Spring 2012 Course Descriptions

(M) = Methodologically focused course

PS 15 Sophomore Seminar: Politics in the City (M) - Berry
(M 1:30-4:00) Block 5
Three major problems in urban politics: the political economy of cities, especially issues involving community economic development; race and the city, emphasizing the problems facing the poorest residents of the inner city; and political empowerment, including analysis of neighborhood government. A methodologically focused course.
Prerequisite(s): Sophomore standing only

PS 21 Introduction to Comparative Politics - Shevel
(MW 10:30-11:45) Block E+
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 42 Western Political Thought II - Devigne
(MW 3:00-4:15) Block I+
Cross-listed as Phil 42
Introduction to the central concepts of modern political thought that have underlined Western political practice. The views of those writers who launched the Enlightenment and challenged Christianity: Descartes and Hobbes. The conflict within modern theory on the meaning of liberty and justice as developed by Rousseau, Smith, Marx and others, setting the stage for a protracted period of conflict within the West. Efforts by thinkers like Mill and de Tocqueville to reconcile divisions within Western civilization and Nietzsche's comprehensive critique of it. Throughout the semester we will analyze the divisions that have animated modern thought – liberty and virtue, self-interest and morality, equality and oligarchy, science and religion, nature and history, reason and politics – and assess whether these divisions: a.) have been overcome; b.) are now ignored due to diminished confidence in the human mind; c.) are persisting and harbingers of conflicts in the future.

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
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 Fieldwork in Politics - Beacon Hill Internship Program - Levine
Through the Institute for Political Citizenship and Tisch College, internship placements in MA State Reps offices and other political organizations in Boston. Full or half credit available depending on number of hours worked per week (8-10 hours for half credit, 12-15 for full credit.) Will include a final paper reflecting on the experience and monthly lunches with other IPC interns to share ideas and challenges. Must have applied through the IPC and been placed in an internship, then register for PS 99:02 on SIS to receive credit. Contact Peter Levine (faculty advisor) or for more info.

PS 102 Congress, Bureaucracy, and Public Policy - Berry
(MW 10:30-11:45) Block E+
The focus of this course is on the national policy-making process. Examination of such topics as agenda building, the relationship between congressional elections and public policy outcomes, legislative process, congressional-agency relations, bureaucratic politics, and program implementation.

PS 103-02 Sophomore Seminar: Political Science Research Methods (M) - Masuoka
(MW 1:30-2:45) Block G+
This course introduces the use of quantitative methods for investigating a wide range of political topics such as voter turnout, democratic development across countries, and the effectiveness of public policies. Students will learn about the mechanics of research design and learn how to collect, analyze and present data. This course emphasizes hands-on instruction and will train students how to use statistical software. This course will prepare new students to properly conduct social science research papers as well as provide important training for professional settings outside the classroom. This class counts as the equivalent to PS 103 (Political Science Research Methods) but enrollment will be limited to those who hold sophomore standing ONLY. Those who do not hold sophomore standing will be dropped from the course.
Prerequisite(s): Sophomore standing only and any intro political science class

PS 118-02 Political Participation and Mass Behavior in the US (M) - Masuoka
(MW 4:30-5:45) Block K+
Who participates in politics and why? Some of us are political junkies: we watch CNN religiously, discuss policy issues with our friends and own one too many campaign buttons. Others would rather jump off a cliff than be forced to watch the presidential debates on television. Although all Americans are provided some opportunity to participate in politics, not everyone chooses to partake. What are the factors that explain why some of us are participatory and others are not? In this course, we will identify and discuss the different forms of political participation as well as the theories that attempt to explain the motivation behind these behaviors. We will also consider the implications of political participation on the health and vitality of democracy by addressing the question: does participation really matter? This course satisfies the PS major methodology requirement.

PS 120 Seminar: Power and Politics in China - Remick
(W 1:30-4:00) Block 7
An advanced seminar in Chinese politics focusing on the strengths and limitations of the Chinese state, as well as challenges it faces. What are the sources of power in the Chinese political system? How is power exercised, and by whom? How powerful is the state, really? What are some of the ways that people in China work with and around state power? What are the prospects for democracy in China? Longstanding debates surround most of these questions, and in the class we will examine different ways people have answered them. We will finish the semester by discussing additional topics of interest to students in the class.
Prerequisite(s): PS 126 or History 41, or consent.

PS 128 Gender, Work, and Politics in East Asia - Remick
(TR 10:30-11:45) Block D+
This course examines the connections between gender and economic development in East Asia during the post-WWII period. Paying attention to differences among East Asian countries, it looks at how men and women have participated differently in the post-war "miracle." It examines the kinds of work that women have done, considering different experiences that women of different classes have had during the development process. To what extent is the gender division of labor mandated or facilitated by the state, under what conditions, and for what reasons? What role do culture and politics play in creating the gender division of labor? How has women's participation in economic development altered gender relations? Has the miracle liberated women, as some predict it should?
Prerequisite(s): Sophomore standing.

PS 130 Seminar: African Political Economy (M) - Robinson
(T 1:20-4:20) Block 6+
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 of the importance of political agency and the role that Africans can play in shaping the future of their continent.
Prerequisite(s): Sophomore standing or above

PS 131 Democracy and Capitalism in Japan - Fujihara
(MW 7:30-8:45) Block P+
A survey of Japan's democracy, capitalism, and foreign policy. Topics include: the Meiji restoration, democratization, militarism and imperialism, U.S. occupation, the Liberal Democratic Party and opposition parties, interest groups, civil society, bureaucracy, gender in politics and society; developmental state, the Japanese firm, the "bubble economy," financial crisis, economic reform, energy and environment, immigration, demographic crisis; U.S.-Japan alliance, the "war on terror," constitutional revision, relations with China, nationalism, and Asian regionalism.

PS 134 Comparative Politics of the Middle East - Mufti
(TR 12:00-1:15) Block F+
Survey of the political development of the Arab states, Israel, Turkey, and Iran since the fall of the Ottoman Empire in World War I. Focus on the various factors that have helped shape the emergence of political institutions in those countries: history, economics, culture, religion, and foreign intervention. Prospects for future change (socioeconomic development, political liberalization, war and peace) in the Middle East.
Prerequisite(s): Sophomore standing or permission of instructor.

PS 136 Contemporary European Politics - Art
(MW 1:30-2:45) Block G+
Examination of contemporary issues in individual European states as well as those affecting the region as a whole. Topics include the political systems of individual European states, political parties and ideologies, immigration and the integration of foreigners, the welfare state, and the relationship between the European Union and individual member state.

PS 138-01 Seminar: Authoritarianism in Comparative Perspective - Art
(W 9:00-11:30) Block 2
Throughout human history, most political regimes have not been democratic. Until recently, however, the field of comparative politics treated authoritarian regimes as theoretically uninteresting. This upper-level seminar examines the politics of non-democratic regimes in different regions of the world and across time. Topics include types of authoritarian regimes, political institutions in authoritarian regimes, methods of repression and control, and economic development.

PS 138-02 Political Violence in State and Society - Cruz
(MW 3:00-4:15) Block I+
This course examines the varieties in form and scale of political violence It also assesses salient theories that aim to explain or trace the origins and logic of such violence. Finally, the course tests these theories against empirical cases mainly drawn from the Latin American experience.

PS 138-03 Culture, Politics, & Environment - Gleason
(TR 10:30-1145) Block D+
This political science course covers a broad range of social and cultural factors which can affect environmental sustainability around the world. The political ecology of many different societies will be explored. Student will learn key terminology and explore how indigenous populations and states have both attempted to manage their natural surroundings. The politics and policy that have emerged from these challenges will be reviewed with the contact of human demographics, temporal perspective, corruption perceptions, and state intervention practices.

PS 138-11 Political Economy of India - Mazaheri
(TR 6:00-7:15) Block N+
This course provides an introduction to the political economy of India. It examines the interplay of politics and economics in this large sub-continental country from the village level to the international level. It begins by discussing India's economy during the colonial period, looks at the challenges it has faced since independence, and then focuses on the transformations that have occurred since the period of liberalization in the 1990s. Some of the key themes to be explored are globalization, economic reforms, poverty, redistribution, federalism, political protest, public goods delivery, and ethnic politics. We will also analyze government policymaking toward agricultural, industrial, and high-tech sectors and the impact this policymaking has had on various developmental outcomes. Although this class focuses specifically on India, a number of the themes discussed in this course are central to an analysis of developing countries in general.

PS 139-04 Seminar: Government, Business, and Public Policy - Mazaheri
(R 9:00-11:30) Block 3
This course examines the relationship between governments, the private sector, and the citizenry in countries around the world. It begins by exploring the ideas and forces that have shaped the government's relationship to the private sector throughout history. It then discusses the political, regulatory, institutional, market, legal, and civic context in which businesses function in societies. The course also looks at how firm owners and entrepreneurs have shaped political and economic outcomes in both the United States and developing countries. The role of the informal economy, credit markets, entrepreneurship, and business networks are examined in particular detail. Throughout the course, a central theme is exploring and understanding the nature of government regulation, how regulation affects businesses, and how regulation affects societal welfare.

PS 167 Studies of War & Empire - Mufti
(TR 10:30-11:45) Block D+
An introduction to basic issues in international relations theory such as the causes of war, the motivations behind imperialism, strategic thinking in various cultures, and the role of leadership. Major strategic thinkers such as Thucydides, Sun Tzu, Machiavelli, and Clausewitz.
Prerequisite(s): PS 61

PS 168 International Law - Fletcher
(R 12:00-2:30) Arranged
PS 168 is an introductory survey course on international law, which provides a broad overview of the international legal framework. The course covers the structure of international law and the United Nations legal order as well as selects areas of international law, I.e. international trade, investment, human rights and humanitarian law. Students will gain an understanding of the overall structure and processes of public international law and of the political context within which international law operates; develop the ability and desire to think critically about international law and its role in international society; and acquire general professional legal skills, in particular the ability to formulate and structure legal argument—both in writing and orally.

PS 174 Rise and Fall of Great Powers - Taliaferro
(TR 10:30-11:45) Block D+
Why do some great powers flourish while others decline? Under what conditions does the international system move from relative calm to the point where great powers initiate devastating system-wide wars or hard-line strategies that increase the risk of war through inadvertent escalation? How can victorious great powers construct stable international orders after major wars? How do mass revolutions within major states affect the international balance-of-power and the likelihood of war? Do the grand strategies of great powers in pre-nuclear, multipolar international systems offer any lessons for the United States and China in the twenty-first century? To answer these questions, this course first examines how international and domestic forces shaped the grand strategies of five great powers from 1648 to 1945: France, Great Britain, Prussia (later Germany), Japan, Russia (later the Soviet Union). It then draws “lessons” from the past to help understand the likely trajectory of China and the U.S. grand strategic choices in the twenty-first century.

PS 176 Migration, Refugees, and Citizenship in a Globalized World - Greenhill & Shevel
(MW 1:30-2:45) Block G+
Analysis of the causes and consequences of modern population movements that have occurred around the world since the late twentieth century, and recipient states' reactions to it. Topics include the political, economic, social, and security determinants of refugee and migration flows; the political and social responses of receiving governments and societies; the security and crime-related issues and concerns engendered by international migration; changing conceptions of citizenship and nationality in receiving states; the role played by the international institutions in influencing state policies towards refugees and immigrants, and the moral and ethical issues for public policy posed by international population movements. Cases examined are drawn from throughout the world, with particular emphasis on Europe and the United States.
Prerequisite(s): PS 21 or PS 61

PS 180 Regionalism in African International Relations - Robinson
(MW 1:30-2:45) Block G+
The intersection of domestic politics and international relations in Africa: examination of regional economic communities, regionally based solutions to problem-solving, and new regionalism in the post Cold War era. Particular attention given to state-building and national sovereignty as they impinge on regional projects. Theories of the state, regional integration theory, international regime theory, and constructivist international relations theory frame five themes: the construction of regional norms, transnational civil society, peace and security, trade and economic development, and the African human rights system.
Prerequisite(s): Sophomore standing or above

PS 188-03 Gender Issues in World Politics - Eichenberg
(TR 3:00-4:15) Block J+
This course is a survey of many issues relating to gender in world politics, with a particular emphasis on: gender differences in political attitudes and behavior generally; gender differences in attitudes toward war and national security in particular; the cross-cultural uniformity (or lack thereof) in gender differences in attitudes and political behavior, particularly in relation to national security and war; the role of gender differences in war, in particular how gender roles are created and the effect of war on men and women; violence against women; and the role of gender in world affairs more generally and specifically the role of gender in economic development, environmental sustainability and gender mainstreaming within international institutions.
Prerequisite(s): PS 61 recommended

PS 188-19 Human Rights & 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 188-20 International Environmental Negotiations - 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 188-24 Financial Turbulences & Crises - Psalidopoulos
(TR 10:30-11:45) Block D+
This course uses the analytical tools of economic history, the history of economic policy-making and the history of economic thought, to study episodes of financial turbulence and crisis spanning the last three centuries. It explores the principal causes of a variety of different manias, panics and crises, as well as their consequences, and focuses on the reactions of economic actors, theorists and policy-makers in each case. Emphasis is placed on the theoretical framework used by contemporary economists to conceptualize each crisis, as well as the changes in theoretical perspective and/or policy framework that may have been precipitated by the experience of the crises themselves.

PS 188-25 Criminal Groups as Challenges to International Security - Chindea
(MW 4:30-5:45) Block K+
In today's globalized environment, criminal groups undermine the ability of several state institutions to govern in countries all over the world, irrespective of the political regime in place, and the threats they pose today go beyond simple local law-and-order concerns. In this context, this course surveys the ways in which criminal organizations impact domestic, regional and international security and discusses the connections between the evolution in structure of such groups over time, the scope of their illicit activities, as well as their ties with the state and other violent non-state actors. The course also aims to further the debate on the place of violent non-state actors in the international system and the ways in which the field of international relations theory can be adapted in response to this real-world challenge.

PS 189-07 Seminar: Better Than the Truth: Fabricated and False Facts in International Politics - Greenhill
(W 6:30-9:00) Block 12
This seminar examines the sources, manipulation and consequences of unverifiable information in international relations and foreign and defense policy, in modern world history. The use and abuse of various organizations and techniques for influencing domestic and foreign audiences will be examined through the use of case studies and analyzed in terms of both theory and practice. Specific sources of fabricated facts include: rumors, conspiracy theories, literature, and propaganda.
Prerequisite(s): PS 61; Junior or senior standing

PS 189-09 Seminar (Sophomores, and open enrollment to juniors and seniors majoring in PS and IR): Realism and US Strategy: Realism and US Strategy - Taliaferro
(T 1:30-4:00) Block 6
Examination of major turning points in U.S. grand strategy since World War II through lenses of competing schools of IR theories: realism, liberalism, constructivism, and neoconservatism. Debates over whether the international balance-of-power, liberal democratic institutions, American exceptionalism, or strategic culture actively drive (or ought to drive) U.S. foreign and national security policies. Consideration of how IR theories do (and do not) impact actual policy debates in Washington. Topics include: U.S. entry into World War II, origins of the Cold War and containment, the Korean and Vietnam Wars, nuclear non-proliferation humanitarian intervention in the Balkans, the current Iraq war, and possible future U.S. grand strategies.
Prerequisites: PS 61 and sophomore standing; open enrollment to juniors and seniors majoring in PS and IR
NOTE: PS 189-09 will fulfill the capstone research (upper level seminar) requirement of the PS major.

PS 195 Seminar: Politics of Sustainable Communities (M) - Portney
(T 1:30-4) Block 6
Theories and practice of sustainability applied to cities and communities in the U.S. Comparison of specific cities' programs and policies. Patterns of variation in cities' operational definitions of sustainability, and specific local programs and policies that represent local sustainability initiatives. Political conditions conducive to local communities' pursuit of sustainability policies.
Prerequisite(s): PS 11 or consent

PS 199 Senior Honors Thesis (M) - Eichenberg

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