Courses

Fall 2011 Course Descriptions

(M) = Methodologically focused course

PS 11 Introduction to American Politics - Masuoka
(MW 1:30-2:45) Block G+
A study of governmental politics, functions, and programs. Emphasis given to political behavior, both at the mass level and in institutions. Survey of public opinion and political culture, parties, and elections. Congress, the presidency, the bureaucracy, the federal courts, and interest groups.

PS 13 Soph Sem: Race and Class in American Politics - Glaser
(W 9:00-11:30) Block 2
Race and class cleavages in the US and their effect on our politics. Emphasis on how race has impeded a class-based politics in this country. Origins and decay of the Jim Crow South, American political attitudes toward race and class issues, and urban and social welfare policy. A methodologically focused sophomore seminar.

PS 21 Introduction to Comparative Politics - Art
(MW 3:00-4:15) Block I+
Theories and evidence in comparative politics, preparing students for upper-level courses that focus on specific regions, countries, and themes. Examination and evaluation of competing theoretical approaches to important phenomena in world politics, including democracy and democratization; revolutions; economic development; and ethnicity and ethnic conflict. Discussion of illustrative examples from different regions such as Western Europe, Eastern Europe and Russia, East Asia, South Asia, Africa, the Middle East, and Latin America.

PS 41 Western Political Thought I - Sullivan
(MW 3:00-4:15) Block E+
Cross-listed as Phil 41 & CLS 45
Central concepts of ancient, medieval, and early modern political thought. Ideas of Thucydides, Aristophanes, Plato, and Aristotle during the rise and fall of Athens. Subsequent transformations of political philosophy, related to the decline of the Roman empire and the origins and development of Christian political doctrine, and the new political outlook of those who challenge the hegemony of Christianity. Analysis of how pre-modern political thought helped structure future political debate.

PS 61 Introduction to International Relations - Eichenberg
(TR 10:30-11:45) Block D+
Examination of several conceptual designs intended to make order out of the essential anarchy in international relations, from a theoretical assessment of the nation-state and the nature of national power to an exploration of behavior among nation-states, including the ultimate problem of war and peace and an appraisal of the factors that give an age its particular characteristics.

PS 99-01 Fieldwork in Politics - Gleason
(Arranged)
Internship placements with such employers as legislators, campaigns, news media, lobbies, law firms, and administrative agencies. Twelve to fifteen hours of work per week. Written assignments, with supporting readings, on organizational structure, goals and strategies, and occupational socialization.

PS 99-02 City Government Internship - Levine
(Arranged)

PS 101 Presidency and the Executive Branch - Berry
(MW 1:30-2:45) Block G+
Study of the constitutional development of the presidential office, its power, prestige, and functions, as well as the influences of the person occupying that office. Major emphasis is on the process of policy formulation in the executive branch. Analysis of the president's relations with his staff, the bureaucracy, the Congress, the press, and the public.
Prerequisite: Sophomore Standing

PS 103 Political Science Research Methods (M) - Schildkraut
(D M 9:30-10:20; TR 10:30-11:20) Block D
This course introduces the use of quantitative methods for investigating political issues such as campaigns and elections, the death penalty, public opinion about war and terrorism, and other policy controversies. Students will develop research designs and learn how to collect, analyze, and present data. The course emphasizes hands-on training that will provide useful skills for academic and professional settings. Most readings and assignments emphasize politics in the United States, though the skills we will develop are useful for every aspect of political science.
Prerequisite: Foundational PS Course

PS 111 Political Psychology (M) - Schildkraut
(TR 3:00-4:15) Block J+
This course employs social and cognitive psychological theories to examine the world of politics. Students will explore several key approaches to understanding the psychology of political behavior and will examine the psychological origins of citizens' political beliefs and actions from a variety of perspectives. Topics covered include: information processing, inter-group conflict, attribution, identity formation and change, heuristics, stereotyping and prejudice, and political communication.

PS 118 New Media, New Politics - Berry
(M 9-11:30) Block 0
The focus of this seminar is on cable television news networks, talk radio, and political blogs. Among the topics discussed will be the business model that supports political commentary, why audiences find these media attractive, how TV and radio hosts and blog writers build audiences, the deregulation of media markets, and the impact of these media on polarization in America. Students will work in teams to produce a major research paper.

PS 119-02 Senior Seminar: Politics of U.S. Immigration - Masuoka
(W 6:30-9:00) Block 12
Co-List AMER 194-03
The U.S. is in the midst of the most significant influx of immigrants in its history. More than one in ten Americans is foreign born, and together with their children make up almost a quarter of the U.S. population. How will these newcomers impact the form and function of American democracy? This course will address the question: what are the political causes and consequences of immigration policy on American politics? We will review the history of immigration policy in the U.S., identify the processes of immigrant political incorporation as well as consider competing perspectives on contemporary topics such as undocumented immigration.

PS 121 Political Culture in Comparative Perspective - Cruz
(M 6:30-9:00) Block 10
How cultural meanings and practices shape political struggles and institutions. Survey of culturalist theories of political dynamics and structures, and assessment of theories against a range of empirical case studies from Asia, the Middle East, Western Europe, Latin America, and the United States.

PS 122 Soviet, Russian and Post-Soviet Politics - Shevel
(TR 12:00-1:15) Block F+
In this course, you will be studying one of the most important countries of the 20th century, the Soviet Union, and the states – the Russian Federation and 14 others – that were formed from its collapse. Approximately one third of the course will be devoted to an overview of political, economic, and social structures that defined Soviet Communism. In the remaining two/thirds of the course we will consider the divergent paths taken by the 15 successor states of the Soviet Union after 1991. While Russia will receive the most extensive consideration, we will cover the other successor states as well. As we examine and compare developments in the region after 1991, we will pay special attention to topics such as state collapse and state formation, political and institutional changes, the politics of economic reform, the challenges of nationalism within the multinational state, informal politics, and "colored revolutions."

PS 124 Sem: Pol Economy of Advanced Industrial Democracies (M) - Fujihira
(M 6:30-9:00) Block 10
Comparison of different models of capitalism in Western Europe, the United States, and Japan. Topics include: rise and fall of Keynesianism, electoral and partisan business cycles, interest groups and corporatism, central bank independence, production regimes, welfare states, privatization, and globalization.

PS 126 Chinese Politics - Remick
(MW 10:30-11:45) Block E+
Survey of the domestic politics of the People's Republic of China. The development of Communist Party power through the political campaigns of the 1950s and 1960s. The political, cultural, economic, and social challenges faced by post-Mao reformers.

PS 127 Latin American Politics - Cruz
(MW 3:00-4:15) Block I+
This course is intended to deepen our understanding of Latin America and of politics. To that end, we will be concerned with both the political dynamics of Latin America and with significant debates in political science. This course will familiarize students with the rich histories of several Latin American countries and engage social scientific theorizing of such processes as imperialism, colonialism, revolution, regime change, identity politics, and issues in political economy.

PS 129 African Policy - Robinson
(MW 1:30-2:45) Block G+
This seminar examines the nature of Africa's political institutions and their varying impacts on African economies. We consider why sustainable development has been so illusive, and engage in debates about the way forward. Focusing on political order, economic policies and governance, readings explore a series of interrelated questions: What are the determinants of state-business relationships in the making of economic policies? Why are the poorest countries failing, and what can be done about it? In what ways might gender-targeted strategies turn the tide of Africa's poor economic performance? Is "Smart Aid" possible? Throughout these discussions, we will be mindful.
Prerequisite: Sophomore Standing

PS 132 Comparative Politics of Post-Communism - Shevel
(W 1:30-4:00) Block 7
Application and testing of theories of democratization, economic reforms, state and nation-building, ethnic conflicts, and international influences on domestic politics through the exploration of divergent paths taken by the formerly communist states of East-Central Europe and the former Soviet Union since the collapse of communism. Due attention is paid to the main historical and contemporary developments, but the focus is on theoretical attempts to explain the different developmental trajectories upon which the post-communist states have embarked. Students research and write a major research paper.
Prerequisite: Any Comparative Course or Consent

PS 135 Comparative Revolutions (M) - Remick
(MW 1:30-2:45) Block G+
The causes, processes, and outcomes of revolution. Student development of a theory of revolution's causes through comparative examination of revolutions in France, Russia, China, and Iran. Discussion of whether the causes of revolution have changed in the late twentieth century.
Prerequisite: Sophomore Standing. This course is methodologically focused.

PS 138-06 Democracy and Dictatorship in Europe - Art
(MW 10:30-11:45) Block E+
Examination of the origins and development of democracy, authoritarianism, and totalitarianism in Europe. Course uses European political development as prism for examining major theoretical issues in comparative politics, such as state formation, the connections between economic development and political liberalization, the rise of fascism and communism, and the construction of the modern welfare state.

PS 138-08 Conflict and Natural Resources - Gleason
(TR 10:30-11:45) Block D+
This course examines the role of natural resource endowments and scarcity in national and international conflicts. Students will explore not only conflict theory but also technical aspects of global environmental change and civil conflict. The course begins with a study of the various causes of conflict at the state, society and individual levels such as structural violence, politics, religion and humiliation. We then explore how constraints on natural resources such as water and fertile soil increase the likelihood of environmentally related violence as compared to other causes of conflict. Finally, the class will explore potential conflict resolution approaches as they relate to resource scarcity and environmental change. Case studies include the Sudan Conflict, Somalia' Pirate Conflicts, and Ache Indonesia's struggle with violence.

PS 138-09 The Political Economy of Developing Countries - Mazaheri
(TR 1:30-2:45) Block H+
This course examines the political economy of developing countries. It begins by introducing a number of theoretical tools that are often used to explain political and economic outcomes in countries from South and East Asia, Africa, the Middle East, and Latin America. Central questions to be explored in the course are: Can democracy foster economic development? Why do governments adopt policies that inhibit development? Does geography matter in explaining development outcomes? Understanding how developing countries interact with the international community (particularly multilateral lending institutions) is also a theme that will be explored. Finally, we will evaluate current thinking about how governments in the developing world can best address some of the challenges they face such as corruption, illiteracy, gender inequality in labor markets, and more.

PS 138-10 The Politics of Oil and Energy - Mazaheri
(TR 6:00-7:15) Block N+
This course examines how oil, energy, and other natural resources have shaped economic and political outcomes in countries around the world. It begins by exploring research on how oil and natural resources affect political regimes and the risk of civil war and international conflict. The economic effects of oil and natural resources are then considered through an analysis of the "resource curse" hypothesis. We will evaluate this hypothesis by investigating the experiences of countries in the Middle East, Latin America, Africa, and North America. The final part of the class takes a public policy focus by looking at how governments design and implement policy related to oil and energy, how oil and energy industries respond to this policy, and how this affects consumers and the public as a whole. We examine topics such as the role of OPEC, regulation, and energy policy in the United States.

PS 147 Sem: Political Philosophy of Nietzsche - Devigne
(R 6:30-9:00) Block 13
Nietzsche's views of philosophy, nature, morality, religion, art, science, and politics. Analysis of view that "God is dead" and that we are no longer capable of distinguishing whether one value is better than another. Assessment of the qualities that must exist--in both the individual and society--for human creativity to regenerate. Exploration of whether Nietzsche successfully broke from Western political philosophy.
Prerequisite: PS 41 or 42, or instructor consent

PS 148 Sem: Political Thought of Montesquieu - Sullivan
(W 1:30-4:00) Block 7
Examination of Montesquieu's political thought through his comparative analysis of political regimes in his major work, Spirit of Laws. Topics include the principles that guide tyranny, monarchy, and republican government, the principle of separation of powers, the meaning of political liberty, the impact of commerce on political life, the relation of mores to laws, and the character of Montesquieu's liberalism. His other works, The Persian Letters or Considerations on the Greatness of the Romans and Their Decline, will also be considered. Please see departmental website for specific details.
Prerequisite: PS/PHIL 41 or 42 or Consent

PS 154 Romanticism and Revolution: The Polit Phil of Rousseau - Devigne
(TR 3:00-4:15) Block J+
Rousseau proposes inner direction and sincerity as central to individuals overcoming civil society's restrains and experiencing their natural sensibilities, while his political proposals support the community's ability to self-define as the highest goal. The course analyzes how these divergent currents of thought contributed to romanticism among artists, revolutionary practice among intellectuals, and ideas of liberty that continue to exert enormous influence on Western culture and politics. It examines how Rousseau critiqued the Enlightenment and founded an alternative current within modern political philosophy. The class analyzes how all of Rousseau's thinking is driven by the goal of attaining autonomy for either the individual or the community.

PS 160 Force, Strategy and Arms Control (M) - Taliaferro
(TR 10:30-11:45) Block D+
Examination of the political, economic, military, and ethical factors affecting the use and utility of military force in international relations. Study of the political and decision-making process by which nations decide to use military force. Study of the major arms control agreements of the post-World War II period, including negotiations currently under way.
Prerequisite: PS 61

PS 166 Causes of Modern War (M) - Greenhill
(W 6:30-9:00) Block 12
This course explores the causes of interstate war, with a particular focus on preventable causes. Topics examined include the security dilemma, diversionary war, deterrence, power transition theory, misperceptions, domestic politics, the role of alliances, and economic causes of war. These theories will be examined through the lens of some of the most significant wars and crises of the modern era. The conflicts examined will be used to test the logic of the various theories that purport to explain their causes and consequences.
Prerequisites: PS 61; Senior Standing

PS 170 Understanding Civil Wars - Greenhill
(MW 10:30-11:45) Block E+
For the better part of the twentieth century, international security scholars and practitioners focused on the causes and consequences of war and peace between countries, particularly the prospects for conflict between the great powers. Nevertheless, since 1945 the vast majority of conflicts have been within countries rather than between them. This course surveys competing theories about the causes, conduct, and conclusion of the dominant brand of conflict in the world today and examines how the international community deals with these (enduring and often seemingly intractable) conflicts. Topics examined include conflict prevention, conflict mediation, military intervention, peace implementation, peacekeeping and peace enforcement, and refugee crisis management. The course combines theories from international relations and conflict resolution with case studies of recent and ongoing conflicts.
Prerequisite: PS 61

PS 172 U.S. Foreign Policy in the Middle East - Mufti
(MW 1:30-2:45) Block G+
The evolution of American foreign policy toward the Middle East since World War II. Basic American interests in the region, and how the U.S. has pursued those interests in connection with issues such as conflicting nationalisms (including the Arab-Israeli conflict), the role of Turkey and Iran in the regional balance of power, and the Islamist revival. Implications of the Soviet Union's collapse for future American policy in the Middle East. Prerequisites Sophomore standing or permission of instructor.

PS 188-06 Global Environmental Policy - Gleason
(TR 1:30-2:45) Block H+
This course seeks to highlight effective responses to global environmental problems in the international treaty making arena. Students will explore the negotiation process, the structure of the United Nations treaty making system, the convention-protocol approach and the politics of the north v. south divide. Topics will include the weaknesses of the international environmental negotiation process, the importance of non-state actors, and potential solutions for the system.

PS 188-19 Human Rights and American Foreign Policy - Swett
(R 1:30-4:00) Block 8
This course will be an exploration of a range of issues regarding human rights in US Foreign Policy. The course will touch on the historical roots of the human rights idea in American foreign policy but the primary focus will be on the post WW II era when the modern human rights movement took shape with a particular interest in some of the most pressing human rights issues of the day. It will examine the respective roles of the Congress and the President in advancing (or in some cases hindering) a focus on human rights in America's international relations. The role of the NGO community will be looked at as well. The costs and benefits of a vigorous human rights policy will be explored and recent controversies surrounding "enhanced interrogation techniques", waterboarding and the challenges to a human rights policy during war-time will be examined.

PS 188-23 Race, Ethnicity and US African Policy - Robinson
(TR 12:00-1:15) Block F+
Scholars debate whether foreign attachments of US ethnic lobbies foster policy advocacy that runs counter to the national interest. This course traces the shift in emphasis of African-American internationalists from the defense of Black nationality to broader human rights advocacy around norms of racial equality, the rule of law, and economic justice. Case studies address the role of race, ethnicity and religion in the making of US Africa policy from 1850 to the age of Obama.

PS 188-25 Wilson to Obama - Smith
(TR 10:30-11:45) Block D+
From the presidency of Woodrow Wilson (1913-1921) to that of Barack Obama, liberal internationalism has often been the framework adopted for the conduct of American foreign policy. Liberal internationalism stresses democracy promotion, the creation of an open and integrated world economy, and multilateralism to settle conflicts as the way best to provide for American national security. The invasion of Iraq in March 2003 was in good measure justified in terms of bringing the Middle East into such a system. Where did this thinking come from, how has it evolved over time, and what is its future likely to be in the hands of the new administration in Washington?

PS 189-04 Sem: World Wars and the Nation State - Taliaferro
(T 1:30-4:00) Block 6
This research seminar examines the grand strategies of the five great powers the United States, Britain, France, Germany, the Soviet Union, and Japan during the World War I, the Twenty Years' Crisis (1919-39), and World War II. We will explore the causes of the world wars and the determinants of wartime and peacetime strategies from variety of historical interpretations and international relations theories, such as neoclassical realism, structural realism, strategic culture/constructivism, and dynamic differentials theory. Topics discussed include: debates on the origins and responsibility for World War I; the 1919 peace settlement and the League of Nations; the cause and character of German and Japanese expansion in the 1930s; role of ideology, nationalism, and domestic mobilization for warfare in liberal democracies versus totalitarian or authoritarian regimes; Anglo-French debates over preventive war and appeasement of Germany in 1930s; the crisis between the United States and Japan in 1940-41 and the U.S. entry into the war; the origins of strategies of civilian victimization and genocide; and debates over war aims and war termination.
Prerequisites: PS 61; Junior/Senior Standing

PS 189-05 Sem: Turkish Foreign Policy - Mufti
(W 9:00-11:30) Block 2
This seminar studies the determinants, mechanisms, and main elements of Turkish foreign policy. It combines three main elements: an investigation of the relationship between domestic political dynamics - particularly competing conceptions of Turkish identity - and foreign policy; a chronological survey of Turkish diplomatic history; and in-depth analyses of Turkey's relations with its primary interlocutors on the regional and global levels.

PS 189-06 Sem: Making the World Safe for Democracy - Smith
(W 1:30-4:00) Block 7
On the eve of America entering World War I, President Woodrow Wilson famously asserted that "the world must be made safe for democracy." Wilson's central meaning was that the leading countries of the world needed to be democracies; only then could world peace be achieved and American national security be guaranteed. Brief reference will be made to the evolution of "Wilsonianism" and "liberal internationalism" since Wilson's time (including the invasion of Iraq in 2003 and the reaction in the U.S. to the "Arab Awakening" of 2011), but the focus of the course is on the origins of American democracy promotion in concepts formulated by Wilson between 1885 and 1923.

PS 194 Politics of Environmental Policy in US - Portney
(TR 1:30-2:45) Block H+
Examines the recent history and contemporary political debates surrounding governmental decisions affecting the environment. Environmental policy making in the general context of U.S. policy-making processes and institutions, emphasizing the roles of federal, state, and local actors, including the president, executive and regulatory agencies (especially the Environmental Protection Agency), the legislature, and the courts, as well as their state and local counterparts, in defining environmental policy. Addresses such issues as policies toward air pollution, water pollution, hazardous waste management, environmental justice, sustainability, and public opinion toward the environment.

PS 198 Seminar: Senior Honors Thesis (M) - Eichenberg
(M 1:30-4:00) Block 5
Co-List INTR 197-01
This course explores the theoretical, empirical, normative, and methodological problems involved in conducting political science research. It will also provide a forum for discussing students' draft thesis chapters.

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