All information in this guide is tentative and subject to change. Check the Political Science Department Office for updates. Current 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 apply 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.

PSC 121 m100 American National Government and Politics

Instructor: Jenn Jackson

Class #: 30619

Offered: M/W 11:40 am – 12:35 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 # 31902 (Section 101) Fridays 10:35 am-11:30 am

Discussion # 31903 (Section 103) Thursdays 5:00 pm-5:55 pm

Discussion # 32125 (Section 105) Thursdays 5:00 pm-5:55 pm

Discussion # 32126 (Section 106) Fridays 9:30 am-10:25 am

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 m200 American National Government and Politics

Instructor: Scott Taylor

Class #: 31142

Offered: T/Th 5:00 pm-5:55 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 # 31143 (Section 201) Thursdays 3:30 pm-4:25 pm

Discussion # 32564 (Section 202) Fridays 12:45 pm-1:40 pm

Discussion # 32565 (Section 203) Thursdays 6:300 pm-7:25 pm

Discussion # 31144 (Section 204) ***Section 204 is cancelled***

Discussion # 31361 (Section 206) Thursdays 2:00 pm-2:55 pm

Discussion # 31457 (Section 207) ***Section 207 is cancelled***

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 122 m001 American State and Local Government and Politics

Instructor: Mark Brockway

Class #: 41853

Offered: T/Th 11:00 am - 12:20 pm

Frequency Offered: Irregularly

Prerequisites: None

Course Description

Local and state governments arguably have the biggest impact on our everyday lives but are ignored by the political spotlight. School boards, city councils, and mayors make hundreds of decisions that shape what businesses we can go to, what school we attend, how well our parks are maintained, and what we spend our tax dollars on. Local political and civic organizations also shape politics from the precinct to the presidency and state governments set the rules for national elections. All of these organizations and governmental institutions, from a local political party to the governor's office, are accessible to ordinary citizens. In many cases, all a citizen must do to become involved is show up. The primary goal of this class is to give you the tools to participate in the political and civic world to advocate for change in your own context. In your main project for the course you will plan some type of local political action, enact that action, and evaluate its success. What can you, a student, do right now to create change? Can you do it alone? What resources do you have to advocate for yourself or someone else? What is the most effective way to go about advocacy? These questions will shape our activities throughout the course and beyond the classroom.

PSC 123 m100 Comparative Government and Politics *

Instructor: Margareta Estevez-Abe

Class #: 31357

Offered: M/W 11:40 am - 12:35 pm

Frequency Offered: Yearly

Prerequisites: None

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

Discussion # 31358 (Section 101) Thursdays 3:30 pm-4:25 pm

Discussion # 31359 (Section 102) Thursdays 5:00pm-5:55 pm

Discussion # 32127 (Section 103) Fridays 12:45pm-1:40 pm

Discussion # 31360 (Section 104) Fridays 9:30 am-10:25 am

Course Description

Why are some countries wealthier than others? Why do some countries become democratic while others remain authoritarian? Do certain democratic institutions work better than others? Comparative politics is the study of variation in political outcomes across and within countries. This course provides a broad introduction to the various topics covered under comparative politics, including issues of economic development, regime type, and management of social and political conflict. This course presents theory and comparative case analysis to help students deepen their understanding differences in important outcomes between countries and world regions.

PSC 124 m100 International Relations *

Instructor: Minju Kim

Class #: 30620

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 # 30621 (Section 101) Thursdays 9:30 am-10:25 am

Discussion # 30622 (Section 102) Fridays 10:35 am-11:30 am

Discussion # 30623 (Section 103) Thursdays 3:30 pm-4:25 pm

Discussion # 30624 (Section 104) Thursdays 12:30 pm-1:25 pm

Discussion # 31362 (Section 105) Fridays 9:30 am-10:25 am

Discussion # 31363 (Section 106) Thursdays 2:00 pm-2:55 pm

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 m300 International Relations *

Instructor: Liwu Gan

Class #: 30815

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 # 30816 (Section 302) Fridays 12:45 pm-1:40 pm

Discussion # 32128 (Section 304) Thursdays 9:30 am-10:25 am

Discussion # 31269 (Section 305) ***Section 305 is cancelled***

Discussion # 32129 (Section 306) Thursdays 11:00 am-11:55 am

Discussion # 33103 (Section 307) ***Section 307 is cancelled***

Discussion # 33104 (Section 308) Thursdays 12:30 pm-1:25 pm

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.  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 u001 International Relations *

Instructor: Falak Nur Hadi

Class #: 41851

Offered: T/Th 5:00 pm – 6:20 pm

Frequency Offered: Every semester

Prerequisites: None

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.  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 m001 Political Theory

Instructor: Dennis Rasmussen

Class #: 31590

Offered: M/W 10:35 am -11:30 am

Frequency Offered: Yearly Prerequisites: None

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

Discussion # 32342 (Section 002) Fridays 9:30 am-10:25 pm

Discussion # 32343 (Section 003) Fridays 10:35 am-11:30 am

Discussion # 32344 (Section 004) Fridays 12:45 pm-1:40 pm

Discussion # 32345 (Section 005) Fridays 2:15 pm-3:10 pm

Cross-listed with PHI 125.001

Course Description

This course examines some of the most important thinkers and concepts of modern political philosophy, including the rejection of ancient political philosophy and the rise of liberalism (Hobbes, Locke, and Mill) as well as critiques of the liberal outlook in the name of nature and virtue (Rousseau), tradition and custom (Burke), equality and liberation (Marx), and creativity and greatness (Nietzsche). In addition to exploring the various conceptions of nature, human nature, justice, freedom, history, and the good life in the works of these thinkers, we will also use their arguments to reflect on the health or illness of liberal democracy in today’s world.

PSC 200 m401 Religion, Science, and Society

Instructor: Team taught: Mark Brockway and Christopher Junium

Class #: 42019

Offered: T/Th 12:30 pm -1:50 pm

Frequency Offered: Special Offering

Prerequisites: None

Meets with REL 200.002 & EAR 200.401

Course Description

Religion and science are the most powerful forces in society. Religion has dominated the minds and lives of humans for millennia and scientific advancement is the crowning achievement of human endeavors. They both also represent fundamentally different ways of seeing the world—one seems concerned with physical, empirical reality and the other connected with supernatural, unseen entities. But these powerful forces also appear to be inextricably connected in unending conflict. Religious people pass laws based on religious morality, science pushes back against religious viewpoints in education, and individuals and leaders eschew scientific evidence in favor of religious beliefs. Fights over climate change, stem cells, public health protocols, morality, religious dogma, and scientific facts permeate the globe. In this course we will tackle these issues head on and uncover the nature of the conflict between science and religion. How has religion and religious identity shaped scientific progress? How and why do people believe in science? What is the value and utility of religious devotion and belief? How do debates over science and religion play out in the public sphere? Our explorations of these questions will bring us to the issues and identities that make up the fabric of society giving us the tools to help understand and shape the world around us. 

PSC 202 m100 Introduction to Political Analysis

Instructor: Simon Weschle

Class #: 31051

Offered: M/W 2:15 pm-3:10 pm

Frequency Offered: Every semester

Prerequisites: None

This course is required for all students who are majoring in political science.

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

Discussion # 31052 (Section 101) Fridays 10:35-11:30 am

Discussion # 31053 (Section 102) Fridays 10:35-11:30 am

Discussion # 31054 (Section 103) Fridays 2:15 pm-3:10 pm

Discussion # 31055 (Section 104) Fridays 2:15 pm-3:10 pm

Discussion # 32847 (Section 105) Fridays 9:30 am-10:25 pm

Discussion # 32848 (Section 106) Fridays 9:30 am-10:25 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 300 m101 Policy Implementation

Instructor: Zachary Huitink

Class #: 32851

Offered: T/Th 2:00 pm-3:20 pm

Frequency Offered: Special Offering

Prerequisites: None

Meets with PAI 305.001

Course Description

This course is about how public policy gets put into action, with a focus on developing knowledge and skills essential for addressing some of society’s most complex problems. The course will help you understand what we really mean when we say “policy implementation,” as well as some realities of implementation as it is done in practice. The course will stress, in particular, the widespread roles of not only government but also the private and nonprofit sectors at all levels in the implementation process, and how these actors use policy tools like regulations, grants, vouchers, and public-private partnerships to get things done. Government and non-governmental actors have taken numerous approaches to achieving public policy goals, from (among many others) reducing poverty and improving education to ensuring public health and safety, protecting the environment, and recovering from disasters. What are the trade-offs of different strategies to pursuing goals like these, and why has the record of achievement been mixed? How do government, business, nonprofits, and individual members of the public contribute to implementation efforts? How can they work better with one another to make public policy successful? How do we assess whether policies have had their intended impacts on people and communities? Students will consider these questions through a mix of lecture, discussion, examples, and hands-on exercises, and develop abilities in areas including policy field mapping, logic modelling, planning, and applied implementation analysis.

PSC 300 m103 Black Feminist Policies

Instructor: Jenn Jackson

Class #: 32563

Offered: M/W 2:15pm- 3:35 pm

Frequency Offered: Special Offering

Prerequisites: None

Meets with WGS 300.003

Course Description

This seminar critically examines key issues, assumptions, and debates in contemporary, post-civil rights Black Feminist thought, action, and behavior. As such, we will understand that Black Feminism is global and diasporic. We will begin with a survey and broad analysis of Black Feminist history and origins. We will pay particular attention to how Black Feminists make use of standpoint theory, Black nationalism, Black liberalism, liberal feminism, Black Marxism, and radical feminist thought. We will also investigate the simultaneity of race, gender, class, and sexual oppression and its relationship to power. This means that we will draw connections between Black Feminist models and contemporary queer and trans politics. In this course, we will also focus on Black feminist understandings of intersectionality, the history of this analytical frame, and how this framework has contributed to today’s politics. The particular questions we will analyze include but are not limited to the following: How do we evaluate Black movements and leadership using a Black Feminist lens? What is the relationship between racism, gender based oppression, homophobia, and classism in Black women’s lives? What forms of resistance do many Black women engage in? How do these decisions shape politics?

PSC 300 m104 US Intelligence Community *

Instructor: Robert Murrett

Class#: 32867

Offered: M/W 2:15 pm-3:35 pm

Frequency Offered: Special Offering

Prerequisites: None

Meets with PAI 338.001 & IRP 338.001

Course Description

This course will focus on the practice, structure and governance of the intelligence field, and material that has a direct bearing on its current posture.  Students will study the functional elements of intelligence tradecraft (human intelligence, signals intelligence, imagery analysis, etc.), and engagement with international counterparts.  The course will review governance and oversight of the Intelligence Community (I.C), and in order to understand the full range of today’s intelligence activities, students will examine the evolution of the I.C. since its inception in 1947 through the present day.  Key phases and specific events will be explored, including I.C. efforts throughout the Cold War, The Cuban Missile Crisis, The Vietnam Conflict, the Church Committee, the Balkans Conflicts, pre and post-9/11 operations, the 911 and WMD Commissions and the subsequent executive and legislative changes implemented over the past decade.  The class will participate in case studies, in which the students will evaluate, provide briefings and recommend decisions in realistic scenarios, both in terms of analysis and intelligence-driven decision-making on policy and operational matters

PSC 300 m201 China and the World *

Instructor: Dimitar Gueorguiev

Class#: 33581

Offered: T/Th 9:30 am – 10:50 am

Frequency Offered: Special Offering

Prerequisites: None

Meets with IRP 300.001

Course Description

Pending

PSC 300 m301 Nationalism and World Politics *

Instructor: Ryan Griffiths

Class#: 41860

Offered: T/Th 12:30 pm – 1:50 pm

Frequency Offered: Special Offering

Prerequisites: None

Course Description

Pending

PSC 300 m302 Race and International Relations *

Instructor: Mario Nisbett  

Class #: 42010

Offered: T/Th 5:00 pm -6:20 pm

Frequency Offered: Special Offering

Prerequisites: None

Meets with AAS 300.001 & IRP 300.003

Course Description

Pending

PSC 300 m401 Political Psychology & Persuasion

Instructor: Emily Thorson

Class #: 42096

Offered: T/Th 2:00 pm-3:20 pm

 Frequency Offered: Special Offering

Prerequisites: None

Course Description
Email professor for course description In this course, students will be introduced to the theory and techniques of political persuasion. The course draws on literature from psychology, political science, and communications to explain how and why people change their attitudes and/or behavior. Students will design their own theory-driven persuasive messages on a political topic of their choosing.

PSC 303 m001 The Development of the American State

Instructor: Steven White

Class#: 33601

Offered T/Th 3:30 pm-4:50 pm

Frequency Offered: Irregularly

Prerequisites: None

Course Description

This course addresses major themes in the historical development of American politics, while also introducing students to the American political development (APD) approach to political science research. The first part of the course examines APD perspectives on the American national state and U.S. political culture. We will consider whether the American federal government is smaller or merely different than that of other countries, as well as the extent to which U.S. political culture is characterized by a distinctly individualistic liberalism. The second part of the course focuses on the development of major national political institutions, including Congress, the presidency, political parties, and interest groups. The third part of the course examines U.S. social policy and the question of why the American welfare state takes the form that it does. Among other topics, we will look at programs like Social Security and the debate over the national government's role in health care. We will conclude by examining how APD perspectives might help us make sense of contemporary American politics.

PSC 304 m001 The Judicial Process

Instructor: Domenic Trunfio

Class #: 30625

Offered: T/Th 3:30 pm-4:50 pm

Frequency Offered: Yearly

Prerequisites:  None

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 305.001 U.S. Congressional Politics

Instructor: Maraam Dwidar

Class #: 41863

Offered: M/W 2:15 pm-3:35 pm

Frequency Offered: Yearly

Prerequisites: None

Course Description

This course is about the politics of the United States Congress. We will discuss the historical and contemporary functions of the U.S. Congress, with a focus on representation, elections, political parties, special interest groups, inter-branch relations, and the changing character of legislative politicking and policymaking. As we do so, we continuously consider the questions of how and why certain policy topics rise and fall on the agenda of the U.S. Congress over time.

PSC 307 m001 Politics of Citizenship

Instructor: Elizabeth Cohen

Class #: 41864

Offered: T/Th 11:00 am-12:20 pm

Frequency Offered: Irregularly

Prerequisites: None

Course Description

This course examines the process of policymaking in the United States. We will ask such questions as, how do particular issues become framed as public policy priorities and placed on the political agenda. How are certain policy alternatives chosen for consideration to the exclusion of others?  Why are some issues considered to be appropriate for government action, and others left to market forces?  How do democratic institutions shape the policymaking process? And we'll consider how policies can be designed so that they play a positive role in solving problems and shaping our society. As we grapple with these concerns, we will focus on a number of case studies. While these questions are often approached in a technical fashion, as if public policy was created and implemented in a scientific laboratory, our approach will acknowledge that public policy is inherently political and cannot be understood apart from the political processes and institutions in which it is created and implemented.

PSC 308 m001 The Politics of U.S. Public Policy

Instructor: Sarah Pralle

Class #: 32560

Offered: T/Th 2:00 pm-3:20 pm

Frequency Offered: Irregularly

Prerequisites: None

Course Description

This course examines the process of policymaking in the United States. We will ask such questions as, how do particular issues become framed as public policy priorities and placed on the political agenda. How are certain policy alternatives chosen for consideration to the exclusion of others?  Why are some issues considered to be appropriate for government action, and others left to market forces?  How do democratic institutions shape the policymaking process? And we'll consider how policies can be designed so that they play a positive role in solving problems and shaping our society. As we grapple with these concerns, we will focus on a number of case studies. While these questions are often approached in a technical fashion, as if public policy was created and implemented in a scientific laboratory, our approach will acknowledge that public policy is inherently political and cannot be understood apart from the political processes and institutions in which it is created and implemented.

PSC 315 m001 Politics & Media

Instructor: Emily Thorson

Class #: 41865

Offered: T/Th 11:00 am-12:20 pm

Frequency Offered: Irregularly

Prerequisites: None

Course Description

This course provides an overview of the media’s role in American political life. In doing so, we will focus on several broad themes: the relationship between the media and government; the process of newsmaking and how it shapes the content of political news; and the effects of the media on public opinion and voting behavior. We will also examine recent developments in the media ecosystem, from Facebook algorithms to the rise of "fake news."

PSC 317 m001 Local Internship

Instructor: Grant Reeher

Class #: 30626

Offered: M/W/F 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 m001 Technology, Politics, and Environment

Instructor: William Lambright

Class #: 31056

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 320 m001 Comparative Law & Courts *

Instructor: Yuksel Sezgin

Class #: 33509

Offered: M/W 12:45 pm-2:05 pm

Frequency Offered: Yearly

Prerequisites: None

Course Description

This course will introduce students to major legal traditions of the world. Among the legal systems to be covered are the Common Law, Civil Law, Islamic Law, and African and Asian legal traditions. The course will specifically look at the role and function of courts in both national and international contexts (e.g., European Court of Human Rights, and the International Criminal Court).

PSC 322 m001 International Security *

Instructor: Pedram Maghsoud-Nia

Class #: 42050

Offered: M/W/F 9:30 am – 10:25 am

Frequency Offered: Yearly

Prerequisites: None

Course Description

This course is an introduction to the field of security studies within the discipline of Political Science.  Topics to be covered include: the motivations for, and consequences of, nuclear proliferation; the origins of ethnic violence and the capacity for humanitarian intervention to successfully prevent mass killings and genocide; the likelihood that enlarged ‘zones of democracy’ will foster zones of peace; and the sources of terrorist violence and the implications of counter-terrorism policies. The course will also include ‘hot’ topics currently debated among scholars and policymakers, including piracy and other non-conventional forms of force; the out-sourcing of war; and the connection between climate change and violent conflict. Throughout the course, we will consider these topics via the lens of real-world examples and ‘case studies’. While these cases will be cross-regional, special focus will also be placed on the US role in fostering international security and contemporary US national security dilemmas.

PSC 325 m100 Constitutional Law II

Instructor: Thomas Keck

Class #: 31180

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 326 m001 Foundations of American Political Thought

Instructor: Dennis Rasmussen

Class #: 32794

Offered: M/W 2:15 pm-3:35 pm

Frequency Offered: Yearly

Prerequisites: None

Cross-listed with HST 383.001

Course Description

This course examines American political thought through the mid-nineteenth century, concentrating on the founding debate, the development of Lincoln’s thought and the Civil War, and Alexis de Tocqueville’s Democracy in America. Topics include the nation’s founding documents, the challenges posed by the Anti-Federalists, the defense of the large republic in The Federalist, the problems presented by slavery, the proper role of a democratic statesman, and Tocqueville's hopes and worries about liberal democratic society and government (especially its American variant).

PSC 338 m001 Race, Ethnicity & American Politics

Instructor: Steven White

Class #: 33602

Offered: T/Th 5:00 pm-6:20 pm

Frequency Offered: Irregularly

Prerequisites: None

Course Description

This course examines race and ethnicity in American politics, with particular attention to African Americans, Latinos, and Asian Americans as voters, activists, and policymakers. Among other topics, we will examine public opinion, trends in partisanship and voting behavior, the link between traditional civil rights organizations and new social movements, debates about “pan-ethnicity,” descriptive and substantive representation in political institutions, and intersectionality.

PSC 341 m001 Politics of Africa *

Instructor: Mario Nisbett

Class #: 32349

Offered: T/Th 9:30 am - 10:50 am

Frequency Offered: Irregularly

Prerequisites: None

Cross-listed with AAS 341.001
Meets with PAI 500.001

Course Description

The objective of the course is to introduce students to the foundations of the politics in Africa. The focus will be to bring to life the struggles for self-determination and self-emancipation in Africa. Empiricism and immediatism in the study of Africa reinforce the old conceptions of the need to civilize and modernize Africa, the need for ‘good governance’ and the establishment of a ‘reform agenda’ to bring Africa into the ‘global’ economy. The focus will be to bring to life the humanity of the African peoples and to understand the ideation system and social processes that had evolved in the process of developing a Healing Spirit.

How can the African knowledge systems inspire new political formations to repair humans and the natural environment? These questions are now more urgent in the face of daily warnings that humans have passed a tipping point with respect to the future of global warming and the attendant disasters. Drawing from the ideas of healing and the interconnections between humans and nature will lead us to study the importance of African Fractals. While there is the understanding that fractal geometry can take us into the far reaches of ‘modern computing,’ its patterns are common in African design and some of its basic concepts are fundamental to African knowledge systems. What has been understood in the fields of the natural sciences has not yet been grasped in the social sciences. One of the many challenges for us is to grasp how alternative approaches to knowledge can open new directions in the study of African politics and society. How are symbols and divination processes linked to a cosmology that influenced social and political relations? In what ways was the palaver a reflection of democratic relations in the village community? How did the matricentric production unit guarantee the autonomy of women? These questions arise in the present period as African scientists, activists, intellectuals and ordinary producers seek the ideas and organization necessary to break from domination and exploitation in order to develop new concepts of politics and community.

In this course, we will seek to deconstruct liberal conceptions of modernization, idealistic visions of the salvation of the market and the equation of democracy with elections. From the outset, the effort will be to interrogate the intellectual foundations of the present output on Africa from the academy. Questions of the politics of radical African feminism, genocidal politics, militarism and absolutism of the colonial order will form the foundation of the understanding of contemporary politics. In so far as the principal theoreticians of Modern Political Thought developed the ideas of citizenship and the state in the era of the victory of capitalist expansion, there will be an examination of the relationship between the ideas of the enlightenment and contemporary social and economic devastation of Africa. The core ideas of individualism and private accumulation will be interrogated in relation to the environmental destruction, the politics of underdevelopment, and the traditions of militarism, war and genocide.

Because there are 55 states in the African Union it would be unrealistic to cover this vast continent in one semester. Thus, the emphasis of the course will be on themes 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 African peoples.

PSC 344 m001 Politics of the Middle East *

Instructor: Yuksel Sezgin

Class #: 41867

Offered: M/W 2:15 pm – 3:35 pm

Frequency Offered: Yearly

Prerequisites: None

Cross-Listed with MES 344.001

Course Description

This course offers a thematic approach to the study of contemporary Middle East politics and society. We will review the major questions that leading scholars and policymakers ask about the Middle East today. The class will proceed both thematically and chronologically, beginning with the region’s long-standing authoritarianism, proceeding to challenges to the long-time status quo (e.g. the Arab Uprisings of 2011), and ending with the ongoing, diverging consequences of these challenges. Geographically, the class will focus on Egypt, Syria, and Tunisia, as well as examine more general patterns and trends across the region. 

PSC 349 m001 Politics of Iran *

Instructor: Pedram Maghsoud-Nia  

Class #: 42051

Offered: M/W/F 11:40 am – 12:35 pm

Frequency Offered: Yearly

Prerequisites: None

Cross-Listed with MES 349.001

Course Description

This course will provide students with a historical and theoretical understanding of modern Iranian politics and society from the late nineteenth century to the present. Students will learn about Iran’s cultural ambiance and heritage, ethnic/class/religious cleavages, foreign policy, the causes and consequences of the 1979 revolution, and the nature of the post-revolutionary political system through reading some of the most seminal scholarly essays on these subjects. 

PSC 352 m001 International Law *

Instructor: Francine D’Amico

Class #: 33109

Offered: T/Th 11:00 am-12:20 pm – Online Synchronous

Frequency Offered: Irregularly

Prerequisites: None

Course Description

If might makes right, as skeptics often claim, why do states comply with most of their many international commitments? And why, if international law is fundamentally flawed, would states invest any resources in negotiating treaties and conventions in the first place? In this course, we go beyond cynical clichés, but without resorting to excessive optimism, by concentrating on questions embedded in the politics of international law, such as:

What leads to bilateral or multilateral agreements on certain issues but not others?

Why do some legal principles remain resilient in the face of criticism but others ebb?

When do states and non-state actors seek to bolster or undermine such commitments?

We will seek answers to these questions by looking at well-known legal disputes involving territorial boundaries, laws of war, human rights conventions, and environmental principles.

PSC 355 m001 International Political Economy *

Instructor: Daniel McDowell

Class #: 41868

Offered: M/W 12:45 pm – 2:05 pm

Frequency Offered: Irregularly

Prerequisites: 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 365 m001 IPE of the Third World

Instructor: S.N. Sangmpam

Class #: 41757

Offered: M/W 12:45 pm – 2:05 pm

Frequency Offered: Irregularly

Prerequisites: None

Cross-Listed with AAS 365.001

Course Description

This course is about international political economy with special emphasis on the status of developing countries in it. Because international political economy cannot be understood without an understanding of the international system as a whole, we will perforce discuss the relationship between the "Third world" and other countries. But the main objective will be to convey some concrete knowledge about the political and economic problems developing countries face in these relations and various attempts to solve them. Among the issues to be discussed are the making of the international economic system, the "Third World," globalization and political responses to it, trade, debt, multinational corporations, multilateral lending agencies (IMF, World Bank), the politics and strategies of development, and the prospects of a new international system. Listed texts will be supplemented by other materials to be handed out throughout the semester.

PSC 373 m001 Social Contract Tradition

Instructor: Verena Erlenbusch-Anderson

Class #: 41846

Offered: T/Th 9:30 am - 10:50 am

Frequency Offered: Irregularly

Prerequisite: None

Cross-listed with PHI 317.001

Course Description

Religions and governments are arguably the two most important and powerful forces that connect people and societies. Religious ideas garner the following of billions, political leaders have transformed nations, and each wields incredible influence over the thoughts and actions of individuals. As two powerful forces, they often cooperate and collide with momentous consequences. We begin by examining the tumultuous relationship between religion and politics throughout history, asking if efforts to separate these two fundamental human experiences have been successful or worthwhile. In the second part of the course, we examine the wide variety of strategies that religions and governments pursue to coexist throughout the world. From the theocracies of Iran and Vatican City to the militant secularism of France and China, governments use religion (or irreligion) to influence individuals, justify policies, and bolster claims to their own legitimacy. Finally, we try and find the utility of religion in international institutions and NGOs, peacebuilding efforts, and transnational justice. How governments and citizens navigate religious and political institutions and identities is at the heart of our investigation.

PSC 378 m001 Power & Identity *

Instructor: Elizabeth Cohen

Class #: 41870

Offered: T/Th 3:30 pm – 4:50 pm

Frequency Offered: Irregularly

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 382 m001 Contemporary Political Philosophy

Instructor: Kenneth Baynes

Class #: 33678

Offered: T/TH 9:30 am-10:50 am

Frequency Offered: Yearly

Prerequisites: None

Cross-listed with PHI 417.001

Course Description

This course examines the works of prominent contemporary theorists of politics through the lens of basic issues central to the organization of social and political life. In particular, we will consider the costs and benefits of digital technology with regard to the democratic process as well as its effects on equality and fundamental rights like freedom and privacy. Readings will include both theoretical works and immediately relevant political case studies.

PSC 387 m001 Ethnic Conflict *

Instructor: Seth Jolly

Class #: 41871

Offered: T/TH 9:30 am-10:50 am

Frequency Offered: Yearly

Prerequisites: None

Course Description

This course examines ethnicity and its effects on politics.  Our primary goals are to understand what ethnicity is, how it ignites both domestic and international conflict, and what political tools exist to manage these conflicts.  We will begin the semester by exploring various definitions of ethnicity.  Then we will study the many manifestations of political conflict, such as ethnic riots and genocide, that can be attributed to ethnic divisions within a society.  Finally, we will evaluate possible means of mitigating and managing ethnic conflict.  In all three segments of the course, we will draw material from around the world, in particular Africa, Asia, Europe, and North America.

PSC 392 m001 Islamism and Islamist Movements *

Instructor: Hossein Bashiriyeh

Class #: 32561

Offered: M/W 12:45 pm-2:05 pm

Frequency Offered: Irregularly

Prerequisites: None

Cross-listed with MES 392.001 and REL 362.001

Course Description

The purpose of this course is to explain various aspects of Islamism as a major contentious political ideology in the world today. Islamism has been described as a traditionalist, militant ideology and movement trying to preserve and reinvent a religious tradition against the forces of secularization, modernization, democratization and globalization. Since its emergence, Islamism has been challenging various aspects of Western modernity. It has emerged out of a deep sense of hostility and indignation and anger against various aspects of modern life. In this course we will study the origins, various generations, types, internal tendencies and trends, as well as the impact of Islamism and Islamist movements in a number of countries in the Middle East as well as in a number of non-Muslim nations.

PSC 395 m001 Democratization in the Muslim World *

Instructor: Hossein Bashiriyeh

Class #: 33101

Offered: M/W 3:45 pm-5:05 pm

Frequency Offered: Irregularly

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 396 m001 European Integration *

Instructor: Glyn Morgan

Class #: 41881

Offered: T/Th 6:30 pm – 7:50 pm

Frequency Offered: Irregularly

Prerequisites: None

Cross-listed with GEO 396.001

Course Description

For twenty years (1985-2005), the process of European Integration was a spectacular success. Europe added new member states, expanded to include the former Communist states of Eastern and Central Europe, and introduced a common currency and a common Schengen boundary. Then starting in 2005, things started to go wrong.  This course focuses on the strengths and weaknesses of the European project---a project to build a common system of governance. We focus on such issues as: Europe's Monetary Union; the Greek Crisis; the Refugee Problem; Germany's economic superiority; demographic decline; the failure to incorporate Europe's Muslim populations; the Geopolitical problems of dealing with Russia and the United States, and Brexit.

PSC 400 m201 Comparative Social Movements

Instructor: Yael Zeira

Class#: 42241

Offered: M/W 9:30 am – 10:50 am

Frequency Offered: Special Offering

Prerequisites: None

Course Description

Pending

PSC 400 m401 Data Analytics for PoliSci

Instructor: Gregory Smith

Class#: 33108

Offered: M/W 2:15 pm -3:35 pm

Frequency Offered: Special Offering

Prerequisites: None

Course Description

Data and data analysis are increasingly important for political science research, but also in the public discourse and the workplace. In this class, you will learn how to conduct data analysis yourself. We’ll cover topics such as finding data, data cleaning and data manipulation, data visualization, and data analysis. Along the way, we’ll learn basic statistical functions and plots in the powerful (and free) statistical program R. Throughout, the class takes an applied approach, so students will develop their own research project and conduct their own data analyses.

PSC 400 m402 Theories of Nationalism

Instructor: Ryan Griffiths

Class #: 41897

Offered: T/Th 3:30 pm – 4:50 pm

Frequency Offered: Irregularly

Prerequisites: None

Course Description

Pending

PSC 435 m001 Humanitarian Action in World Politics *

Instructor: Lamis Abdelaaty

Class#: 33110

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 496 m001 Distinction in Political Science II

Instructor: Emily Thorson

Class #: 31270

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.

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