Politics Courses

Spring 2014 Course Descriptions

 DEPARTMENT OF POLITICS

 

All Politics Department courses are open to all students who meet the prerequisites. For information on requirements for a Politics major or minor, including the concentration in International Studies and the minor in International Politics, please see Naeem Inayatullah, Politics Department, 325 Muller Faculty Center.

(for course schedule, go here [pdf file])

 

POLT 10100-01, 02 U.S. POLITICS SS LA 1 h

3 CREDITS

INSTRUCTOR: Alex Moon, Muller 308, Ext. 4-1258

ENROLLMENT: 26

PREREQUISITES: None

COURSE DESCRIPTION: This course has three main purposes. In ascending order of importance, it seeks to familiarize students with the role of voters, interest groups, the media, and parties in the American political system. We will examine the dynamics of American political institutions and (some of) the origins of (some of) the current political cleavages in the U.S.; it will examine the gap between the ideals and practices of American politics.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Lecture/discussion

 

 

POLT 10100-03, 04 U.S. POLITICS SS LA 1 h
3 credits

INSTRUCTOR: Carlos Figueroa, Muller 319, Ext. 4-7381
ENROLLMENT: 28 per section
PREREQUISITES: None

COURSE DESCRIPTION: This introductory course explores the development of the U.S. political system, how it works, and its impact upon individual citizens. We begin our journey with the various foundations of U.S. politics, with a special emphasis on the federal Constitution and the shifting meaning Americans have attached to fundamental rights and liberties. Then, we examine the various ways in which people have participated in politics, including political parties, national elections, and interest groups. Finally, we turn to the principle entities of the national government, Congress, the presidency, and the courts -- and to the policy-making process at the national level. Lectures and discussions explore each topic from an historical perspective, tracing the development of institutions and practices from the founding era to the present: Declaration of Independence, Constitution, federalist papers, civil rights, civil liberties, political participation, political parties, electoral politics, and national institutions. The course readings consist of primary source documents and secondary source materials from both political science and history. At the center of the course's approach to U.S. politics is the premise that past decisions by social, political and historical actors shape the choices open to later actors, including leaders, citizens and non-citizens alike.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: short video lectures; group discussions/debates; Skype presentation; films/documentaries
COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: readings; weekly quizzes; four textual analytical summaries; and three group projects/presentations

 

 

POLT 12200-01, 02 POLITICS AND SOCIETY SS LA

Credits 3

INSTRUCTOR: Patricia Rodriguez, Muller 312, Ext. 4-5714
ENROLLMENT: 27
PREREQUISITES: none
STUDENTS: open
COURSE DESCRIPTION: This is an introductory course in comparative and international politics that explores the impact of social forces and societal dynamics on the politics of diverse countries, as well as the influence of politics and the state on society. Students will be learning and analyzing past and current world events of political relevance in today’s world but that do not get well captured in mainstream media, such as what meaning does democracy have for different actors, why/when democracies emerge and breakdown and with what effects on different societal groups, why is state power wielded in repressive manners across different political systems, what problems emerge when international actors play attempt conflict resolution and governance-related reconstruction, and what impact do citizens’ struggles and activism have on creating democratic and economic change within countries affected by poverty and/or conflict? Students will explore the history, political processes and events in a variety of countries including Chile, Venezuela, North and South Sudan, Egypt, and other countries.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: lecture and discussion

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: thought-papers, group discussion, participation

 

 

POLT 12300-01, POLITICAL JUSTICE SS LA 1 g

3 credits

INSTRUCTOR: Beth Harris, Muller 310, Ext. 4-3517

ENROLLMENT: 28 per section

PREREQUISITES: None

COURSE DESCRIPTION: We examine the relationships between collective identities, law, politics, power, witnessing, and justice in comparative contexts. The readings and films draw on a number of disciplinary and professional approaches, including law, the social sciences, the humanities, and journalism. We use case studies to analyze conflicts between nation building/national security strategies and those social and politics groups whose civil liberties are threatened by official legal and political strategies. This course is included within the interdisciplinary, transnational Classrooms Beyond Borders project. The case studies may explore: 1) the legal dimensions of conflicts between Native Americans, American settlers, and the United States government; 2) the legal consolidation of the Third Reich in Germany and its impact on Jewish people under its rule; 3) the legal construction of Israel’s military rule over the West Bank and Gaza Strip and the impact of military occupation on the Palestinian population; 4) Legal and cultural strategies of resistance to racial injustices in the United States; and 4) recent transformations of law and “official” norms of justice within the United States.

COURSE FORMAT/ STYLE: Discussion of readings and videos, video conferences, student presentations of group research projects; and blog communications.

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Reading, watching videos, open-note exam, writing case briefs and essays, maintaining blogs with commentaries related to course curriculum; researching and preparing group projects, and presenting group projects in class.

 

 

POLT 12800-01, 02 INTRODUCTION TO INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS SS LA 1b, g
3 credits
INSTRUCTOR:  Chip Gagnon, Muller 324, Ext. 4-1103

ENROLLMENT:  28

PREREQUISITES:  None
STUDENTS:  Open to all.
COURSE DESCRIPTION:  We examine and discuss issues of security ranging from security of the state to security of individuals. Issues include the future of war, terrorism, the global economy, nationalism, ethnic and religious conflict, and the role of the media in how we think about the international.  We also study how different perspectives lead us to see different worlds, looking specifically at realism, liberalism, global humanism, and theories of identity. This course counts as a Comparative and International Studies course for the purposes of the Politics major, the Concentration in International Studies, and the International Politics minor.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE:  Lectures, discussions, films.
COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING:  Attendance and participation in class discussions; readings for each class; three take-home exam essays.

 

 

 

 

 

POLT 12900 -01 Explorations in Global & Comparative Studies 1 G LA SS HU

3 Credits

INSTRUCTOR: Peyi Soyinka-Airewele, 314 Muller, ext. 4-3508

ENROLLMENT: 25

PREREQUISITES: None

COURSE DESCRIPTION: The course examines global issues, including culture and identity formation, globalization, human rights, the environment, and militarism. National and international public policies are examined critically and policy alternatives are explored, as are individual responses and responsibilities. The course utilizes country case studies, international simulations, literature and film and emphasizes global awareness.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Lectures, discussions, and collaborative work.

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Regular attendance, full participation, presentations, tests, essays and projects. Open to those who are interested in the subject matter.

 

 

POLT 14200-01, 02 IDEAS AND IDEOLOGIES SS LA 1a, 1b

3 CREDITS

INSTRUCTOR: Kelly Dietz, Muller 323, Ext. 4-3581

PREREQUISITES: None

ENROLLMENT: 28 per section

COURSE DESCRIPTION: What is your idea of the ‘good life’ or a ‘perfect world’? How do you think we might achieve it, and why? Where do your ideas about the world and your own life come from? How do your individual beliefs relate to broader systems of thought we call ideologies? This course encourages self-reflection on these questions as we explore the ideological roots of political, social and economic life. Through readings, film, art, music and your own observations, the course focuses on key political ideas and the ideological debates over their meaning and practice. We will examine a range of views on concepts such as liberty, equality, democracy, rationality, security, order, authority, community and nation. We will consider how these and other political ideas developed historically, why certain ideas endure, and why they remain important to understanding politics today. In doing so we will also pay close attention to how political ideas reflect, reinforce, and challenge relations of power, especially in terms of class, race, ethnicity, gender and sexuality. The course encourages critical reflection on where our views about the world come from, and on aspects of political life that we take for granted. Encounters with political theories different from our own subjective views help bring to light our unconscious assumptions and also what is distinctive about our political views. Ideological perspectives the course explores include liberalism and conservatism (and their “neo” variants), socialism, anarchism, and fascism.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: lecture and discussion

COURSE REQUIREMENTS AND GRADING: active participation and demonstration of class preparation, one quiz, weekly written reflections and a semester-long final project

 

 

POLT 14200-03, 04 Ideas and Ideologies SS LA 1a, 1b

3 credits

INSTRUCTOR: Evgenia Ilieva, Muller 311, Ext. 4-7092

ENROLLMENT: 28 per section

PREREQUISITE: None.

COURSE DESCRIPTION: In this course we examine the historical development and contemporary manifestations of a number of ideological perspectives including, but not limited to, liberalism, conservatism, socialism, feminism, anarchism, fascism, and religious fundamentalism. In addition to exploring the key concepts and normative assumptions of these various “isms”, the primary goal of the course is to encourage us to begin thinking about what ideology each of us currently believes in. We will ask why and how we have come to hold these beliefs, and we will seek to understand the way that our beliefs inform our practical conduct in the world.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: discussion

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: close reading of texts, thinking, talking, and writing about the ideologies under consideration.

 

 

POLT 14300-01 UNDERSTANDING CAPITALISM LA SS

3 credits

INSTRUCTOR: Naeem Inayatullah

ENROLLMENT: 28

COURSE DESCRIPTION: Exploration of the role of class conflict in the making of contemporary political and social life. Application of theoretical and historical materials to assess capitalism's complex relationship to such ideals as progress, freedom, equality, individuality, and justice. Understanding the personal, regional, national, and global scope of capitalism.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: willingness to accept alternative teaching methods.

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Plenty of reading, writing, and discussion

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

POLT 19500-01, 02 FOOD AND WATER SUSTAINABILITY

3 CREDITS

INSTRUCTOR: Juan Arroyo, Muller 316, Ext. 4-3969

ENROLLMENT: 26 per section

PREREQUISITES: None

STUDENTS: Open to all students

COURSE DESCRIPTION: At some level, we may think we know what it means to eat and drink sustainably. This course will challenge conceptions by examining different, and often conflicting definitions of sustainability. Then, even if we do agree to eat and drink differently, we face challenges in changing individual behavior and social patterns in more sustainable directions. This course will look at the many actors and obstacles involved in defining and shaping our choices regarding food and water. Political systems privilege certain ideas and also specific interests. Economic structures and patterns limit our choices. Anthropological, cultural, and sociological backgrounds structure our options. Biological and psychological predispositions affect our ability to eat and drink sustainably. Students will consider the “simple” acts of eating and drinking from all of these perspectives. Students will be challenged to understand the potential for changing patterns of consumption, examining their own choices, their communities, and the socio-political system in which we are embedded.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Discussion/lecture; expert presentations

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Readings, active participation in class discussions, 2-3 short papers (3-5 pages), 1 medium paper (5-7 pages), 1 final paper (7-10 pages)

 

 

POLT-30300-01 CONSTITUTIONAL LAW: Civil Rights and Liberties SS LA

3 CREDITS

INSTRUCTOR: Alex Moon, Muller 308, Ext. 4-1258

ENROLLMENT: 26

PREREQUISITES: None

COURSE DESCRIPTION: An introduction to constitutional law concerning civil rights and liberties (freedom of speech, press, and thought; equal protection; rights of the accused; etc.). The first section covers different theories of constitutional interpretation. The second section is about the role of the Supreme Court and judicial power in the political system. The rest of the course deals with the major areas of civil rights and liberties jurisprudence. Questions we will ask include: To what extent does any particular justice work within the framework of a single interpretive theory? To what extent are the different areas of civil rights jurisprudence consistent with each other? To what extent can we explain Court decisions as a function of the constellation of social, economic, and, especially, political forces at any given time?

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Lecture/discussion

 

 

POLT 30600-01 US FOREIGN POLICY LA SS

3 credits

INSTRUCTOR: Don Beachler, Muller 333, ext. 4-1249

ENROLLMENT: 28

PREREQUISITE: Three courses in the social sciences or equivalent.

COURSE DESCRIPTION: The course will include an historical overview of U.S. Foreign Policy, but is focused on contemporary issues such as the war with Al Qaeda, the occupation of Iraq, and U.S. Middle East policy. Attention will be paid to the politics of intervention in cases of genocide. We will also consider the normative issues surrounding the cost and consequences of being a super-power/empire.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Lecture and Discussion

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Read 5-6 book and assigned articles. There will be a two exams (mid-term and a final exam) and a research paper.

 

 

POLT 32700-01 POLITICS OF DEVELOPMENT LA SS
credits 3

INSTRUCTOR: Patricia Rodriguez, Muller 312, Ext. 4-5714
ENROLLMENT: 28
PREREQUISITES: one course in social sciences
COURSE DESCRIPTION: This course explores the political, social, cultural, and economic challenges of Third World development. It covers a wide range of development approaches aimed at reducing poverty and inequality adopted in different developing countries, with particular attention to the rationales, problems and contradictions in the ways in which governments, non-governmental agencies, international aid agencies, and social movements envision and implement development assistance programs. We will analyze what alternatives ‘civil-society centered’ development approaches have to offer, including sustainable and participatory development projects throughout Latin America, Asia, Africa and other areas. The course has a strong comparative focus.

The course is designed with the objective of engaging students in a critical look at current development and policy issues (environment/mining issues in Amazon & elsewhere, poverty relief efforts, and rural development & displacement & urban problems) around the globe, thereby enhancing students’ research and analytic skills for class and future work in international and national political and economic development issues. The course will be strongly discussion and policy based, as we tackle the diverse topics and perspectives that surround these issues.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: lecture, group discussion, speakers, documentaries.
COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: participation, policy and response papers, group or individual project

 

 

POLT 33000-01 EUROPEAN POLITICS LA SS
3 CREDITS
INSTRUCTOR: Juan Arroyo, Muller 316, Ext. 4-3969
ENROLLMENT: 26
PREREQUISITES: Three courses in social sciences or the equivalent.
COURSE DESCRIPTION: We start with the question of European identity: do we only mean the EU or something more general? Who is included or excluded, and how is this decided? This will lead to a discussion of “European” values. We will address tensions affecting the creation of a new geo-political entity called Europe out of many separate European countries. We consider the structures and selected policies of the European Union. The focus will be on the ideals of such a union, as contrasted with the reality of including different nations with very different policy priorities. The course will introduce further tools for understanding European politics by looking at some of the key European ideological/political groups that are less familiar in the U.S. (Social Democracy, Christian Democracy, the Greens, post-Communism and the far right). Similarly, the course will look at the ideas and practices behind welfare state policies: education, welfare, immigration, employment policy, and the environment. Finally, students will examine the political systems of selected European countries, with their distinct sets of actors and policy priorities. The emphasis will be on institutional and policy variations in how each country responds to the same needs or issues, such as economics, civil rights, regional identity, and nationalism. Students will also consider Europe’s interaction with the rest of the world, both at the level of the European Union and of the individual countries.
COURSE FORMAT/ STYLE: Lecture and discussion
COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Readings, active participation in class, 2 medium papers (6-8 pages), 1 final paper (10-15 pages).

 

POLT 34004-01 ST: POLITICS OF GLOBAL CAPITALISM LA SS

3 credits

INSTRUCTOR: Don Beachler, beachler@ithaca.edu, 274-1249, 333 Muller Faculty Center

ENROLLMENT: 28

PREREQUISITES: Three courses in Social Sciences or Equivalent

STUDENTS: Sophomores, Juniors, Seniors

COURSE DESCRIPTION: This course will deal with a variety of issues confronting the global political economy. These issues will be addressed from a variety of theoretical perspectives. Among the topics covered are the politics of trade, currency values (especially with respect to the U.S Dollar, the Euro the Chinese RMB), foreign aid, debt, development, trans-national corporations, the global financial crisis, and international organizations such as the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund. The political and ethical consequences of policy decisions are a core concern of the course.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Lecture/Discussion

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Read 3-4 books and other assigned readings available on Blackboard. There will be three take-home essay exams (the final will be the third exam).

 

POLT 34008-01 Working Beyond Borders: Identity, Justice and Ethics LA SS

3 Credits

INSTRUCTOR: Peyi Soyinka-Airewele, 314 Muller, ext. 4-3508

ENROLLMENT: 20

PREREQUISITES: 2 courses in the Social Sciences

COURSE DESCRIPTION: This course offers Ithaca College students the opportunity to participate in an innovative transnational, shared classroom with students from universities in Nigeria and Palestine. Together, we will study the constructs of human reality and imagination in a way that allows students from diverse disciplines to uncover new ways of engaging their communities and understanding themselves and their world. The course will grapple with these central themes: 1) identity and identification; 2) representation; 3) peace, violence, and justice; and 4) ethics, collaboration and personal agency. In addition to traditional learning modes, participants will utilize digital technologies to engage their peers overseas. Along with our international partners, we hope that this core class can culminate in a shared multi-institutional study abroad opportunity. The course is particularly valuable for students contemplating a study abroad program or careers involving international issues and work outside their familiar communities.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Lectures, in-class and web-based discussions and collaborative work.

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Regular attendance, full participation in class and web-conferences, presentations, assignments and projects. Open only to those who are interested in the subject matter.

 

POLT 34008-02 Working Beyond Borders: Identity, Justice and Ethics LA SS

3 Credits

INSTRUCTOR: Beth Harris, Muller 310, Ext 4-3517

ENROLLMENT: 20

PREREQUISITES: 2 courses in the Social Sciences

COURSE DESCRIPTION: This course offers Ithaca College students the opportunity to participate in an innovative transnational, shared classroom with students from universities in Nigeria and Palestine. Together, we will study the constructs of human reality and imagination in a way that allows students from diverse disciplines to uncover new ways of engaging their communities and understanding themselves and their world. The course will grapple with these central themes: 1) identity and identification; 2) representation; 3) peace, violence, and justice; and 4) ethics, collaboration and personal agency. In addition to traditional learning modes, participants will utilize digital technologies to engage their peers overseas. Along with our international partners, we hope that this core class can culminate in a shared multi-institutional study abroad opportunity. The course is particularly valuable for students contemplating a study abroad program or careers involving international issues and work outside their familiar communities.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Lectures, in-class and web-based discussions and collaborative work.

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Regular attendance, full participation in class and web-conferences, presentations, assignments and projects. Open only to those who are interested in the subject matter.

 

 

POLT 34200-01 Liberalism and Marxism LA SS

3 credits

INSTRUCTOR: Evgenia Ilieva, Muller 311, ext: 4-7092

ENROLLMENT: 28

COURSE DESCRIPTION: In this course we explore the ideas of human progress and development from the perspective of liberalism and Marxism. On the face of it, liberalism and Marxism offer two contrasting visions of political and social life. Despite their many differences, both ideologies nevertheless share certain key assumptions about the human desire for development. Both are not only products of modernity, but also champions of it. In its optimistic moments, perhaps best expressed by the liberal tradition, modernity defines itself in opposition to an older epoch which was understood as being more superstitious, more hierarchical, less free, less rational, less civilized, less comfortable, less democratic, less tolerant, less respectful of the individual, less scientific, and less technologically developed. To be modern, by contrast, is to find ourselves, as Marshall Berman once said, “in an environment that promises us adventure, power, joy, growth, transformation of ourselves and the world.” But to be modern is also to be part of a universe in which, as Marx wrote, “all that is solid melts into air.” Unlike its liberal counterpart, Marx (and the Marxist tradition) recognized the relentless destructiveness of modernity, and spoke powerfully about the violence and suffering it inflicts. He nevertheless insisted that the devastation and ruin of modernity are a necessary moment in a historical process that will lead us beyond capitalism and towards human emancipation. In this course, we will seek to understand how liberalism and Marxism have grappled with the tragedy of modern progress. We will select from the writings of Locke, Mill, Rousseau, Hegel, Marx, Kant, Walter Benjamin, Adorno, Berman, and Ghosh.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: discussion

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: close reading of texts, thinking, discussing, and writing.

 

POLT 35000 – 01 ST: Theory: Writing and Criticism LA SS

3 CREDITS

INSTRUCTOR: Naeem Inayatullah, Muller 325, Ext. 4-3028

ENROLLMENT: 15

COURSE DESCRIPTION: Grasping the technical, political, theoretical, and psychodynamic motivations for writing. Understanding the meaning, purpose, and practice of criticism. Students will evaluate their written work via collaborative and individual assessments of others’ work. Together, we will seek to write and criticize well as a means to living meaningfully.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: willingness to accept alternative teaching methods.

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Plenty of reading, writing, and discussion
 

POLT 36600-01 Environmental Politics LA SS

3 credits

INSTRUCTOR: Thomas Shevory

ENROLLMENT: 30

PREREQUISITE: Three courses in the social sciences.

COURSE DESCRIPTION: Considers an array of issues related to environmental politics, including genetic engineering, climate change, toxics, population, urban development, agricultural production, and radical political action. The course is reading, writing, and discussion intensive.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Lecture/discussion.

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Three critical writing assignments; A-F.


 

POLT 40102-01 SEMINAR: Violent Ethnic Conflict CP/IR SS LA
3 CREDITS
INSTRUCTOR: Chip Gagnon, Muller 324, Ext. 4-1103
ENROLLMENT: 10
PREREQUISITE: Junior or Senior standing; and 3 courses in social sciences or equivalent, one of which must be Politics.

STUDENTS: Open to interested students who meet prerequisites
COURSE DESCRIPTION: To what extent are wars motivated by cultural or national identity? Starting with this question we explore the sources of violent conflicts described as ethnic. We’ll look at the political, military, and cultural origins of the nation-state and the role of culturally-defined violence in constituting state, national, and group boundaries. Cases will include Yugoslavia/Bosnia, Rwanda, the United States and other cases.
COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Discussion

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Attendance and active participation in Seminar; reaction papers for each reading; final research paper.

 

 

POLT 40103-01 SEMINAR: THE HOLOCAUST SS LA

3 credits

INSTRUCTOR: Don Beachler, Muller 333, Ext. 4-1249

ENROLLMENT: 10

PREREQUISITES: Permission of the instructor and three courses in social sciences or the equivalent

STUDENTS: Juniors and seniors

COURSE DESCRIPTION: The seminar will explore portions of the voluminous literature on the Holocaust to extract implications for politics. Among the topics to be considered are the conditions that permit people to participate in genocide and the human capacity for self-deception that enables people to rationalize their actions. This section of the seminar will consider the controversy raised by Daniel Goldhagen’s book Hitler’s Willing Executioners. We will also explore the academic politics of Holocaust studies by reading works that both proclaim the uniqueness of the Holocaust and by considering authors who argue that too much attention has been paid the Holocaust to the neglect of other historical instances of genocide. The ethical lessons that can be gleaned from global indifference to the destruction of the European Jews will form another segment of the seminar. The global response to atrocities in Rwanda and Bosnia will be included for comparative purposes.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: The seminar will employ a discussion format

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Five to six short papers; read 8- 10 books; regular class attendance and participation

 

POLT 40105-01 ST: STRUGGLES OF PEOPLE AND PLACE: THE POLITICS OF IDENTITY AND TERRITORY

3 CREDITS

INSTRUCTOR: Kelly Dietz, Muller 323, Ext. 4-3581

PREREQUISITES: Junior or senior standing and three courses in the social sciences (or permission of the instructor)

ENROLLMENT: 15

COURSE DESCRIPTION: Political maps of the world today are remarkable for their neatness. Bold lines mark the division of continents into countries, with no countries overlapping. Bold labels identify the spaces within the lines, giving a name to both the place and the people. Another way to make this point is to note that everyone is organized and divided spatially; we all have a place on today’s political map, but only one place—every person lives within one line, under one name. This arrangement of people and place is taken for granted by most of us today, but to what extent is this a natural state of affairs? What forces—political, economic, social, cultural—gave rise to such a straightforward representation of the world’s people and territory? How did it come to be taken for granted? What (or who) might this neatness obscure, or erase? Is the ‘state system’ as we know it here to stay? Taking the contemporary political map as its analytical point of departure and looking at examples from around the world, this course explores the histories of struggle over identity and territory that created this particular way of organizing people and place, and the struggles that emerged as a result. We will pay particular attention to competing narratives about people and place—and how power relations shape whose stories count in which contexts. Struggles and disputes over territory and identity will be examined in multiple forms, from the use of military force to contested representations in popular culture. Throughout the course we will reflect critically on how our own identities and claims to place relate to the topics under discussion. Key topics and concepts we will explore include construction of borders, mapping, and other practices of representation; historical memory and place-making; capitalist relations and space; imperialism, militarization, anti-imperialism, decolonization and state formation, sovereignty, race, ethnicity nation/alism, transnationalism, and indigeneity.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: discussion

COURSE REQUIREMENTS AND GRADING: active participation and demonstration of class preparation, weekly written reflections, analytical essay on course topic of student’s choice, final take-home exam

 

 

POLT 40201-01 Seminar: QUAKERISM, RACE AND AMERICAN POLITICAL LIFE

3 credits

INSTRUCTOR: Carlos Figueroa, Muller 319, Ext. 4-7381

ENROLLMENT: 10

PREREQUISITES: Three courses in the humanities and/or social sciences; junior/senior standing.

COURSE DESCRIPTION: This course explores the broad historical, cultural and theological processes and contexts that gave rise to pragmatic Quakers’ interventions into U.S. race/racial justice politics: 1) shaping various discourses and policies concerning indigenous citizenship and territorial rights (e.g., Native Americans), 2) addressing the so-called "Negro Question" post-Reconstruction era, 3) structuring debates over U.S. insular affairs (e.g. Puerto Rico and the Philippines), and 4) challenging U.S. involvement in 20th Century regional/international conflicts/wars, among others. We examine how and the extent to which U.S. progressive (pragmatic) Quakers through discursive practices, institutional arrangements, and social/political activism shaped policies over the extension/expansion of U.S. citizenship, disputes surrounding territorial sovereignty, and debates over the rights of self-determination and governance during several key moments in U.S.political development. Readings will include primary and secondary texts from social and political historians, political scientists, Quaker historians, American pragmatists, novelists, poets, and historical political figures.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Discussion-based; group work; close reading of texts; guest speaker; films/documentaries

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: four textual analytical summaries; two book reviews; and final seminar paper & presentation

 

 

POLT 40500-01 INTERNSHIPS NLA

Variable Credit

INSTRUCTOR: Don Beachler, Muller 333, Ext. 4-1249

ENROLLMENT: 5

PREREQUISITES: Permission of instructor and three courses in social sciences or equivalent.

STUDENTS: Interested students should see Don Beachler to register for an internship.

COURSE DESCRIPTION: The Politics Department offers a wide variety of internship opportunities for students in different fields. Faculty will work with students to find internships that meet their needs. Internships are available in Ithaca and the surrounding areas. Internship/Field Study can be used to meet both 300 and 400 level requirements. Possible internship sites include: Tompkins County Environmental Management Council; Citizen's Environmental Coalition; Offender Aid and Restoration (working with jail inmates); Planned Parenthood; Assemblyman Marty Luster; Congressman Maurice Hinchey; Community Dispute Resolution Agency; Dispositional Alternatives (Youth Bureau); Red Cross; Human Services Coalition; Mayor's Office; City Attorney's Office; Prisoner's Legal Services; Loaves and Fishes; Alternatives Credit Union; Women's Community Center; Cornell Environmental Law Society; Eco-Justice Task Force; City of Ithaca, Dept. of Planning and Development; Tompkins County Planning Department; Tompkins County Solid Waste Management Division; Rune Hill Earth Awareness School; New York Public Interest Research Group; Science Center; Battered Women Task Force; GIAC; Downtown Business Council; Day Care Council; Human Rights Commission.

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Students receive one hour credit for every 60 hours of internship-related work. Students are required to keep a journal and undertake internship-oriented research and writing.

 

 

POLT 40550-01 INTERNSHIPS: INTERNATIONAL POLITICS NLA

INSTRUCTOR: Don Beachler

ENROLLMENT: 5

PREREQUISITES: Junior or Senior standing; and 3 courses in social sciences or equivalent, of which must be Politics.

STUDENTS: Interested students should see Don Beachler to register for an internship.

COURSE DESCRIPTION: The Politics Department offers a wide variety of internship opportunities for students in different fields. Faculty will work with students to find internships that meet their needs. Internships are available in Ithaca and the surrounding areas. Internship/Field Study can be used to meet both 300 and 400 level requirements. Possible internship sites include: Tompkins County Environmental Management Council; Citizen's Environmental Coalition; Offender Aid and Restoration (working with jail inmates); Planned Parenthood; Assemblyman Marty Luster; Congressman Maurice Hinchey; Community Dispute Resolution Agency; Dispositional Alternatives (Youth Bureau); Red Cross; Human Services Coalition; Mayor's Office; City Attorney's Office; Prisoner's Legal Services; Loaves and Fishes; Alternatives Credit Union; Women's Community Center; Cornell Environmental Law Society; Eco-Justice Task Force; City of Ithaca, Dept. of Planning and Development; Tompkins County Planning Department; Tompkins County Solid Waste Management Division; Rune Hill Earth Awareness School; New York Public Interest Research Group; Science Center; Battered Women Task Force; GIAC; Downtown Business Council; Day Care Council; Human Rights Commission.

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Students receive one hour credit for every 60 hours of internship-related work. Students are required to keep a journal and undertake internship-oriented research and writing.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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