Christian Potholm

DeAlva Stanwood Alexander Professor of Government

Teaching this semester

GOV 1028. The Daughters of Mars: Women at War

Introduces the student to the nature of warfare throughout various cultures and epochs by focusing on the “Daughters of Mars,” women warriors and warrior queens. Includes case studies from the Trojan war, the early Eurasian steppes, classical Greece and Rome, the High Middle Ages, nineteenth-century Africa, Samurai Japan, the American Civil War, World War II, Vietnam, Iraq, and Afghanistan. Also focuses on the arguments for and against having women in combat, culminating with the contemporary realities and debates concerning American women in combat today. Student research projects investigate these and other related subjects.

GOV 2035. Maine Politics

An analysis of politics in the state of Maine since World War II. Subjects covered include the dynamics of Republican and Democratic rivalries and the efficacy of the Independent voter, the rise of the Green and Reform parties, the growing importance of ballot measure initiatives, and the interaction of ethnicity and politics in the Pine Tree State. An analysis of key precincts and Maine voting paradigms is included, as well as a look at the efficacy of such phenomena as the north/south geographic split, the environmental movement, and the impact of such interest groups as SAM, the Tea Party, and the Roman Catholic Church. Students are expected to follow contemporary political events on a regular basis.

Professor Chris Potholm is the DeAlva Stanwood Alexander Professor of Government and currently teaches a number of courses on Maine politics and various dimensions of war and warfare, including Women at War, Conflict Simulation and Conflict Resolution, Government War and Society, and Maine Politics (the course).  For twenty years he was also a Registered Maine Guide and his first work of fiction, “Tall Tales from the Tall Pines,” reflecting Maine’s rural hunting and fishing culture, was published by DownEast Books in 2015.

His most recent scholarly work, “Understanding War: An Annotated Bibliography” (2016) completes his War Trilogy a series which also includes “Winning at War: Seven Keys to Military Victory Throughout History” (2010) and “War Wisdom: A Cross-Cultural Sampling” (2015).


Professor Potholm is widely contacted and quoted by a variety of media and news outlets including The New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Baltimore Sun, All Things Considered, Newsweek, The Nation, ABC, Atlantic Monthly, Time, Roll Call, Congressional Quarterly, The Guardian, Gay Patriot, Newsday, Boston Globe, Bloomberg News, Christian Science Monitor, Portland Press Herald, CBS,  NBC Nightly News, Maine Times, Bangor Daily News, New England Cable Network, National Public Radio, Wall Street Journal, USA Today, Washington Post, CNN, MSNBC, WGAN, WCSH, WMTW, the Blade and many others.



  • A.B. , Bowdoin College
  • M.A, M.A.L.D., Ph.D. , Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy

Previous works include:

Tall Tales from the Tall Pines. Roman & Littlefield (2015)

The War Triology

Winning at War: 7 Keys to Military Victory Throughout History. Rowman & Littlefield (2010)

War Wisdom: A Cross-Cultural Sampling. Roman & Littlefield (2015)

Understanding War: An Annotated Bibliography. Roman & Littlefield (2016) 

This Splendid Game: Maine Campaigns and Elections, 1940-2002. Rowman & Littlefield (2003)

Maine: The Dynamics of Political Change. Rowman & Littlefield (2005)

Maine: An Annotated Bibliography. Lexington Books (2012)

Insider's Guide CoverThis Splendid Game CoverMaine Dynamics Cover      Maine: An Annotated Bibliography. Lexington Books (2012)

The Delights of Democracy: The Triumph of American Politics, An Insider's Guide to Maine Politics:1946-1996

Four African Political Systems, Swaziland: The Dynamics of Political Modernization, Liberation and Exploitation

The Theory and Practice of African Politics, Strategy and Conflict

Just Do It! Political Participation in the 1990s.

Co-editor of Integration and Disintegration in East Africa, Southern Africa in Perspective: Essays in Regional Cooperation, Focus on Police with Professor Richard Morgan.

Co-author of American Politics: Directions of Change, Dynamics of Choice and People, Power and Politics.

Delights of Democracy Cover4africansystemsPeople, Power, Politics Cover