Fall 2012 Courses

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010. The Pursuit of Peace
Allen Springer T 11:30 - 12:55, TH 11:30 - 12:55 Hubbard-22
Examines different strategies for preventing and controlling armed conflict in international society, and emphasizes the role of diplomacy, international law, and international organizations in the peace-making process.
011. The Korean War
Christian Potholm M 2:30 - 3:55, W 2:30 - 3:55 CT-16 Harrison McCann
The Korean War is often called “the forgotten war” because it is overshadowed by World War II and the Vietnam War, yet many important aspects and results of it are mirrored in the contemporary world. Korea is still divided and its situation as a buffer state between China, Russia, and Japan continues to have important policy ramifications for the United States. Focuses not just on the course of the war, but on the foreign policy assumptions of the two Korean governments, the United States, the People’s Republic of China, and Russia.
020. Global Media and Politics
Henry Laurence M 2:30 - 3:55, F 2:30 - 3:55 Sills-209
Examines the impact of media including the Internet, newspapers, and television, on politics and society in cross-national perspective. Asks how differences in the ownership and regulation of media affect how news is selected and presented, and looks at various forms of government censorship and commercial self-censorship. Also considers the role of the media and “pop culture” in creating national identities, perpetuating ethnic stereotypes, and providing regime legitimation; and explores the impact of satellite television and the Internet on rural societies and authoritarian governments.
025. Representation, Participation, and Power in American Politics
Janet Martin M 2:30 - 3:55, W 2:30 - 3:55 Hubbard-22
An introductory seminar in American national politics. Readings, papers, and discussion explore the changing nature of power and participation in the American polity, with a focus on the interaction between individuals (non-voters, voters, party leaders, members of Congress, the President) and political institutions (parties, Congress, the executive branch, the judiciary). Not open to students who have credit for or are concurrently taking Government 150.
026. Fundamental Questions: Exercises in Political Theory
Jean Yarbrough T 2:30 - 3:55, TH 2:30 - 3:55 Chase Barn Chamber
Explores the fundamental questions in political life: What is justice? What is happiness? Are human beings equal or unequal by nature? Do they even have a nature, or are they “socially constructed”? Are there ethical standards for political action that exist prior to law and, if so, where do they come from? Nature? God? History? Readings may include Plato, Aristotle, the Bible, Machiavelli, Locke, Rousseau, Shakespeare, the American Founders, Tocqueville, and Nietzsche.
027. Political Leadership
Andrew Rudalevige T 10:00 - 11:25, TH 10:00 - 11:25 Mass Hall-McKeen Study
We talk about political leadership all the time, mostly to complain about its absence. Leadership is surely one of the key elements of politics, but what does it mean? Do we know it when we see it? What kinds of leaders do we have, and what kinds do we want? How do modern democratic conceptions of governance mesh with older visions of authority? Of ethics? Looks both at real world case studies and the treatment of leadership in literature. Offers a wide variety of perspectives on leadership and the opportunities and dangers it presents—both for those who want to lead, and for those who are called upon to follow.
028. Human Being and Citizen
Paul Franco M 2:30 - 3:55, W 2:30 - 3:55 Mass Hall-McKeen Study
An introduction to the fundamental issues of political philosophy: human nature, the relationship between individual and political community, the nature of justice, the place of virtue, the idea of freedom, and the role of history. Readings span both ancient and modern philosophical literature. Authors may include Plato, Aristotle, Hobbes, Locke, Rousseau, the American Founders, Tocqueville, Mill, and Nietzsche.
150. Introduction to American Government
Jeffrey Selinger M 1:00 - 2:25, W 1:00 - 2:25 Cleaveland-151
Provides a comprehensive overview of the American political process. Specifically, traces the foundations of American government (the Constitution, federalism, civil rights, and civil liberties), its political institutions (Congress, Presidency, courts, and bureaucracy), and its electoral processes (elections, voting, and political parties). Also examines other influences, such as public opinion and the mass media, which fall outside the traditional institutional boundaries, but have an increasingly large effect on political outcomes.
160. Introduction to International Relations
Marc Scarcelli M 9:30 - 10:25, W 9:30 - 10:25, F 9:30 - 10:25 Adams-208
Provides a broad introduction to the study of international relations. Designed to strike a balance between empirical and historical knowledge and the obligatory theoretical understanding and schools of thought in IR. Designed as an introductory course to familiarize students with no prior background in the subject, and recommended for first- and second-year students intending to take upper-level international relations courses.
204. Congress and the Policy Process
Janet Martin M 11:30 - 12:55, W 11:30 - 12:55 Hubbard-22
An examination of the United States Congress, with a focus on members, leaders, constituent relations, the congressional role in the policy-making process, congressional procedures and their impact on policy outcomes, the budget process, and executive-congressional relations.
205. Campaigns and Elections
Andrew Rudalevige T 1:00 - 2:25, TH 1:00 - 2:25 Druckenmiller-020
Addresses current theories and controversies concerning political campaigns and elections in the United States. Takes advantage of the fact that the class meets during the heart of the 2012 presidential and congressional campaigns. Uses concepts from the political science literature on elections to explore general trends in electoral choice at the legislative and presidential level. Students will be expected to follow journalistic accounts of the fall campaigns closely. A second set of readings introduces political science literature on campaigns and elections. These readings touch upon a wide range of themes, including voting behavior (e.g., economic voting and issue voting), campaign finance, media strategy, the role of incumbency, presidential primaries, the Electoral College, and trends in partisan realignment.
210. Constitutional Law I
Richard Morgan T 10:00 - 11:25, TH 10:00 - 11:25 Sills-117
Examines the development of American constitutionalism, the power of judicial review, federalism, and separation of powers.
216. Maine Politics
Christian Potholm M 1:00 - 2:25, W 1:00 - 2:25 Hubbard-Conf Room West
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.
220. The Politics of Development: Poverty, Prosperity, and Political Change
Ericka Albaugh T 8:30 - 9:55, TH 8:30 - 9:55 Adams-406
Examines the meaning of development from economic and political perspectives. Considers various theories and practices of development that have been applied to newly independent states in Asia, Latin America, and Africa. Investigates why trajectories of economic growth and political stability have been so uneven in different regions of the world. Incorporates views from both external and internal actors on issues such as foreign aid, multilateral institutions, good governance, and democratic participation.
222. Politics and Societies in Africa
Ericka Albaugh T 11:30 - 12:55, TH 11:30 - 12:55 Sills-109
Surveys societies and politics in sub-Saharan Africa, seeking to understand the sources of current conditions and the prospects for political stability and economic growth. Looks briefly at pre-colonial society and colonial influence on state-construction in Africa, and concentrates on three broad phases in Africa’s contemporary political development: (1) independence and consolidation of authoritarian rule; (2) economic decline and challenges to authoritarianism; (3) democratization and civil conflict. Presumes no prior knowledge of the region.
227. Contemporary Chinese Politics
Christopher Heurlin T 10:00 - 11:25, TH 10:00 - 11:25 Banister-106
Examines Chinese politics in the context of a prolonged revolution. After a survey of the political system as established in the 1950s and patterns of politics emerging from it, the analytic focus turns to political change in the reform era (since 1979) and the forces driving it. Topics include the political impact of decentralization and marketization, the reintegration into the capitalist world economy, and the development of the legal system. The adaptation by the Communist Party to these changes and the prospects of democratization are also examined.
230. Post-Communist Russian Politics and Society
Laura Henry M 11:30 - 12:55, W 11:30 - 12:55 Druckenmiller-020
Explores the most dramatic political event of the twentieth century: the collapse of Soviet communism and Russia’s subsequent political development. Begins by examining the Soviet system and the political and social upheaval of the late Soviet period. Proceeds to investigate the challenges of contemporary Russian politics, including the semi-authoritarian regime, the challenges of sustainable economic growth and modernization, the demographic crisis, the loss of superpower status, and the search for a role in international politics. Comparisons will be made with other countries in the post-Communist region.
231. The Politics of Dictatorship: Authoritarian Resilience and Democratization
Christopher Heurlin T 1:00 - 2:25, TH 1:00 - 2:25 Banister-106
Despite the end of the Cold War, dictatorship has persisted—even thrived. At least 40 percent of states in the world remain authoritarian. Introduces students to the social and political logic of dictatorship. Explores questions such as: Where do dictatorships come from? Why might people support dictatorships? What effect does dictatorship have on political, economic, and social outcomes? How do dictatorships differ from one another? Why are some dictatorships resilient and stand the test of time while some quickly collapse? When dictatorships collapse, why are some dictatorships replaced by other dictatorships, while others democratize? Concentrates on the post-World War II era and explores the dynamics of dictatorship in regions throughout the world, including the Middle East, Latin America, Asia, Europe, and Africa.
232. Japanese Politics and Society
Henry Laurence M 9:30 - 10:25, W 9:30 - 10:25, F 9:30 - 10:25 Searles-223
Comprehensive overview of modern Japanese politics in historical, social, and cultural context. Analyzes the electoral dominance of the Liberal Democratic Party, the nature of democratic politics, and the rise and fall of the economy. Other topics include the status of women and ethnic minorities, education, war guilt, nationalism, and the role of the media.
235. Comparative Environmental Politics
Laura Henry M 8:30 - 9:55, W 8:30 - 9:55 Adams-406
Examines environmental politics from a comparative perspective, drawing on case material from the United States, Europe, Latin America, Africa, and Asia. Asks why, despite the fact that many contemporary environmental problems are shared globally, states develop different environmental policies. Readings cover issues ranging from forest conservation to climate policy and consider explanatory factors such as type of political regime, level of economic development, activism by citizens, and culture and values.
239. Comparative Constitutional Law
George Isaacson M 8:30 - 9:55, W 8:30 - 9:55 Mass Hall - Faculty Room
A comparative examination of constitutional principles and constitutional processes in democratic and non-democratic countries. Explores the roles that constitutions play in shaping civil society and defining the relationship between governments and the people they govern. Compares American constitutional law with that of other nations to scrutinize alternative models of governance, and to gain new perspectives regarding the legal foundations for the protection of individual rights. Special attention given to the constitutions of Canada, India, Germany, South Africa, Israel, and the People’s Republic of China, along with that of the United States. Structural issues include consideration of executive-legislative separation of powers, constitutional courts, federalism, and church-state relations. Discusses arguments in favor of and against a written Bill of Rights, as well as such specific issues as emergency powers, political dissent, hate speech, religious belief, reproductive choice, racial and gender discrimination, public welfare, privacy, and police investigative authority.
240. Classical Political Philosophy
Jean Yarbrough T 11:30 - 12:55, TH 11:30 - 12:55 Hubbard-Conf Room West
A survey of classical political philosophy focusing on selected dialogues of Plato, the political writings of Aristotle, and St. Augustine’s City of God. Examines ancient Greek and early Christian reflections on human nature, justice, the best regime, the relationship of the individual to the political community, the relationship of philosophy to politics, and the tension between reason and revelation.
244. Liberalism and Its Critics
Paul Franco M 11:30 - 12:55, W 11:30 - 12:55 Hubbard-Conf Room West
An examination of liberal democratic doctrine and of religious, cultural, and radical criticisms of it in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. Authors may include Locke, Kant, Burke, Tocqueville, Mill, Marx, and Nietzsche.
260. International Law
Allen Springer T 10:00 - 11:25, TH 10:00 - 11:25 Hubbard-Conf Room West
The modern state system, the role of law in its operation, the principles and practices that have developed, and the problems involved in their application.
279. Terrorism
Marc Scarcelli M 1:00 - 2:25, W 1:00 - 2:25 Adams-406
An in-depth study of the problem of terrorism, including its definition, historical origins and development, specific cases of terrorist organizations, its expansion into a global phenomenon, tactics and strategies, and the question of causes, as well as the issues surrounding counterterrorism’s tactics, strategies, and policy dilemmas.
303. The Law and Politics of Freedom of Speech
Richard Morgan T 2:30 - 3:55, TH 2:30 - 3:55 Hubbard-22
While focusing primarily on American material, students have the option of choosing speech controversies in other polities as the subject of their seminar papers.