Courses: Previous Semesters

Courses Spring 2013

Descriptions of Spring 2013 courses

Politics Department courses are open to all students who meet the prerequisites. For information on requirements for the Politics major, the Politics major with the concentration in International Studies, the Politics minor or International Politics minor, please see Chip Gagnon, Chair, Politics Department, 324 Muller Faculty Center.

Course schedule: /hs/depts/politics/docs/schedules/s13schedule.pdf

 

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

3 credits 

INSTRUCTOR: Juan Arroyo, Muller 308, Ext. 4-3969 

ENROLLMENT: 25 per section 

PREREQUISITES: None 

COURSE DESCRIPTION: Institutions, processes, and cultural/ideological roots of U.S. politics.  We begin by studying a framework of ideologies that will help us to understand the political-economic institutions that have evolved to reflect the conditions of U.S. society: Congress, the presidency, bureaucracy, judiciary, parties, interest groups, media, and the electoral process. Throughout, we will constantly ask: how democratic is this place? What are your criteria for measuring democracy? The class will consider the many ways in which money affects the ability of citizens to influence the political process. The 2010 health care reform will be analyzed in greater detail from a variety of perspectives, along with other prominent issues in social, economic and foreign policy. 

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Discussion/lecture 

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

 

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

3 credits

INSTRUCTOR: Adnan Selimović

ENROLLMENT: 25 

PREREQUISITES: None

COURSE DESCRIPTION: In this introductory course we will explore the many facets that regularly fall under the heading of American politics. In an effort to give students new to studies of politics a useful grounding, we will study American politics as it has developed since the era of the “cultural wars” during the 1960s. Instead of reading textbooks on American politics, an exercise that can mistakenly communicate a false sense of transparency and organization, we are going to construct a picture of American politics from some of the major scandals involving the political arena. We will read these scandals not as exceptions, but as constituent parts, which make up the functioning of the system. The primary objective will be to gain a general yet critical understanding of American political "lay of the land" in ways that demystify its trends and processes and confront the implications of its limitations and internal contradictions. Invariably we will explore the nature of its institutional structures. But, our more global concern will be to inquire into the forces and dynamics that have conditioned those political structures. 

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Discussion/lecture

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Readings, active participation in class discussions, one midterm paper, and a final group class-project.

 

POLT 10100-05, 06 U.S. POLITICS SS LA 1 h

3 CREDITS

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

ENROLLMENT: 30 per section

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 12200 -01, 02 POLITICS AND SOCIETY, SS LA

Credits 3

INSTRUCTOR: Patricia Rodriguez, Muller 312, ext 4-5714

ENROLLMENT: 27 per section

PREREQUISITES: none

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. The course explores diverse understandings on issues of power, justice, and sustainability around the globe. 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 the media, such as: what meaning does democracy have for different actors? Why/when do 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 understand the history, and political processes and events in a variety of countries including Chile, Venezuela, Sudan and South Sudan, Rwanda, Afghanistan, and others. 

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: lecture and discussion

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: papers, group discussion, participation

 

POLT 12300-01, 02 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. Through the use of digital technologies, students will share and discuss several readings with students at An Najah University in the West Bank.  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 AND STYLE: Discussion of readings and videos, video conferences, student presentations of group research projects; and blog communications beyond classroom borders.

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 INTRODUCTION TO INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS SS LA 1b, g

3 credits

INSTRUCTOR: Chip Gagnon, Muller 324, Ext. 4-1103

ENROLLMENT: 30 

PREREQUISITES: None

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 12800 - 02 INTRODUCTION TO INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS 1 G LA SS

3 credits

INSTRUCTOR: Lisa Sansoucy, 122 Administrative Annex, Ext. 4-7040 

ENROLLMENT: 28

PREREQUISITES: None

COURSE DESCRIPTION: Introduces students to basic perspectives and events in world politics (international relations). Different theoretical positions are examined critically. The central purpose of the course is to provide the beginning student of international relations/world politics with the analytic tools necessary to understand contemporary events and to undertake advanced study in these areas. 


COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Discussion/lecture


COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Readings, active participation in class discussions.

 

POLT 12900-01, 02 INTRODUCTION TO GLOBAL STUDIES SS LA 1 G

3 CREDITS

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

ENROLLMENT: 25 per section

PREREQUISITES: None

COURSE DESCRIPTION: The course will expose participants to critical global challenges such as the protection of human security in a competitive marketplace; state sovereignty and violence and; globalization and its sociopolitical and economic consequences. It will foster critical thinking and 

writing skills and provide fundamental analytical frames through which students can address on-going debates on representation, identity, Euro centrism and global histories. Through international collaboration and case simulations (Classrooms beyond Borders module), we will also seek to facilitate dialogue that engenders global citizenship and contributes to the growth of all participants.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Lecture

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: 30 per section

COURSE DESCRIPTION: The course explores the ideological roots of political life and political inquiry. 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 intertwine with constructions 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 AND STYLE: lecture and discussion

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: active participation, weekly blog contributions and a semester-long final project

 

 

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 30300-01 CONSTITUTIONAL LAW: CIVIL RIGHTS AND LIBERTIES SS LA 

3 credits

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

ENROLLMENT: 30 per section

PREREQUISITES: Three courses in social sciences or equivalent.

STUDENTS: Primarily politics and legal studies majors, but open to all who meet prerequisites.

COURSE DESCRIPTION: Throughout this course we will attempt to come to terms with the content, character and roles of constitutional norms in modern America. Our studies typically will begin with significant Supreme Court decisions, but we also will examine the broader political and social conflicts, debates and cultural practices involving basic rights. We will give attention to the roles of race, class, gender and citizenship in the scope of the judicial protection of rights. Our inquiry will focus on two general categories of constitutionally authorized civil liberties: 1) the rights of suspected criminals related to due process, and 2) the rights to belief, expression, religion and association.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Students will discuss significant Supreme Court decisions and supplementary readings. Students will develop and present group projects that explore legal debates and analyze the significance of constitutional doctrine in political conflicts. Students must be willing to prepare for class by briefing cases, participate in class discussions, and work in groups outside of the class period to prepare group presentatioons.

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADES: Texts may include a casebook of Supreme Court opinions, a text concerning judicial review of anti-terrorism policies, and A Promise of Justice, by David Protess and Rob Warden. Grades will be based on open-note exams, essays and in-class presentations.

 

 

POLT 30600-01 US FOREIGN POLICY LA SS 


3 credits 


INSTRUCTOR: Lisa Sansoucy, 122 Administrative Annex, Ext. 4-7040 

ENROLLMENT: 25

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. 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: Readings, active participation in class discussions.

 

POLT 31900 - 01 ST: US Politics in the Long Term

3 credits 

INSTRUCTOR: Simon Gilhooley 

ENROLLMENT: 27 

PREREQUISITE: None 

COURSE DESCRIPTION: Why are there two parties in America? Why is there no universal healthcare? Why did the Civil Rights Movement happen in the 1950s and 1960s? This course takes up some of these questions by exploring the historical origins and development of contemporary issues in American politics. Taking up a different theme (such as race, welfare, or political parties) each week, the course will discuss the ways in which we can see these areas of politics as the consequence of developments occurring over long periods of time. Exploring the consequences of decisions made in the past, the unintended results of policies, and the development of institutions we shall attempt to understand how American politics has come to be the way that it is, and how and when political change has been effected in the United States.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Discussion section. 

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: 3 Reflection Papers & Final Research Paper; A-F. 

 

 

POLT 32000 – 01 ST: US Politics: War on drugs

3 CREDITS

INSTRUCTOR: Adnan Selimović

ENROLLMENT: 25

PREREQUISITIES:

COURSE DESCRIPTION: In this class we will study the ‘War on Drugs’ by looking closely at a number of its most visible (widely-documented) historical sightings. Some of our cases will be: the CIA involvement in the Southeast Asian heroin trade during the Vietnam War; the pharmaceutical industry’s legislative battles in (de)regulation of key ingredients for illicit drug manufacturing during the 1980s; the intertwining of the political economy of cocaine with Anti-Communist rhetoric in Latin America; the politics of the drug trade in the borderlands and Northern Mexico. In this course we will interrogate the claims of historical moral rhetoric by juxtaposing it with the historical record in hopes of deeping understanding of how politics and economy are intertwined in the context of illicit drug trade, the role of the black market in political and ideological objectives and the goals of the contemporary US state.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Discussion

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: One midterm and one final paper.

 

POLT 32700-01, POLITICS OF DEVELOPMENT, LA SS

3 Credits

INSTRUCTOR: Patricia Rodriguez, Muller 312, Ext. 4-5714

ENROLLMENT: 28

PREREQUISITES: three courses 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 emphasis on the ways in which governments, non-governmental organizations, international aid agencies, and social movements envision and implement development programs. We look closely at alternative civil-society centered and social movement-led development projects throughout Latin America, Asia, Africa and other areas, and examine their impacts. In-depth case studies of Egypt, Cuba and Colombia are examined; but we also take a broad look at particular development-related issues in other countries like Indonesia, Brazil, and Rwanda. The course is designed with the objective of engaging students in a critical look at current development and policy issues (environment, disaster and poverty relief, garbage, rural development & displacement)  thereby enhancing students’ research and analytic skills for class and future work in international and national political, economic, and environmental issues.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Lecture, group discussion, speakers, films

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: participation, policy and response papers, group or individual project

 

 

POLT 32800-01 INTERNATIONAL CONFLICT SS LA

3 CREDITS

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

ENROLLMENT: 28

COURSE DESCRIPTION: To learn about: the Cold War origins of Contemporary World Politics; origins of the conflict between first and third worlds; political debates over the meaning and construction of history and histories; politics of remembering and forgetting; colonialism, neo-colonialism, imperialism, neo-imperialism in contemporary politics; and the role of violence and non-violence in politics.  

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

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

 

 

POLT 33300-01   UNDERSTANDING ISLAM     LA SS 

3 credits

INSTRUCTOR: Asma Barlas, CHS 101 (CSCRE Office), ext 4-1056

ENROLLMENT: 20

PREREQUISITES: Three courses in the social sciences or permission of the instructor.

STUDENTS: Open to all who meet the prerequisites or have instructor’s permission.

COURSE DESCRIPTION: This course engages Islam from within two very different frameworks: one which is provided by its own scriptural teachings as well as by Muslim social and political history, and the other by its representations in the West.  The most pervasive of these is the trope of Islamic violence, framed variously as “Islamic terror,” “holy war,” and sexual oppression.  Accordingly, the course also focuses on these themes.  The obvious drawback of such an approach is that it is not only lop-sided but it can lend itself to reifying pejorative images of Islam.  However, its advantage is that it allows us to examine Western relationships to Islam/ Muslims instead of pretending that we’re studying the religion in an ideological and political vacuum.  Part of the challenge of taking this class, therefore, is to see if you can walk a fine line between trying to understand Islam “itself” and figuring out to what extent this understanding is shaped by specific Western ideologies and experiences.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: class discussions

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Class attendance/participation, journals, concept papers.

 

 

POLT 33400-01 POLITICS OF RIGHTS AND CULTURE: Africa   SS LA

3 CREDITS

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

ENROLLMENT: 20

PREREQUISITES: Three courses in the social sciences. 

COURSE DESCRIPTION: Investigates controversial issues, philosophical and legal debates that emphasize the lack of consensus on whether human rights are truly universal. Explores the contradictory ways in which religious, social and cultural forces, gender and class struggles and structural global inequalities generate diverse concepts of moral rights, justice, freedoms and protections. Uses case studies and critical questions such as that posed by Mahmood Mamdani: “can a culture of individual rights coexist with the right of every individual to practice one’s culture?” Provides comparative studies of the U.S, Latin America, Asia and the Middle East but focuses primarily on African countries and their contributions to human rights discourses and practice.

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Regular attendance, active participation, research and presentations. Assessment methods set by instructor. 

 

 

POLT 33500-01 CROSSING BORDERS/GLOBAL MIGRATIONS SS LA

3 CREDITS 

INSTRUCTOR: Chip Gagnon, Muller 324, Ext. 4-1103

ENROLLMENT: 27

PREREQUISITES: Three courses in the social sciences or equivalent.

STUDENTS: Open to all interested students who fulfill the prerequisites.

COURSE DESCRIPTION: Why do people move across borders? Why is immigration such a volatile political issue around the world? What are the effects on national and cultural identity and boundaries? Immigration and population movements have in fact become the focus of politics throughout the globe, often linked to xenophobia and other forms of violence. We’ll explore the phenomenon of global migration, including labor migration and refugees; consider how immigration/emigration differs from other kinds of movement; how population mobility highlights the construction and reconstruction of nation-states; the ways in which the resulting cultural diversity plays into local and nation-state politics; and how cultural diasporas influence politics in their home and host countries. We’ll also consider these questions as they affect local communities (including upstate NY) and explore the gendered nature of migration. 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 AND STYLE: Discussion, lecture, films, fiction and nonfiction readings.

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Three papers and a take-home exam. Standard grading

 

 

POLT 34100 - 01 U.S. POLITICAL THOUGHT

3 credits 

INSTRUCTOR: Simon Gilhooley 

ENROLLMENT: 25 

PREREQUISITE: None. 

STUDENTS: Open to students from all areas of the college, and of all years. 

COURSE DESCRIPTION: The purpose of this course is to provide a survey of American Political Thought. Arranged chronologically, but drawing upon material from across the entire span of American history, we shall attempt to develop an understanding of concepts such as democracy, liberty, individuality, and republicanism as they pertain to America, and to discuss how understandings of each of them have influenced political and social choices in what would become the contemporary United States. Readings include John Winthrop, John Adams, James Madison, Frederick Douglass, Abraham Lincoln, Martin Luther King, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, & Emma Goldman.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Discussion section.

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: 3 Papers; A-F.

 

 

POLT 35000-01 ST: RADICAL CRITIQUE OF SOCIETY SS LA

3 CREDITS

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

ENROLLMENT: 30

PREREQUISITES: Three courses in social sciences or equivalent.

COURSE DESCRIPTION: Some thinkers appear to hold that the chief cause of unhappiness is the existence of other people.  They hold that society is the source of cruelty, sexual repression, and domination.  It creates needs it cannot satisfy, stunts human development, and restricts freedom.  We will survey some of these criticisms in the work of Rousseau, Marx, Nietzsche, Freud, and Foucault.  We will attempt an empirical assessment of some aspects of these criticisms using studies of domination, prisons, and the history of manners.

 

 

POLT 36600-01, 02 ENVIRONMENTAL POLITICS

3 credits 

INSTRUCTOR: Tom Shevory, 315 Muller Faculty Center, Ext. 4-1347 

ENROLLMENT: 18 per section

COURSE DESCRIPTION: Course considers an array of environmental topics from multiple political perspectives: feminist environmentalisms, environmental justice, climate change, food and agriculture, water scarcity, radical action, species depletion. Course topics will be connected to screenings and events connected to the Finger Lakes Environmental Film Festival. Possible texts include: Mark Hertsgaard, Heat Wave, Rebecca Solnit, A Paradise Built in Hell, Jiang Rong, Wolf Totem, Michael Pollan, Omnivore’s Dilemma, Craig Rosebraugh, Burning Rage of a Dying Planet: Speaking for the Earth Liberation Front, Kenneth Murchison, The Snail Darter Case. 

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Class will consist of reading, lecture, and class discussion. 

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Three papers on class readings will be required. 

 

POLT 40105-01 SEM: IMPERIALISMS IN THE ASIA-PACIFIC

3 CREDITS

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

ENROLLMENT: 15

PREREQUISITES: Three courses in the social sciences or equivalent (or permission of the instructor)

COURSE DESCRIPTION: This course will focus on the question of empire in our own times through the lens of imperialisms and imperial encounters of the past. We will explore in particular the contemporary legacies and manifestations of Chinese, Japanese, European and American imperialisms in the Asia-Pacific region. Two general questions animating the course are, first, how do different ideas and practices of imperialism intertwine with one another? (Is imperialism the same over time and in different places?) Second, how do ideas and practices of imperialism(s) intertwine with ideas and practices of the international state system? (Now that we’re a world of states, is imperialism a thing of the past?) We will also consider how different forms and strategies of opposition to imperialism shed light on the politics of empire in the region (and beyond). In doing so, we will examine competing narratives about territory, identity, race and experiences of colonial encounters—and how power relations shape whose stories count in which contexts. Throughout the course we will reflect critically on how our own lives relate to the topics under discussion. Some key concepts we will interrogate include imperialism, colonialism, decolonization, sovereignty, nation/alism, and state. 

COURSE FORMAT AND STYLE: discussion

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: active participation, weekly blog contributions, short essay on topic of student’s choice, final take-home exam

 

 

POLT 40106-01 SEM: CATHOLICS AND POLITICS LA SS
3 CREDITS
INSTRUCTOR: Juan Arroyo, Muller 316, Ext. 4-3969
ENROLLMENT: 15
PREREQUISITES: 1 Politics course and 2 courses in social sciences
COURSE DESCRIPTION: The Catholic Church is one of the oldest continuous institutions in world history. 5 out of 9 Supreme Court Justices are Catholic, as are both 2012 vice-presidential nominees. Christian Democratic parties (inspired by Papal doctrines on labor and economics) are major players in political systems of many countries. These are just a few indicators of the Church’s prominence in the political world. This course will guide students as they analyze the politics of the Catholic Church and the politics within the institution. The course has three major themes. The first is a review of the history of Church and state, in Europe, the US and in the rest of the world, including key events and controversies. This part examines the changing balance between church and state in different cultures and times. The second theme looks look at the Church’s understanding of prominent policies, such as birth control, abortion, marriage, economic justice, and foreign affairs. The point is to examine the internal debate on such issues, revealing the richness of Catholic thought from different perspectives. Finally, we will also consider the internal politics of the church, and how different interests might be affected by changes in the societies of the world. The spring semester comes just after the 50th anniversary of the opening of the Second Vatican Council. One of our sessions will be devoted to a simulation of the debates that took place.

COURSE FORMAT AND STYLE: Some presentations; discussion of readings.
COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Readings, active participation in class; one in-class presentation of your first 8-12 page paper. 2nd and final paper (8-12 pages); participation in simulation. 

 

POLT 40202 – 01 SEM: WRITING AND CRITICISM

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 40400-01 TUT: POLITICAL THEORY SELF CONSCIOUSNESS

1-4 CREDITS

INSTRUCTOR: Adnan Selimović

ENROLLMENT: 5
PREREQUISITE: JR/SR standing and three courses in the social sciences of which at least one must be in POLT, or permission of Instructor
COURSE DESCRIPTION: What does it mean to be self-aware; is self-consciousness political? What is autonomy; can this concept help us hone our ideas of political empowerment? These are just a few versions of the question, which has underpinned many of the most influential social and political philosophies in Europe and the US. In this course we will explore the most radical of historical articulations around the question of individual persons and society. More specifically, our attention will be focused on Existentialism, Critical Theory, Postcolonial Though, Post structuralism, Radical Feminism, and Queer Theory. If this course has a primary objective, it is to strive for critical clarity on the nature of our individual perception of what it means to be a person in contemporary society and raise unnerving questions about the so-called social and personal compromise. The hope is that through this exploration we will strengthen and deepen the terms of social and political critique. Some of the major thinkers on the agenda will include: Frederic Nietzsche, Simone De Beauvoir, Franz Fanon, Erich Fromm, Herbert Marcuse, bell hooks, Hakim Bey, and Lee Edelman.
COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Seminar
COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Term-long individual projects.

 

 

POLT 40500-01 INTERNSHIPS NLA

Variable Credit

INSTRUCTOR: Thomas Shevory, 315 Muller Faculty Center, 4-1347

ENROLLMENT: 5

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

STUDENTS: Interested students should see Thomas Shevory 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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