Location: Bowdoin / Barbara Elias

Government and Legal Studies

Barbara Elias

Assistant Professor of Government

(on leave for the fall 2017 semester)

Contact Information

Government and Legal Studies

Hubbard Hall - 203

Teaching this semester

GOV 2670. United States Foreign Policy

Examines the development and conduct of United States foreign policy. Analyzes the impact of intragovernmental rivalries, the media, public opinion, and interest groups on the policy-making process, and provides case studies of contemporary foreign policy issues.

GOV 3620. Advanced Seminar in International Relations: Counterinsurgencies

Counterinsurgency warfare -- the political and military struggle to obstruct insurrection -- is complex, variable, and arduous. As one US Special Forces officer in Iraq noted, counterinsurgency is not just thinking man’s warfare, it is the graduate level of war. How do we make sense of the intricate, violent contest between insurgent and counterinsurgent? Why have the United States' wars in Vietnam, Iraq, and Afghanistan been exceedingly drawn out, irregular, and destructive? Connecting classic and critical military texts such as Clausewitz and US Army/Marine Corps operational manuals, with case studies from Vietnam, Iraq, and Afghanistan (contrasting the US and Soviet interventions), entwines political/military theory with battlefield history to deepen understandings of thinking man’s warfare.

Barbara Elias

Personal website: barbaraelias.org


  • B.A. Brown University, Providence, RI, 2002
  • M.A., Ph.D. University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, 2013