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Maxwell School
Maxwell / Department of Political Science

Undergraduate Study

Spring 2018 Courses

All information in this guide is tentative and subject to change. Check the Political Science Department Office for updates.  Information on rooms and times for the classes listed can be obtained from the university-wide Time Schedule of Classes or from the Political Science office.

“Cross listed” Courses: These may applied to a Political Science major or minor without a petition, regardless of the departmental prefix. For example, if you take African-American Politics as AAS 306, you do not need to petition to apply it to your Political Science major.

"Meets With” Courses": If you take a “Meets With” course under a departmental prefix other than PSC, you will need to petition to count that course towards your Political Science major or minor.

Current information on rooms and times for classes can be obtained on your MySlice or from the Political Science office.


PSC 121.100 American National Government and Politics
Instructor: Danielle Thomsen
Class #: 30754
Offered: M/W 8:25 am-9:20 am

Frequency Offered: Every semester
Prerequisites: None

This course is required for all students who are majoring in Political Science.  
Note:  All students must also enroll in a discussion section listed for this course.


Discussion # 33035    (Section 101)   Fridays 10:35 am-11:30 am
Discussion # 30755    (Section 102)   Fridays 12:45 pm-1:40 pm
Discussion # 33036    (Section 103)   Thursdays 2:00 pm-2:55 pm
Discussion # 30756    (Section 104)   Thursdays 5:00 pm-5:55 pm
Discussion # 33804    (Section 105)   Thursdays 3:30 pm-4:25 pm
Discussion # 33805    (Section 106)   Fridays 11:40 am-12:35 pm


Course Description:  How does the American political system operate?  This course provides an introduction to American political institutions, behaviors, and processes. Topics include (among other things) public opinion, elections, Congress, the presidency, the mass media, civic participation, the Constitution, federalism, and public policy. Although we will cover the “nuts and bolts” of American government, our focus is on political science rather than civics, which means our task is to analyze and interpret political phenomena.


PSC 121.200 American National Government and Politics
Instructor: Christopher Faricy
Class #: 31507
Offered: M/W 9:30 am-10:25 am

Frequency Offered: Every semester
Prerequisites: None

This course is required for all students who are majoring in political science.  
Note:  All students must also enroll in a discussion section listed for this course.


Discussion # 31508    (Section 201)   Thursdays 3:30 pm-4:25 pm
Discussion # 31509    (Section 204)   Fridays 11:40 am-12:35 pm
Discussion # 31892    (Section 206)   Thursdays 2:00 pm-2:55 pm
Discussion # 32036    (Section 207)   Fridays 10:35 am-11:30 am

Course description:  How does the American political system operate?  This course provides an introduction to American political ideas, institutions, behaviors, and processes.  Topics include (among other things) the Constitution, Congress, the presidency, the mass media, civic participation, and public policy.  Although we will cover the “nuts and bolts” of American government, our focus is on political science rather than civics, which means our task is to analyze and interpret political phenomena.


PSC 123.100 Comparative Government and Politics
Instructor: Anoop Sadanandan
Class #: 31888
Offered: M/W 10:35 am-11:35 am

Frequency Offered: Yearly
Prerequisites: None

Note: All students must also enroll in a discussion section listed for this course.

Discussion # 31889    (Section 101)   Thursdays 3:30 pm-4:25 pm
Discussion # 31890    (Section 102)   Thursdays 5:00 pm-5:55 pm
Discussion # 33806    (Section 103)   Fridays 12:45 pm-1:40 pm
Discussion # 31891    (Section 104)   Fridays 2:15 pm-3:10 pm


Course description:  Why are some countries democratic and others authoritarian? Do democracies provide citizens a better quality of life? Why do civil wars happen in some countries? What are the relations among history, culture, the economy and politics? These are some of the questions that we will cover in class. This is a course intended to introduce students to politics around the world in a comparative perspective. We will examine some of the pressing issues in politics today, and survey the social science literature to see how the theories it develops helps us understand politics better.


PSC 124.100 International Relations
Instructor: Terrell Northrup
Class #: 30757
Offered: M/W 11:40 am-12:35 pm

Frequency Offered: Every semester
Prerequisites: None

Note:  All students must also enroll in a discussion section listed for this course.


Discussion # 30758     (Section 101)    Thursdays 9:30 am-10:25 am
Discussion # 30759     (Section 102)    Fridays 10:35 am- 11:30 am
Discussion # 30760     (Section 103)    Thursdays 3:30 pm-4:25 pm
Discussion # 30761     (Section 104)    Thursdays 12:30 pm-1:25 pm
Discussion # 31893     (Section 105)    Fridays 11:40 am-12:35 pm
Discussion # 31894     (Section 106)    Thursdays 2:00 pm-2:55 pm


Meets with PSC 139.001


Course Description:   This course introduces students to the main issues and actors in contemporary international relations, organized around three major topical perspectives: world structure and theoretical views of that structure; international political economy; and international conflict, cooperation and security. It will focus on current debates around global topics such as human rights, economic interdependence, nationalism, the global environment, and economic disparities.  During section meetings, students are encouraged to explore and discuss how states, international institutions, and non-state actors shape current international affairs and future forms of global governance.


PSC 124.300 International Relations
Instructor: Daniel McDowell
Class #: 30986
Offered: M/W 10:35 am-11:30 am

Frequency Offered: Every semester
Prerequisites: None

Note:  All students must also enroll in a discussion section listed for this course.

Discussion # 33807     (Section 301)    Fridays 10:35 am-11:30 am
Discussion # 30987     (Section 302)    Fridays 12:45 am- 1:40 pm
Discussion # 33808     (Section 303)    Fridays 9:30 am-10:25 am
Discussion # 33809     (Section 304)    Thursdays 9:30 am-10:25 am
Discussion # 31711     (Section 305)    Fridays 11:40 am-12:35 pm
Discussion # 33810     (Section 306)    Thursdays 11:00 am-11:55 am

Course Description:
 This course introduces students to the main issues and actors in contemporary international relations, organized around three major topical perspectives: world structure and theoretical views of that structure; international political economy; and international conflict, cooperation and security. It will focus on current debates around global topics such as human rights, economic interdependence, nationalism, the global environment, and economic disparities.  During section meetings, students are encouraged to explore and discuss how states, international institutions, and non-state actors shape current international affairs and future forms of global governance.


PSC 125.001 Political Theory
Instructor: Pamela Ryan
Class #: 32290
Offered: T/Th 5:00 pm-5:55 pm 

Frequency Offered: Yearly
Prerequisites:   None

Note:  All students must also enroll in a discussion section listed for this course.

Discussion # 41509     (Section 002)    Fridays 9:30 am-10:25 am
Discussion # 41510     (Section 003)    Fridays 10:35 am- 11:30 am
Discussion # 41511     (Section 004)    Fridays 12:45 pm-1:40 pm
Discussion # 41512     (Section 005)    Fridays 2:15 pm-3:10 pm


Cross-listed with PHI 125

Course Description:   This is a course covering the great political thinkers of Western Civilization. Covering the major political theories from Plato to Rawls, we will discuss issues of human nature, the justification of the state, democracy and its difficulties, liberty and rights, economic justice, war and peace and alternatives to liberalism. Students will also have the opportunity to apply this knowledge to current political issues and events


PSC 139.001 International Relations (Honors)
Instructor: Terrell Northrup
Class #: 31510
Offered: M/W 11:40 am-12:35 pm; Th 9:30 am-10:25 am

Frequency Offered: Yearly
Prerequisites: None

Meets with PSC 124.100
This course is restricted to honors students only.


Course Description:  This course explores diverse world views and theoretical perspectives on issues in contemporary international relations, including foreign policy, global political economy, international conflict and cooperation, international law & organizations, and global issues such as health and the environment.   Lectures, readings, analytic writing, case analysis, and group discussion.  This course is offered ONLY for students currently enrolled in the Syracuse University Renee Crown Honors Program.  Students not enrolled in the Crown Honors program must enroll in PSC 124 International Relations.  Academic credit is given for PSC 124 or PSC 139, but not both.


PSC 202.100 Introduction to Political Analysis
Instructor: Simon Weschle
Class #: 31357
Offered: T/Th 3:30 pm- 4:25 pm

Frequency Offered: Every semester
Prerequisites: None

This course is required for all students who are majoring in political science.  
Note:  All students must also enroll in a discussion section listed for this course.


Discussion # 31358    (Section 101)   Fridays 10:35-11:30 am
Discussion # 31359    (Section 102)   Fridays 10:35-11:30 am
Discussion # 31360    (Section 103)   Fridays 12:45-1:40 pm
Discussion # 31361    (Section 104)   Fridays 12:45-1:40 pm

Course Description:  The purpose of this course, required for political science majors, is to build skills for conducting, interpreting, and presenting political science research. These skills include: basic research and data collection practices, techniques for measuring political science concepts quantitatively, hypothesis testing, interpretation of statistical evidence, and the presentation of findings in a clear and compelling manner.  Tying these components together is a thematic focus on important political science concepts such as democracy, power, or representation.


PSC 202.200 Introduction to Political Analysis (Honors)
Instructor: Gavan Duffy
Class #: 33795
Offered: T/Th 5:00 pm-6:20 pm

Frequency Offered: Every semester
Prerequisites: None

This course is restricted to honors students only.  

Course Description:  The purpose of this course, required for political science majors, is to build skills for conducting, interpreting, and presenting political science research. These skills include: basic research and data collection practices, techniques for measuring political science concepts quantitatively, hypothesis testing, interpretation of statistical evidence, and the presentation of findings in a clear and compelling manner.  Tying these components together is a thematic focus on important political science concepts such as democracy, power, or representation.


PSC 300.101 The Politics of Income Inequality
Instructor: Christopher Faricy
Class #: 41504
Offered: M/W 2:15 pm-3:35 pm

Frequency Offered: Special Offering
Prerequisites: None

Course Description:  Over the last 40 years, Americans have witnessed a precipitous rise in national income inequality.  How does the federal government influence income inequality in the U.S.?  In turn, how does rising income inequality affect American democracy? These questions will guide a new political science course about the relationship between the state and the economy. Equal representation and responsive government are cornerstones of American Democracy. We will examine how the rise in income disparity influences the principle of equal voice in democracy and the role of politics and policy in contributing to a more unequal social and economic society.


PSC 300.102 American Political Development
Instructor: Steven White
Class #: 41505
Offered: M/W 5:15 pm-6:35 pm

Frequency Offered: Special Offering
Prerequisites: None

Course Description:  How has American politics changed over time? This course addresses major themes in the historical development of American politics, while also introducing students to the American Political Development (APD) framework of political science research. Among other topics, we will examine whether the American federal government is smaller or merely different than that of other countries; the development of the American welfare state, including programs like Social Security and the debate over the national government's role in health care; the extent to which the United States has a distinctly individualistic political culture compared to other western democracies; and the central role of race in American political history.


PSC 300.203 Multi-Track Diplomacy

Instructor: Frederick Carriere
Class #: 33039
Offered: T/Th 3:30 pm-4:50 pm

Frequency Offered: Special Offering
Prerequisites: None

Course Description:   This course explores the unofficial contacts and activities conducted by non-state actors – known as track two or second track/citizens’ diplomacy – which facilitate and enhance the effectiveness of the formal diplomacy conducted through official government channels. This inter-related complex of unofficial and official diplomatic activity – i.e., multi-track diplomacy – will be examined from the perspective of the underlying political, empirical, moral and ethical assumptions deployed to develop engagement strategies, influence public opinion, and organize human and material resources for the management or resolution of international conflicts.  It also will include simulations of intractable conflicts involving the Korean Peninsula, Iran and Northern Ireland.


PSC 300.u201 Politics of Modern Turkey
Instructor: Latif Tas
Class #: 33555
Offered: T/Th 5:00 pm-6:20 pm

Frequency Offered: Special Offering
Prerequisites: None

Course Description:   This course introduces students to one of the most important political developments in the Middle East and Europe: the politics of the late Ottoman Empire and the Turkish Republic (1876 to the present day). The modern Turkish state is an important nation-state-building case to study, since it was constructed from a long-lived and very large multi-ethnic Empire. The Ottoman Empire may no longer exist, but its legacy is far-reaching and Ottoman influences are visible in many established institutions, political structures, social identities, crises and conflicts of the modern Turkish Republic. Without understanding late Ottoman politics and the continued existence of Ottoman-style political structures in Turkey today, it is not possible to understand Middle Eastern, Balkan, Caucasian or even European politics and their states’ interests in ongoing conflicts. 

In this course, we will focus on how the Ottoman’s imperial practices of managing multi-ethnic, multi-faith and multi-linguistic societies, along with their pluralistic legal frameworks, were transformed into the assimilationist policies and constitutional structure of the modern Turkish Republic. In doing so we will examine how Turkey’s mono-ethnic, Sunni Islam-dominated and mono-linguistic nation-state identity has developed from its pluralistic Ottoman past. We will learn about Western influences and continued attempts to modernize Turkey. The struggles between secularism, Islamism and nationalism - ongoing since 1876 - will also be examined, with a particular focus on the longstanding Turkish-Kurdish conflict.  Other important themes examined throughout this course include the significance of gender and the battle for equality within contestations of the Turkish state, and Turkey’s approach to democracy, human rights and free speech.

This course will problematize the way we study and learn about the politics of Turkey and relations with the Middle East and the West.


PSC 304.001 The Judicial Process
Instructor: Domenic Trunfio
Class #: 30762
Offered: T/Th 3:30 pm-4:50 pm

Frequency Offered: Yearly
Prerequisites: PSC 121

Course Description:  This course will take an in-depth examination of the Criminal Justice System from arrest to appeal, taught by an experienced prosecutor. Students will get a practical, realistic view of criminal justice and the court system through readings, lectures, class discussion and guest speakers who work in the legal system. This course is designed to give students a basic understanding of constitutional law and criminal procedure and will attempt to improve analytical ability and critical thought process.  It will examine how the rights of those accused of a crime are balanced against the rights of those who are victims of crime.  This course will also explore how the judicial process affects average citizens, their communities and American society, and how the system is often inaccurately portrayed in the media and by Hollywood.


PSC 307.001 The Politics of Citizenship
Instructor: Elizabeth Cohen
Class #: 33038
Offered: T/Th 11:00 am-12:20 pm

Frequency Offered: Special Offering
Prerequisites: None

Course Description:  This course will study how democratic nations define membership through their constitutions, laws, and practices.  Subjects covered will include the history of the idea of citizenship, the evolution of modern citizenship and possibilities for supranational citizenship.  We engage questions such as:  who is entitled to be a citizen of a country, what constitutes the legal right to exclude people from citizenship, and what are the characteristic rights and duties of citizenship. We will also look at issues of pressing immediate concern such as refugee crises and concerns over border security. The course materials will range from primary sources including constitutions and court cases to secondary studies of citizenship with an emphasis on political theoretical approaches.  Throughout the course students will be asked to respond critically to the ideas that are presented by the reading and in class.   


PSC 317.001 Local Internship
Instructor: Grant Reeher
Class #: 30763
Offered: MWF 11:40 am-12:35 pm

Frequency Offered: Every semester
Prerequisites: The internship program is intended for juniors and seniors only

Course Description:  The course is based on a local internship experience in politics, public affairs, or the law.  Placements are found at the beginning of the semester based on a list provided by the professor.  Students also meet once a week in the classroom for organizational discussions, Q&A sessions with local political figures, and advice from professional development experts.  Interested students are advised to review a FAQ sheet and recent syllabus, which can be found in 100 Eggers Hall or by contacting the professor.


PSC 318.001 Technology, Politics, and Environment
Instructor: William Lambright
Class #: 31362
Offered: M/W 2:15 pm-3:35 pm 

Frequency Offered: Yearly 
Prerequisites: None

Course Description:  This course analyzes the relation of government to policymaking in the domain of environment, where technology and politics intersect in many crucial ways. Attention is given primarily to politics and administration of environmental policy in the US at all levels of government. Comparative and international aspects of the problem are also examined. Particular emphasis is given to the processes by which policy is formulated, implemented and modified.


PSC 321.001 Populism & Conspiracy Culture      
Instructor: Mark Rupert
Class #: 32600
Offered: M/W 12:45 pm-2:05 pm      

Frequency Offered: Special Offering
Prerequisites: None

Course Description:  Populist political ideologies claim to speak on behalf of the people and take their side against malevolent social forces that oppress or exploit them – elites, or others represented as alien to, hostile toward, or parasitic upon the people. This course will explore the history of American populisms, with special attention to the rise of powerful strains of right-wing populism that have reshaped the American political landscape from Barry Goldwater to Ronald Reagan to the Trump administration. We will also explore the roots of conspiracy culture in America, linking it to right-wing versions of populism that scapegoat marginalized groups within society by projecting upon them the blame for society’s ills. As Berlet and Lyons (2000, p. 2) have argued, right-wing populism and conspiracism “attract people who often have genuine grievances against elites, but channel such resentments in ways that reinforce social, cultural, political, or economic power and privilege.”


PSC 325.001 Constitutional Law II
Instructor: Thomas Keck
Class #: 31571  
Offered: T/Th 9:30 am-10:50 am

Frequency Offered: Yearly
Prerequisites: Sophomore or above (taken PSC 324 preferred)

Course Description:
 This course, a continuation of the course sequence that began with Constitutional Law I (PSC 324), focuses on a variety of significant political and legal conflicts regarding the US Constitution from the mid-twentieth century to the present, including civil rights for racial minorities, women, and LGBT persons; reproductive rights; gun rights; religious freedom; free speech; and presidential power during wartime. 


PSC 334.001 Mexico and the United States
Instructor: Matthew Cleary
Class #: 41084
Offered: T/Th 12:30 pm-1:50 pm

Frequency Offered: Special offering
Prerequisite: None

Cross-listed with LAS 335
Meets with IRP 400.003 


Course Description:  This course focuses on the politics of modern Mexico, with special attention to relations between Mexico and the United States.  In the opening sessions we study the long history of U.S.-Mexican relations, including comparative colonial histories, the War (1846-48) and other conflicts, and the westward expansion of the U.S. during the 19th century.  However, the bulk of the course focuses on the historical roots and contemporary dynamics of various themes that are critical for understanding Mexico today, again with special attention to U.S.-Mexican relations.  Topics of study include economic ties (e.g., NAFTA and bilateral trade, the maquila industry, and U.S. exports to Mexico); the roots of migration and the effects of migration in both countries; democratization and inter-governmental relations; the drug trade; and the way that each of these bilateral issues is politicized and negotiated in both countries.


PSC 341.001 Politics of Africa
Instructor: Mouctar Diallo
Class #: 41547
Offered: T/Th 11:00 am-12:20 pm

Frequency Offered: Special offering
Prerequisite: None

Cross-listed with AAS 341.001


Course Description:  The objective of the course is to seek to understand the foundations of the political process in Africa. The focus will be to bring to life the humanity of the African people and to understand the processes which have been unleashed to heighten dehumanization. This will require a new epistemology, since in this post fordist era there are new definitions of politics. These definitions seek to deconstruct cold war conceptions of modernization with the old emphasis on elite structures and the simple equation of parties, elections and voting as the basis for political participation. We will seek to understand "politics" and interrogate the relationship between the "personal and the "political".  However, it may be necessary to understand how the very concept of "personal" reinforces the moral ethic of individualism and how this relates to the moral ethic of social collectivism.

It is on the terrain of the politics of gendered constructions where the articulation of African politics has been most underdeveloped. In an attempt to explore the links between gender and politics, it will be necessary to analyze the foundations of the present societies in Africa. This will require an analysis of pre-colonial forms of democratic participation and community solidarity as manifest in the palaver. From this background, it will be necessary to look at the ways in which Europe Underdeveloped Africa and the processes which were set in motion for neo colonial politics. The forms of humanitarianism and external intervention will be analyzed to grasp the continuities of external military involvement in Africa. The politics of Operation Restore Hope will be contrasted to the international response of European and American governments to the issues of destabilization and apartheid.

Because there are over 51 states on the continent it would be unrealistic to cover this vast continent in one semester. Thus, the emphasis of the course will be on theme and methodological tools which would sharpen our analytical skills. Students are encouraged to use their term paper to focus on one society. The lectures and visual presentations will draw from the material and intellectual culture of the region to provide an understanding of the dynamic of the societies


PSC 342.001 Religion and Politics in the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict 
Instructor: Miriam Elman
Class #: 33792
Offered: T/Th 2:00 pm-3:20 pm

Frequency Offered: Special Offering
Prerequisites: None

Cross-listed with JSP 342, MES 342, and REL 342

Course Description:  The Israeli-Palestinian conflict is one of the world’s most contested and protracted conflicts.   
■ How much does religion matter in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict? 
■ Is religion at the root of the conflict?
■ What are the implications of a ‘secular’ peace process?
■ Can religion be a force for peace between Israelis and Palestinians?

This course considers these questions via a cross-disciplinary approach that considers scholarship across the social sciences and humanities, including work by political scientists, religious studies scholars, journalists and media experts, sociologists, and scholars of peace studies and conflict resolution. 

The first part of the course looks at the ways in which religion and politics are depicted in overviews of the conflict, and will examine how contested religious and political narratives have impeded conflict resolution. The second part of the course examines the core political and religious issues that undergird the intractable Israeli-Palestinian conflict, including Israel’s settlement project, the controversy over Jerusalem’s future, and the refugee problem. The third part of the course considers the origins and nature of religiously and politically motivated violence, and examines the dilemmas of peacemaking. Specifically, we will consider what lessons the demise of Oslo offers for today’s peacemaking efforts; how terrorism and counter-terrorism strategies have undermined the search for peace; and the ways in which incitement contributes to violence and conflict. The last section of the course considers how religion and politics informs the current impasse in the Israeli-Palestinian peace process. We will consider the emergence of a Palestinian international strategy involving international ‘lawfare’ and a global boycott, divestment, and sanctions (BDS) movement. We will end the course by considering how religion can be a ‘force for peace’ and whether a just and lasting peace for Israelis and Palestinians is likely to emerge in 2017. 

This course is not intended to be an introduction to the Israeli-Palestinian or Israeli-Arab conflicts.  While several introductory overviews of the conflict will be assigned as required reading at the beginning of the semester, students are expected to have a basic familiarity with the subject. In order to do well in the class, students who are unfamiliar with the basic contours of the conflicts will need to read background material in addition to the required texts for the course.


PSC 343.001 Politics of Europe 
Instructor: Seth Jolly
Class #: 41490
Offered: T/Th 11:00 am-12:20 pm

Frequency Offered: Special Offering
Prerequisites: None

Course Description:  The purpose of this course is to familiarize you with the politics of Europe, not on a country by country basis, but in a truly comparative way. We will study various aspects of European politics including domestic political and economic institutions, the process of European integration, and current events such as immigration and the Euro crisis. For each topic we will compare a range of European countries, but, following the textbook, we will focus on several European countries in more detail.


PSC 346.001 Comparative Third World Politics 
Instructor: SN Sangmpam
Class #: 33793
Offered: M/W 12:45 pm-2:05 pm

Frequency Offered: Special Offering
Prerequisites: None

Cross-listed with AAS 346

Course Description:  The prevailing tendency in the comparative politics of the third world today is to deal with each region or country separately and to emphasize their differences.  Although one needs to recognize such differences, this course proceeds from the assumption that differences can be better understood only via an examination of the similar political features shared by the regions and countries of the third world.  For this reason, the course examines thematically the political systems of South American, Asia, and Africa, exploring such aspects as colonization, decolonization and nation-building, the post-colonial state and its institutional make-up both under authoritarian and democratic regimes, the recent wave of democratization, and the challenges of socioeconomic development.  In order to better apprehend similarities and difference, specific case-studies from the major regions of the third world will be discussed.  To facilitate the understanding of these issues, the course starts with basic concepts and methodologies of comparative politics. 


PSC 347.001 Politics of Russia
Instructor: Brian Taylor
Class #: 41265
Offered: T/Th 11:00 am-12:20 pm

Frequency Offered: Yearly
Prerequisites: None

Course Description:  This course is an introduction to the politics of the Russian Federation (Russia).  The course is divided into two, unequal parts.  The first, short part is organized chronologically and covers the period up to the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991.  The goal for this part of the course is to provide some minimal, essential background for those who have never had a course in Russian or Soviet history.  The second, longer part of the course is organized thematically and covers the 26 years since the Soviet collapse.  We study the basic institutional structure of Russian politics, learn about Vladimir Putin and his worldview, investigate some important challenges facing Russia today, assess the political, economic, and social order created over the last two and a half decades, and seek to understand Russia’s current place in the world and where the country is going.  Russia has presidential elections in March 2018, an event that we will cover in the class.  We also will cover the 2014 Ukrainian revolution, the annexation of Crimea by Russia, and the ongoing war in Eastern Ukraine.


PSC 351.001 Political Economy of Development
Instructor: Anoop Sadanandan
Class #: 33042
Offered: M/W 2:15 pm-3:35 pm

Frequency Offered: Special Offering
Prerequisite: None

Course Description:  Why do some economies grow faster and create more affluent societies? Why are some countries poor and underdeveloped? In this course, we will seek answers to the differences in development that so much characterize the world we live in.  


PSC 352.001 International Law
Instructor: Francine D’Amico
Class #: 41502
Offered: T/Th 12:30 pm-1:50 pm

Frequency Offered: Special Offering
Prerequisite: None

Course Description:  In this course we examine the origins and operations of international organizations in international relations.  We begin with an exploration of the membership, structure, purpose, and function of the United Nations Organization (UNO), then undertake a comparative analysis of three multipurpose regional intergovernmental organizations (IGOs):  the European Union (EU), the Organization of American States (OAS), and the African Union (formerly the Organization for African Unity-OAU).  We will also investigate several nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) engaged in work on human rights and globalization.  Our goal is to understand the role and significance of each organization in contemporary international relations.


PSC 355.001 International Political Economy
Instructor: Daniel McDowell
Class #: 32059
Offered: M/W 2:15 pm-3:35 pm

Frequency Offered: Yearly
Prerequisite: None

Course Description:  From the rise of Donald Trump’s economic populism to Great Britain’s “Brexit” from the European Union, it is impossible to deny the tenuous political underpinnings of economic globalization today. To borrow from Prof. Jeffry Frieden, globalization is a choice, not a fact. That is, the global economic integration we observe today is the product of governments’ policy decisions over a period of many decades. This course introduces the student to the field of international political economy (IPE). IPE studies how politics impacts the global economy and, in return, how the global economy impacts politics. There are two central questions that we will wrestle with in this class. First, what explains the international economic policy choices governments make? Second, what are the effects of those policy choices both within and across countries? Over the course of the session, we will engage with a number of key topics in IPE including: international trade, economic development, multinational corporations, international capital flows, exchange rates, sovereign debt, and financial crises. We will rely on two primary analytic tools: basic economic principles to explain how economic policies influence the distribution of income and political economy theories that explain how politicians set policies. Together, we will use these tools to help understand historical and contemporary phenomena.


PSC 356.001 Political Conflict 
Instructor: Gavan Duffy
Class #: 33797
Offered: T/Th 2:00 pm-3:20 pm

Frequency Offered: Special Offering
Prerequisites: None

Course Description: This course introduces students to the analysis of political conflict, conceived as political contention that is uncontained within existing political institutions and typically violent.  We read and discuss works on several approaches currently used by NGOs, IGOs, states, multinational corporations, and scholars to make sense of such conflicts and to suggest strategies for resolving, settling, or otherwise containing them.  In the final course project, each student will participate on a team that will research a political conflict, applying the analytical approaches discussed earlier in the term.  Each team will present oral and written reports on its research and analysis.


PSC 373.001 The Social Contract Tradition and its Critics
Instructor: Kenneth Baynes
Class #: 33091         
Offered: T/Th 11:00 am-12:20 pm

Frequency Offered: Special Offering
Prerequisite:  None

Cross-listed with PHI 317

Course Description:  This course will explore the idea of the social contract as a basis for political obligation and political authority as well as various criticisms of that view of the social contract.  Readings will include both classic and contemporary texts, including Hobbes, Locke, Rousseau, Hume, Rawls, Pateman and Mills.


PSC 378.001 Power & Identity
Instructor: Elizabeth Cohen
Class #: 33045
Offered: T/Th 3:30 pm-4:50 pm

Frequency Offered: Special Offering 
Prerequisite: None 

Course Description:  This course examines classic and contemporary theories of identity as well as their manifestation in political practice. We will examine basic theories about how identities are constructed and what meaning/import such constructs have.  This will allow students to critically examine specific manifestations of identity including the role of race, ethnicity, sexuality, gender, social class and foreignness in democratic politics. Assigned reading will include normative theory as well as texts drawn from public policies and court decisions. Students enrolled in the course must participate actively in all discussions and demonstrate serious engagement with the material via thoughtful written assignments.


PSC 379.001 American Slavery and the Holocaust
Instructor: Laurence Thomas
Class #: 41450
Offered: T/Th 3:30 pm-4:50 pm

Frequency Offered: Special Offering
Prerequisites: None

Cross-listed with PHI 379 and JSP 379

Course Description:  For many, if only unwittingly, the issue between these two events is: Who suffered more? Which event was worse than the other? Indeed, take themselves to have a satisfactory answer to these two questions. I have no interest in either of these questions. In fact, my view is that structurally these two evils were so different that the two questions that seem to animate so many are quite out of place.

Neither evil can be subsumed under the other. Support for this comes from the writings of actual victims. Some of the fundamental claims written by Frederick Douglass about American Slavery are simply inapplicable to the Holocaust. Likewise, some of the fundamental claims written by Elie Wiesel about the Holocaust are simply inapplicable to American Slavery.

Readings in the course will be divided evenly between writings about American Slavery and writings about the Holocaust. These readings will include writings by Douglass and Wiesel, Genovese (American Slavery), and Lifton (the Holocaust).

Work load: to be determined the first day of class. The exception is that I am psychologically constructed to attach enormous weight to attendance. I advise anyone for whom attendance will be a problem not to take this course. For anyone who (barring obviously legitimate excuses such as illness or death in the family) is absent more than three times will automatically receive a grade of “F” for the course.


PSC 391.001 Revolutions in the Middle East
Instructor: Hossein Bashiriyeh
Class #: 32291
Offered: M/W 3:45 pm-5:05 pm 

Frequency Offered: Special Offering
Prerequisites: None

Cross-listed with MES 391Course Description:

Whereas revolutions are more or less abating in other regions of the world today, the Middle East still finds itself in the throes of revolution. A new wave of revolutionary upheavals has begun since January 2011 and continues to shape the politics of the region. In theoretical terms, four aspects of these political revolutions need to be studied: 1) Taxonomy; 2) Etiology; 3) Morphology, and 4) Teleology. Hence, in the first few weeks of the course we will study the major theories of revolution. Then in light of the theoretical discussion, we will explain the new wave of revolutions in the Middle East in terms of their causes and consequences. In every historical case we will discuss the following sequence of processes:
1- The pre-revolutionary authoritarian stability;
2- How crises emerge and provide opportunities for collective action;
3- Oppositions, and their modes of mobilization;
4- The complex interactions between authorities and oppositions including the possibility of repression, accommodation, and revolution;
5- Post-revolutionary power struggles.

PSC 395.001 Democratization in the Muslim World
Instructor: Hossein Bashiriyeh
Class #: 33046
Offered: M/W 12:45 pm-2:05 pm

Frequency Offered: Special Offering
Prerequisites: None

Cross-listed with MES 395.001

Course Description: The aim of this course is to study the ongoing process of democratization which has   begun recently in the Islamic world. With the rising wave of democratic transitions in the last quarter of the 20th Century, the question has been raised as to whether the world of Islam could also experience a similar development. As a matter of historical fact a number of Muslim nations are in a process of making a transition to at least electoral democracy and are striving to consolidate the new institutions despite formidable obstacles.  On the one hand a number of forces and variables favor democratization, but on the other hand several variables and forces impede the process. Like elsewhere, transition to democracy in the Muslim nations is taking different forms and modes, including reform from above, revolt from below and conclusion of pacts between regimes and oppositions. We assume that theories explaining transition to democracy elsewhere must be instrumental in understanding the process of democratization in the Muslim world as well. Hence, we will first review the general theories of democratization, in terms of their possible relevance to the study of democratization in the Muslim world.


PSC 397.001 Realism & Power Politics in International Relations
Instructor: Colin Elman
Class #: 41503
Offered: M/W 2:15 pm-3:35 pm

Frequency Offered: Special Offering
Prerequisites: None

Course Description:  The course is designed to familiarize undergraduate students with important realist scholarship. Theories covered will include classical realism, neorealism, rise and fall realism, offensive and defensive structural realism, and neoclassical realism.  


PSC 399.001 God in Political Theory
Instructor: Ahmed Abdel Meguid
Class #: 41085
Offered: T/Th 2:00 pm-3:20 pm

Frequency Offered: Special Offering
Prerequisites: None

Cross-listed with REL 372.001 and PHI 319.001

Course Description:
 To what extent has religion or more generally metaphysics and theology affected the political sphere and the civil order of society? What intermediary domains allow for such influence? Is it ethics and morality, aesthetics or the systems of knowledge (epistemology)? We will address these questions both historically and thematically.


PSC 400.101 Pursuing Sustainability Policy
Instructor: Sherborne Abbott
Class #: 33864
Offered: M/W 2:15 pm-3:35 pm

Frequency Offered: Special Offering
Prerequisites: None

Meets with GEO 400.002

Course Description:   This course provides an introduction to the pursuit of sustainability policy.  Students will examine whether the approaches to sustainability and sustainable development that consider complex interactions of humans and the environment lead to different priorities, strategies, and methods compared to conventional approaches and analytical tools that are used in environmental policy. The course will explore the underlying theory of sustainability science and its practice toward the pursuit of sustainability, thereby integrating what is known from science with what actions can be taken through policy and understanding how best to aim science toward decision-making.   The course will draw from case studies related to energy and climate change, water sustainability, and land use change, as well as theoretical materials.

Also, the course fits within the Environment, Sustainability, and Policy ILM that is under development, as well as growing interest in policy related to sustainable futures.  The course will fulfill a requirement within the ILM for a course that integrates science and policy.


PSC 400.301 Human Rights in the Americas
***Canceled***


PSC 400.302 Humanitarian Action in World Politics
Instructor: Lamis Abdelaaty
Class #: 41506
Offered: T/Th 12:30 pm-1:50 pm

Frequency Offered: Special Offering
Prerequisites: None

Course Description:  This course deals with the global politics of humanitarianism. Topics covered include the historical evolution of humanitarian norms and principles, key actors in the humanitarian sector, and institutional frameworks governing humanitarian action. We also explore the challenges associated with emergency relief, development aid, and military intervention. The emphasis throughout the course is on critically assessing the underlying foundations, dilemmas, and consequences of international humanitarianism.


PSC 469.001   Global Migration
Instructor: Audie Klotz
Class #: 33798
Offered: T/Th 2:00 pm-3:20 pm

Frequency Offered: Irregularly
Prerequisites: None

Course Description: People increasingly move across international borders.  Some seek jobs in more prosperous regions; others flee political persecution, war, or ecological disasters.  What are the social, economic and political consequences of these transnational population pressures?  How should national governments and international institutions meet these new challenges?  Are immigration restrictions justified?  Can international institutions provide better or supplementary responses?


PSC 478.001   Politics of China
Instructor: Dimitar Gueorguiev
Class #: 41491
Offered: T/Th 2:00 pm-3:20 pm         

Frequency Offered: Irregularly
Prerequisites: None

Course Description: China’s rise is arguably the most important feature of the 21st Century.  Its growth-driven model of single-party rule challenges democratic ideals nurtured since WWII and its expanding economic and political weight threatens the existing world order.  At the same time, China’s larger-than-life presence belies a fragile domestic environment, riddled with rampant corruption, extreme pollution, and bubbling social tensions.  How did China get to this point and where is it going?  In this class, we explore China’s transition from an impoverished agriculture society to leading world power and assess how China's involvement in the global economy influences its domestic as well as its foreign policy aspirations.  As such, this class should appeal to a broad audience, including those with personal or professional experience in China as well as those with no background in Chinese studies but with a curiosity and concern for the country and its future.


PSC 496.001 Distinction Thesis II
Instructor: Daniel McDowell
Class #: 31712
Offered: W 3:45-6:30 pm

Frequency Offered: Yearly
Prerequisites: PSC 495 Distinction I

Course Description:  The program requires the student to produce a senior thesis that reflects an understanding of the contemporary literature relevant to the thesis topic, advances an original argument, and presents evidence appropriate to the underlying inquiry. The thesis should generally be modeled after a typical academic journal article in the field of Political Science. The thesis will be read and evaluated by a committee of three, consisting of the main advisor and two additional readers. Two of the readers must be members of the Political Science department. One of the readers may be a graduate student in Political Science. An oral defense will determine if the thesis meets the departmental requirements for distinction.


PSC 600.002 Republic to Superpower:  America in the World
Instructor: James Steinberg 
Class #: 32991
Offered: M 12:45 pm - 3:30 pm

Meets with IRP 400.001

Course Description:
From its founding through its rise to a superpower, the United States has grappled with its role in an ever-changing world. This course will explore the internal debates and external events that shaped America’s international relations throughout its history. We will address the nature of these debates through key points in American history, including the founding and early debates over government, the Civil War, American expansionism, the two World Wars, the Cold War, and the post-Cold War world. We will discuss both the decisions the U.S. government made in its foreign relations as well as the critiques offered by those opposed to these decisions. We will also consider the perspectives that political science and international relations theory contribute to the historical understanding.

As we move through the history of American international relations, we will use the debates over America’s place in the world to understand contemporary policy choices. To that end, students will be expected to follow current news closely and complete regular blog assignments discussing current issues.

Class discussion will also be driven through readings of primary documents from the period as well as secondary sources offering overviews of the history. Class exercises will include two simulated debates. 

Graduate students will be expected to complete additional readings and attend 2-3 additional grad-only meetings to discuss these readings with the instructor.

***Please note that this course is available to advanced undergraduate students only.  Undergraduates interested in taking this course may register via petition with the permission of the instructor.***