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Mary Neuburger, Director BUR 452, 2505 University Avenue, Stop F3600, Austin, TX 78712 • 512-471-3607

Summer 2008

REE s335 • Politics of New Democracies

Unique Days Time Location Instructor
88695 MTWThF
10:00 AM-11:30 AM
MEZ BO.306

Course Description

One of the most important developments in the last quarter century has been the expansion of democracy around the world. The most dramatic events of the late 20th century - the fall of the Berlin Wall, the end of apartheid, the collapse of the Soviet Union, and the end of the Cold War - have all been associated with what scholars have called the "third wave" of democratization. As the threat of communism has been replaced by the threat of international terrorism, the role of democracy and its spread around the globe has remained central. Fighting terrorism has presented consolidated and emergent democracies with their greatest challenge to date. Democracy is seen as a primary antidote to the terrorist threat as well as its chief target. This course will examine the process of democratization in an attempt to determine which factors make the consolidation of democracy in a formerly authoritarian system more likely. The course will be organized thematically rather than regionally, meaning that we will deal primarily with broad issues that (conceivably) can be generalized to all cases. The examples of democratization used in the course will be drawn primarily from Latin America and post-communist states (Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union) and secondarily from Asia and Africa. After a survey of the central concepts surrounding democratization, the class will focus on specific factors related to successful democratization including: modernization, political culture, institutional design, civil society, and globalization.


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