Politics of India
This course provides students with an introduction to the history and politics of India, one of the most diverse, populous (home to more than one-seventh of the world’s population), and important developing countries in the modern world. This course proceeds chronologically, beginning with ancient Indian (South Asian) civilization, the Mughal Empire of the medieval period, the British colonial experience, Independence, Partition, and contemporary politics, including rising development, as well as the growth of Hindu nationalism. (Comparative Politics) 3 hrs. lect.

Terms Taught

Spring 2021, Spring 2023

Requirements

SOA, SOC

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Course Description

The Politics of International Humanitarian Action
Humanitarian intervention has emerged as a new moral imperative that challenges traditional concepts and practices in international relations. In this course we will consider how a range of actors--international organizations, states, NGOs--understand the concept of humanitarian intervention and engage (or not) in humanitarian actions. We will examine a variety of policy choices, including aid and military intervention, through case studies, including Somalia, Kosovo, and Rwanda. The goal of the course is to enable students to assess critically the benefits and challenges of a humanitarian approach to global politics. 3 hrs. lect./disc. (International Relations and Foreign Policy)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2021, Spring 2022

Requirements

CMP, SOC

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Course Description

The Political Economy of Drug Trafficking
This course examines the political economy of drug trafficking in the Western Hemisphere. How have transnational drug markets evolved, and why? What effects has narco-trafficking had on the political, economic, legal, financial, and social systems of producer, consumer, and transshipment countries? What policy responses are available to combat it? How should we weigh alternative policy options? Examination of these issues centers on source countries in Latin America's Andean region, the chief transshipment country (Mexico), and the principal consumer country (the US). Attention also is devoted to the drug trade's effects on American society and criminal justice system. 3 hrs. lect./disc.
(International Relations and Foreign Policy)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2020

Requirements

AAL, AMR, CMP, CW, SOC

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Course Description

Might and Right Among Nations
What role does justice play in international politics? What role should it play? Does it pay to act justly in the conduct of foreign affairs? In this course, we will examine the place of ethical considerations in international politics. Drawing upon major works of political theory, we will pay special attention to the relationship between justice and necessity, the ethics of war and deception, and plans for perpetual peace. Authors will include Thucydides, Cicero, Augustine, Aquinas, Machiavelli, Rousseau, Montesquieu, Kant, Weber, Woodrow Wilson, and Michael Walzer. 3 hrs. lect. (Political Theory)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2023

Requirements

EUR, PHL

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Course Description

On Tyranny
What is Tyranny? Is it, as has been said, “a danger coeval with political life”? To help us consider these questions, we will read works of political philosophy, literature, and political commentary: Plato, Apology of Socrates, Republic VIII-IX and Charmides; Xenophon, Hiero, or On Tyranny; Machiavelli, Prince; Shakespeare, Macbeth and Julius Caesar; Hegel on master and slave; Carl Schmitt, The Concept of the Political; Leo Strauss on Xenophon, Alexander Kojeve’s Commentary and Strauss’s Restatement; Heidegger, Question Concerning Technology; Hannah Arendt, The Human Condition or Origins of Totalitarianism; Frederick Douglass, Narrative; Robert Penn Warren, All The King’s Men; and Ta Nahisi Coates, We Were Eight Years in Power). (not open to students who have taken PSCI 1158) 3 hrs. lect. (Political Theory)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2020

Requirements

EUR, PHL

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Course Description

Comparative Politics of Religion
This course provides students with an introduction to the study of religion in political science. The course is divided into four sections. The first section provides a theoretical background to religion and its study in political science. The second section discusses long-standing debates over the concept of ‘secularization.’ The third section examines the study of religion and democracy, with a special focus on the non-western case of India. The final section explores the effect of religion on political violence, with empirical examples from around the world. The last class explores the future of the study of religion in political science. (Comparative Politics) 3 hrs. lect.

Terms Taught

Spring 2022, Spring 2025

Requirements

CW

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Course Description

Authoritarian Politics
The purpose of this course is to examine the characteristics and dynamics of non-democratic regimes. First, we will define autocracy and consider different forms of authoritarianism and how their leaders come into power. Next, we will investigate why some authoritarian regimes are able to sustain their rule while others collapse. Finally, we will explore how citizens of these regimes bolster, comply with, or revolt against their governments. Throughout the course, adopting a comparative standpoint, we will draw on various country cases. (Comparative Politics)/

Terms Taught

Fall 2020, Fall 2021, Spring 2024, Fall 2024

Requirements

CMP, CW, SOC

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Course Description

Love and Friendship in Literature and Philosophy
Love and friendship are important topics for understanding the best human life and its relationship to the best regime. We will study Plato’s Phaedrus and Symposium; Aristotle’s Ethics; essays on friendship by Montagne and Bacon; Shakespeare’s Antony and Cleopatra and Midsummer Night’s Dream; and Edith Wharton's The Age of Innocence. Students will be expected to attend all classes prepared to discuss the readings. In addition, a short (500 to 1000 word) paper will be due in class each week.

Terms Taught

Winter 2024, Winter 2025

Requirements

EUR, LIT, PHL

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Course Description

Contentious Politics in Asia
In this course we will compare protest, social mobilization, and contentious politics across Asia. While some have argued that "Asian values" cause harmonious and stable political systems, we will start from the premise that contentious politics in the region reflect the same dynamics seen elsewhere throughout history. However, as with all countries, the specific institutional and cultural context often shapes particular forms of contention. Empirically, we will focus on key regions including East and Southeast Asia as well as the domestic and international dimensions of activism. 3 hrs. lect. (Comparative Politics)

Terms Taught

Fall 2020, Fall 2021, Fall 2022, Fall 2023, Fall 2024

Requirements

CMP, SOA, SOC

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Course Description

Political Communication
How are media and communications technology re-shaping politics? From a global comparative perspective—ranging from the United States to Asia—this course will survey the historical development of communications, the role of media in shaping public opinion and behavior, the impact of new media, and the rise of transnational satellite TV. Conceptually, the course will assess the importance of communications for understanding authoritarianism, democracy, and foreign policy. We will develop general comparative frameworks for understanding the growing importance of communications in the information age, while clarifying the limitations of media for shaping polities. (This course is not open to students who have taken PSCI 0413) 3 hrs. lect. (Comparative Politics)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2021, Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Fall 2024

Requirements

CMP, NOA, SOC

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Course Description

International Political Economy
This course examines the politics of global economic relations, focusing principally on the advanced industrial states. How do governments and firms deal with the forces of globalization and interdependence? And what are the causes and consequences of their actions for the international system in turn? The course exposes students to both classic and contemporary thinking on free trade and protectionism, exchange rates and monetary systems, foreign direct investment and capital movements, regional integration, and the role of international institutions like the WTO. Readings will be drawn mainly from political science, as well as law and economics. 3 hrs. lect./disc./(International Relations and Foreign Policy)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2020, Fall 2020, Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Spring 2023, Fall 2023, Spring 2024, Fall 2024, Spring 2025

Requirements

SOC

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Course Description

American Constitutional Law: The Federal System
This course examines the development of American constitutionalism through study of Supreme Court decisions. Every major topic but the bill of rights (see PSCI 0306) is covered. Using the Sullivan and Gunther Constitutional Law casebook, we begin with judicial review and then study the development of legal doctrines surrounding the commerce clause, the due process and equal protection clauses of the fourteenth amendment, and the separation of powers. Recent cases focus on affirmative action and federal protection of civil rights. Interpretive books and essays are considered, as time permits. A mock court exercise is anticipated. (Juniors and seniors with PSCI 0102 or PSCI 0104 or PSCI 0306) 3 hrs. lect./disc. (American Politics)/

Terms Taught

Fall 2021, Fall 2023

Requirements

AMR, NOR

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Course Description

American Constitutional Law: The First Amendment
This course focuses on the Supreme Court’s interpretation of the first amendment freedoms of speech, press, and religion. After starting with the philosophic foundations of these first amendment freedoms (Mill, Locke), students will read the major Supreme Court decisions concerning these rights. Class assignments in the form of oral arguments and briefs and/or options will enable students to take the part of lawyers and judges. (Sophomores, juniors and seniors with PSCI 0102 or 0104 or 0205 or 0206 or 0305 or waiver) 3 hrs. lect./disc. (American Politics)/

Terms Taught

Fall 2020, Fall 2022, Fall 2024

Requirements

AMR, PHL

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Course Description

The Politics of Virtual Realities
How has technology changed our politics? Are those changes all for the good? In this course we will explore the political, legal, and normative implications of the Internet for liberal democracy. We start with the US Constitution and explore arguments that it cannot by itself prevent the Internet from becoming a domain of manipulation rather than of freedom. How can we uphold the ideals of liberty and equality? And, since cyberspace has no country, whose laws should govern it? Cases will include President Obama's campaign and governance strategies, Google's activities abroad, cybersecurity, virtual war, and the WikiLeaks controversy. 3 hrs. lect./disc. (International Relations and Foreign Policy)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Spring 2024, Spring 2025

Requirements

CW, SOC

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Course Description

U. S. National Elections
In this course we will analyze national elections in the United States. Topics covered will include party systems, electoral realignment, voting behavior and turnout, candidate strategy, the nomination process, the legal framework for elections, the Electoral College, gender, race and ethnicity, the media, the Internet, and U.S. elections in comparative perspective. Although the focus will be on the upcoming congressional and presidential contests, earlier elections will be studied for insight into continuity and change in American electoral politics. 3 hrs. lect./disc. (American Politics)

Terms Taught

Fall 2020, Fall 2022

Requirements

AMR, SOC

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Course Description

American Public Policy
This course examines the functioning of the entire United States political system, with an emphasis on the policies or outcomes of this political system. The first part of the course will examine the context in which policy is made (e.g., history, capitalism, liberalism). The second part of the course will focus on the policy-making process. We will examine the major stages of the policy process: agenda setting, policy formulation, adoption, implementation, and evaluation. The third and final part of the course will focus on specific policy areas, such as education policy and health care policy. 3 hrs. lect./disc. (American Politics)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2020, Spring 2021, Spring 2024, Spring 2025

Requirements

AMR, NOR, SOC

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Course Description

American Foreign Policy
Does America exercise its power in the world in a distinctive way? If yes, has it always done so? In this course we will examine the evolution of American foreign policy from the time of the founding to the present. As we make our way from the height of the Cold War to the 21st century, we will assess how leaders, institutions, domestic politics, and the actions and inactions of other countries have shaped American international behavior. Topics considered include terrorism, nuclear proliferation, globalization, democracy promotion, whether the rich US has an obligation to help the less fortunate, how much power the Pentagon should have, what role the private sector can and should play in advancing American interests, and the Bush revolution in foreign policy. A central aim of the course is to map competing perspectives so that the student can draw his or her own political conclusions. 3 hrs. lect./disc. (International Relations and Foreign Policy)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2020, Fall 2021, Spring 2024

Requirements

AMR, SOC

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Course Description

Bureaucracy
How did 9-11 happen? Why did the U.S. believe Iraq possessed weapons of mass destruction? What went wrong with relief efforts in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina? Answering these questions requires an understanding of bureaucracies in the American political context -- the subject of this course. It begins with an overview of the nature of bureaucracies and theories for their formation, followed by an examination of bureaucratic actors (managers, operators, and executives) and the context within which they work. It concludes with an attempt to assess bureaucratic effectiveness. Case studies of particular bureaucracies, including those involved in the War on Terror, Iraq and Hurricane Katrina, are included to sharpen analyses. 3 hrs. lect./disc. (American Politics)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2020, Fall 2024

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Course Description

Globalization, Terrorism, and Global Insurgency
How does globalization change the nature of terrorism and create a global security environment characterized by a series of hybrid asymmetric threats? What are the connections between organizations, conflict regions, and the developed world? This course will focus on at least four modules that link aspects of globalization to global counterterrorism, counterinsurgency, and counterproliferation policy: 1) migration, immigration, and the movement of people, 2) illicit international markets and financing, 3) global communications, and 4) the connections between international relations, foreign-policy, and political violence worldwide. Skill development will focus on policy evaluation and analysis, oral briefings, collaborative project management, and collaborative policy strategy papers. 3 hrs. sem. (International Relations and Foreign Policy)/

Terms Taught

Fall 2020, Fall 2021, Fall 2022, Fall 2023, Fall 2024

Requirements

SOC

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Course Description

Ancient and Medieval Political Philosophy
We will study some classic works in ancient and medieval political philosophy: Plato (Laws, RepublicApology, Republic, Gorgias, Protagoras, Meno); Aristotle (Ethics, Politics, Rhetoric); Cicero (Republic, Laws), Maimonides (Guide to the Perplexed), Aquinas (Summa Theologica, Summa Contra Gentiles), Alfarabi (The Political Regime). (PSCI 0101 or PSCI 0107 or by waiver) 4 hrs. lect./disc. (Political Theory)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2025

Requirements

PHL, SOC

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Course Description

Modern Political Philosophy
In this course. we will study: Machiavelli (Prince, Discourses); Bacon
(Advancement of Learning); Hobbes (Leviathan); Locke (Second Treatise);
Spinoza (Theological-Political Treatise); Montesquieu (Spirit of the Laws);
Rousseau (Social Contract); Burke (Reflections); Kant (Foundations of the Metaphysics of Morals, Perpetual Peace); Hegel (Introduction to Philosophy of History); Marx (Communist Manifesto, German Ideology, Capital); Nietzsche
(Beyond Good and Evil); Heidegger (Question Concerning Technology).
We will examine modernity's rejection of ancient thought, its later replacement of nature by history as the standard for right, and its subsequent rejection of any standard of right. Other topics include religion, freedom ofspeech, and the separation of powers. (PSCI 0101 or PSCI 0107 or PSCI 0317, or PSCI 0333, or waiver) 4.5 hrs. lect./disc. (Political Theory)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2022

Requirements

EUR, PHL, SOC

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Course Description

The Politics of Taxes
Who gets taxed and how much they get taxed is at least as much a political decision as an economic one. Additionally, the ways governments tax their citizens (and how much they tax them) vary widely between different countries. Moreover, the purpose underlying governments’ use of taxes ranges from fighting inequality to incentivizing various behavioral changes. In this course we will examine sales taxes, wealth taxes, corporate profits, income taxes and the politics around those taxes in a variety of national contexts. (Comparative Politics). 3 hrs. sem.

Terms Taught

Fall 2020, Spring 2025

Requirements

CW, SOC

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Course Description

War and Peace
What causes conflicts between states and within countries? What factors facilitate or impede their resolution? In this course we will examine interstate and intrastate conflicts and the challenges faced in resolving them, from both practical and theoretical perspectives. Employing some of the most prominent theories on war, and more recent theories of bargaining, negotiation, and conflict, we will draw upon a range of case studies to illustrate and evaluate the theoretical dynamics of conflict and conflict resolution. (PSCI 0109 or by waiver) 3 hrs. lect./disc. (International Relations and Foreign Policy)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2020, Spring 2022, Fall 2023

Requirements

SOC

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Course Description

The Political Development of Western Europe
In what ways are the political systems and politics of France, Germany, Italy, and Britain similar? In what ways do they differ? How might we explain these patterns? This course attempts to answer these questions through comparative investigation of the processes and consequences of economic and political modernization in these nations from the feudal period to the 21st century. 3 hrs. lect./disc. (Comparative Politics)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2022

Requirements

CMP, CW, EUR, SOC

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Course Description

Transitional Justice
This course examines how democracies reckon with former authoritarian regimes and their legacies. Measures adopted to overcome the legacy of large-scale human rights
violations include apologies, amnesties, trials of perpetrators, truth commissions as well as restorative justice. Case studies from Asia, Europe, Latin America, South Africa, and the US help us understand the forces and factors that shape the difficult choices: to prosecute and punish versus to forgive and forget. Course readings supplemented by documentaries and fiction films illuminate the dilemmas societies confront to provide accountability for the victims, bystanders and perpetrators. (Not open to students who have taken FYSE 1283) 3 hrs. sem. (Comparative Politics)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2021, Spring 2023, Winter 2024, Winter 2025

Requirements

CMP, SOC

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Course Description

The Media and Minorities
In this course we use techniques developed by Middlebury’s Media Portrayals of Minorities Project lab to examine how the media portray identifiable groups. These techniques enable quantitative and qualitative analysis of digital news to better understand how different types of groups--such as, for example, immigrants, refugees, Muslims, Jews, Latinos, Chinese, Africans, or others--have been portrayed in the US and international media. Students in this class will contribute to ongoing publication projects of the lab, and will have the opportunity to pursue their own research topics. Student projects will culminate in research papers that may form the basis for further independent work or for senior theses. 3hrs. seminar (Comparative Politics) (Approval Only)

Terms Taught

Spring 2020, Spring 2024, Spring 2025

Requirements

DED, SOC

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Course Description

International Politics of the Middle East
In this course we will study the evolution of the inter-state system in the Middle East. Using contemporary International Relations (IR) theories we will examine the influence of great powers, regional states, transnational movements, and regional organizations on state interests, ideology, religion, and the region's political economy. Questions to be addressed will include: which levels of analyses are most helpful in understanding the complexity of Middle East politics? Which of the IR theories--realist, liberal, or constructivist-- best explain inter-state relations in the region? What other approaches may be useful in this endeavor? 3 hrs. sem. (International Relations and Foreign Policy)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2023

Requirements

MDE, SOC

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Course Description

Gender and International Relations
Many issues facing international society affect, and are affected by, gender. Global poverty, for example, is gendered, since 70% of the world's population living below $1.25 per day is female. Women are far more vulnerable to rape in war and water scarcity, and they are moreover globally politically underrepresented. In this course we will use theories of international relations, including realism, neoliberalism, and feminism, to study how international society addresses (or fails to address) these challenges through bodies such as the UN and treaties such as the Elimination of Violence Against Women. 3 hrs. lect./disc. (International Relations and Foreign Policy)/

Terms Taught

Fall 2024

Requirements

CMP, SOC

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Course Description

Asymmetric Conflict Research Practicum
The prevalence of civil conflict, asymmetric threats, and global counterterrorism have resulted in the dramatic growth of special operations, security cooperation, and peacebuilding in civil conflict environments. To what extent have we learned the lessons of the post 9/11 world, and to what extent is the global policy community prepared for the asymmetric, embedded, and culturally aware operations that characterize 21st century conflict? Examples will be drawn from around the globe and we will take a comparative approach to conflicts within and across regions, noting their impacts on institutions, policy processes, and human social systems. This course uses the ongoing development of the Special Operations Research Database (SORD) as a platform for learning about global counterterrorism and for students’ training in all phases of research methodology, including fieldwork interviewing techniques. 3 hrs. lect. (International Relations and Foreign Policy)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2021, Spring 2022, Fall 2023, Fall 2024

Requirements

CMP, SOC

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Course Description

Who Elected Big Tech?
There is public awareness that technology is delivering unprecedented opportunities while simultaneously undermining privacy, equity, and democratic values. An unprecedented shift in the balance of power between multinational industry and national governments has been a necessary condition for these new challenges. How else could a freely elected American president be silenced by Google, Twitter, and Facebook? How else could Facebook’s Instagram be exposed as knowingly causing harm to teenagers without government penalty? How did America reach the point where Big Tech has the capacity to mount foreign policies? What consequences for social justice follow from that transfer of power in a global economy of multinational companies and diverse workforces? By first exploring these questions together, students will be well prepared for pursuing independent research projects. (International Relations and Foreign Policy)/

Terms Taught

Fall 2022

Requirements

AMR, SOC

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Course Description

Political Philosophies of Cosmopolitan and Nationalism
Political communities unite and divide human beings into separate groups. Can anything justify or explain these divisions? Is there a form best suited to human flourishing and happiness? To the scope of our moral and political obligations? To our identities as co-nationals, compatriots, or cosmopolitans? We will focus on theorists of the late Enlightenment: Smith, Rousseau, Herder, Kant, Fichte, Tocqueville, Mill, Mazzini, Acton, and Weber. We will also read more recent works by Rawls, Walzer, Beitz, Nussbaum, Scruton, and Manent and selections from the ancient Stoic tradition. (PSCI 0101 or 0204 or by waiver) 3 hrs sem. (Political Theory)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Spring 2024

Requirements

CMP, EUR, PHL, SOC

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Course Description

Statesmanship and Modern Liberty: Montesquieu and Tocqueville
Montesquieu's Spirit of the Laws and Tocqueville's Democracy in America offer profound treatments of modern representative government, its promise, and its perils. In this course we will focus on each author's understanding of the often neglected role of statesmanship in shaping political and cultural conditions favorable to the emergence and preservation of human liberty in the modern world. We will consider key themes such as the relationship between liberty and equality, the role of the passions in politics, the meaning of despotism, the relationship between culture and politics, and the promise and dangers of modern commerce for liberal democracy. (Political Theory)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2020

Requirements

EUR, PHL, SOC

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Course Description

The Politics of Money and Finance
Governments’ choices on money-related matters deeply affect people’s lives. Stock market crashes, inflation, debt, and unforeseen currency fluctuations can scar society. Conversely, if stock markets, inflation, debt, and currencies are all well-managed, prosperity can be created. One of the central aims of governments across the world is to do just that - manage these issues in order to promote economic growth. In this course, we examine the choices governments face in the pursuit of that and, what leads them to make the choices they do, and what kinds of choices have historically been the most successful. 3 hrs. sem. (International Relations and Foreign Politics)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2020, Fall 2021, Spring 2024, Fall 2024

Requirements

SOC

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Course Description

Basic Problems in Political Philosophy
In this course we will focus on the writings of Plato, Aristotle, and Kant to examine different formulations of theory and practice. We will read Plato’s Meno, Euthyphro, Apology, Crito, Phaedo, and Sophist; from Aristotle’s Ethics, Physics and Metaphysics; Kant’s, Critique of Pure Reason, Foundations of the Metaphysics or Morals, and Perpetual Peace; concluding with parts of Rawls’ A Theory of Justice. We will be examining the following questions: What can we know and how do we know it? How should we live and how is that related to what we can know? A previous course in political philosophy or philosophy is recommended. Students will write two short papers and a final essay on topics to be assigned. A previous course in political philosophy or philosophy is recommended. (Political Theory) 3 hrs. sem.

Terms Taught

Spring 2021, Spring 2024

Requirements

PHL

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Course Description

The Future of U.S. Democracy
Pessimism abounds among analysts of 21st Century U.S. politics. What is the nature of the nation’s problems? Are they rooted mostly in social divides – of identity, ideology, geography, and inequality? Are they mostly the result of dysfunctional institutions – such as Congress, the presidency, and the courts? Do we face policy problems that are more profound and dire than previous generations? Is there any cause for optimism? In this seminar we engage with these debates and try to answer some of these questions about the volatile contemporary American political environment. (PSCI 102 or PSCI 104) 3 hrs. sem. (American Politics)/

Terms Taught

Fall 2024

Requirements

AMR, SOC

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Course Description

American Environmental Politics
In this seminar we will examine various aspects of environmental politics in the United States. Topics to be covered include how society seeks to influence environmental policy (through public opinion, voting and interest groups,) and how policy is made through Congress, the executive branch, the courts, collaboration, and through the states. Policy case studies will vary from year to year. Students will write a major research paper on an aspect of U.S. environmental politics. (PSCI/ENVS 0211) 3 hrs. sem. (American Politics)

Terms Taught

Spring 2020, Fall 2020, Spring 2022, Spring 2024, Spring 2025

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Course Description

Guns, Drugs, People: The Illicit Economy in the Global Perspective
In this course, we will focus on patterns of illegal activity in the international economy. Students will study phenomena such as illegal trade in arms, animals, and drugs, and the trafficking and smuggling of human beings. The purpose of this course is to introduce students to the systematic analysis of the illicit global economy. Students will be taught to examine the causes of illicit markets, the actors involved ( entrepreneurs, consumers, governments), and how markets respond to efforts to combat them. The objective is for students to understand the phenomenon and its drivers, and to translate this understanding into a critical evaluation of current policy approaches. (International Relations and Foreign Policy)

Terms Taught

Spring 2023, Fall 2023, Fall 2024

Requirements

CMP, SOC

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Course Description

The American Presidency
In-depth examination of the exercise of presidential leadership from a normative and empirical perspective. What are the sources of presidential power, the constraints on its use, and the implications for the American political system? The focus is on the leadership strategies of the modern presidents (FDR through Obama). (PSCI 0102 or PSCI 0104 or PSCI 0206 or waiver) 3 hrs. sem. (American Politics)/

Terms Taught

Fall 2020, Spring 2024

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Course Description

How Democracies Die
After years of expansion since the end of the cold war, democracy now is in retreat. From young democracies in the developing world to bastions of liberal democracy in Western Europe and North America, democratic political systems are under mounting pressure. What are the fundamental features of this recession? What are the driving forces behind global democratic backsliding? Why do people support autocrats? In this course we will tackle these questions and discuss an array of factors that contribute to global democratic recession including the role of the political elite, failing institutions, eroding norms, and the role of ordinary people. In so doing we will delve deeper into economic and social causes of this decline. Our focus will span from global trends to individual cases such as Venezuela, Turkey, Hungary, India, the United States, and the Philippines. (Not open to students who have taken FYSE 1544) 3 hrs. Sem. (Comparative Politics)/

Terms Taught

Fall 2020, Fall 2021, Fall 2022, Spring 2024

Requirements

CMP, SOC

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Course Description

Seminar on the U.S. Congress
The U.S. Congress is the most powerful political institution in the nation, and one of the least popular. To understand why, this course examines theories of representation and how they relate to the contemporary Congress; the historical development and institutionalization of the Congress; the roles of parties, candidates, media, and money in Congressional elections; the legislative process, including roles of committees, interest groups, parties, congressional leaders, and presidents; the impact of representational and policy-making processes on the nature of legislation enacted by Congress; and Congress in comparative perspective. 3 hrs. sem. (American Politics)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2023, Spring 2025

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Course Description

African Government
Sub-Saharan Africa has been described as being in a state of permanent crisis, a place where disorder and chaos reign and states are chronically weak. How do political systems form and thrive under such conditions? What accounts for their survival in the face of tremendous political, economic, and environmental challenges? We will investigate the distinctive characteristics of African political systems, the different governance models throughout Sub-Saharan Africa, and the types of public goods or public ills these systems have produced. We will also have the opportunity to more deeply appreciate the real-life consequences for displaced Africans through a service-learning component. 3 hrs. sem. (Any one PSCI course) (Comparative Politics)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2022, Spring 2023, Spring 2024

Requirements

AAL, SAF

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Course Description

International Law
In this course, we analyze key concepts that underpin how scholars and practitioners examine the rules that assist and constrain international actors (states, businesses, activists, and individuals). We analyze legal issues and cases involving sovereignty, human rights, trade and investment law, use of force, and environmental treaties. (formerly PSCI 0237) 3 hrs, seminar. (Not open to students who have already taken PSCI 0237)

Terms Taught

Fall 2023

Requirements

SOC

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Course Description

Political Islam
In this course we will survey the central questions in studies of political Islam, focusing on the emergence of Islam as a political force in the contemporary period. Discussion will center on the following core topics: (1) the nature of political Islam and Islamic interests; (2) how Islamic political movements develop; (3) why Islamic political movements flourish or fail; (4) how Islamic interests are expressed in the political arena; and (5) what types of political systems are most compatible with politicized Islam? These questions will be addressed by looking at the general history of the contemporary Islamic resurgence and by examining case studies on Egypt, Algeria, Iran, Afghanistan, Turkey, West Africa, and Southeast Asia. 3 hrs. sem. (Comparative Politics)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2020, Spring 2021, Spring 2022

Requirements

AAL, MDE

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Course Description

The Media and the Marginalized
In this course we will study major elements of media analysis such as gatekeeping, agenda-setting, priming, framing, media tone, and media effects. We will then review how these elements have been applied in coverage of marginalized groups in developed democracies such as the United States and those of Western Europe. We will focus on groups identified by immigration status, race or ethnicity, religion, LGBTQ status, and sex. Students will develop skills to interpret and analyze articles about marginalized groups in light of theories of media studies, culminating in a research project of their choice. 3 hrs. sem. (Comparative Politics)

Terms Taught

Fall 2022

Requirements

CMP, SOC

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Course Description

Ethnic Conflict
Experts regard ethnic divides as causing everything from nationalist violence to democratic breakdown to economic stagnation. In this course we will engage the most prominent recent and classic research into the relationship between ethnicity, conflict, and peace. Readings will include leading works in a wide variety of theoretical and empirical traditions, including comparative political science, rational choice, comparative history, sociology, and anthropology. Empirical material includes cases from many parts of the world. 3 hrs. sem. (Comparative Politics)/

Terms Taught

Fall 2020, Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Fall 2024

Requirements

SOC

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Course Description

Ecocriticism and Global Environmental Justice
Many global environmental problems—climate change, biodiversity, deforestation, clean water, and transboundary waste movement—are ineffectively managed. In this course we will take a critical look at these failures and ask: do existing norms and attitudes make effective, sustainable environmental management more difficult? In doing so, we will examine institutions and phenomena such as the sovereign nation-state, free market capitalism, and the authority of scientific knowledge. We will ask whether sustainable management is compatible with these institutions and phenomena, or whether they contribute to environmental injustice, racism, political marginalization, and gender and class inequity by studying contemporary and historic examples. 3 hrs. sem. (International Relations and Foreign Policy)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2021, Fall 2023, Spring 2025

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Course Description

Leadership: Politics and Personality
What difference do leaders make? Are leaders born or made? What accounts for effective leadership? Do answers to these questions change when the social, cultural, and political context varies? This course will approach the subject of leadership from a multidisciplinary perspective, focusing on (1) the individual personalities and values of leaders; (2) the relationship of leaders to the institutions they serve; (3) the role of the state and cultural context in which the leadership is exercised; and (4) the process of leading. (One course in comparative politics) 3 hrs. sem. (Comparative Politics)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2021, Spring 2022

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Course Description

The U.S. Politics of Race, Gender, and Class
Race, gender, and class have long shaped American politics. They have formed the basis for social movements, have structured institutions, and have affected the way political actors–from voters to activists to elected officials–have made their day-to-day decisions. What do political scientists know about the roles that race, gender, and class play in politics, separately and together, and what do we yet have to learn? (PSCI 0102 or PSCI 0104) 3 hrs. sem. (American Politics) /(Critical Race Feminisms)

Terms Taught

Spring 2021, Fall 2022

Requirements

AMR, SOC

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Course Description

City Politics
Cities have always been central to political life in the United States, but scholars disagree over how power is distributed in cities, which groups exercise the most authority, how cities relate to their economic and political environments, and whether it is legitimate to view cities as microcosms of state or national politics. We will consider these general debates as we read major works on U.S. urban politics, addressing issues such as racial and ethnic politics, immigration, suburbanization, and cities' positions in the global economy. (PSCI 0102 or PSCI 0104) 3 hrs. sem. (American Politics)/

Terms Taught

Fall 2021, Fall 2023, Fall 2024

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Course Description

Chinese Political Economy
Over the past 30 years China has undergone a tremendous transition. The purpose of this course is to consider the extent to which China's experience has challenged theories of market reform. First, we will examine the role of the state in Chinese economic development and market systems more broadly. Second, we will analyze challenges in Chinese state-society relations, from public service provision to protest, that have emerged after such rapid economic growth. Finally, we will discuss the political implications of the Chinese state's responses to these issues in terms of authoritarian durability and governance. 3 hrs. sem. (Comparative Politics)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2022, Fall 2023, Spring 2025

Requirements

AAL, NOA, SOC

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Course Description

The Rise of Asia and US Policy
In this course we will study what is arguably the most important strategic development of the 21st century: how the rise of Asia presents security challenges to the region and the United States. Drawing from international relations scholarship, the course will focus on foreign policy challenges and potential responses. These challenges include both traditional security and nontraditional areas such as water and the environment. We will integrate the analysis of these issues in South, East, and Southeast Asia with study of the policy process, in part through simulations and role-playing exercises. 3 hrs. sem. (International Relations and Foreign Policy)/

Terms Taught

Fall 2020, Fall 2021, Spring 2023, Spring 2024, Spring 2025

Requirements

CMP, NOA, SOC

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Course Description

Independent Projects
A program of independent work designed to meet the individual needs of advanced students. (Approval required)

Terms Taught

Spring 2020, Fall 2020, Winter 2021, Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Winter 2022, Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Winter 2023, Spring 2023, Fall 2023, Winter 2024, Spring 2024, Fall 2024, Winter 2025, Spring 2025

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Course Description

Honors Thesis
(Approval required)

Terms Taught

Spring 2020, Fall 2020, Winter 2021, Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Winter 2022, Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Winter 2023, Spring 2023, Fall 2023, Winter 2024, Spring 2024, Fall 2024, Winter 2025, Spring 2025

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Course Description

Euro-Atlantic Relations
In this course we’ll examine the history, status, and future of US-European security relations, with a special focus on the consequences of the war in Ukraine. The learning process will include lectures, class discussions, guest speakers, a role-playing exercise, and a final policy paper. Issues covered include: persistent and evolving aspects of the “transatlantic bargain;” relations with Russia after its aggression against Ukraine; Islamic State threats and Middle East turmoil; Middle Eastern and European refugee issues; impact of 9/11 and Iraq crisis; US-European relations under the Biden administration; relations between NATO, the European Union and the UN; alternative transatlantic relations futures. The instructor’s 2020 Defense of the West: Transatlantic Security from Truman to Trump will be the core text. International Relations and Foreign Policy
/Stan Sloan, a former senior U.S. government intelligence, foreign and defense policy expert, and research manager, has for the past 18 years taught courses on Euro-Atlantic Relations and American Power in the Middlebury Winter Term. He is the author of numerous opinion and journal articles,
monographs, book chapters and books, including De-Trumping U.S. Foreign Policy: Can Biden bring America back? (2021); Defense of the West: Transatlantic Security from Truman to Trump (2020) and transatlantic traumas: Has illiberalism brought the West to the brink of collapse? (2018)./

Terms Taught

Winter 2021, Winter 2023

Requirements

CMP, EUR, SOC, WTR

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Course Description

American Power: Soft, Hard, or Smart
Wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, turmoil in the Middle East, and Russian and Chinese expansionist tendencies have raised important questions about how the United States should use power to defend its interests. In this course we will survey historical, institutional, and theoretical factors as a prelude to consideration of how the United States has used its power since WWII. Using selected case studies, we will examine pro/con arguments for different approaches to the use of power (soft, hard, smart) with class debate and discussion, as well as reviews of relevant daily news reports written and presented by class members. (International Relations and Foreign Policy)/

Terms Taught

Winter 2022

Requirements

AMR, CW, NOR, SOC, WTR

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Course Description

Vermont Government and Politics
Vermont is the second smallest state in America. Its state government is similarly small and accessible. How does it work? Does it work well? Are there lessons for other states that didn’t fare as well as we emerged from the Great Recession? Are there lessons Vermont can learn from other states? This course will offer an insider's perspective on the political landscape and governmental system of our host state. We will learn about the state's political history, meet with those involved in the process, and discuss the intricacies of state government and how the political system affects it. (American Politics)
/James Douglas, ‘72, successfully sought the office of Governor in 2002 and was inaugurated as the 80th Governor of Vermont in January, 2003. He was re-elected in 2004, 2006, and 2008./

Terms Taught

Winter 2022, Winter 2023, Winter 2024, Winter 2025

Requirements

AMR, NOR, SOC, WTR

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Course Description

Protest Music in Comparative Perspective
In this course we will examine how marginalized populations around the world use music to interpret, explain, and respond to political, racial, socioeconomic, and gendered inequities. Because music is produced for a wide audience, it is important for the construction of group identity and a useful means of protest. We will discuss the domestic politics of countries such as Nigeria, Jamaica, the U.S., and Brazil by reading the literature of comparative politics, sociology, and critical race and gender theory. Our discussion of these topics will help us better understand how power in various forms is used to repress, and how music challenges existing hegemonies. (Comparative Politics)

Terms Taught

Winter 2021

Requirements

AAL, ART, CMP, SOC, WTR

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Course Description

Contemporary Conflicts in the Middle East
The Middle East is known to be one of the most conflict-ridden regions of the world. In this course we explore the contemporary conflicts in the region and the basic motivation of major actors. Specifically, we will study the rivalry between Iran and Saudi Arabia, the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, the wars in Yemen and Syria, and the Kurdish question in Syria and Turkey. We will study the causes and consequences of these conflicts at the regional and global level. (International Relations and Foreign Policy)

Terms Taught

Winter 2021, Winter 2024, Winter 2025

Requirements

MDE, SOC, WTR

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Course Description

How to Win the Argument: Rhetoric and Democracy
Arguments shape the progress of free society. From "Four score and seven" to "never surrender," to "I have a dream," we celebrate the power of rhetoric to motivate political action. Yet rhetoric can mislead as well, and its techniques appear to involve a form of manipulation. In this class, we will examine the "arts" of rhetoric, and the philosophical debates surrounding the role of rhetoric in politics. Readings include political speeches (Lincoln, Churchill, King), plays (Aristophanes, Shakespeare), ancient philosophies of rhetoric (Plato, Aristotle), and modern theories of speech and "public reason" (Mill, Rawls). We will prepare and practice public speech-making in class, and we will compose and revise our own analytical and rhetorical prose.

Terms Taught

Winter 2024, Winter 2025

Requirements

CW, EUR, SOC, WTR

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Course Description

Water Conflict in Vietnam and Thailand
Students will research water conflict between China, Vietnam, and Thailand through extensive field research in both Vietnam and Thailand. Specifically, students will conduct group interviews exploring water politics and conflict transformation comparing the two countries, such as how do they secure Chinese investment but also balance local environmental and water use concerns to avoid conflict over scarce water resources? How do they strike a balance between their economic dependence on China and security dependence on the US? How have the China-led Lancang Mekong Cooperation group (LMC) and the US-led Mekong River Commission (MRC) competed as multilateral institutions governing water politics in the region? How do they strike a policy balance between meeting energy demand and mitigating negative social and environmental impacts of dam-building? How do they coordinate various interests and impacts between the upstream and downstream states through regional institutions? Studying these important questions will help students learn more about water politics in the region as well as tools and methods of conflict transformation, while also deeply immersing themselves in local politics and culture in each country.

Terms Taught

Winter 2024, Winter 2025

Requirements

CMP, SOA, SOC, WTR

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Course Description

Social Change to Address Systemic Challenges*
In this course we will examine different methods to enact social change around systemic challenges such as climate, poverty, and racism. We will evaluate lobbying, protest, public opinion campaigns, psychology of communication outreach, training seminars, behavioral nudges, etc., to determine when and how these efforts are successful. Through this process we will wrestle with the current debate on how to coordinate and scale individual efforts to realize durable, large-scale change. In addition to the course content, students will advance a social change project (in groups) with instructor mentoring. This effort will be digitally based and supported by skill-building workshops from experts and mentors (instructor's approval needed for registration). (Pass/Fail)

Terms Taught

Winter 2021

Requirements

SOC, WTR

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Course Description

Climate Change and the Markets of Tomorrow
In this course, we will examine how new technologies and capitalism can be leveraged to fight climate change with a particular focus on green energy, plant-based meats, and electric vehicles. We analyze how these markets are evolving and what public policies can do to help them advance more quickly. The course takes an intentionally international approach and should be especially interesting to IPEC, PSCI, and ENVS majors. This course counts as a social science cognate for ENVS majors with foci in the natural sciences, humanities, or arts./

Terms Taught

Winter 2024, Winter 2025

Requirements

SOC, WTR

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Course Description

Weapons of Mass Destruction
Technological development has brought human civilization to the point at which we can destroy ourselves in a matter of hours using weapons of mass destruction. What effects do these weapons have on political, and social behavior? Do WMDs deserve their own classification, or is human behavior consistent regardless of the weapon? We explore the technology, political theory and policy that has risen around the prospect of human annihilation. (not open to students who have taken PSCI 0242 or equivalent) (International Relations and Foreign Policy)

Terms Taught

Winter 2021

Requirements

CMP, SOC, WTR

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Course Description

Data Science Across Disciplines
In this course, we will gain exposure to the entire data science pipeline—obtaining and cleaning large and messy data sets, exploring these data and creating engaging visualizations, and communicating insights from the data in a meaningful manner. During morning sessions, we will learn the tools and techniques required to explore new and exciting data sets. During afternoon sessions, students will work in small groups with one of several faculty members on domain-specific research projects in Geography, Political Science, Restorative Justice, or Healthcare. This course will use the R programming language. No prior experience with R is necessary.

PSCI 1230: How do candidates for U.S. national office raise money? From whom do they raise it? In this section we will explore these questions using Federal Election Commission data on individual campaign contributions to federal candidates. Our analysis using R will help us identify geographic patterns in the data, as well as variations in funds raised across types of candidates. We will discuss what implications these patterns may have for the health and functioning of democracy in the U.S.

INTD 1230A: Data is a powerful tool for improving health outcomes by making programmatic choices to support justice. In this afternoon section of Data Across the Disciplines, students will be working with Addison County Restorative Justice (ACRJ) on understanding patterns in the occurrence of driving under the influence. ACRJ has over 1,000 cases and would like to better understand their data and come up with ways to access information. We will explore how identity, geography, and support impact outcomes from DUI cases. Using statistical analysis and data visualizations, along with learning about ethical data practices, we will report our findings.

INTD 1230B: Let’s dive into the minutes and reports of local towns to develop an accessible news and history resource. Could this be a tool for small newspapers to track local news more easily? Can we map this fresh data for a new look across geographies? Do you want to help volunteer town officials make decisions and better wrangle with their town’s history and data?
In this course we will develop a focused database of documents produced by several municipal boards and commissions. We will engage in conversation with local officials, researchers, and journalists. This course aims to introduce students to making data from real world documents and the people that make them to generate useful information that is often open but frequently difficult to sift through.

GEOG 1230: In this section, students will use data science tools to explore the ways migration systems in the United States changed during the COVID-19 pandemic. We will draw on data collected from mobile phones recording each phone’s monthly place of residence at the census tract level. The dataset includes monthly observations from January 2019 through December 2021 allowing the analysis to compare migration systems pre-pandemic with those during the pandemic.

MATH/STAT 1230: Students will explore pediatric healthcare data to better understand the risks correlated with various childhood illnesses through an emphasis on the intuition behind statistical and machine learning techniques. We will practice making informed decisions from noisy data and the steps to go from messy data to a final report. Students will become proficient in R and gain an understanding of various statistical techniques.

Terms Taught

Winter 2023, Winter 2024, Winter 2025

Requirements

DED, SOC, WTR

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Course Description

Reactionary "mentalités"
How did the reactionary worldview emerge and how does it continue to evolve to adapt to present and future circumstances? We listen to those who first imagined it as well as those who brought it to life to answer this question. We converse with reactionaries in three handpicked historical periods: the French revolution, the interwar period, and present day America. Using the “mentalités” approach we listen to reactionary philosophers, politicians and main street activists speak of their experiences with financial and political turmoil, war, revolution and social anomie and connect the dots between high and low reactionary culture.

Terms Taught

Spring 2021

Requirements

EUR, SOC

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Course Description

New Left, New Right: The Politicization of Class, Gender, Race and Sexuality in Latin America
This course explores how issues of class, gender, race, and sexuality are being politicized in contemporary Latin America, where the historical definitions of “Left” and “Right” as well as the political practices of collective actors are being redrawn. The Left has abandoned Marxism; the neoliberal Right left technocratic cosmopolitanism for radical xenophobia; and new alternatives seem to lie between Left-wing and Right-wing populism. Political cleavages and new forms of activism have emerged around issues of feminism, masculinity, race, ethnicity, religion, age, and class, and through coalitions and new social movements that are addressed through film, literature, pop-communication, and street practices.

Terms Taught

Spring 2021, Fall 2021

Requirements

AMR, SOC

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Course Description

Ideology and Power in the History of US-Latin America Relations
This survey course will examine the historical interaction between different forms of power in the construction of the current hegemony of the United States over Latin America. In addition to the traditional political and economic actors that shaped the core of the relations, the construction of the U.S. hegemony also involved non-state actors and various forms of cultural dynamics that strengthened the power discourse: state cultural diplomacy, “money doctors,” or film and media enterprises, among others built references such as “sister nations,” “backyard subordinates,” or “strategic partners,” whose load of elements of identity—gender, ethnicity, tradition—complemented traditional power politics.

Terms Taught

Spring 2020, Spring 2021, Fall 2021

Requirements

AMR, SOC

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Course Description

Global Civil Society: Towards the Globalization of Human Rights?
This course examines the growing and changing roles of non-governmental actors in international politics. We will begin by asking whether there is such a thing as a global civil society and examining its components. We will then focus on specific issue areas of civil society activism, including human rights, women’s rights, the environment, humanitarian aid, racism, and migrants and refugees. The course aims at providing students with both a conceptual and empirical framework so they can form an opinion about the existence, functions, transformative potential, and challenges faced by civil society activism in an increasingly globalized world.

Terms Taught

Spring 2021

Requirements

AMR, SOC

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American Politics

Courses offered in the past four years. Courses offered currently are as noted.

Course Description

The American Political Regime
This is a course in American political and constitutional thought. The theme, taken from de Tocqueville's Democracy in America, is the problem of freedom. The first half covers the American founding up through the Civil War and the "refounding." This includes de Tocqueville, Madison's Notes on the Debates in the Federal Convention, the Federalist-Anti-Federalist ratification debate, Supreme Court decisions (Marbury, McCulloch), writings of Jefferson, Calhoun, and Lincoln. The second half considers basic problems in American politics, such as race, gender, foreign policy, and education. Readings include a novel, de Tocqueville, and Supreme Court decisions (Brown, Frontiero, Roe, Casey, Grutter, Lawrence). 4 hrs. lect./disc. (American Politics)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2020, Spring 2021, Spring 2022, Spring 2024, Spring 2025

Requirements

AMR, NOR, SOC

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Course Description

Introduction to American Politics
This course introduces the institutions and practices of American government and politics. The aim is to give students a firm understanding of the workings of and the balance of power among the American Congress, President, bureaucracy, and court system. We begin with the Constitution, which provides the set of founding principles upon which the American government is based. We then look at how American citizens make decisions about politics. Finally, we examine how political institutions, interest groups, parties, elections, and legislative bodies and rules aggregate diverse, often conflicting preferences and how they resolve or exacerbate problems. 3 hrs. lect./disc. (American Politics)/

Terms Taught

Fall 2020, Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Fall 2022, Spring 2023, Fall 2023, Spring 2024, Fall 2024, Spring 2025

Requirements

AMR, SOC

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Course Description

The American Presidency
This course examines the development and modern practice of presidential leadership. Focus is on presidential decision-making, changes in the structure of the presidency as an institution, differences among individual presidents, and the interaction of the president with other major actors, including national governing institutions (executive branch, Congress, courts), interest groups, media, and the public. The course includes an historical overview of the evolution of the presidency, and examines changes in the electoral process. (PSCI 0102 or PSCI 0104 or waiver) 3 hrs. lect./disc. (American Politics)/

Terms Taught

Fall 2022, Fall 2024

Requirements

AMR, SOC

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Course Description

The Politics of the U.S. Congress
Introduces students to the analysis of Congress and congressional policy-making. Considers how congressional elections, institutions, and policy hang together roughly in equilibrium. Focuses on the internal organization of Congress-committees, parties, House and Senate leadership, rules and norms, and congressional staff. Analyzes the power of Congress relative to the president, the bureaucracy, and the courts, specifically in the policy process. Investigates how unified and divided party control of the government affects legislation in the House and Senate. Finally, applies congressional theories to determine the fates of specific policy proposals in Congress. (PSCI 0102 or PSCI 0104 or waiver) 3 hrs. lect./disc. (American Politics)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2020, Fall 2023

Requirements

AMR, NOR

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Course Description

Conservation and Environmental Policy
This course examines conservation and environmental policy in the United States. In order to better understand the current nature of the conservation and environmental policy process, we will begin by tracing the development of past ideas, institutions, and policies related to this policy arena. We will then focus on contemporary conservation and environmental politics and policy making—gridlock in Congress, interest group pressure, the role of the courts and the president, and a move away from national policy making—toward the states, collaboration, and civil society. 3 hrs. lect./disc. (American Politics)/

Terms Taught

Fall 2020, Fall 2021, Fall 2023, Fall 2024

Requirements

AMR, NOR, SOC

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Course Description

Federalism, State and Local Politics
What are the unique political opportunities and constraints facing state and local governments? How have these changed over time? In this course we examine the relationships between different levels of government in the U.S. federal system, considering the particular tasks and dilemmas facing states and cities, and scrutinizing the complex interactions between governments that characterize federalism in the United States. Topics include local political culture, intergovernmental grants, state parties, and state political economy. Vermont, New York, and California will receive special scrutiny. 3 hrs. lect./disc. (American Politics)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2021, Spring 2022, Spring 2023, Spring 2025

Requirements

AMR, SOC

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Course Description

American Constitutional Law: The Federal System
This course examines the development of American constitutionalism through study of Supreme Court decisions. Every major topic but the bill of rights (see PSCI 0306) is covered. Using the Sullivan and Gunther Constitutional Law casebook, we begin with judicial review and then study the development of legal doctrines surrounding the commerce clause, the due process and equal protection clauses of the fourteenth amendment, and the separation of powers. Recent cases focus on affirmative action and federal protection of civil rights. Interpretive books and essays are considered, as time permits. A mock court exercise is anticipated. (Juniors and seniors with PSCI 0102 or PSCI 0104 or PSCI 0306) 3 hrs. lect./disc. (American Politics)/

Terms Taught

Fall 2021, Fall 2023

Requirements

AMR, NOR

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Course Description

American Constitutional Law: The First Amendment
This course focuses on the Supreme Court’s interpretation of the first amendment freedoms of speech, press, and religion. After starting with the philosophic foundations of these first amendment freedoms (Mill, Locke), students will read the major Supreme Court decisions concerning these rights. Class assignments in the form of oral arguments and briefs and/or options will enable students to take the part of lawyers and judges. (Sophomores, juniors and seniors with PSCI 0102 or 0104 or 0205 or 0206 or 0305 or waiver) 3 hrs. lect./disc. (American Politics)/

Terms Taught

Fall 2020, Fall 2022, Fall 2024

Requirements

AMR, PHL

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Course Description

U. S. National Elections
In this course we will analyze national elections in the United States. Topics covered will include party systems, electoral realignment, voting behavior and turnout, candidate strategy, the nomination process, the legal framework for elections, the Electoral College, gender, race and ethnicity, the media, the Internet, and U.S. elections in comparative perspective. Although the focus will be on the upcoming congressional and presidential contests, earlier elections will be studied for insight into continuity and change in American electoral politics. 3 hrs. lect./disc. (American Politics)

Terms Taught

Fall 2020, Fall 2022

Requirements

AMR, SOC

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Course Description

American Public Policy
This course examines the functioning of the entire United States political system, with an emphasis on the policies or outcomes of this political system. The first part of the course will examine the context in which policy is made (e.g., history, capitalism, liberalism). The second part of the course will focus on the policy-making process. We will examine the major stages of the policy process: agenda setting, policy formulation, adoption, implementation, and evaluation. The third and final part of the course will focus on specific policy areas, such as education policy and health care policy. 3 hrs. lect./disc. (American Politics)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2020, Spring 2021, Spring 2024, Spring 2025

Requirements

AMR, NOR, SOC

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Course Description

Bureaucracy
How did 9-11 happen? Why did the U.S. believe Iraq possessed weapons of mass destruction? What went wrong with relief efforts in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina? Answering these questions requires an understanding of bureaucracies in the American political context -- the subject of this course. It begins with an overview of the nature of bureaucracies and theories for their formation, followed by an examination of bureaucratic actors (managers, operators, and executives) and the context within which they work. It concludes with an attempt to assess bureaucratic effectiveness. Case studies of particular bureaucracies, including those involved in the War on Terror, Iraq and Hurricane Katrina, are included to sharpen analyses. 3 hrs. lect./disc. (American Politics)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2020, Fall 2024

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Course Description

American Environmental Politics
In this seminar we will examine various aspects of environmental politics in the United States. Topics to be covered include how society seeks to influence environmental policy (through public opinion, voting and interest groups,) and how policy is made through Congress, the executive branch, the courts, collaboration, and through the states. Policy case studies will vary from year to year. Students will write a major research paper on an aspect of U.S. environmental politics. (PSCI/ENVS 0211) 3 hrs. sem. (American Politics)

Terms Taught

Spring 2020, Fall 2020, Spring 2022, Spring 2024, Spring 2025

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Course Description

The American Presidency
In-depth examination of the exercise of presidential leadership from a normative and empirical perspective. What are the sources of presidential power, the constraints on its use, and the implications for the American political system? The focus is on the leadership strategies of the modern presidents (FDR through Obama). (PSCI 0102 or PSCI 0104 or PSCI 0206 or waiver) 3 hrs. sem. (American Politics)/

Terms Taught

Fall 2020, Spring 2024

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Course Description

Seminar on the U.S. Congress
The U.S. Congress is the most powerful political institution in the nation, and one of the least popular. To understand why, this course examines theories of representation and how they relate to the contemporary Congress; the historical development and institutionalization of the Congress; the roles of parties, candidates, media, and money in Congressional elections; the legislative process, including roles of committees, interest groups, parties, congressional leaders, and presidents; the impact of representational and policy-making processes on the nature of legislation enacted by Congress; and Congress in comparative perspective. 3 hrs. sem. (American Politics)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2023, Spring 2025

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Course Description

City Politics
Cities have always been central to political life in the United States, but scholars disagree over how power is distributed in cities, which groups exercise the most authority, how cities relate to their economic and political environments, and whether it is legitimate to view cities as microcosms of state or national politics. We will consider these general debates as we read major works on U.S. urban politics, addressing issues such as racial and ethnic politics, immigration, suburbanization, and cities' positions in the global economy. (PSCI 0102 or PSCI 0104) 3 hrs. sem. (American Politics)/

Terms Taught

Fall 2021, Fall 2023, Fall 2024

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Course Description

Vermont Government and Politics
Vermont is the second smallest state in America. Its state government is similarly small and accessible. How does it work? Does it work well? Are there lessons for other states that didn’t fare as well as we emerged from the Great Recession? Are there lessons Vermont can learn from other states? This course will offer an insider's perspective on the political landscape and governmental system of our host state. We will learn about the state's political history, meet with those involved in the process, and discuss the intricacies of state government and how the political system affects it. (American Politics)
/James Douglas, ‘72, successfully sought the office of Governor in 2002 and was inaugurated as the 80th Governor of Vermont in January, 2003. He was re-elected in 2004, 2006, and 2008./

Terms Taught

Winter 2022, Winter 2023, Winter 2024, Winter 2025

Requirements

AMR, NOR, SOC, WTR

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Comparative Politics

Courses offered in the past four years. Courses offered currently are as noted.

Course Description

Introduction to Comparative Politics
This course offers an introduction to the comparative study of political systems and to the logic of comparative inquiry. How are different political systems created and organized? How and why do they change? Why are some democratic and others authoritarian? Why are some rich and others poor? Other topics covered in this course include nationalism and political ideologies, forms of representation, the relationship between state institutions and civil society, and globalization. The goal in this course is to use comparative methods to analyze questions of state institutions -- how they arise, change, and generate different economic, social, and political outcomes. 3 hrs. lect. disc. (Comparative Politics)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2020, Fall 2020, Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Spring 2023, Fall 2023, Spring 2024, Fall 2024, Spring 2025

Requirements

CMP, SOC

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Course Description

African Politics
This course surveys the challenges and possibilities that Sub-Saharan Africa presents in our era of globalization. We will look at the process of state formation to appreciate the relationships between historical legacies and political and economic development. Themes include state formation, democratic governance, sustainable development, and Africa in world affairs. Topics such as colonial rule and national responses, authoritarian rule, ethnic politics, the debt burden, the HIV/AIDS pandemic, and natural resource politics will be discussed. Case studies from English-, French-, and Portuguese-speaking Africa will be used to illuminate such relationships. 3 hrs lect/disc. (Comparative Politics)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2022, Spring 2023, Spring 2024

Requirements

AAL, SAF, SOC

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Course Description

Local Green Politics
How do local communities manage their natural resources? How do they navigate global forces that often work against them? Through systematic comparisons of cases of successful and unsuccessful community resource management efforts, we will assess under what conditions local communities are likely to be successful environmental stewards. The course will draw on experiences from Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America, and the USA. Students will compare the cultural contexts in which resource management decisions are made. By the end of the course, students will be expected to describe and critically analyze cases of resource (mis)management. They will also learn to offer solutions to situations of resource mismanagement. 3 hrs. lect./disc./(Comparative Politics)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2020

Requirements

AAL, CMP, CW, SOC

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Course Description

Politics of the Middle East and North Africa
This course is an introduction to important themes, concepts, and cases in the study of Middle Eastern and North African politics. We will examine key political issues in the region, focusing primarily on developments since World War II and issues of relevance to the region today. For the purposes of this course, the region is defined as the countries of the Arab world, Israel, Turkey, and Iran. The first half of the course introduces major themes in Middle Eastern politics. These include state development, nationalism, revolution, authoritarian rule, the petro-state, the Arab-Israeli conflict, conflicts in the Persian Gulf, civil conflict, the rise of Islamism, and attempts at liberal reform. The second half of the course examines how these themes have affected political development in a number of key cases. Primary cases include Egypt, Israel, Iran, Morocco, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, and Iraq. Students will have the opportunity to individually assess other countries of personal interest in the region. 3 hrs. lect./disc. (Comparative Politics)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Spring 2023, Spring 2024

Requirements

MDE, SOC

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Course Description

Contemporary Chinese Politics
This introductory course provides students with a background in how the party-state political system functions, and then investigates the major political issues in China today. We will focus first on economic reform issues, such as income inequality, the floating population, and changes in the socialist welfare model, and then on political reform issues, such as the liberalization of news media, NGO and civil society activity, protest and social movements, environmental protection, and legal reform. China is a quickly changing country, so students will focus on analyzing current events but also have an opportunity to explore a topic of interest in more detail. 3 hrs. lect./disc. Comparative Politics

Terms Taught

Spring 2021, Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Fall 2023, Spring 2025

Requirements

NOA, SOC

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Course Description

Soviet and Russian Politics
This course seeks to introduce the student to a major phenomenon of 20th century politics, the rise and decline of the Soviet Union and the emergence of Russia as its successor state. The first part of the course provides an overview of key factors that influenced Russian and Soviet politics under communism, including history, economy, ideology, institutions of the communist party, and the role of political leadership from Lenin to Gorbachev. The second part surveys radical political and social transformations in the 1990s and analyzes Russia's struggle with the twin challenges of democratic and market reform under Yeltsin and Putin. 3 hrs. lect./disc. (Comparative Politics)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2020, Spring 2022, Spring 2023, Spring 2024

Requirements

EUR, HIS, SOC

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Course Description

Central and East European Politics
This introductory course surveys the key stages in the political development of East and Central Europe in the 20th century, including the imposition of communist rule, crises of de-Stalinization, the revolutions of 1989, the politics of post-communist transitions, the Balkan wars, and democratization. It focuses on those factors that either promote or impede the development of stable democratic regimes and assesses East Europe's prospects in the context of EU enlargement and NATO expansion. 3 hrs. lect./disc. (Comparative Politics)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2021

Requirements

EUR, HIS, SOC

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Course Description

The Politics of Diversity in Western Europe
Contrary to common perceptions, most West European populations are no longer overwhelmingly white and Christian. The new diversity prompted by post-World War II immigration has generated opportunities and challenges for European societies. In this course, we will examine how ethnic diversity is affecting contemporary West European politics. We will cover the topics of citizenship, immigration, immigrant integration, the rise of far right parties, and state policies toward Europe's new ethnically, racially, and religiously diverse societies. 3 hrs. lect./disc. (Comparative Politics)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2020

Requirements

EUR, SOC

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Course Description

Politics of India
This course provides students with an introduction to the history and politics of India, one of the most diverse, populous (home to more than one-seventh of the world’s population), and important developing countries in the modern world. This course proceeds chronologically, beginning with ancient Indian (South Asian) civilization, the Mughal Empire of the medieval period, the British colonial experience, Independence, Partition, and contemporary politics, including rising development, as well as the growth of Hindu nationalism. (Comparative Politics) 3 hrs. lect.

Terms Taught

Spring 2021, Spring 2023

Requirements

SOA, SOC

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Course Description

Comparative Politics of Religion
This course provides students with an introduction to the study of religion in political science. The course is divided into four sections. The first section provides a theoretical background to religion and its study in political science. The second section discusses long-standing debates over the concept of ‘secularization.’ The third section examines the study of religion and democracy, with a special focus on the non-western case of India. The final section explores the effect of religion on political violence, with empirical examples from around the world. The last class explores the future of the study of religion in political science. (Comparative Politics) 3 hrs. lect.

Terms Taught

Spring 2022, Spring 2025

Requirements

CW

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Course Description

Authoritarian Politics
The purpose of this course is to examine the characteristics and dynamics of non-democratic regimes. First, we will define autocracy and consider different forms of authoritarianism and how their leaders come into power. Next, we will investigate why some authoritarian regimes are able to sustain their rule while others collapse. Finally, we will explore how citizens of these regimes bolster, comply with, or revolt against their governments. Throughout the course, adopting a comparative standpoint, we will draw on various country cases. (Comparative Politics)/

Terms Taught

Fall 2020, Fall 2021, Spring 2024, Fall 2024

Requirements

CMP, CW, SOC

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Course Description

Contentious Politics in Asia
In this course we will compare protest, social mobilization, and contentious politics across Asia. While some have argued that "Asian values" cause harmonious and stable political systems, we will start from the premise that contentious politics in the region reflect the same dynamics seen elsewhere throughout history. However, as with all countries, the specific institutional and cultural context often shapes particular forms of contention. Empirically, we will focus on key regions including East and Southeast Asia as well as the domestic and international dimensions of activism. 3 hrs. lect. (Comparative Politics)

Terms Taught

Fall 2020, Fall 2021, Fall 2022, Fall 2023, Fall 2024

Requirements

CMP, SOA, SOC

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Course Description

Political Communication
How are media and communications technology re-shaping politics? From a global comparative perspective—ranging from the United States to Asia—this course will survey the historical development of communications, the role of media in shaping public opinion and behavior, the impact of new media, and the rise of transnational satellite TV. Conceptually, the course will assess the importance of communications for understanding authoritarianism, democracy, and foreign policy. We will develop general comparative frameworks for understanding the growing importance of communications in the information age, while clarifying the limitations of media for shaping polities. (This course is not open to students who have taken PSCI 0413) 3 hrs. lect. (Comparative Politics)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2021, Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Fall 2024

Requirements

CMP, NOA, SOC

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Course Description

The Politics of Taxes
Who gets taxed and how much they get taxed is at least as much a political decision as an economic one. Additionally, the ways governments tax their citizens (and how much they tax them) vary widely between different countries. Moreover, the purpose underlying governments’ use of taxes ranges from fighting inequality to incentivizing various behavioral changes. In this course we will examine sales taxes, wealth taxes, corporate profits, income taxes and the politics around those taxes in a variety of national contexts. (Comparative Politics). 3 hrs. sem.

Terms Taught

Fall 2020, Spring 2025

Requirements

CW, SOC

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Course Description

The Political Development of Western Europe
In what ways are the political systems and politics of France, Germany, Italy, and Britain similar? In what ways do they differ? How might we explain these patterns? This course attempts to answer these questions through comparative investigation of the processes and consequences of economic and political modernization in these nations from the feudal period to the 21st century. 3 hrs. lect./disc. (Comparative Politics)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2022

Requirements

CMP, CW, EUR, SOC

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Course Description

Transitional Justice
This course examines how democracies reckon with former authoritarian regimes and their legacies. Measures adopted to overcome the legacy of large-scale human rights
violations include apologies, amnesties, trials of perpetrators, truth commissions as well as restorative justice. Case studies from Asia, Europe, Latin America, South Africa, and the US help us understand the forces and factors that shape the difficult choices: to prosecute and punish versus to forgive and forget. Course readings supplemented by documentaries and fiction films illuminate the dilemmas societies confront to provide accountability for the victims, bystanders and perpetrators. (Not open to students who have taken FYSE 1283) 3 hrs. sem. (Comparative Politics)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2021, Spring 2023, Winter 2024, Winter 2025

Requirements

CMP, SOC

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Course Description

How Democracies Die
After years of expansion since the end of the cold war, democracy now is in retreat. From young democracies in the developing world to bastions of liberal democracy in Western Europe and North America, democratic political systems are under mounting pressure. What are the fundamental features of this recession? What are the driving forces behind global democratic backsliding? Why do people support autocrats? In this course we will tackle these questions and discuss an array of factors that contribute to global democratic recession including the role of the political elite, failing institutions, eroding norms, and the role of ordinary people. In so doing we will delve deeper into economic and social causes of this decline. Our focus will span from global trends to individual cases such as Venezuela, Turkey, Hungary, India, the United States, and the Philippines. (Not open to students who have taken FYSE 1544) 3 hrs. Sem. (Comparative Politics)/

Terms Taught

Fall 2020, Fall 2021, Fall 2022, Spring 2024

Requirements

CMP, SOC

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Course Description

African Government
Sub-Saharan Africa has been described as being in a state of permanent crisis, a place where disorder and chaos reign and states are chronically weak. How do political systems form and thrive under such conditions? What accounts for their survival in the face of tremendous political, economic, and environmental challenges? We will investigate the distinctive characteristics of African political systems, the different governance models throughout Sub-Saharan Africa, and the types of public goods or public ills these systems have produced. We will also have the opportunity to more deeply appreciate the real-life consequences for displaced Africans through a service-learning component. 3 hrs. sem. (Any one PSCI course) (Comparative Politics)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2022, Spring 2023, Spring 2024

Requirements

AAL, SAF

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Course Description

Political Islam
In this course we will survey the central questions in studies of political Islam, focusing on the emergence of Islam as a political force in the contemporary period. Discussion will center on the following core topics: (1) the nature of political Islam and Islamic interests; (2) how Islamic political movements develop; (3) why Islamic political movements flourish or fail; (4) how Islamic interests are expressed in the political arena; and (5) what types of political systems are most compatible with politicized Islam? These questions will be addressed by looking at the general history of the contemporary Islamic resurgence and by examining case studies on Egypt, Algeria, Iran, Afghanistan, Turkey, West Africa, and Southeast Asia. 3 hrs. sem. (Comparative Politics)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2020, Spring 2021, Spring 2022

Requirements

AAL, MDE

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Course Description

Ethnic Conflict
Experts regard ethnic divides as causing everything from nationalist violence to democratic breakdown to economic stagnation. In this course we will engage the most prominent recent and classic research into the relationship between ethnicity, conflict, and peace. Readings will include leading works in a wide variety of theoretical and empirical traditions, including comparative political science, rational choice, comparative history, sociology, and anthropology. Empirical material includes cases from many parts of the world. 3 hrs. sem. (Comparative Politics)/

Terms Taught

Fall 2020, Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Fall 2024

Requirements

SOC

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Course Description

Leadership: Politics and Personality
What difference do leaders make? Are leaders born or made? What accounts for effective leadership? Do answers to these questions change when the social, cultural, and political context varies? This course will approach the subject of leadership from a multidisciplinary perspective, focusing on (1) the individual personalities and values of leaders; (2) the relationship of leaders to the institutions they serve; (3) the role of the state and cultural context in which the leadership is exercised; and (4) the process of leading. (One course in comparative politics) 3 hrs. sem. (Comparative Politics)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2021, Spring 2022

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Course Description

Chinese Political Economy
Over the past 30 years China has undergone a tremendous transition. The purpose of this course is to consider the extent to which China's experience has challenged theories of market reform. First, we will examine the role of the state in Chinese economic development and market systems more broadly. Second, we will analyze challenges in Chinese state-society relations, from public service provision to protest, that have emerged after such rapid economic growth. Finally, we will discuss the political implications of the Chinese state's responses to these issues in terms of authoritarian durability and governance. 3 hrs. sem. (Comparative Politics)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2022, Fall 2023, Spring 2025

Requirements

AAL, NOA, SOC

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Course Description

Protest Music in Comparative Perspective
In this course we will examine how marginalized populations around the world use music to interpret, explain, and respond to political, racial, socioeconomic, and gendered inequities. Because music is produced for a wide audience, it is important for the construction of group identity and a useful means of protest. We will discuss the domestic politics of countries such as Nigeria, Jamaica, the U.S., and Brazil by reading the literature of comparative politics, sociology, and critical race and gender theory. Our discussion of these topics will help us better understand how power in various forms is used to repress, and how music challenges existing hegemonies. (Comparative Politics)

Terms Taught

Winter 2021

Requirements

AAL, ART, CMP, SOC, WTR

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Course Description

Social Change to Address Systemic Challenges*
In this course we will examine different methods to enact social change around systemic challenges such as climate, poverty, and racism. We will evaluate lobbying, protest, public opinion campaigns, psychology of communication outreach, training seminars, behavioral nudges, etc., to determine when and how these efforts are successful. Through this process we will wrestle with the current debate on how to coordinate and scale individual efforts to realize durable, large-scale change. In addition to the course content, students will advance a social change project (in groups) with instructor mentoring. This effort will be digitally based and supported by skill-building workshops from experts and mentors (instructor's approval needed for registration). (Pass/Fail)

Terms Taught

Winter 2021

Requirements

SOC, WTR

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International Relations and Foreign Policy

Courses offered in the past four years. Courses offered currently are as noted.

Course Description

International Politics
What causes conflict or cooperation among states? What can states and other international entities do to preserve global peace? These are among the issues addressed by the study of international politics. This course examines the forces that shape relations among states, and between states and international regimes. Key concepts include: the international system, power and the balance of power, international institutions, foreign policy, diplomacy, deterrence, war, and global economic issues. Both the fall and spring sections of this course emphasize rigorous analysis and set theoretical concepts against historical and contemporary case studies. 3 hrs. lect./disc. (International Relations and Foreign Policy)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2020, Fall 2020, Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Spring 2023, Fall 2023, Spring 2024, Spring 2025

Requirements

CMP, SOC

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Course Description

International Environmental Politics
What happens when the global economy outgrows the earth's ecosystem? This course surveys the consequences of the collision between the expanding world economy and the earth's natural limits: shrinking forests, falling water tables, eroding soils, collapsing fisheries, rising temperatures, and disappearing species. We will examine how countries with different circumstances and priorities attempt to work together to stop global environmental pollution and resource depletion. 3 hrs. lect./disc. (International Relations and Foreign Policy)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2024, Fall 2024

Requirements

CMP, SOC

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Course Description

Introduction to Text as Data
Computational tools that identify patterns in language and text increasingly help us understand the world. In this course we will explore several of the most common types of text-as-data analyses, such as collocations, keywords in context, topic modeling, and sentiment analysis. Students will work in teams throughout the semester to apply these tools to understand media coverage of a group or topic of their choice. This course is designed to be accessible to students in the social sciences, humanities, and arts as well as being of interest to computer science, math, and science students. 3 hrs. sem. (Methods)/

Terms Taught

Fall 2023, Fall 2024

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Course Description

International Politics and WMD
In this course we will examine the international ramifications of nuclear, biological, and chemical weapons use. What is a weapon of mass destruction (WMD)? How have WMD changed the way states behave toward international conflicts and within international crises? How has the development of these weapons influenced the policies states have adopted in response? Beyond these questions, major course themes include the threats of proliferation and the highs and lows of weapons reduction initiatives. 3 hrs. lect./disc. (not open to students who have taken PSCI 1159) (International Relations and Foreign Policy)/

Terms Taught

Fall 2022, Spring 2024

Requirements

SOC

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Course Description

International Diplomacy and Modern South Asia
In this course we will examine current political and economic issues in the countries of South Asia - Afghanistan, Pakistan, India, Nepal, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Maldives and Bhutan. We will first examine the background of the South Asian region in general (pre-colonial and colonial eras) and of South Asian countries after independence. We will look at specific interstate and intrastate issues, focusing on the combined quests for political stability and economic development. Students will look at topical issues from the perspective of an officer working in a U.S. Embassy or in a U.S. foreign policy agency. The course will combine rigorous academic understanding of the region with current policy issues. Readings will include both academic studies and contemporary policy/issues papers. 3 hrs. lect./disc. (International Relations and Foreign Policy)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2020, Spring 2022, Fall 2023

Requirements

AAL, SOA, SOC

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Course Description

Identity and Conflict in South Asia
In this course we will examine political development and conflict in South Asia through the concept of identity. South Asians take on a variety of identities -- ethnic, religious, linguistic, caste, national, etc. These identities often form the basis of political mobilization and both inter- and intrastate conflict. We will study the general concept of identity, including how identities are constructed and used, and then specific manifestations in South Asia. We will also examine the question of whether these identities were constructed during colonial or post-colonial times, or have an earlier basis. (International Relations and Foreign Policy)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2021, Spring 2023

Requirements

SOA, SOC

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Course Description

The Politics of International Humanitarian Action
Humanitarian intervention has emerged as a new moral imperative that challenges traditional concepts and practices in international relations. In this course we will consider how a range of actors--international organizations, states, NGOs--understand the concept of humanitarian intervention and engage (or not) in humanitarian actions. We will examine a variety of policy choices, including aid and military intervention, through case studies, including Somalia, Kosovo, and Rwanda. The goal of the course is to enable students to assess critically the benefits and challenges of a humanitarian approach to global politics. 3 hrs. lect./disc. (International Relations and Foreign Policy)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2021, Spring 2022

Requirements

CMP, SOC

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Course Description

The Political Economy of Drug Trafficking
This course examines the political economy of drug trafficking in the Western Hemisphere. How have transnational drug markets evolved, and why? What effects has narco-trafficking had on the political, economic, legal, financial, and social systems of producer, consumer, and transshipment countries? What policy responses are available to combat it? How should we weigh alternative policy options? Examination of these issues centers on source countries in Latin America's Andean region, the chief transshipment country (Mexico), and the principal consumer country (the US). Attention also is devoted to the drug trade's effects on American society and criminal justice system. 3 hrs. lect./disc.
(International Relations and Foreign Policy)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2020

Requirements

AAL, AMR, CMP, CW, SOC

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Course Description

International Political Economy
This course examines the politics of global economic relations, focusing principally on the advanced industrial states. How do governments and firms deal with the forces of globalization and interdependence? And what are the causes and consequences of their actions for the international system in turn? The course exposes students to both classic and contemporary thinking on free trade and protectionism, exchange rates and monetary systems, foreign direct investment and capital movements, regional integration, and the role of international institutions like the WTO. Readings will be drawn mainly from political science, as well as law and economics. 3 hrs. lect./disc./(International Relations and Foreign Policy)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2020, Fall 2020, Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Spring 2023, Fall 2023, Spring 2024, Fall 2024, Spring 2025

Requirements

SOC

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Course Description

The Politics of Virtual Realities
How has technology changed our politics? Are those changes all for the good? In this course we will explore the political, legal, and normative implications of the Internet for liberal democracy. We start with the US Constitution and explore arguments that it cannot by itself prevent the Internet from becoming a domain of manipulation rather than of freedom. How can we uphold the ideals of liberty and equality? And, since cyberspace has no country, whose laws should govern it? Cases will include President Obama's campaign and governance strategies, Google's activities abroad, cybersecurity, virtual war, and the WikiLeaks controversy. 3 hrs. lect./disc. (International Relations and Foreign Policy)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Spring 2024, Spring 2025

Requirements

CW, SOC

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Course Description

American Foreign Policy
Does America exercise its power in the world in a distinctive way? If yes, has it always done so? In this course we will examine the evolution of American foreign policy from the time of the founding to the present. As we make our way from the height of the Cold War to the 21st century, we will assess how leaders, institutions, domestic politics, and the actions and inactions of other countries have shaped American international behavior. Topics considered include terrorism, nuclear proliferation, globalization, democracy promotion, whether the rich US has an obligation to help the less fortunate, how much power the Pentagon should have, what role the private sector can and should play in advancing American interests, and the Bush revolution in foreign policy. A central aim of the course is to map competing perspectives so that the student can draw his or her own political conclusions. 3 hrs. lect./disc. (International Relations and Foreign Policy)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2020, Fall 2021, Spring 2024

Requirements

AMR, SOC

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Course Description

Globalization, Terrorism, and Global Insurgency
How does globalization change the nature of terrorism and create a global security environment characterized by a series of hybrid asymmetric threats? What are the connections between organizations, conflict regions, and the developed world? This course will focus on at least four modules that link aspects of globalization to global counterterrorism, counterinsurgency, and counterproliferation policy: 1) migration, immigration, and the movement of people, 2) illicit international markets and financing, 3) global communications, and 4) the connections between international relations, foreign-policy, and political violence worldwide. Skill development will focus on policy evaluation and analysis, oral briefings, collaborative project management, and collaborative policy strategy papers. 3 hrs. sem. (International Relations and Foreign Policy)/

Terms Taught

Fall 2020, Fall 2021, Fall 2022, Fall 2023, Fall 2024

Requirements

SOC

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Course Description

War and Peace
What causes conflicts between states and within countries? What factors facilitate or impede their resolution? In this course we will examine interstate and intrastate conflicts and the challenges faced in resolving them, from both practical and theoretical perspectives. Employing some of the most prominent theories on war, and more recent theories of bargaining, negotiation, and conflict, we will draw upon a range of case studies to illustrate and evaluate the theoretical dynamics of conflict and conflict resolution. (PSCI 0109 or by waiver) 3 hrs. lect./disc. (International Relations and Foreign Policy)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2020, Spring 2022, Fall 2023

Requirements

SOC

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Course Description

International Politics of the Middle East
In this course we will study the evolution of the inter-state system in the Middle East. Using contemporary International Relations (IR) theories we will examine the influence of great powers, regional states, transnational movements, and regional organizations on state interests, ideology, religion, and the region's political economy. Questions to be addressed will include: which levels of analyses are most helpful in understanding the complexity of Middle East politics? Which of the IR theories--realist, liberal, or constructivist-- best explain inter-state relations in the region? What other approaches may be useful in this endeavor? 3 hrs. sem. (International Relations and Foreign Policy)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2023

Requirements

MDE, SOC

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Course Description

Gender and International Relations
Many issues facing international society affect, and are affected by, gender. Global poverty, for example, is gendered, since 70% of the world's population living below $1.25 per day is female. Women are far more vulnerable to rape in war and water scarcity, and they are moreover globally politically underrepresented. In this course we will use theories of international relations, including realism, neoliberalism, and feminism, to study how international society addresses (or fails to address) these challenges through bodies such as the UN and treaties such as the Elimination of Violence Against Women. 3 hrs. lect./disc. (International Relations and Foreign Policy)/

Terms Taught

Fall 2024

Requirements

CMP, SOC

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Course Description

Asymmetric Conflict Research Practicum
The prevalence of civil conflict, asymmetric threats, and global counterterrorism have resulted in the dramatic growth of special operations, security cooperation, and peacebuilding in civil conflict environments. To what extent have we learned the lessons of the post 9/11 world, and to what extent is the global policy community prepared for the asymmetric, embedded, and culturally aware operations that characterize 21st century conflict? Examples will be drawn from around the globe and we will take a comparative approach to conflicts within and across regions, noting their impacts on institutions, policy processes, and human social systems. This course uses the ongoing development of the Special Operations Research Database (SORD) as a platform for learning about global counterterrorism and for students’ training in all phases of research methodology, including fieldwork interviewing techniques. 3 hrs. lect. (International Relations and Foreign Policy)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2021, Spring 2022, Fall 2023, Fall 2024

Requirements

CMP, SOC

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Course Description

International Law
In this course, we analyze key concepts that underpin how scholars and practitioners examine the rules that assist and constrain international actors (states, businesses, activists, and individuals). We analyze legal issues and cases involving sovereignty, human rights, trade and investment law, use of force, and environmental treaties. (formerly PSCI 0237) 3 hrs, seminar. (Not open to students who have already taken PSCI 0237)

Terms Taught

Fall 2023

Requirements

SOC

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Course Description

Ecocriticism and Global Environmental Justice
Many global environmental problems—climate change, biodiversity, deforestation, clean water, and transboundary waste movement—are ineffectively managed. In this course we will take a critical look at these failures and ask: do existing norms and attitudes make effective, sustainable environmental management more difficult? In doing so, we will examine institutions and phenomena such as the sovereign nation-state, free market capitalism, and the authority of scientific knowledge. We will ask whether sustainable management is compatible with these institutions and phenomena, or whether they contribute to environmental injustice, racism, political marginalization, and gender and class inequity by studying contemporary and historic examples. 3 hrs. sem. (International Relations and Foreign Policy)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2021, Fall 2023, Spring 2025

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Course Description

The Rise of Asia and US Policy
In this course we will study what is arguably the most important strategic development of the 21st century: how the rise of Asia presents security challenges to the region and the United States. Drawing from international relations scholarship, the course will focus on foreign policy challenges and potential responses. These challenges include both traditional security and nontraditional areas such as water and the environment. We will integrate the analysis of these issues in South, East, and Southeast Asia with study of the policy process, in part through simulations and role-playing exercises. 3 hrs. sem. (International Relations and Foreign Policy)/

Terms Taught

Fall 2020, Fall 2021, Spring 2023, Spring 2024, Spring 2025

Requirements

CMP, NOA, SOC

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Course Description

Euro-Atlantic Relations
In this course we’ll examine the history, status, and future of US-European security relations, with a special focus on the consequences of the war in Ukraine. The learning process will include lectures, class discussions, guest speakers, a role-playing exercise, and a final policy paper. Issues covered include: persistent and evolving aspects of the “transatlantic bargain;” relations with Russia after its aggression against Ukraine; Islamic State threats and Middle East turmoil; Middle Eastern and European refugee issues; impact of 9/11 and Iraq crisis; US-European relations under the Biden administration; relations between NATO, the European Union and the UN; alternative transatlantic relations futures. The instructor’s 2020 Defense of the West: Transatlantic Security from Truman to Trump will be the core text. International Relations and Foreign Policy
/Stan Sloan, a former senior U.S. government intelligence, foreign and defense policy expert, and research manager, has for the past 18 years taught courses on Euro-Atlantic Relations and American Power in the Middlebury Winter Term. He is the author of numerous opinion and journal articles,
monographs, book chapters and books, including De-Trumping U.S. Foreign Policy: Can Biden bring America back? (2021); Defense of the West: Transatlantic Security from Truman to Trump (2020) and transatlantic traumas: Has illiberalism brought the West to the brink of collapse? (2018)./

Terms Taught

Winter 2021, Winter 2023

Requirements

CMP, EUR, SOC, WTR

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Course Description

American Power: Soft, Hard, or Smart
Wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, turmoil in the Middle East, and Russian and Chinese expansionist tendencies have raised important questions about how the United States should use power to defend its interests. In this course we will survey historical, institutional, and theoretical factors as a prelude to consideration of how the United States has used its power since WWII. Using selected case studies, we will examine pro/con arguments for different approaches to the use of power (soft, hard, smart) with class debate and discussion, as well as reviews of relevant daily news reports written and presented by class members. (International Relations and Foreign Policy)/

Terms Taught

Winter 2022

Requirements

AMR, CW, NOR, SOC, WTR

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Course Description

Contemporary Conflicts in the Middle East
The Middle East is known to be one of the most conflict-ridden regions of the world. In this course we explore the contemporary conflicts in the region and the basic motivation of major actors. Specifically, we will study the rivalry between Iran and Saudi Arabia, the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, the wars in Yemen and Syria, and the Kurdish question in Syria and Turkey. We will study the causes and consequences of these conflicts at the regional and global level. (International Relations and Foreign Policy)

Terms Taught

Winter 2021, Winter 2024, Winter 2025

Requirements

MDE, SOC, WTR

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Course Description

Weapons of Mass Destruction
Technological development has brought human civilization to the point at which we can destroy ourselves in a matter of hours using weapons of mass destruction. What effects do these weapons have on political, and social behavior? Do WMDs deserve their own classification, or is human behavior consistent regardless of the weapon? We explore the technology, political theory and policy that has risen around the prospect of human annihilation. (not open to students who have taken PSCI 0242 or equivalent) (International Relations and Foreign Policy)

Terms Taught

Winter 2021

Requirements

CMP, SOC, WTR

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Methods

Courses offered in the past four years. Courses offered currently are as noted.

Course Description

Frontiers in Political Science Research
Nothing is more controversial among political scientists than the topic of how to study politics. In this course, we consider a variety of advanced techniques for studying political phenomena, including statistical methods, game theory, institutional analysis, case study techniques, experiments, and agent-based modeling. We will work with concrete examples (drawn from major political science journals) of how scholars have used these techniques, and consider the ongoing philosophical controversies associated with each approach. Students will have the opportunity to conduct original research using a method and subject of their choosing. (Any political science courses) 3 hrs. lect.disc (Methods)

Terms Taught

Fall 2020, Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Spring 2022, Spring 2023, Fall 2023, Spring 2024, Spring 2025

Requirements

DED, SOC

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Course Description

Qualitative Methods in Political Science
This seminar offers a broad introduction to qualitative methodology with a focus on comparative methods for the analysis of a relatively small number of cases (small-n). This course will enable students to create and critique qualitative research designs in political science. The course focuses on recent methodological writings and includes several substantive examples from various subfields. Topics covered include causal inference, case studies, cross-case comparison, typological theory, case selection, process tracing, counterfactual analysis, and set theory. We will also discuss approaches to multi-method research and the use of mixed methods in political science. 3 hrs. lect. (Methods)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Spring 2023, Fall 2023, Spring 2024, Fall 2024, Spring 2025

Requirements

DED

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Course Description

Game Theory for Political Science
How do candidates for political office choose their platforms? Why do some conflicts lead to war while others do not? What legislation will legislators introduce? These and many other compelling questions of political behavior often use game theory as a tool to study strategic, or interdependent, decision-making. Students will learn basic concepts of game theory and how to apply them to a range of political phenomena. To succeed, students need only a solid background in algebra. Students who have taken ECON 0280 cannot register for this course. (Any political science course) (formerly PSCI 0393) 3 hrs. lect./disc. (Methods)

Terms Taught

Fall 2020, Fall 2022

Requirements

DED, SOC

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Political Theory

Courses offered in the past four years. Courses offered currently are as noted.

Course Description

Introduction to Political Philosophy
What is politics and how should it be studied? Is there a best regime? A best way of life? How are these two things related, if at all? Can we gain knowledge of such topics? We will examine these questions through a study of the some or all of the following texts: Plato, Apology of Socrates, Republic; Aristotle, Nicomachean Ethics, Politics; Thucydides, The Peloponnesian War; St. Augustine, Confessions; St. Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologica, Summa Contra Gentiles; Machiavelli, The Prince; Hobbes, Leviathan; Locke, Second Treatise on Government; Rousseau, Discourse on the Origin and Foundations of Inequality Among Men; Marx, The Communist Manifesto, The German Ideology, Capital; and Weber, “Science as a Vocation.” 4 hrs. lect./disc. (Political Theory)

Terms Taught

Spring 2020, Fall 2020, Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Spring 2023, Fall 2023, Spring 2024, Fall 2024

Requirements

EUR, PHL, SOC

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Course Description

Left, Right, and Center
In this course, we shall examine liberalism, conservatism, socialism and their competing conceptions of freedom, equality, the individual, and community. We shall consider the origins of these ideologies in early modern political theory and shall afford special attention to the connection between thought and politics. Authors may include John Locke, Adam Smith, Edmund Burke, Alexis de Tocqueville, Karl Marx, Friedrich Nietzsche, John Rawls, Michel Foucault, Michael Oakeshott, and Friedrich Hayek. 3 hrs. lect. (Political Theory)

Terms Taught

Fall 2020, Fall 2021, Fall 2022, Fall 2023, Fall 2024

Requirements

EUR, PHL, SOC

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Course Description

Might and Right Among Nations
What role does justice play in international politics? What role should it play? Does it pay to act justly in the conduct of foreign affairs? In this course, we will examine the place of ethical considerations in international politics. Drawing upon major works of political theory, we will pay special attention to the relationship between justice and necessity, the ethics of war and deception, and plans for perpetual peace. Authors will include Thucydides, Cicero, Augustine, Aquinas, Machiavelli, Rousseau, Montesquieu, Kant, Weber, Woodrow Wilson, and Michael Walzer. 3 hrs. lect. (Political Theory)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2023

Requirements

EUR, PHL

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Course Description

Ancient and Medieval Political Philosophy
We will study some classic works in ancient and medieval political philosophy: Plato (Laws, RepublicApology, Republic, Gorgias, Protagoras, Meno); Aristotle (Ethics, Politics, Rhetoric); Cicero (Republic, Laws), Maimonides (Guide to the Perplexed), Aquinas (Summa Theologica, Summa Contra Gentiles), Alfarabi (The Political Regime). (PSCI 0101 or PSCI 0107 or by waiver) 4 hrs. lect./disc. (Political Theory)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2025

Requirements

PHL, SOC

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Course Description

Modern Political Philosophy
In this course. we will study: Machiavelli (Prince, Discourses); Bacon
(Advancement of Learning); Hobbes (Leviathan); Locke (Second Treatise);
Spinoza (Theological-Political Treatise); Montesquieu (Spirit of the Laws);
Rousseau (Social Contract); Burke (Reflections); Kant (Foundations of the Metaphysics of Morals, Perpetual Peace); Hegel (Introduction to Philosophy of History); Marx (Communist Manifesto, German Ideology, Capital); Nietzsche
(Beyond Good and Evil); Heidegger (Question Concerning Technology).
We will examine modernity's rejection of ancient thought, its later replacement of nature by history as the standard for right, and its subsequent rejection of any standard of right. Other topics include religion, freedom ofspeech, and the separation of powers. (PSCI 0101 or PSCI 0107 or PSCI 0317, or PSCI 0333, or waiver) 4.5 hrs. lect./disc. (Political Theory)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2022

Requirements

EUR, PHL, SOC

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Course Description

Political Philosophies of Cosmopolitan and Nationalism
Political communities unite and divide human beings into separate groups. Can anything justify or explain these divisions? Is there a form best suited to human flourishing and happiness? To the scope of our moral and political obligations? To our identities as co-nationals, compatriots, or cosmopolitans? We will focus on theorists of the late Enlightenment: Smith, Rousseau, Herder, Kant, Fichte, Tocqueville, Mill, Mazzini, Acton, and Weber. We will also read more recent works by Rawls, Walzer, Beitz, Nussbaum, Scruton, and Manent and selections from the ancient Stoic tradition. (PSCI 0101 or 0204 or by waiver) 3 hrs sem. (Political Theory)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Spring 2024

Requirements

CMP, EUR, PHL, SOC

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Course Description

Statesmanship and Modern Liberty: Montesquieu and Tocqueville
Montesquieu's Spirit of the Laws and Tocqueville's Democracy in America offer profound treatments of modern representative government, its promise, and its perils. In this course we will focus on each author's understanding of the often neglected role of statesmanship in shaping political and cultural conditions favorable to the emergence and preservation of human liberty in the modern world. We will consider key themes such as the relationship between liberty and equality, the role of the passions in politics, the meaning of despotism, the relationship between culture and politics, and the promise and dangers of modern commerce for liberal democracy. (Political Theory)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2020

Requirements

EUR, PHL, SOC

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Course Description

Basic Problems in Political Philosophy
In this course we will focus on the writings of Plato, Aristotle, and Kant to examine different formulations of theory and practice. We will read Plato’s Meno, Euthyphro, Apology, Crito, Phaedo, and Sophist; from Aristotle’s Ethics, Physics and Metaphysics; Kant’s, Critique of Pure Reason, Foundations of the Metaphysics or Morals, and Perpetual Peace; concluding with parts of Rawls’ A Theory of Justice. We will be examining the following questions: What can we know and how do we know it? How should we live and how is that related to what we can know? A previous course in political philosophy or philosophy is recommended. Students will write two short papers and a final essay on topics to be assigned. A previous course in political philosophy or philosophy is recommended. (Political Theory) 3 hrs. sem.

Terms Taught

Spring 2021, Spring 2024

Requirements

PHL

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