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Robert G. Moser, Chair BAT 2.116, Mailcode A1800, Austin, TX 78712 • 512-471-5121

Course Descriptions

GOV 310L • American Government

38675
Meets MWF 1200pm-100pm BUR 136
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This course is an introduction to American government and politics.  While the main focus is on the national level, additional attention is paid to the state and local governments of Texas. Topics will include U.S. political history, political institutions, elections, public opinion, rights and freedoms, and public policy issues.

GOV 310L • American Government

38680
Meets MWF 100pm-200pm ART 1.110
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This course is an introduction to American government and politics.  While the main focus is on the national level, additional attention is paid to the state and local governments of Texas. Topics will include U.S. political history, political institutions, elections, public opinion, rights and freedoms, and public policy issues.

GOV 310L • American Government

38685
Meets MWF 200pm-300pm CLA 0.128
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This course is an introduction to American government and politics.  While the main focus is on the national level, additional attention is paid to the state and local governments of Texas. Topics will include U.S. political history, political institutions, elections, public opinion, rights and freedoms, and public policy issues.

GOV 310L • American Government

38690
Meets TTH 800am-930am MEZ 1.306
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This course is an introduction to American government and politics.  While the main focus is on the national level, additional attention is paid to the state and local governments of Texas. Topics will include U.S. political history, political institutions, elections, public opinion, rights and freedoms, and public policy issues.

GOV 310L • American Government

38695
Meets MWF 1100am-1200pm MEZ B0.306
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This course is an introduction to American government and politics.  While the main focus is on the national level, additional attention is paid to the state and local governments of Texas. Topics will include U.S. political history, political institutions, elections, public opinion, rights and freedoms, and public policy issues.

GOV 310L • American Government

38700 • Leal, David L.
Meets TTH 1100am-1230pm PAI 3.02
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Course Description

This course will introduce you to the government and politics of the United States and Texas.  We will cover U.S. political history, political institutions, elections, public opinion, rights and freedoms, and public policy issues.  The class begins with the creation of the nation and its fundamental features, including the adoption of the Constitution, the development of democracy, and the importance of federalism.  The class then examines public input into the political system, particularly public opinion, individual and group participation, and the political parties.  Public input is nowhere better found than in congressional and presidential elections, which are separately discussed.  In fact, the main textbook of the class argues that American government can only be fully understood by studying the central role of elections. We then explore the basic institutional building blocks of government – the Congress, presidency, bureaucracy, and courts, as well as the media.  We continue by discussing fundamental civil liberties and civil rights, followed by the key policy issues that face national, state, and local governments today.  The class will also cover the central features of Texas government and politics and make frequent comparisons between American government and Texas government. 

 

Grading Policy

First midterm: 30%

Second midterm: 32%

Third exam: 33%. 

Essay: 5%

 

Texts

Morris P. Fiorina, Paul E. Peterson, Bertram Johnson, and William G. Mayer.  The New American Democracy (either 7th edition, 2011, or the most recent version).

 

GOV 310L • American Government

38705 • O'Brien, Shannon Bow
Meets MWF 200pm-300pm MEZ 1.306
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Course Description:

This course is an introduction to American Government. It is designed to give you a basic idea of the functions, activities, and interactions of our federal system. Our government is a dynamic entity that has evolved over time and shaped by both internal and external forces. The goal of this class is to provide you with tools to understand American Institutions.  Through learning the duties, powers, and limitations of government, you can better appreciate the impact of current events upon America.

 

 Grades:

 

Grades will based on the following:

Test 1  25% 
Test 2  30% 
Test 3  35% 


Paper Assignments: Total Weight is 5% each or 10% total

Paper Assignment 1   

Paper Assignment 2    

 

Required Readings:

 

There is ONE (1) book required for this course.  You can purchase it either as a hardcopy version from the bookstore/online/etc or as an electronic version.

 

American Politics Today, 3rd Essentials Edition by William T. Bianco and David T. Canon 2013 W. W. Norton and Company.

GOV 310L • American Government

38715 • McDaniel, Eric
Meets MW 830am-1000am
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GOV 310L AMERICAN GOVERNMENT - WB

Eric McDaniel & Bethany Albertson 

 

Prerequisites

 

6 hours of college course-work.  This course fulfills the first half of the legislative requirement for Government.

 

Course Description

 

This course is designed to provide an introduction to the processes and issues of United States and Texas government.  The course will cover the relevant institutions in the development of the governmental process as well as discuss the role of the citizens in shaping our government.

 

Mandatory course meetings take place online during scheduled class times, via live-streaming video. Students will be responsible for using their own devices and using an appropriate Internet connection, or for accessing the course from a campus computer lab.  Students are strongly encouraged to visit the following page http://www.laits.utexas.edu/tower/gov310l/ to test their computer and network connection.

 

Topics:

 

I.             Introduction to the Study of Politics

II.            Pre-constitutional America

III.           The Constitution

IV.          Federalism

V.            Civil Liberties and Civil Rights

VI.          Interest Groups

VII.         Political Parties

VIII.        The Congress

IX.           The President (and Bureaucracy)

X.            The Courts

XI.           Texas Government

XII.         The News Media

XIII.        Public Opinion and Voting Behavior

XIV.        Campaigns and Elections

XV.         Economic policy

XVI.        Social Welfare Policy

XVII.      Foreign Policy

  

Grading Policy

 

Grades will be based on the following breakdown:

 

Weekly Quizzes                (Thirteen in all; each worth 10 points; drop the three low scores)              100 points

Take-home Essays           (Three in all; each worth 50 points)          150 points

Participation/Simulations                             50 points

TOTAL                   300 points

                       

 

Texts

 

Ken Kollman, 2013. “The American Political System,”. New York: Norton.

 

The Texas portion of the course will be covered through free material provided on the Texas Politics website (http://texaspolitics.laits.utexas.edu/index.html)

GOV 310L • American Government-Honors

38722 • Tulis, Jeffrey
Meets TTH 200pm-330pm GAR 2.112
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Introduction to American Politics

 

This honors seminar offers an introduction to American politics that emphasizes the confluence of ideas, mores, institutions, and interests, in the constitutional system. This course covers more theory, and the readings are more demanding, than other versions of GOV 310. 

 

One of the main objectives of the course is to deepen your understanding of the practical aspects of contemporary public affairs by developing your ability to understand the theoretical foundations of American politics.  Although we cover the nuts and bolts of politics there is much more theory in this version of GOV 310. If you have registered for this section mainly because 310 is a legislative requirement that you need to fulfill, this is not the right version for you.  There is a substantial workload in this class.

 

Regular attendance, thorough and timely preparation, and active participation are all necessary to do well.

 

Course requirements:

 

  1. Four essays (approximately 1000 words each).  Three of these will be assigned analytic essay topics. The last will be a book review of a title chosen by the student from a long list of provided possibilities.   (15% each essay, 60% of total course grade)

 

  1. Two in-class tests. These will count 15% each, 30% of total course grade.

 

  1. Class participation. (10% of course grade).  Both informed participation and occasional leadership of the seminar will be graded.

 

No make-up exams or late papers, except for documented medical or other emergencies.

 

Texts: (tentative)

Joseph M. Bessette and John J. Pitney, American Government and Politics: Deliberation, Democracy and Citizenship

Mary Nichols and David Nichols, Readings in American Government

Thomas Mann and Norman Ornstein, Its Even Worse Than It Looks: How the American Constitutional System Collided With the New Politics of Extremism

Bruce Ackerman,Before the Next Attack: Preserving Civil Liberties in an Age of Terrorism

GOV 312L • Iss & Policies In Amer Gov-Hon

38724 • Wellhausen, Rachel
Meets TTH 930am-1100am MEZ 1.120
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GOV 312 with Writing Flag • Issues & Policies In American Government: US in the World Economy

 This course explores the changing role of the US in the world economy, from the 1800s through the present, and the consequences of that role for American politics today. Some of the key issues to be explored include: Is globalization really a new phenomenon, and is it irreversible? What are the effects of globalization on wages and inequality, social safety nets, production, innovation, and crisis in the United States? How does the United States interact with developing countries in an interconnected global economy? The requirements include two essays that will be substantially revised and expanded throughout the semester. No prerequisites are required.

 

Grading Policy:

Peer review, attendance, participation       20%

Essay 1: First draft                                        10%

Essay 1: Final draft                                       20%

Essay 2: First draft                                        20%

Essay 2: Final draft                                       30%

 

Textbooks:

Tyler Cowen (2011). The Great Stagnation.

Pietra Rivoli (2005). The Travels of a T-Shirt in the Global Economy: An Economist Examines the Markets, Power, and Politics of World Trade.

Martin Wolf (2005). Why Globalization Works.

GOV 312L • Issues & Policies In Amer Gov

38725
Meets MWF 900am-1000am MEZ B0.306
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Government 312L satisfies the second half of the mandated six hours of government that every UT student must take.  Course covers analysis of varying topics concerned with American political institutions and policies, including the United States Constitution, and assumes basic knowledge of government from GOV 310L, which is a prerequiste. May be taken for credit only once.

GOV 312L • Issues & Policies In Amer Gov

38730
Meets MWF 1200pm-100pm BUR 112
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Government 312L satisfies the second half of the mandated six hours of government that every UT student must take.  Course covers analysis of varying topics concerned with American political institutions and policies, including the United States Constitution, and assumes basic knowledge of government from GOV 310L, which is a prerequiste. May be taken for credit only once.

GOV 312L • Issues & Policies In Amer Gov

38735 • Chapman, Terrence
Meets MWF 1000am-1100am MEZ 1.306
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38735 GOV 312L 

Prerequisites:

None

 Course Description 

This course provides a basic and broad introduction to U.S. foreign policy and international relations theory.   The course covers classic approaches to studying international relations and foreign policy and deals with issues areas ranging from military intervention, terrorism, and international law to international trade, finance, and environmental cooperation. 

Grading:

3 exams: 25% each

Weekly quizzes: 25% in total

Textbook:

Jon Pevehouse and Joshua Goldstein, International Relations, 10th edition

Various journal articles and news items, available electronically on blackboard.

GOV 312L • Issues & Policies In Amer Gov

38740 • Buchanan, Bruce
Meets MWF 1100am-1200pm MEZ 1.306
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Course Purpose This course seeks to help you do better the two things citizens must do well if the presidency is to work:  choose and judge presidents.  It tries to offer useful answers to the question, “Where should I look and what should I look for to better choose and judge?”  The concepts and information presented are similar to those found in other presidency courses, but with one important difference.  Here they are subordinated to the citizen’s-eye-view of the presidency and tested for relevance to the evaluation of presidential performance and presidential candidate qualifications.

 

Course Organization   The course is organized into the following three parts and associated lecture topics

 

A.  Presidential Precedents How do past presidents (and national experience, and changing circumstances) influence the way an incumbent chief executive performs and is judged?

 

            1.  Introduction:  Functions and Values

            2.  The Presidency Defined and Launched: Washington

             3.  The Presidency Democratized:  Jefferson and Jackson                          

            4.  Presidential Morality and Power:  Polk and Lincoln

            5.  The Presidency Modernized:  TR, Wilson, FDR

            6.  Why Reputations Change:  Truman, Eisenhower, JFK

            7.  The Impact of Vietnam and Watergate:  Johnson and Nixon

            8.  Preliminary Appraisals:  From Ford to Bush II

            9.  The Lessons of Presidential   History

 

B.  Current Presidential Operations  What is the president's "job description", and how can we tell if the incumbent is performing well?

 

            1.  Introduction:  The Grounds for Judgment

            2.  The Campaign for Office

            3.  The Domestic Policy Arena

            4.  Confronting Congress

            5.  Media:  The Classic Dilemma

            6.  The Budget and Economic Policy

            7.  Foreign Policy

            8.  Presidential Competence and the Public Interest

 

C.  Evaluating Presidential Candidates.  What are the reasons for preferring one presidential candidate to another?

 

            1.  Introduction:  Five Dimensions of Presidential Leadership

            2.  Candidate Qualifications

            3.  Character:  Avoiding Troubled Candidates

 

D.  Course Conclusion:  The Division of Labor

 

                                                           Student Responsibilities

 

            1.  Attendance is required.  More than three absences=lower course grade (one-half letter                  grade reduction for each absence after 3).

 

            2. Make-up exams are for emergencies only, not for scheduling convenience.  Eligibility will be determined on a case-by-case basis.  Students facing emergencies must notify the instructor or a T.A. before missing an exam unless it is physically impossible.

 

            3.  Unexcused absences from any scheduled exam may result in a score of zero for that exam. 

                                                                 Grading Criteria

 

2 multiple choice mid-term examinations                                       30% each

1 mixed-mode (multiple choice and essay) final exam,                    40%

Note:  Pluses and minuses will not be used for final course grades

 

                                                               Required Readings

 

J.A. Pika, and J.A. Maltese. 2013.  The Politics of the Presidency, (8th Edition).

 

M. Nelson, ed. 2012. The Evolving Presidency. (4th Edition).

 

One national daily newspaper:  e.g., The Washington Post, New York Times, or  Wall Street Journal

GOV 312L • Issues & Policies In Amer Gov

38745 • Budziszewski, J.
Meets MW 330pm-500pm MEZ 1.306
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Substantial writing component.  Fulfills second half of legislative requirement for 6 hours of American Government.  Includes strongly encouraged, but voluntary, Supplemental Instruction discussion sections, which are statistically associated with higher grades for those students who participate.

 

DESCRIPTION

 

Americans are often said to be obsessed with their Constitution.  So be it; but then it behooves us to know something about it.  The approach taken in this course is to return to the early debates surrounding its writing and ratification.  We make no use at all of textbooks; rather we study the political thinking of the early Americans in their own words.

 

Another old saw is that history is written by the winners.  However, this is not be a course in winner-worship:  Equal attention and respect are given, on the one hand, to those who wrote the Constitution and argued for its ratification, and on the other, to those who argued against it or demanded sweeping changes in its content.  There are several good reasons for such evenhandedness.  One is that, for all we know, the losers might have been right.  Another is that they might have had some influence on the winners.  Still a third is that we can't fully understand the arguments by which the winners won unless we understand what they were arguing against.

 

Having spoken of history, I should now admit that this is not a "history course" in the ordinary sense.  Rather it is a course in early American political thought -- in political theory and philosophy.  Another thing that you should understand is that this course puts heavy emphasis on the development of skills in interpretive reading, critical thinking, and analytical writing.  For instance, it doesn't matter that you can read what a writer has written and figure out what he believes.  What matters is whether you can learn to figure out why he believes it, and how it is logically related to other things he believes.  In other words, when you read you are expected to look for arguments, not just propositions.

 

 

REQUIREMENTS

 

Unit 1: Required analytical outline.

 

Unit 2:  Required take-home essay.  Extra credit for analytical outline.

 

Unit 3:  Required take-home essay.  Extra credit for analytical outline.

 

Thirteen short quizzes.

 

Attendance in Supplemental Instruction discussion sections is STRONGLY recommended but not required, and is statistically correlated with better performance and therefore higher grades.

Final grades are calculated in four steps.  First, each student's TWO lowest quiz grades are dropped, and remaining quiz grades averaged.  Second, this average is "curved."  Third, the uncurved exam grades and the curved quiz average are weighted, as follows:

 

            Unit 1 analytical outlines                                                             25%

            Unit 2 take-home exam (uncurved, counting extra credit points)       25%

            Unit 3 take-home exam (uncurved, counting extra credit points)       25%

            Curved quiz average                                                                   25%

 

Class participation and attendance modify grades.  Scholastic dishonesty results in a failing grade for the course.

 

See the “Other things my students may need” section at the bottom of the Teaching page at my personal website:  http://www.UndergroundThomist.org/teaching , especiall the course policies in the FAQ, which I expect you to know.

 

TEXTS

 

The following required books have been ordered.  Each book must be purchased.  Always bring with you to class the books we are using at the moment.

 

1. Ralph Ketcham, ed., The Anti-Federalist Papers and the Constitutional Convention Debates, excerpts.

 

2. Alexander Hamilton, James Madison, and John Jay, The Federalist, excerpts.

 

3. Herbert J. Storing, ed., with Murray Dry, The Anti-Federalist, excerpts.

GOV 312L • Issues & Policies In Amer Gov

38750 • Dietz, Henry
Meets MWF 100pm-200pm JGB 2.324
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GOV 312L – Poverty and Politics

 

Prerequisites – none

 

Description – the course first examines how poverty is defined in the US and elsewhere, and what competing explanations are offered to account for the existence and persistence of poverty in the US and in Texas.  Second, it covers historically what sorts of policies have been tried to deal with poverty, including the Great Depression, the War on Poverty, and current discussions about poverty and inequality, again looking at the US and Texas.  The third part of the course looks at poverty and inequality on a global basis.

 

Grades – grades will be determined in the basis of three in-class exams consisting of short answers and essay question .  Each exam counts on third of the course grade.  Students may also write an optional paper that counts as much as one exam; however, the paper does NOT replace an exam grade.

 

Texts (subject to change)

 

DiNitto and Johnson, Essentials of Social Welfare

Rodgers, American Poverty in a New Era of Reform

Isbister, Promises Not Kept

GOV 312L • Issues & Policies In Amer Gov

38755 • Philpot, Tasha
Meets TTH 930am-1100am GSB 2.124
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Description

 

This course examines the ways in which the media shape how we think about race. In doing so, this course will first explore the nature and construction of race. Second, it will examine the media establishment and its role in politics. Third, it will apply theories of media norms to explore how racial stereotypes of the four largest minority groups in the U.S. are created and perpetuated. Finally, this course will examine the effects of racialized media images on political processes.

 

This course carries the flag for Cultural Diversity in the United States. Cultural Diversity courses are designed to increase your familiarity with the variety and richness of the American cultural experience. You should therefore expect a substantial portion of your grade to come from assignments covering the practices, beliefs, and histories of at least one U.S. cultural group that has experienced persistent marginalization.

 

Prerequisites

 

Twenty-four semester hours of college coursework, including Government 310L, and a passing score on the reading section of the Texas Higher Education Assessment (THEA) test (or an appropriate assessment test).

 

Required Text Books

 

Wilson II, Clint C., Felix Gutierrez, and Lena M. Chao.  2012.  Racism, Sexism and the Media: The Rise of Class Communication in Multicultural America, 4th Ed.  Thousand Oaks: Sage Publications.

 

Graber, Doris A and Johanna Dunaway.  2014.  Mass Media and American Politics, 9nd Ed.  Washington, DC: CQ Press.

 

Grading

 

Exam 1                                                25%

Term Paper                              25%

Exam 2                                    25%

Quizzes and in-class assignments                   25%

GOV 312L • Issues & Policies In Amer Gov

38760 • Enelow, James
Meets TTH 330pm-500pm MEZ 1.306
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 ISSUES & POLICIES IN AMERICAN GOVT: TEXAS POLITICAL HISTORY

 

Required Reading

 

Randolph B. Campbell, Gone to Texas: A History of the Lone Star State, Oxford University Press, 2nd edition, 2012 (paperback)

 

Description

 

This course will examine the major events and personalities in Texas political history from 16th century Spanish Texas up to the present. We will adopt a narrative approach, stressing the issues and concerns that motivated the major actors who helped shape the history of this state and also seeing events in Texas in the larger context of European, Mexican, and American history.

 

Exams and Grades

 

There will be three in-class, multiple-choice exams on the dates noted below. There is no final exam. The first two exams have 35 questions and the last one has 30 questions for a total of 100 questions on all three exams.  The raw scores on the three exams are added and the total raw scores are then used to determine your final grade. 100-87 = A, 86-85 = A-, 84-83 = B+, 82-77 = B, 76-75 = B-, 74-73 = C+, 72-67 = C, 66-65 = C-, 64-55 = D, 54-0 = F. There is no extra credit. A make-up exam (IDs and short answer questions) will be given only if an exam is missed for a valid reason. See Blackboard (under “Course Documents”) for a lengthier description of the grading system. Each exam covers only material since the exam just before it.

GOV 312L • Issues & Policies In Amer Gov

38765 • Madrid, Raul L.
Meets MW 300pm-430pm WEL 3.502
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Prerequisites

 

None

 

Course Description

 

This course will analyze the origins and consequences of U.S. policies toward Latin America. The first third of the course provides some basic background on U.S.-Latin American relations. We will identify the main actors in U.S. policymaking in the region, discuss different theories that seek to explain U.S.-Latin American relations, and examine the history of U.S.-Latin American relations from the colonial period to World War II. The second part of the course will deal with U.S.-Latin American relations during the Cold War, from 1945 to 1990. The topics examined here will include the Cuban missile crisis and the Bay of Pigs, U.S. support for South American military regimes, and U.S. policy toward guerrilla movements in Central America. The final section of the course will examine current issues in U.S.-Latin American relations, including trade, immigration, narcotics and the promotion of human rights and democracy.

 

This course carries the ethics and leadership flag and, as a result, at least one-third of the course will be devoted to practical ethics. In the exams and the paper, students will be asked to defend and critique U.S. policies in the region from an ethical perspective. The course will emphasize the difficulty of ethical policymaking in a complex world of competing goals and interests. Students will be encouraged to examine policy choices from a variety of viewpoints, weighing the perspectives of U.S. policymakers as well as Latin American leaders and citizens.

 

Grading:

 

2 in-class examinations with multiple choice and essay questions (30% each)

1 in-class examination with multiple choice questions only (20%)

1 5-6 page policy research paper (20%)

 

Texts:

 

Danner, Mark. The Massacre at El Mozote. New York: Vintage Books, 1994.

 

Kennedy, Robert. Thirteen Days: A Memoir of the Cuban Missile Crisis. New York: W. W. Norton and Co. 1999.

 

Weeks, Gregory. U.S. and Latin American Relations. New York: Pearson/Longman, 2008.

GOV 312L • Issues & Policies In Amer Gov

38770-38773 • Moser, Robert
Meets TTH 1100am-1230pm
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GOV 312L:  US Foreign Policy

 

Since its founding, the United States has played a central role in shaping the larger international political order.  American victories in World War I, World War II, and the Cold War coupled with its support for democracy and open global markets stand at the heart of this legacy.  At the same time, external pressures in the form of war, globalization, and the spread of transnational ideological movements have stressed American institutions and shaped an evolving American national identity.  This course explores this mutually interactive relationship by examining the making of American foreign policy over the past two centuries more broadly.  It explores such topics as American entry into World Wars I and II, the role of Congress in foreign policy making, the construction of the national security state in the twentieth century, competing partisan conceptions of America’s national interest, the Cold War, nuclear deterrence and proliferation, territorial expansion, trade liberalization, nation building, humanitarian intervention, and more recent challenges like terrorism.  As part of this broad overview, the course will also explore the moral and ethical dilemmas of many foreign policy challenges faced by the United States. Should the United States ever use torture when combatting its enemies?  Does the U.S. have an interest or even an obligation to promote democracy abroad?  When is military intervention justified?  What is our moral obligation to address global warming?

This course fulfills the second half of legislative requirement for government and may be counted toward the ethics and leadership flag requirement. May be taken for credit only once.  

Designed to accommodate 800 or more students. Course meets online during scheduled class times and includes a live-streaming video component. Students are encouraged to visit http://www.laits.utexas.edu/tower/gov312lusfp  to test their computer and network connection and learn about the course structure.

Grading Policy: TBD

NO TEXTBOOKS REQUIRED

GOV 312P • Constitutnl Prins: Core Texts

38775 • Stauffer, Dana
Meets MWF 1200pm-100pm MEZ 1.306
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This course examines the principles that lie at the core of the American political system. Why do we, as Americans, stand for liberty, equality, and democracy? How did these come to be our principles? How has our commitment to these principles manifested itself in our political history? How has our understanding of these principles changed over time, and what do these principles demand of us today?

 

We will begin by considering the theoretical foundations of our liberal democracy in the thought of John Locke. Then we will consider how the political theory of modern liberalism found expression in the American Founding. We will examine the considerations that led the Founders to design the Constitution as they did, as well the arguments of those who opposed the Constitution, the Anti-Federalists. We will turn from the Founding period to Alexis de Tocqueville’s great work Democracy in America, and consider his analysis of American political life and of the American character more generally. After that, we will consider how liberty and equality became thematic issues in the debate over slavery. We will examine the ways in which Americans conceived of liberty and equality changed in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. We will examine how those principles were defended in the context of the Cold War. And we will conclude by considering some of the most compelling and provocative assessments of American life today.

 

Requirements: A mid-term exam, an optional paper, and a final exam. Class participation is taken into consideration and attendance counts.

 

Texts:

Second Treatise of Government by John Locke

The Federalist Papers

Democracy in America by Alexis de Tocqueville

A Course Reader

GOV 314 • Math Methods:political Science

38780 • Enelow, James
Meets MW 300pm-430pm RLM 5.114
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Prereqs: None

 

Course description:

The purpose of the course is to fill in the gaps in the student’s mathematical background for a better understanding of the analytical methods used to study government. Topics covered include sets, numbers, linear and quadratic equations, matrices, exponential functions, sequences, and probability. It is expected that students will know little or nothing about these subjects at the beginning of the course.

 

Grading policy:

There will be 3 exams and 6 unannounced quizzes with the lowest 2 quizzes thrown out. The scores on these tests will be added together and curved to determine the final grade. The curve will be 30% A’s, 35% B’s, 20% C’s, 10% D’s, 5%  F’s. There will be no plus or minus grades.

 

Readings:

The text will be chapters 0-8 of Mathematical Applications for the Management, Life, and Social Sciences (10th edition) by Ronald J. Harshbarger and James J. Reynolds (Brooks/Cole, Cengage Learning).

 

Flag:

Quantitative Reasoning

GOV 314 • Human Rts: Theors/Pracs Gov

38785 • Gregg, Benjamin
Meets TTH 930am-1100am PAR 203
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TITLE: “Human Rights: Theories and Practices”

 

Prerequisites

 

None

 

Course Description

 

This seminar provides a basic introduction to human rights by exploring competing answers to such questions as: What is the idea of human rights? Who are the “humans” of human rights? In a state-centric world, how do human rights relate to the nation-state and beyond any state? How are human rights related to the history of European empire and commerce? How are human rights related to the European Enlightenment? How are human rights related to global poverty, inequality, and underdevelopment? What roles do international instruments play -- or fail to play? How are human rights related to non-European cultures, such as various East Asian and African cultures? The seminar will also consider alternative approaches to understanding and advancing human rights, including human rights as political not theological; generating universal human rights out of local norms; individuals as authors of human rights; translating human rights into local cultural vernaculars; and advancing human rights through cognitive reframing.

 

Grading Policy

 

Average of four essays (each 5 pages), adjusted for quality of in-class participation

 

Required Text

 

Benjamin Gregg, Human Rights as Social Construction (Cambridge University Press, 2012), paperback (ISBN: 9781107612945)

 

Flag: Writing

GOV 322M • Politics In China

38790 • LU, XIAOBO
Meets TTH 1100am-1230pm WAG 201
(also listed as ANS 322M)
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GOV 322M Course Description:

 

This Course is designed as an introductory course in Chinese politics primarily for upper-level undergraduates with a good background in political/social science, but not necessarily any background on China. The aim of the course is to provide a foundation that will enable the non-specialist to make informed use of China as a case in more general arguments and give the intended China specialist a solid footing from which to pursue more in-depth study of particular topics.  

 

Grading:

 

Grading will be based principally on a series of in-class quizzes and exams.

 

Textbooks:

 

TBD

 

Flag:

 

Global Cultures

GOV 324L • Govs & Polit Of Western Europe

38795 • Givens, Terri
Meets MWF 900am-1000am PAR 1
(also listed as EUS 350)
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Course Description

Europe has experienced major change since World War II, from the fall of the Berlin Wall to European enlargement, with Croatia increasing the size of the EU to 28 member states. European integration, and ethnic conflict have presented major challenges for the governments of Western Europe. The current fiscal crisis has complicated politics in the EU, and challenged the survival of both the Euro and the broader European project. This course will introduce the governments and politics of countries in Western Europe and a comparative politics approach will be used.

 

What is comparative politics?

Comparative politics is the field within political science that tries to explain why countries vary in their domestic political institutions, their level of political and economic development, and their public policies.  Other fields in political science include international relations, political theory and American politics.

 

Course Requirements

This course is designed to provide students with an overview of the political institutions of European governments and the European Union.  By the end of the course students will be expected to be able to describe the different types of government institutions and how they impact politics and policy making in Europe. They will also be expected to describe some of the important issues facing European governments, including issues related to immigration, the financial crisis and European enlargement. Student achievement of these goals will be assessed through exams and written assignments as described below.

 

To receive credit for the course, students are required to complete all assigned readings and to attend lecture (the TA will be taking attendance after the first week of class).  Any assignments not completed within a week of the due date will be given a zero.  There will be two exams and weekly assignments.  The overall grading breakdown is as follows:

 

Exam 1                                                            25%

Exam 2                                                            25%

Weekly assignments                                       40%

Participation                                                    10%

Total                                                                100%

 

Plus-Minus grading will be used:

 

Texts

Gallagher, Laver and Mair, Representative Government in Modern Europe (Fifth Edition)

John McCormick, Understanding the European Union: A Concise Introduction (The European Union Series), Fifth edition.

GOV 328L • Intro To Lat Amer Gov & Pol

38800 • Dietz, Henry
Meets TTH 200pm-330pm WEL 2.308
(also listed as LAS 337M)
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GOV 328L/LAS 337M – Latin American Politics

 

Prerequisites – GOV 310L and 312L

 

Description – the course assumes no prior knowledge of Latin America.  It begins with a overall view of the region, including its historical background, geography, economic and social characteristics, and the basic models of governance post-World War II.  It then examines several specific Latin American countries (including Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Cuba, Guatemala, Mexico, Nicaragua, Peru among others) and how these basic ways of governance have succeeded and/or failed.  The course then examines US-Latin American relations.

 

Grades – grades are determined by three exams (short answer and essay); each counts a third of the final grade.  Students may also write an optional paper that counts a quarter of the final grade.  The optional paper does not replace or count for any of the exams.

 

Texts (subject to change)

 

                Wiarda and Kline, A Concise Introduction to Latin American Politics

                Blake, Latin American Political Development

                Weeks, US and Latin American Relations

 

Flag: Global Cultures

GOV 335M • Politics And Reality

38815 • Edwards, David
Meets TTH 800am-930am MEZ 1.102
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GOV 335M Politics and Reality

 

Course Description

In this course we'll be reading and discussing various ideas about why different people experience reality differently, and how the differing ways people experience reality and then act upon that experience can result in changes in reality--for them and for others--over time.  We'll then ask how we and others can use this knowledge to create changes we or they desire.  

    Much of our study will focus on basic aspects of everyday life, especially interpersonal and intergroup relations.  Most of that study will be theoretical, combining aspects of psychology, philosophy, sociology, theology, anthropology, and other aspects of the human sciences.  From time to time, however, we'll also consider some aspects of political action.

 

The Readings

 

TBD

 

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Writing

GOV 335M • Politics And Reality

38820 • Edwards, David
Meets TTH 1100am-1230pm BAT 5.102
show description

GOV 335M Politics and Reality

 

Course Description

In this course we'll be reading and discussing various ideas about why different people experience reality differently, and how the differing ways people experience reality and then act upon that experience can result in changes in reality--for them and for others--over time.  We'll then ask how we and others can use this knowledge to create changes we or they desire.  

    Much of our study will focus on basic aspects of everyday life, especially interpersonal and intergroup relations.  Most of that study will be theoretical, combining aspects of psychology, philosophy, sociology, theology, anthropology, and other aspects of the human sciences.  From time to time, however, we'll also consider some aspects of political action.

 

The Readings

 

TBD

 

Flag

 

Writing

GOV 335N • Southern Political History

38825 • Enelow, James
Meets TTH 930am-1100am MEZ B0.306
show description

 SOUTHERN POLITICAL HISTORY

 

 

Required Reading

 

Steve Bickerstaff, Lines in the Sand: Congressional Redistricting in Texas and the Downfall of Tom DeLay, University of Texas, 2007.

Earl Black and Merle Black, The Rise of Southern Republicans, Harvard University

 Press, 2002.

William J. Cooper, Jr. and Thomas E. Terrill, The American South: A History,

         Volumes I and II, Fourth Edition, Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, 2009

Michael Perman, Pursuit of Unity: A Political History of the American South,

         University of North Carolina Press, 2009

Description

The course will review Southern political history from the 1780s to the present. In the first part of the course, we review the events which transformed the South from a region of progressive nationalism from the 1780s to the 1810s to a region of defensive sectionalism from the 1820s to the 1860s. Touching briefly on the Civil War, we then take up Reconstruction and the agrarian movement of the late 19th century, followed by the period of the “Solid South” in the first half of the 20th century. Next we examine the civil rights movement of the 1950s and 60s, followed by the rise of southern Republicans in the late 20th century. Lastly, we examine Texas’s congressional redistricting in 2003.

 

Exams and Grades

There will be three in-class, multiple-choice exams on the dates noted below. The exams are not cumulative. There is no final exam. The first two exams have 35 questions and the last one has 30 questions for a total of 100 points on all three exams. The raw scores on the three exams are added and the total raw scores are then curved to determine your final grade. There is no extra credit. A make-up exam (not multiple-choice) will be given only if an exam is missed for a valid reason. The top 30% of the class will receive an A, the next 35% a B, the next 20% a C, the next 10% a D, and the bottom 5% a grade of F. There are no pluses or minuses.

GOV 342N • Public Choice

38838 • Roberts, Brian
Meets TTH 1100am-1230pm CBA 4.348
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Course Description

 

Public Choice describes a way of thinking about politics.  It starts with the silly assumption that people are rational – people generally know what they want and make choices accordingly – and explores its implications for the likely decisions of such political actors as voters, politicians, bureaucrats, lobbyists, etc..  These decisions include everything from whether to vote in an election to how to design a constitution.  One of the main objectives of the course is to assess the degree to which what we actually observe about politics is consistent with the assumption that people are rational.

 

The goals of the course are to equip you with, and understand the reach of, some critical tools for understanding the decisions of political actors.  If you want to change the way politics works then it is essential that you understand, at the most fundamental level, how it works. Nothing is more fundamental to politics than the choices people make.  If you believe that politics is largely driven by cold, heartless, self-serving decisions then this course offers essential insight.

 

Texts
  • Olson. 1965. The Logic of Collective Action. Harvard University Press
  • North. 1981.  Structure and Change in Economic History. W. W. Norton & Company
  • Hindmoor. 2006. Rational Choice. Palgrave
  • Heckelman. 2004.  Readings in Public Choice Economics. University of Michigan Press
  • Leeson. 2009. The Invisible Hook. Princeton University Press

 

Grading

 

  • Two Tests      40%  (20% each)
  • Final Exam    40% 
  • Quizzes          20%

 

+/- grading is used in this course

GOV 344 • American Foreign Relations

38840 • Wolford, Scott
Meets TTH 930am-1100am GAR 0.102
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GOV 344 American Foreign Relations (38840)

 

Prerequisites:

None

 

Course description:

This course examines the theory and practice of American foreign policy, with a particular focus on the post-1945 era. We focus on systematic, scientific explanations for the why and the how of decisions over war and peace, alliances, trade, and foreign aid, and we will discuss both the international and domestic sources of these policies. The goal is to build a useful, practical base of knowledge for understanding both ongoing and future issues in American foreign relations.

 

Grading Policy:

Students will be graded on three exams (85%) and a combination of quizzes and short writing assignments (15%)

 

Texts:

Ray, James Lee. 2013. American Foreign Policy and Political Ambition, 2nd Ed. Washington, DC: CQ Press.

GOV 350K • Statistical Anly In Polit Sci

38845 • McIver, John
Meets MW 300pm-430pm SAC 5.102
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Instructor:

McIver, J

 

GOV 350K Course Description

 

Description

This course introduces basic concepts and methods of statistics. Emphasis here will be on applications of statistic concepts and methods in political science. The objective of this course is to help students acquire the literacy for understanding more “technical” political science and public policy literature.

Topics include descriptive statistics, probability and probability distributions, sampling, sampling distribution, point estimation, hypothesis testing, contingency tables, and elementary multivariate statistical procedures. Computing will be an integral part of this course. You will use STATA to analyze data from Gallup Surveys, the General Social Survey, and the National Election Study in class and for homework assignments including a final paper.

 

Requirements

310L

 

Textbooks

Philip Pollack, Essentials of Political Analysis

Philip Pollock, A STATA Companion to Political Analysis

 

Grading

A midterm and final examination

Lab & home work

Term paper based on analysis of survey data

Attendance and Participation

 

Flag: Quantitative Reasoning

GOV 351C • Classical Quest For Justice

38850 • Stauffer, Dana
Meets MWF 1100am-1200pm UTC 1.102
(also listed as CTI 320)
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Course Description:

 

This course introduces students to the political thought of classical Greek antiquity.

Ancient Greek thinkers presented their reflections on politics in a variety of ways. Some wrote treatises, but others expressed themselves through plays, histories, and, of course, dialogues. While the authors we will read in this course present their work in different formats, they all address themselves to the simplest and deepest questions raised by political life, and offer profound insight into the answers to those questions. Two main themes lie at the heart of their common inquiry: Justice—what it is, and how human beings can attain it—and the human good. Examples of the questions that we will take up are: What is the best form of political community? Why philosophize? What is human virtue? Do human beings necessarily follow their self-interest? Is devotion possible? Do we have free will? What is courage? What is friendship? What is a good life? We will not approach the texts as historical curiosities, but rather, as potential sources of wisdom about the greatest questions we face in our own lives.

 

Required Texts:

• Aristotle’s Politics. Translated by Ernest Barker. (Oxford)

• Thucydides’ History of the Peloponnesian War. (Penguin Classics)

Four Comedies. By Aristophanes. (Ann Arbor Paperbacks)

Sophocles I: Three Tragedies. By Sophocles. (Chicago)

• “Protagoras” and “Meno” By Plato. Translated by Robert C. Bartlett. (Agora)

• Plato’s Republic. Translated by Allan Bloom. (Basic Books)

It is particularly important to obtain the recommended translations of Plato.

 

Course Requirements and Grading:

First Exam: 30%

Second Exam: 30%

Paper: 30%

Class Participation (including pop quizzes): 10%

 

Exams: Exams will be in-class blue book exams, comprised mostly if not entirely of

essays. I will hand out a list of themes in advance from which the essay question(s) will be drawn. The second exam will be cumulative, but it will be weighted considerably more toward the readings of the second half of the semester.

 

Papers: You will be required to write one 5-7 page paper over the course of the term. I will hand out possible paper topics three times during the term, each with their own respective due dates. The task of the paper will be to explain and evaluate the arguments of one or two of the thinkers we have read. You must choose to write one of the two papers. Late work will be marked down one-third of a letter grade for each day of lateness (from a B+ to a B, for example), and papers will NOT be accepted by email.

 

Class Participation, Quizzes, and Attendance: The works we will read this semester were written with extraordinary care, and they are difficult. It is essential that you read every assignment carefully, preferably twice, and you should come to class with thoughtful comments and questions. Credit will be given in the area of class participation not only for serious and intelligent contributions to class, but also for listening attentively both to the lecture and to the contributions of your fellow classmates.

 

Laptops are not allowed in class; if you have a special need for a laptop,

please explain that need to me. To encourage students to keep up with the readings, I will give an unspecified number ofpop quizzes. These quizzes will consist of basic questions that should not be difficult forthose who have done the reading. If you are absent on the day of a quiz, you will receivea zero for that quiz. Makeup quizzes will not be given. If your absence is excused, I willnot count that quiz toward your overall quiz grade. I will also drop your lowest quizgrade.

 

Attendance: I will take attendance frequently, either by passing around an attendance sheet or by taking roll, either at the beginning or at the end of class. On the days on which there is a quiz, attendance will be registered by handing in the quiz. Absences will be excused with a doctor’s note only. Students with 4 or more unexcused absences will be docked a letter grade for the course. Example: the grade of a student with a B+ average who has four or more unexcused absences will be a C+.

 

You will be expected to bring the relevant volume(s) to every class.

 

Flags:

Ethics and Leadership

Global Cultures

GOV 351D • Theor Foundtns Modern Politics

38855 • Stauffer, Devin
Meets TTH 1230pm-200pm UTC 3.134
(also listed as CTI 321)
show description

 

Course Description

 

This course examines the philosophic origins of modern politics and culture by looking at the works of several authors whose writings played decisive roles in the rise and development of modernity.  In our study of Machiavelli’s Prince, Hobbes’ Leviathan, Locke’s Second Treatise of Government, and selected political writings of Rousseau and Nietzsche, we will consider how modern political thought broke with the past and offered a new set of political visions.  We will consider the differing views of Machiavelli, Hobbes, Locke, Rousseau, and Nietzsche on issues such as the aims and limits of politics, the role of morality in the harsh world of political necessity, the proper place of religion and reason in political life, and the nature and basis of justice, freedom, and equality.  Throughout the course, we will reflect of the impact that the revolutionary doctrines of modern political philosophy have had on the political world in which we live.

 

Texts

 

Machiavelli, The Prince (University of Chicago)

Hobbes, Leviathan (Hackett)

Locke, Two Treatises of Government (Yale)

Rousseau, The First and Second Discourses (St. Martin’s Press)

Nietzsche, Thus Spoke Zarathustra (Penguin)

 

Requirements and Grading

 

Paper: 20%

First exam: 25%

Second exam: 25%

Attendance: 10%

Participation: 10%

Quizzes: 10%

 

(Note:  These percentages are approximate, and the paper may be made optional.)

 

Prerequisites

 

Sophomore standing

 

Flags:

Ethics and Leadership

Global Cultures

GOV 351J • Might And Right Among Nations

38860 • Pangle, Thomas
Meets MWF 100pm-200pm MEZ B0.306
(also listed as CTI 323)
show description

 

Course description:

A study of major alternative approaches, elaborated by the greatest political theorists, to the question of the moral character of international relations.

                  The basic aim of the course is twofold: 1) to gain a better understanding of what kind of justice and law exists among nations; and 2) to gain a better understanding of what justice itself means, in human relations, as its nature is revealed under the stress of the intensely competitive international arena, always overshadowed by the threat of war.

                  We will examine the original, foundational philosophic arguments for: the classical republican struggle for and against empire (Thucydides); Christian Just War theory (Aquinas and Vitoria); Islamic Jihad Theory (The Koran and Hadith; Shaybani, Alfarabi, Avicenna, Ibn Khaldun); the moral supremacy of independent national sovereignty (Hobbes); globalizing moral community achieved through commercialization (Montesquieu); and world legal order achieved through international legal organization (Kant).

                  We will try to uncover the hidden philosophic foundations of our contemporary ways of thinking, and confront our assumptions with challenges from earlier, alien ways of conceiving the world.

                  While we will not forget contemporary issues, we will try to transcend our passionate biases, and view our own immediate situation from a liberating distance, by taking as our chief empirical focus the philosophic historian Thucydides’ dramatic presentation of The Peloponnesian War—a moral as well as military struggle pitting the imperialism of one of history’s greatest democracies (Athens) against the anti-imperialism of one of the most conservative and pious aristocracies in history (Sparta).

 

Course Requirements and Basis of Grading: THERE ARE TWO OPTIONS, ONE OF WHICH YOU MUST CHOOSE BY Fri., Aug. 29.

 

option one—Mid-term exam option

40%—Final Exam, held in the final exam period; format will be questions selected at random from study questions handed out at the end of term covering material from the entire term.

30%—Mid-term closed book exam on Thucydides, administered in class, on questions chosen at random from study questions handed out two weeks before.

20%—Attendance (required) at all lectures; each absence after the second, not excused by a doctor’s note, will subtract 2% from the overall final grade. Attendance at lecture will be recorded by noting empty seats; each student must choose a permanent seat to occupy.

10%—Answers to closed book quizzes on the readings (clues for which will be in the weekly study questions) administered at the start of the class hour on the Fridays when there will be no lecture.

 

OPTION TWO—PAPER/DISCUSSION SECTION OPTION

35%—Final Exam, held in the final exam period; format will be questions selected at random from study questions handed out at the end of term covering material from the entire term.

30%—Two short analytical/interpretative essays (each about three pages, or 1200 words) on topics to be assigned. Late papers penalized 3% per calendar day.

15%—Attendance (required) at all lectures and discussion sections; each absence after the second, not excused by a doctor’s note, will subtract 2% from the overall final grade. Attendance at lecture will be recorded by noting empty seats; each student must choose a permanent seat to occupy.

10%—Answers to closed book quizzes on the readings (clues for which will be in the weekly study questions) administered at the start of each discussion section.

10%—Participation, in discussion sections.

GRADING POLICY

We will use the plus / minus grading system for this class.

 

Required Texts (be sure to get the correct editions and translations!)

—Excerpts from Thucydides, and from Thomas Aquinas, Spinoza, Rousseau, and The Federalist as well as readings on the theory of jihad in photocopied booklet available for purchase at Co-op.

The Landmark Thucydides, Simon & Schuster, ISBN# 0684827905 The translation is not always accurate, and key passages will be found accurately translated in the booklet of readings.

—Francisco de Vitoria, Political Writings, Cambridge, ISBN# 052136714x

—Thomas Hobbes, On the Citizen, Cambridge, ISBN# 0521437806 Tuck and Silverthorne, eds.

—Montesquieu, The Spirit of the Laws, Cambridge, ISBN# 0521369746 Anne Cohler et al., eds. and trans.

—Immanuel Kant, Groundwork of the Metaphysics of Morals, Harper, ISBN# 0061311596  trans. H. J. Paton; and Political Writings, Cambridge, ISBN# 0521398371, H. Reiss, ed.

 

Flags: Ethics and Leadership

GOV 351L • Morality And Politics

38865
Meets MWF 200pm-300pm WAG 201
(also listed as CTI 325)
show description

 

GOV 351L, Unique 38865; CTI 325, Unique 34185

Morality and Politics

Daniel Burns

Fall 2014

 

Themes:

This course is an introduction to some of the moral questions faced by any active citizen, and above all by those who take on roles of political leadership. These questions include: What is the relationship between justice and the good of one’s political community? Is it possible to be both a good person and a good leader? Is it possible to be a good person but a bad citizen? Are some actions justified in wartime that would be unjustifiable in peacetime? Is it a political leader’s job to be concerned with the moral character of his or her fellow citizens? Is it ever his or her job to ignore moral considerations altogether? What happens when religious teachings seem to conflict with the requirements of politics? 

 

We will examine these questions by studying several classic authors from the history of political philosophy. We will read Socrates’ first conversation with the most ambitious young politician in Athens; we will read Cicero’s major treatise on morality, which discusses all of human moral life within the context of our political obligations; we will look at Augustine’s effort to show the compatibility of Christian morality with political responsibility; and we will read Machiavelli, who argued for a new understanding of politics and morality in opposition to all three of these earlier thinkers. Finally, we will read the autobiography of Xenophon, one of Socrates’ best students, who rose to enormous political power in wartime and immediately faced many of the dilemmas that we will have seen our other authors discuss. We will conclude the course by trying to figure out how these authors would have judged Xenophon’s actions, and what his story teaches us about the possibilities for putting political theory into practice.  

 

Course Requirements:

2 short papers

midterm exam

final exam

 

Texts:

 

Plato, Alcibiades I

Cicero, De Officiis

Augustine (several short selections)

Machiavelli, Prince

Xenophon, Anabasis

GOV 355M • World War I In Real Time

38870 • Wolford, Scott
Meets TTH 1230pm-200pm MEZ 1.216
show description

Grading criteria: students will be graded on three exams, occasional quizzes and impromptu writing assignments, as well as a brief analysis paper.

 

Description: This course follows events in the opening months of the First World War---which broke out in August 1914---exactly one hundred years after the outbreak of war. Each day, we will follow events as they happened a century before, beginning with the causes of the war in the July Crisis of 1914, the mobilization of the European great powers, and the initial campaigns on the Western Front that would introduce the world to the horrors of industrial war. We will engage modern, cutting edge theories and evidence about the origins and conduct of war to shed new light on why "the seminal tragedy of modern times" occurred when it did, and on what we can learn from it in the present.

 

Books

- Fromkin, David. 2005. Europe's Last Summer. Vintage.

- Herwig, Holger G. 2009. The Marine, 1914. Vintage.

- Philpott, William. 2014. War of Attrition. Overlook.

GOV 357M • Law Of Politics

38880 • Sager, Alan M
Meets MW 300pm-430pm CLA 1.106
show description

 

Overview This course is designed for students with a variety of interests including students who are interested in some of the core issues of "retail" politics,  students who want to become political practitioners or are political junkies, government majors, students who want a little taste of what law school might be like, future government teachers, and students interested in some of the most difficult current theoretical and philosophical issues at the intersection of law and politics.

There are many ways to conceptualize the structure of this course. One way is to see it as being about the way institutional structures affect or cause results in our political system, e.g. how requiring a voter i.d. law may affect the outcome of elections. From another viewpoint, it is a course in constitutional and statutory interpretation with the subject matter being elections and electoral law. From still another point of view it is about what structures and processes are necessary or sufficient to create the American form of republican government. Of course, that also requires constantly defining what is "republican government."

As you go through the course, you might develop your own conceptual framework for organizing the course material. Keep in mind underlying this course will be some basic questions about liberty, equality, political processes, representation, civic virtue and many other issues of political theory. Often these concepts are deeply embedded in a judge or justice’s view of the more mundane case issues such as campaign finance, bribery,  or campaigning without being articulated.

This course is a discussion course, not a lecture course. Students are expected to prepare for each day's assignments to level of understanding such that  they can discuss the assigned material in class. There is no way to be highly successful in this course without such preparation.

 

Course Goals

There are six major goals for this course:

1. Introduce students to the way law and the constitution structure our electoral process

2. To identify the major themes and controversies relating to legal aspects of elections.

3. To better understand the development of the VRA, The Voting Rights Act, and related legislation

4. To have students develop a high level of skill in reading, briefing and understanding Supreme Court opinions, with special attention on what questions to ask when reading an opinion 

6. To raise participants' "cultural literacy" about the legal structure of our democracy and our Republican form of government.

 

Course Requirements

1. 3 hours exams approximately 65%(40% objective,60% essay)

2. 2 papers 3-4 pages approximately 20%

One paper will involve field observation during the early voting period for the 2014 elections

3. Class attendance and participation approximately 15% This course will be graded with "+" and "-" grades.

 

Required Texts

Main Text

Election Law: Cases and Materials by Daniel Lowenstein, Richard Hasen, and  Daniel Tokaji, 5th Edition Carolina Press 2012

 

Supplementary Texts Don't Vote It Just Encourages the Bastards   by P. J. O'Rourke Voting Rights and Wrongs  by Abigail Thernstrom 

GOV 357M • Constitutional Interpretatn

38885 • Perry, Jr., H. W.
Meets MW 300pm-430pm CLA 0.130
(also listed as CTI 326)
show description

Gov 357 Constitutional Interpretation 2014

H. W. Perry, Jr.

 

General Description of the Course

            The only prerequisites are those required by the Gov. Dept. for upper level courses.

             Determining what the Constitution means, determining how to determine what it means, and determining who should determine what it means are fundamental tasks for participants in the American political process and for students of it.  The course may be of interest to those thinking about attending law school, but it is equally valuable to those who have no such interest.  Given the nature of our society, understanding the Constitution and constitutional law is part of a liberal arts education.  For the most part, the course does not focus on the "civil liberties" provisions in the Constitution; those important subjects are left to other courses.

One objective of the course is for the student to become a constitutional interpreter who contributes intelligently to this ongoing process.  Judges play a very important role in defining the meaning of the Constitution.  As such, it is important to learn what judges have said the Constitution means and to understand how they came to such conclusions.  This necessitates learning how to read and analyze judicial opinions.  The student should develop a sufficient comfort level with legal analysis so that she or he can evaluate intelligently some important interpretations of the justices and ask the questions that a student of politics should ask

                  Another objective of this course is to improve reasoning and communication skills  As in most courses, good writing is demanded, but it is also important to develop the capacity to think and speak on one's feet.  Mastering the use of language, orally and in writing, increases the ability to think and communicate clearly.  Moving toward such mastery is a vital part of education.

                  The course requires a substantial time commitment.  The time required varies greatly over the course of the semester, and as described below, it is hard to plan ahead.

Format of the Course

            There are few lectures.  A combination of the case and Socratic methods is used.  This requires students to come to class, to be prepared, and to listen to one another.  Daily preparation is required.  The method assumes that, instead of lecturing, I am making points through discussion with students.  Lack of preparation or repeated absences or will hurt one’s grade.  The workload in this course increases dramatically as the semester proceeds.

            There will be one or more evening sessions for the Moot Court that require attendance late in the semester. 

Evaluation

  • Midterm examination; Moot Court Group Project; Final Examination
  • Class attendance and participation are required and may affect a grade positively or negatively.

 

Texts

 

  • Constitutional Law, 18th ed., Kathleen Sullivan and Noah Feldman, eds., Foundation Press
  • Deciding to Decide, by H. W. Perry, Jr., Harvard University Press 

GOV 357M • Constitutnl Struct Of Power

38890 • Jacobsohn, Gary J.
Meets TTH 1100am-1230pm MEZ B0.306
show description

Gov 357M - CONSTITUTIONAL LAW: STRUCTURES OF POWER 

 

The focus of this course is on one of the most vital aspects of politics: interpreting and applying the nation's fundamental rules. We examine constitutional structures of power by exploring contests over authority from John Marshall and Thomas Jefferson to Barack Obama and the Tea Party of today. Some of the topics to be considered include: the powers of the federal and state governments, the executive's emergency powers, and the Supreme Court's authority to nullify the acts of other branches. Under these general headings are to be found such issues as the power to provide national health care, the power to regulate firearms, the power to establish an office of independent counsel, the power to overturn a judicial decision through congressional action, the power to deprive citizens of rights during wartime, the power to define the terms of impeachment, and the power to decide the outcome of a presidential election. Much of the reading consists of Supreme Court opinions that highlight the politics of constitutional development. 

 

Requirements: two short papers and a final exam

Grading: 30% for each paper, 40% for the final

 

Texts: Kommers, Finn, and Jacobsohn, AMERICAN CONSTITUTIONAL LAW (Vol. 1), 3rd. ed.

R. McCloskey, THE AMERICAN SUPREME COURT (5th ed.)

GOV 357M • The Face Of Justice-Honors

38895 • Smith, Bea Ann
Meets M 300pm-600pm CAL 200
(also listed as LAH 350, WGS 345)
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Course Description:

 

In our democracy, justice concerns certain inalienable rights: liberty, due process, equality. And it concerns freedom from governmental intrusion on the right to speak, to assemble, to be secure in our homes, to practice or not practice any religion we choose.  Certainly justice includes some notion of fairness. These fundamental values are expressed in the Declaration of Independence and the Bill of Rights. The Face of Justice reflects the individuals whose rights are being protected (and those whose rights are being overlooked) by our operating system of justice at given time.

 

Flags:

 

Writing

Cultural Diversity

Ethics and Leadership

 

Texts:

 

Our readings and our discussions will include historical documents, legal opinions, speeches, biographical materials—and of course the Bill of Rights, the Declaration of Independence, and certain sections of the Constitution. We will have a number of guest lecturers throughout the semester.“We the People” by Professor Penny White, University of Tennessee College of Law. Declaration of Independence, Bill of Rights (Amendments 1-10), 13th, 14th, 15th, and 19thAmendments (in your written materials)Angela Roddey Holder, The Meaning of the Constitution (2d ed. 987), p.55 Susan Wiltshire, Greece, Rome, and the Bill of Rights (1992) Introduction, pp. 1-6, Chapter 1, pp. 9-29, Chapter 5 pp. 89-100Reread: Declaration of Independence Amendments: 13, 14, 15, 19, 24, 26Selected documents and essays from Our Mothers Before Us, Women and Democracy1789-1920. The Handbook of Texas, Woman Suffrage in Texas, Texas State Historical Society Association, 1997-2002.The Woman Who Ran for President, by Lois Beachy Underhill, Prologue, Chapters 8, 9,11. “Victoria Woodhull through Modern Eyes” by Gloria Steinem. Excerpts from Woodhull & Claflin’s Weekly newspaper “Upward and Onward.”Jane M. Friedman, America’s First Woman Lawyer: The Biography of Myra Bradwell (1993) Chap. 1, 7, 9, 10, Prologue and Epilogue Bradwell v. Illinois, 16 Wall 130 (1873), concurring opinion. Mary Beth Rogers, Barbara Jordan, American Hero (1998) Chap. 6 & 7, Chap. 13 & 15Max Sherman, Barbara Jordan: Speaking the Truth with Eloquent Thunder (2007). The following speeches: Constitutional Basis for Impeachment (1974); Testimony in Opposition to Robert Bork (1987); Remarks by Bill Moyers (1996).

 

Requirements:

 

This is a small class. It will not work unless you read the assignments every week, come to class, and participate in the discussion. Attendance is required. After three unexcused absences, your grade will be reduced by 10% for every absence.10% of the final grade will reflect class participation. This is a writing course. You will write two short papers (3-4 pages) one in September, one in October. I will edit your first draft and return it to you for revision. You will be graded on the revision only. These two papers each represent 20% of your grade. After the middle of the course, you will select a topic (with guidance) for a longer paper (8-10pages). Again, you will submit a draft that I will edit and return to you for revision. The final paper will be due shortly after the end of classes and will constitute 50% of your grade. There will be no final exam.

GOV 360N • Intro To Internatl Relatns

38905 • Edwards, David
Meets TTH 330pm-500pm MEZ B0.306
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Prerequisites

None

 

Course description

International relations have enormous impacts on our daily lives, even in the absence of events such as terrorist attacks on the homeland, whether we realize this or not, and whether we play any conscious roles in international relations or not.  In fact, as we’ll see this semester, many of the things we do in everyday life are influenced by international relations, and things we do in our own lives in turn can have impacts on aspects of international relations.

In this course we’ll examine the varying political, military, economic, and cultural phenomena that cross state boundaries in the world today—among them war, diplomatic negotiation, peacekeeping, terrorism, economic relations, ecological problems, cultural exchange, and spiritual movements.  Our major interests will be in discovering what actually happens, in examining competing ideas about why things happen as they do, and in considering various ideas about how things could change or be changed.

 

Grading Policy

Two in class exams and a final exam, each of which will be part multiple choice and part essay.

 

Texts

 TBD

GOV 360N • Internatl Political Economy

38910 • Wellhausen, Rachel
Meets TTH 200pm-330pm MEZ 1.306
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GOV 360N • International Political Economy

Course Description:

This course provides an introduction to the study of international political economy. Its primary focus will be the role of politics and government decision-making in international economic relations. To this end, we will examine three core areas of IPE: international trade, the international monetary system, and investment by multinational corporations. The course begins with a discussion of analytical approaches to IPE. We will use these approaches to address topics as diverse as debates over “globalization,” economic development and post-communist transition, exchange rate policy, the history of international monetary relations, and the politics of financial crisis. While no prerequisites are required, students will benefit from a familiarity with macroeconomics.

 

Grading Policy:

Attendance, participation, quizzes     20%

In-class Midterm                                20%

Take-home Essay Exam                      30%

Final Exam                                          30%

 

Texts:

Frieden, Jeffry, David Lake, and J. Lawrence Broz. 2010. International Political Economy: Perspectives on Global Power and Wealth. 5th edition. New York: W.W. Norton.

Oatley, Thomas. 2011. International Political Economy: Interests and Institutions in the Global Economy. 5th edition. Pearson Longman.

GOV 362L • Government Research Internship

38913 • Findley, Michael
Meets F 200pm-400pm GAR 0.128
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Course Description:

 

This course is the first semester of a year long program to introduce undergraduate students to the research process in the social sciences. In this program, students will get hands on experience by engaging in related assignments that will contribute to research projects in the areas of peace and development. Students will also have the opportunity to develop and present their own research ideas in the form of a research proposal. Throughout the course, we will discuss issues encountered when conducting applied social science research.

 

Grading:

TBD

 

Textbook:

TBD

GOV 662L • Government Rsch Internship-Dc

38915
Meets
show description

Course Pre-requisites, Co-requisites and/or other Restrictions:

Acceptance into the University of Texas, Archer Fellowship Program

Course Description: This course will focus on the role of media, the Congress, the

President and other governmental and non-governmental actors in the policy-making

process. Through a variety of sources (academic texts, newspaper and journal articles,

websites, blogs, advocacy papers) we will look at (and hopefully reconcile) the textbook

and “real world” versions of how policy is made in Washington, D.C.

This course is divided into four phases where we will use a variety of techniques

(lectures/discussion, in-class presentations and guest speakers) to gain a better

understanding of the policy-making process. In Phase I, we will discuss how policy is

defined: where ideas come from and who plays a role in defining what we consider to be

important policy problems. In Phase II, we will look at how policy is made and how the

structures of our unique form of government affect the policy-making process. In Phase

III we will meet with policy-makers to hear their first hand accounts of the policy-making

process and finally, in Phase IV we will try to understand the policy-making process

through a legislative simulation and class discussions/debates of some of the important

issues of the day.

GOV 365L • Intl Rels Of E/Stheast Asia

38920 • Maclachlan, Patricia
Meets TTH 1230pm-200pm PAR 203
(also listed as ANS 361)
show description

 

Fall 2014

International Relations of East and Southeast Asia

GOV 365L-3/ANS 361-23 (Global Cultures Flag)

Patricia Maclachlan

TTH 12:30-2:00, PAR 203

Prerequisites

6 semester hours of lower-division Government courses.  Graduate students may take this course for graduate credit.

 

Course Description

Toward the end of the 20th century, pundits looked to the spectacular economic growth of East and Southeast Asia and predicted that the 21st century would be the “Pacific Century.”  Although analysts have been far less optimistic about the economic and political future of the region following the 1997 financial crisis, most nevertheless agree that the region has more growth potential than any other part of the world.  It is also home to some of the globe’s most dangerous “hot spots.”

 

This upper division undergraduate course introduces students to some of the major themes and topics in the post-Cold War international relations of East and Southeast Asia: “Great Power” (China, Japan, and the United States) contributions and challenges to the military and economic security of the region, the objectives and processes of economic globalization and institutional integration in the Asia-Pacific, and the impact of nationalism and historical memory on intra-regional affairs.  Along the way, we will explore the ongoing North Korean nuclear threat, tensions between China and Taiwan, and the United States’ so-called Asia Pivot, as well as basic theoretical approaches to the study of international relations.

 

Grading Policy

         1.    Quizzes on readings: 15%

         2.    First mid-term exam: 20%

         3.    Second mid-term exam or short research paper:  25%

         4.    Final exam: 40%

 

Texts

         1.    Susan L. Shirk, China: Fragile Superpower (2008)

         2.    Victor Cha, The Impossible State: North Korea, Past and Future (2012)

         3.    Daniel Chirot, Gi-Wook Shin, and Daniel Sneider, eds., Confronting

              Memories of World War II: European and Asian Legacies (2014)

 

 Additional readings will be made available at the beginning of the semester.   

GOV 365L • Political Economy Of Asia

38926 • Maclachlan, Patricia
Meets TTH 930am-1100am PAR 206
(also listed as ANS 361)
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Fall 2014

Political Economy of Asia

GOV 365L/ANS 361 (Global Cultures/Writing Flags)

Patricia Maclachlan

TTH: 9:30-11:00

 

Course Description

This intensive reading and writing course explores the dynamic political economies of Japan, China and South Korea.  We will examine the reasons for the region’s “miraculous” GDP growth rates; the notion of the “developmental state” and the role of industrial policy in economic development; the nature of government-business relationships; industrial structure (chaebol, keiretsu, Chinese State-Owned Enterprises); the experiences of East Asian consumers and workers; East Asian approaches to social welfare; and the reactions (both positive and negative) of East Asian political economies to the pressures of globalization.  In addition to analyzing these topics from theoretical, comparative, and historical perspectives, the course introduces students to political-economic themes and concepts that will benefit them in their reading of current events in global economics and finance. 

 

Individual classes will alternate between lectures and seminar-style sessions based on discussions of assigned readings. Some knowledge of East Asia and or comparative politics/political economy is recommended but not required.

 

Grading Policy 

1.  Quizzes:  15%

2.  Two take-home midterm exams (5 pages each):  20%

3.  Research paper (4,000-4,500 words) in 2 drafts:  40%

4.  Final exam:  25%

 

Texts

1.   Barry Naughton, The Chinese Economy: Transition and Growth (2007)

 

Additional readings will be made available at the beginning of the semester.

GOV 365L • Rights & The State: S Asia

38930 • Newberg, Paula
Meets M 300pm-600pm CLA 0.122
(also listed as ANS 361)
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RIGHTS AND THE STATE: MODERN SOUTH ASIA

(Global Cultures Flag)

 

Course overview:  Politics in modern south Asia are shaped, often dramatically, by contests about the nature of rights, the ways that citizens claim their rights, and the ways that states respond to those claims.   Every state in the region contends with popular movements to assert rights, whether through war and insurgencies, experiments with constitutions and the rule of law, or efforts to secure the rights of excluded groups, minorities and the economically disadvantaged.  Each state has also tried variously to promote and protect rights – on their own, and with their neighbors and the international community -- and to limit them in order to consolidate power.

 

What do rights have to do with political change?  With contemporary cases as our guide, we will explore basic elements of political change in the region by asking how states and societies are meeting the challenges of creating rights-based political orders, and how and why they succeed or fail.   The range of potential topics is intriguingly varied and broad; after our introduction to the field and the region, we will focus on topics related to rights and conflict.

 

Using political writings, government documents, laws and regulations, social science analysis, local journalism and reporting from local and international organizations we will dissect the meanings of rights in the region, and strive to understand the different ways that these complex issues affect citizens, states, observers and advocates.  In the process, we will examine the tools that are employed to protect rights or limit them, and how reports on rights conditions are developed and used.

 

Neither prior experience with the region nor detailed knowledge of human rights is required for this course (although those who have studied either or both are very welcome).  We will use our readings and discussions to learn about the region through the lenses of rights and governance, and to refine our understanding of rights through the experiences of the people and states that comprise south Asia today.  By the end of the course, each student should have a working understanding of some of the many challenges involving fundamental rights in south Asia, a grasp of analysis and reporting related to rights, and the skills needed to write about rights and politics.

 

Prerequisites:  Six hours of lower-division Government courses. 

 

Requirements:  A seminar succeeds when all of us are fully engaged.  Please use any electronic devices – including computers, tablets, and telephones -- in the classroom only when we are consulting documents that are most easily available online.  If you carry a cell phone with you, please silence it before/during class.

 

All seminar members are required to attend all classes punctually; complete all assignments (both written and oral); participate actively in class and as designated, lead class discussions on assigned readings and written projects.   Your class attendance and participation will be included in determining your final grade.

 

Grading:  Class participation and collegiality will be essential to the success of this seminar. Your oral and written products will be graded on the basis of their clarity, organization,  structure and quality of argument, including your ability to marshal evidence to support your arguments.   Grading will be done on a 100-point scale, translated into plus and minus grades.

 

Participation:  Participation will count toward 40% of the term grade.  As part of class preparation, I will assign, on a rotating basis, 1-2 page memos on specific topics related to readings and class discussion.  Specific assignments for class discussion will be indicated as we progress through the semester.   All class members are expected to participate in every class session.

 

Papers:  Each student will be expected to prepare two concise, 1500-1750 word written assignments and a final paper of approximately 2250-2500 words.  Submission dates will be late in the second, third and fourth months of the term.  Paper #1 will count toward 15% of your grade; paper #2 toward 20% of your grade; and paper #3 for 25% of your grade. 

 

Please provide your papers to me in hard copy (in person) as well as electronically.  Please take the time to revise, proofread, and follow accepted form for footnotes and references. 

 

Penalties for late paper submission will be ½ grade for each late day, unless you provide timely and appropriate documentation from health services or your personal physician. 

 

Course readings:   Two books are available for purchase:

 

Andrew Clapham:  Human Rights:  A Very Short Introduction (Oxford University Press, 2007). This volume is optional, but recommended.

 

Jack Donnelly:  Universal Human Rights in Theory and Practice, 2nd Edition (Cornell University Press, 2003).  This volume is required.

 

For reference and background, you might want to refer to a compendium edited by Micheline Ishay entitled  The Human Rights Reader:  Major Political Essays, 2nd. Edition.

 

Other materials (including videos):  I will post class assignments – including PDFs when URLs are not available -- and other notices on Blackboard on a regular basis.   Class readings are generally available online; in some instances, I will distribute materials in class.  Should you miss a class session, please contact me (and perhaps a classmate) for further information. 

Flags:

Global Cultures

GOV 365N • Comparative Legal Systems

38935 • Brinks, Daniel M
Meets TTH 1100am-1230pm WAG 214
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Title: “Courts and Politics Around the World”

 

Course description:

 

This course carries out a comparative study of the nature of courts and law, their position in political systems, and their potential impact on society. We will look at experiences around the world, in part, in order to gain a better understanding of how the US legal system works. The course is very theoretical, and organized around key themes rather than countries. The main themes of the course include the following: why politicians create powerful courts, how do judges and courts make decisions, what is judicial independence, how do we get it, and which systems have it, and how effective are courts as tools for political and social change. The court has a heavy emphasis on judicial design, and the class will design a court structure for an imaginary country.

Two modes of approaching the material will distinguish this class. First, we will not read pre-digested summaries or textbooks, but original social science research. We will engage critically with the readings, testing authors’ claims against their evidence, challenging the logic of their arguments, and questioning their conclusions. Secondly, we will apply what we have learned to an imaginary country modeled roughly on Iraq’s constitutional and ethno-political situation. The class will represent some of the factions present in the Iraqi parliament, and will model debates about how the judiciary should be shaped in our imaginary country.

The readings are often quite challenging and many of them are quite long. In order to participate in the debates regarding institutional design you will need to be very familiar with the readings. I expect that the class will demand a significant amount of preparation each week. You should not take this class if you are not able or willing to spend time on it outside of class hours. Attendance is mandatory and part of your grade.

Class requirements:

  • 2 quizzes worth 10% each (20% total)
  • A midterm worth 25%
  • A final worth 30%
  • Class participation, worth 25% total, calculated on the basis of
  • The quiz lottery results (the quiz lottery randomly tests student preparation and attendance)
  • A series of very short written assignments due throughout the semester
  • Participation in class debates and group assignments

GOV 365N • Compr Notion European Security

38940 • Mosser, Michael W
Meets TTH 1100am-1230pm BUR 136
(also listed as EUS 348)
show description
Course concept

International security, a subfield of international relations, examines the nature of the international states system. It specifically focuses on what is known as the ‘security dilemma,’ the idea (or myth, depending on your theoretical predilection) that states in the international system desire above all to remain secure and extant, and will do whatever necessary to avoid becoming less secure or even disappearing entirely. Questions of how or whether it is necessary or even possible to cooperate to achieve security were seen as peripheral.

Recently, many scholars and practitioners have begun to question the state-centric approach to international security, as well as its focus on power, rivalries, and conflict. Instead, these scholars and practitioners have begun to speak of  ‘comprehensive’ security, or the ‘comprehensive approach’ to international security. Besides being a good catchphrase, what does comprehensive security mean? What does it entail? “Comprehensive security” has a variety of connotations, depending on the context in which the idea is presented, but generally most agree on the idea of a more all-encompassing, holistic understanding of ‘security’ than that embraced by traditional international relations theories. Part of the rationale for this course is to unpack some of the themes underpinning the various ‘flavors’ of comprehensive security, (among others, its human, economic, environmental dimensions).

One of the regions of the world where the notion of ‘comprehensive’ security has been most explicitly theorized and implemented is in Europe. Thus the course pays special attention to this region of the world and examines the practical aspects of comprehensive security via the institutions charged with implementing it: the European Union (EU), the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), and the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE).

Part One: Theories of international security (three weeks)

This part of the course investigates the underlying theoretical premises of international security, with special emphasis on:

  • Theories of conflict and cooperation, covering topics such as realism, institutionalism, constructivism, democratic peace theory.
  • Theories of influence, covering topics such as soft power, deterrence & coercion, domestic politics and influence, credibility, norms and institutions as influencers of behavior.

Part Two: The idea of comprehensive security (three weeks):

This section of the course takes the theoretical precepts gained from Part One and applies them to the newly emerging idea within international security that true international (and regional) security must take into account factors beyond mere state survival. To that end, the idea of ‘comprehensive’ security is raised, bringing into play a more nuanced view of international security. In this section, we will examine various ways in which comprehensive security has been thought about. Primarily, we will explore the idea of ‘human’ security that developed out of the 1994 UN Human Development Report, which has seven constituent elements:

  1. Economic security
  2. Food security
  3. Health security
  4. Environmental security
  5. Personal security
  6. Community security
  7. Political security

The section will begin with a survey of the general concept of human security, then move to a treatment of four of its components: economic, health and environmental, and community security. The section will conclude with a discussion of security sector reform as the means to establishing lasting peace in post-conflict societies, a key facet in any discussion of post Cold War comprehensive security.

Part Three: The practice of comprehensive security in Europe: case studies (ten weeks):

In Part Three of the course, we look at ways in comprehensive security has been implemented in Europe.  We look specifically at European notions of comprehensive security, focusing on the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), and the European Union (EU).

Readings:

There is no required textbook for this course. Rather, each week has a series of readings assigned that are to be read before the class meets each day. The readings will be accessible via Blackboard and the average reading load per class is between 40 and 60 pages.

Assignments and grading

Your course grade will consist of a midterm exam grade, a take-home final exam grade, a short paper grade and a discussion/participation grade:

Exams: 50%

As this class is an upper-division course, a major portion of the grade for the course will consist of exams, consisting of a midterm exam and a take-home final exam. Both the midterm and the take-home final exam will be worth 25% of your course grade.

Paper: 30%

The paper for this class will be a short (2000 word) exploratory paper on the topic of your choice (within the framework of the materials covered in class). Such a paper should be a reasonably thorough treatment of the topic chosen, including a clear thesis statement, logical consistency in the arguments used to show the validity of the thesis, and a clear and concise conclusion that effectively summarizes your argument. The paper should be no more than 2000 words in length. Soon after the beginning of the semester, I will meet with each of you individually to discuss your choice of paper topic and your approach chosen to address it. The paper will comprise 30% of your total grade for the course. The paper grade itself will be divided into four sections:

 

a)              Topic proposal: Worth 10% of paper grade (3% of course grade).

b)             Topic outline and list of references: Worth 20% of paper grade (6% of course grade).

c)              First draft of paper: Worth 20% of paper grade (6% of course grade).

d)             Final draft of paper:  Worth 50% of paper grade (15% of course grade).

Discussion Leading / Participation / Discussion Questions: 20%


Class discussion in a an upper-level seminar is more than expected; it is a given. Everyone has his or her own style of discussion, and I do not expect to turn those who prefer not to speak often in class into debate champions. Nevertheless, I do expect that each of you will at some point in the semester lead a course discussion on the topic of your choosing. You will have your classmates’ questions to serve as a point of departure (see below), which you may use as you wish. There will be a sign-up sheet distributed at the first and second class sessions for you to sign up to lead a discussion. The discussion leadership and general course participation will comprise 10% of your course grade.



So that we can discuss points raised in the online postings in Thursday’s class, discussion questions for the week on which I am lecturing will be due by 5:00 pm every Wednesday (unless directed otherwise). They should be drawn from the readings and should reflect any questions, comments, or cries of outrage you may have regarding the arguments set forth by the authors. They most definitely will help you get the most from the class. I will prepare the first set of discussion questions as a template for future assignments.

Extra credit (up to 6 points):

Students who attend an academic lecture/event dealing with an international/global issue and hand in a typed, one-page summary may receive a 3 point increase on an exam grade.  No more than two lectures/events total may count.  Summaries must be turned in within 5 days of the event.

GOV 365N • Europ Union/Regional Integratn

38945 • Mosser, Michael W
Meets TTH 200pm-330pm PAR 306
(also listed as EUS 348)
show description
Course overview and structure

 

This course is designed to provide students with a detailed introduction to the European Union, one of America's major economic and political partners and one of the major actors (and problem areas) in contemporary international relations. In this course students will learn how the EU came about, how the EU component institutions are designed and how they work with each other, and how the EU functions in international relations. Students will also be able to more fully understand the causes and consequences of the European sovereign debt crisis that threatens to undermine not merely the euro currency but the survival of the entire European Union itself.

 

During the first part of the course, students will be exposed to the geopolitical history of the EU from its beginning as a supranational organization designed to regulate the coal and steel economic sectors to its present status as the political and economic force second only to the United States. Students will also learn to think about the European Union in theoretical terms and will explore various theoretical explanations for the creation and continuation of the European integration project. In Part Two, students will learn the history and politics of the EU's major treaties. Part Three examines the EU's major decision-making institutions, specifically the Council of Ministers, the Commission, the European Parliament, and the European Court of Justice. In Part Four, the course will examine some major EU policies and their consequences, and Part Five looks at the future of the EU.

 

The research requirement for this course will consist of a structured policy memo with individual sections integrated into a cohesive whole. Students will be divided into research teams by the end of week one. Working in those teams over the course of the semester, students will be given a current or potential problem area for the European Union from the case studies and, using the political and economic history learned during the course of the semester, develop a strategy memo for EU leaders. Students will present their memos to the class in the last meetings of the semester.

  Student Learning Outcomes:

 

At the conclusion of this course, students will be able to analyze the European Union across time and space. Students will achieve a comprehensive understanding of the European Union, and will be able to synthesize complex arguments concerning alternative mans of international organization. Students will conduct collaborative research and present evaluative arguments in a group setting.

  Grading and Assignments:

 

Grading for this course will be composed of a combination of an end-of-the-semester map quiz, in-class formal exams, student presentations, and in-class (and electronic) discussion. The map quiz will count for 5% of your grade. There will be two midterm exams which together will count for 40% of the course grade. Each midterm will cover only the portion of the course before it (or between it and the prior exam, in the case of the second midterm). The cumulative final exam will count for 25% of the grade, while the student presentations will count for 20% (10% individual and 10% group). In-class/online discussion will count for 10% of your grade.

 

Extra credit (up to 6 points):

 

Students who attend an academic lecture/event dealing with an international/global issue and hand in a typed, one-page summary may receive a 3 point increase on an exam grade.  No more than two lectures/events total may count.  Summaries must be turned in within 5 days of the event.

 

Grading Standards:

 

I will use the following grade standards. Grades for individual assignments will be weighted according to the scale in the preceding paragraph. All grades given during the course of the semester will be converted to a 100-point scale. Group projects will be given both a group grade and an individual grade.

 

93+ A

90-92 A-

87-89 B+

80-86 B

77-79 B-

75-76 C+

70-74 C

67-69   C-

60-66   D

< 60     F

 

 

Required Readings:

 

  • Neill Nugent, The Government and Politics of the European Union (7th edition)
  • Readings from the official EU website (http://www.europa.eu)
  • Readings from various scholarly journals or books, available online at the Blackboard site or as in-class handouts.

 

Recommended Readings:

 

  • Nathaniel Copsey and Tim Haughton (eds.) The JCMS Annual Review of the European Union in 2009 (Wiley-Blackwell, 2010)
  • It is also a good idea to follow European events via contemporary news sources such as the New York Times or the Christian Science Monitor, or the Economist. Attempting to garner an in-depth understanding of European events via local news sources is not recommended. 

GOV 365N • Israeli Intelligence/Espionage

38950 • BEN ZUR, BARAK
Meets TTH 930am-1100am PAR 208
(also listed as HIS 364G, J S 364, MES 343)
show description

COURSE DESCRIPTION

The Israeli defense strategy is based on the principal of early alert, i.e. the ability of the intelligence community to “ring the bell” and point to the approaching storm. Once the warning is there, the government can mobilize the manpower of the Israeli Defense Forces.

Israeli leadership has a significant impact on shaping the Israeli intelligence community, thus affecting its efficiency and capabilities. Ben Gurion, Israel’s first Prime Minster, shaped the services; he is responsible for the unique phenomenon of defining the military intelligence branch to be the prominent organ in the intelligence community—an exception in democratic countries.

The course will trace Israeli leaders and their attitude toward intelligence and the intelligence community: how they affected the secret services with personnel appointments, budget, initiating changes, investing in research and developments, approving or avoiding special operations, and assimilating intelligence into policies and decision-making processes.

GRADING

  • Mid-length piece, written as a government brief: advising the Israeli government on an assigned topic – due second half of semester – 15 %
  • 10-minute oral presentation on a weekly class topic – 10 %
  • 48-hour take-home final examination – 75%

PROPOSED READINGS

The importance and role of the secret services: theories and case studies

  • Ephraim, Kam, Surprise Attack: the Victims Perspective (Harvard University Press 2004), pp. 37-55, 85-114, 159-175.
  • Michael Warner, “Wanted: A Definition of 'Intelligence' ” (Studies in Intelligence, vol. 46, no.  3, 2002).
  • Michael A. Turner, Why Secret Intelligence Fails (Dulles: Potomac Books, 2005), pp. 1-15.
  • John G. Heidenrich, “The State of Strategic Intelligence (Studies in Intelligence, vol. 51, no.  2, 2007).
  • Michael Herman, Intelligence Power in Peace & War (Cambridge University Press 2001), pp. 61-112.
  • Jeffrey T. Richelson, The U.S. Intelligence Community (Ballinger Publishing Company 2001) pp. 1-29, 233-264.
  • Adda B. Bozmen, Strategic Intelligence & Statecraft ( Brassey’s, 1992), pp. 1-7.
  • John Keegan, Intelligence in War (Vintage Books 2002), pp 3-25, 295-349.

Ben Gurion from the "SHI" to an established intelligence community

  • Ian Black, Benny Morris, Israel's Secret Wars: The Untold History of Israeli Intelligence (London: Hamish Hamilton, 1991), pp. 35-70, 71-97.
  • Eliot A. Cohen, Soldiers Statesmen & Leadership in Wartime (New York: the Free Press 2002), pp 133-172.
  • Ohad Leslau, "Israel Intelligence and Czech-Egyptian Arm Deal", (Intelligence and National Security, vol. 27, 3, June 2012), pp. 327-348.
  • Uri Bar-Joseph, "State Intelligence Relations in Israel 1948-1997", (the Journal of Conflict Studies, vol. xvii, fall 1997).

Out of control: Sharett and other examples

  • Avi Shlaim, "Approaches to Israel's Relations with the Arabs: Ben Gurion and Sharett, 1953-1956". (Middle East Journal, vol. 37, 2, Spring 1983), pp. 180-201.
  • Nathn Yanai, "The Political Affair: A Framework for Comparative Discussion", (Comparative Politics, vol. 22, 2, January 1990), pp. 185-197.
  • Yigal Sheffy, "Early Warning of Intentions or Capabilities? Revisiting the Israeli-Egyptian Rotem Affair, 1960" (Intelligence and National Security, vol. 28, 3, 2013), pp. 420-437.
  • Uri Bar Joseph, "Rotem: the forgotten Crisis on the Road to the 1967 War", (Journal of Contemporary History", vol. 31, 3, July 1996), pp. 547-566.
  • Eyal Pascovich, "Military Intelligence and Controversial Political Issues the Unique Case of the Israeli Military Intelligence", (Intelligence & National Security, 2013), pp. 1-35.
  • Uri Bar Joseph, "Israel's Military Intelligence Performance in the Second Lebanon War", (International Journal of Intelligence and Counterintelligence, vol. 20, 2007).
  • Ephraim, Kahana, "Analyzing Israel's Intelligence Failures", (International Journal of Intelligence, vol. 18, 2, 2007), 262-279.

Golda Meir: Where we went wrong?

  • Uri Bar Joseph, Watchmen Fell Asleep: The Surprise of Yom Kippur and Its Sources, 2005.
  • Moni Chorev, Surprise Attack the Case of the Yom-Kippur War, (Washington D.C.: Fort McNair 1996).
  • Uri Bar Joseph,"Strategic of Fundamental Flaws? The Sources of Israel's Military Defeat at the Beginning of the 1973 War", (the Journal of Military History, vol. 72, 2, April 2008), pp. 509-530.
  • Abraha Ben Zvi, "Between Warning & Response: the Case of the Yom Kippur War", (International Journal of Intelligence & Counterintelligence vol. 4, 2, 1990), pp. 227-242.
  • Israeli National Archive, The Inquiry Commission Report: the Terror Attack on the Israeli Delegation to Olympic Games Munich 1972 (Hebrew, will be presented in class by the lecturer).

 

 

GOV 365N • Responding To Terror In Israel

38955 • BEN ZUR, BARAK
Meets TTH 1230pm-200pm PAR 1
(also listed as J S 365, MES 341)
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COURSE DESCRIPTION

Israeli civilians, official personnel, and security sites—both on Israeli soil and abroad—are legitimate targets for attacks from a variety of armed groups and established state services. Among these: armed Palestinian groups, Iranian established intelligence and military services, groups affiliated with the Iranian regime, and al-Qaeda. Israel is challenged, as well, by the domestic threat of ideologically extreme Jewish groups, some of which turn to violence and the use of terror.

These groups’ ability to adapt and embrace new tactics is the main challenge facing Israeli security services. Since 9/11, the international arena has changed its attitude toward terrorism, and in critical aspects of countering terror Israel finds much understanding.

The course will deal with the challenges facing Israel. We will learn about the strategy and methods armed organizations use and the Israeli security services’ response. The examples we use will include domestic challenges, such as the Second Intifada and Jewish terror groups; threats-next door, such as Hezbollah in Lebanon and Hamas in the Gaza strip; and challenges and threats against Israeli official sites and personnel.

GRADING

  • Mid-length piece, written as a government brief advising the Israeli government on an assigned topic (second half of semester) 15 %
  • 10-minute oral presentation on a weekly class topic 10 %
  • 48-hour take-home final examination 75%

COURSE OUTLINE AND READING

The Global Perspective

  • Bruce Hoffman, Inside Terrorism (New York: Columbia University Press, 2006). Chapter 1: Defining Terrorism, p 1-41.
  • Richard Shultz, Douglas Farah, Itamara V. Lochard. "Armed Groups: a Tier One Security Priority" (Colorado: USAF Academy, INSS Occasional Paper 57, September 2004).
  • Richard H. Shultz Jr. & Andrea J. Dew, Insurgents, Terrorists and Militias (New York: Columbia University Press, 2006).Chapter 2: Assessing Enemies, pp. 17-37.
  • Juan C. Zarate, Treasury's War (New York: Public Affairs, 2013). Chapter: Epilogue - Lessons from the Use of Financial Power, p. 423-432.
  • Matthew J. Morgan, “The Origins of the New Terrorism” (Parameters, Spring 2004) pp. 29-43.

Israel's Domestic Threats

  • Daniel Byman, A High Price: The Failures of Israeli Counterterrorism (New York: Oxford University Press, 2011), pp. 13-28, 269-284.
  • Ami Pedahzur, The Israeli Secret Service & the Struggle against Terrorism (New York: Colombia University Press, 2009), pp. 111-124.
  • Avi Dichter, Daniel L. Byman, "Israel's Lessons for Fighting Terrorists and their Implications for the United States" (The Saban Center: Analysis Paper, 8, March 2006).
  • Boaz, Ganor, The Counter Terrorism Puzzle (Herzlya: IDC, 2011), pp 47-61, 101-141.
  • Richard Shultz and Roy Godson, “Intelligence Dominance: A Better Way forward in Iraq,” The Weekly Standard (July 31, 2006), pp. 22-26.
  • Ami Pedahzur, The Israeli Response to Jewish Extremism and Violence Defending Democracy (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2002), pp. 70-96

Next-Door Threats: Hezbollah and Hamas

  • Martin Rudner, "Hezbollah: an Organizational and Operational Profile" (International Journal of Intelligence and Counter Terrorism, 23, 2010), pp. 226-246.
  • Ely Karmon, “Hezbollah as a Strategic Threat to Israel,” Heartland: Eurasian Review of Geopolitics (July 2005). Pp 22-49.
  • Andrew Axum, "Hezbollah at War" (the Washington Institute: Policy Focus 63, December 2006).
  • "The Covenant of the Islamic Resistance Movement – Hamas" (MEMRI: Special Dispatch 3867, May 26, 2011). Pp. 1-18.
  • "Light at the End of their Tunnels, Hamas & the Arab Uprising" (the International Crisis Group: Middle East Report 129, August 2012), pp. 1-47.

Threats Abroad

  • Bruce Hoffman, Inside Terrorism (New York: Columbia University Press, 2006). pp. 65-80. Matthew Levitt, Hezbollah: the Global Foot Print of Lebanon's Party of God, (Washington D.C: Georgetown University, 2013), pp. 75-106, 117-119.
  • Matthew Levitt, "Iran's Support for Terrorism in the Middle East" (Washington Institute, July 25, 2012).
  • Justus, Reid, Weiner, "Diplomatic Immunity? Terror Attacks against Israeli Embassies and Diplomatic Representatives Abroad” (Israel Journal of Foreign Affairs, VI: 2, 2012), 107-123.
  • Ariel, Merari, "Israel Facing Terrorism" (Israel Affairs, Vol. 11, January 2005).

GOV 365N • Immigration And Compar Polit

38960 • Freeman, Gary
Meets TTH 1230pm-200pm WEL 2.304
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Description:

 

Major changes are taking place in the Western world. The end twenty-five ago of the cold war and the disappearance of the Soviet Union and the Eastern bloc over which it held sway gave birth to what now appear to be absurdly premature celebrations of the End of History, the victory of liberal democracy, and the commencement of an era of peace and prosperity in which alternatives to liberal capitalism no longer existed.

 

 This course explores only a few but profound developments that threaten to give the lie to these more optimistic scenarios of our future. Among these are mass population movements, demographic trends, and religious/cultural conflicts that promise to intensify old cleavages and sharpen new ones. Briefly, migration of populations from the third world into the rich democracies of Europe, North America, and Australasia are bringing about enormous changes that, when conjoined to declining birth rates in the West and exploding fertility in immigrant source countries, amount to “replacement migration” that inevitably will result in the fundamental alteration of the ethnic, religious, cultural, and political composition of Western democracies. The common assumption that Western nations were embarked on an irreversible journey to secularism and the marginalization of religion has run up against a religious revival among Christians and a serious challenge from Islam that has flourished in the wake of immigration and demographic realities. Immigrants to the west bring with them political traditions that bear scant resemblance to democratic institutions considered the highest achievement of Western governance.

 

These developments undermine many cherished assumptions about the nature of modernity, which in their own way both soviet communism and liberal capitalism had claimed as their own.

 

Grading criteria:  3 exams, a mix of short answer and essay, each accounting for 25% of your grade; a term paper that accounts for the remaining 25%.

 

Texts: there will be no texts for this course. Instead, excerpts available on line will be assigned so that text expenses should be nil.

 

Readings will come from sources of the following sort:

 

Huntington, The Clash of Civilizations

Kaufmann, Shall the Religious Inherit the Earth?

Jenkins, God’s Continent: Christianity, Islam, and Europe’s Religious Crisis

Caldwell, Reflections on the Revolution in Europe

Scheffer, Immigrant Nations

Hampshire, The Politics of Immigration

Kenworthy, Social Democratic America

Collier, Exodus: How MIgration is Changing the World

Wright, The Moral Animal

Wright, Non-Zero: The Logic of Human Destiny

Wright, The Evolution of God

Gray, Al Quedda and What it Means to be Modern

Gray, The Silence of Animals: On Progress and Other Modern Myths

Gray, False Dawn

Gray, Straw Dogs

Gray, Black Mass

Clark, The Son Also Rises: Surnames and the History of Social Mobility

Siedentop, Democracy in Europe

Lacorne, Religion in America: a Political History

Flannery, The Future Eaters

Scruton, The West and the Rest

Sruton, England: An Elegy

Salter, On Genetic Interests: Family, Ethnicity, and Humanity in an Age of Mass Migration

Minogue, Alien Powers: The Pure Theory of Ideology

Minogue, The Servile Mind: How Democracy Erodes the Moral Life

Savianio, Gommorah

Dyson, Disturbing the Universe

Fallaci, The Rage and the Pride

Houellebecq, The Elementary Particles

Kagan, Of Paradise and Power

Leonard, Why Europe will run the 21st Century

Ramadan, Western and athe Future of Islam

Hirsi Ali, Nomad

Goodhart, The British Dream

Piketty, Capital

Emmott, 10 Billion

Phillips, The World Turned Upside Down: The Global Battle over God, Truth, and Power

GOV 365N • Australian Society & Polit

38963 • Evans Case, Rhonda L
Meets TTH 1230pm-200pm MEZ B0.306
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Description:

Australia is the principal democratic, economic, and military power in the Southwest Pacific.  Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples inhabited the continent and its surrounding islands for some 50,000 years before Europeans arrived.  In 1788, British colonization began with establishment a penal colony near present-day Sydney.  Six distinct colonies federated voluntarily in 1901 to form the Commonwealth of Australia. Today, the country boasts a multi-ethnic population of 22 million, dispersed unevenly across a landmass nearly the size of the lower 48 US states.  It has served as a key US ally since World War II. While Australia retains special ties to Britain and the US, it has become an important economic and political actor in the Asia Pacific region, with strong trading links to China, Japan, Indonesia, Malaysia, South Korea, the Philippines, and, increasingly, India. This course will (1) provide a succinct overview of Australia’s history and constitutional development; (2) examine the country’s political institutions and party politics; and (3) consider distinct opportunities and challenges that Australia faces across a range of domestic and foreign policy areas, including energy, trade, immigration, welfare, and issues concerning its Indigenous population. Throughout the course, Australia will be compared and contrasted with Texas, the US, and the other Anglo-American democracies – Britain, Canada, and New Zealand.  

Requirements:

(1) Three exams, each worth 25% of the final grade.  The last of these will be administered during the final examination period.  All exams will include a combination of essay, short-answer, multiple-choice, and true-or-false questions.  (2) A group project that involves data analysis and visual presentation of data plus a written assignment will be worth 25% of the final grade. Students who anticipate missing more than two or three classes are advised not to enroll. Likewise, reading and absorbing assigned materials will be important, with roughly half of each examination concentrating on their content. Students unwilling to read two relatively compact books and a collection of articles are advised not to enroll.

Required Reading Materials: 

(1) Stuart Macintyre, A Concise History of Australia, 3rd ed. (Cambridge University Press, 2009); (2) Dennis Woodward, John Summers, and Andrew Parkin, eds., Government, Politics and Policy in Australia, 9th ed. (Pearson/Longman Publishers, 2010); additional readings will be made available on Blackboard.

GOV 370K • Latino Politics

38965 • Leal, David L.
Meets TTH 330pm-500pm CLA 0.130
(also listed as LAS 337M, MAS 374)
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Course Description

This course will introduce you to the political experiences of the United States Latino populations in the present and historically.  The course begins with a discussion of political identity: what does it mean to be Latino, Hispanic, or Chicano, and what are the politically relevant commonalities and differences in Latino communities.  We then discuss Latino political history, starting with the Spanish empire but focusing particularly on the 19th and 20th centuries in Texas and the southwest.  In doing so, we will study Latino political movements, organizations, and important individuals.  Moving to recent decades, the class examines Latino inputs into the American political system – particularly public opinion, voting, and the role of gender in politics.  The class also discusses the two largest non-Mexican national-origin groups in the U.S.: Puerto Ricans and Cuban Americans.  We then explore the growing voice of Latinos in political institutions, such as the U.S. Congress and state legislatures.  Lastly, the class covers key policy issues for Latino communities, particularly education and immigration. 

 

Grading Policy

Midterm: 30%

Final: 40%

Writing assignment: 20%

Class participation and engagement: 10%

 

Texts

-Garcia, F. Chris, and Gabriel Sanchez. 2007. Hispanics and the U.S. Political System: Moving Into the Mainstream. New York: Prentice Hall.

 
-Gutierrez, David. 1995. Walls and Mirrors: Mexican Americans, Mexican Immigrants, and the Politics of Identity. Berkeley: University of California Press.

-Coursepack

 

Flag: Cultural Diversity

GOV 370L • Policy-Making Process-Dc

38970
Meets
show description

Course Pre-requisites, Co-requisites and/or other Restrictions:

Acceptance into the University of Texas, Archer Fellowship Program

 

Course Description:

 

This course will focus on the role of media, the Congress, the

President and other governmental and non-governmental actors in the policy-making process. Through a variety of sources (academic texts, newspaper and journal articles, websites, blogs, advocacy papers) we will look at (and hopefully reconcile) the textbook and “real world” versions of how policy is made in Washington, D.C.

This course is divided into four phases where we will use a variety of techniques (lectures/discussion, in-class presentations and guest speakers) to gain a better understanding of the policy-making process. In Phase I, we will discuss how policy is

defined: where ideas come from and who plays a role in defining what we consider to be important policy problems. In Phase II, we will look at how policy is made and how the structures of our unique form of government affect the policy-making process. In Phase III we will meet with policy-makers to hear their first-hand accounts of the policymaking process and finally, in Phase IV we will try to understand the policy-making

process through a legislative simulation and class discussions/debates of some of the important issues of the day.

 

Required Readings and Course Materials:

 

All required readings are available on-line and will be posted at the Archer

Center Forum. In other words, the required readings for this class will available to you free of charge. Simply follow the link provided for each reading in the syllabus or find it at the Archer Center Forum. All of these links are un-gated and have open access for academic use, but if for any reason you have difficulty accessing them, please let me know. In addition, I will place a binder with a hard copy of each reading (required and recommended) at the Archer Center.

 

Additional Handouts (Legislative Simulation Package and possible additional readings regarding issues of the day or other important breaking news items)

 

General Grading Policy:

 

There are no quizzes or written exams for this course. Instead your grade will be based on a variety of short written assignments, class presentations class attendance and participation in class discussions as well as participation in the legislative simulation at the end of the term. I do not offer extra-credit options to make up missed or late assignments or absences from class.

GOV 370L • Political Representation

38975 • Wlezien, Christopher
Meets TTH 200pm-330pm MEZ B0.306
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Political Representation

Course Description

This course examines the relationship between the public and elected officials in representative democracy.  It builds on democratic political theory but focuses mostly on empirical practice, particularly in the United States (US).  Special attention is paid to the representation of public opinion in the composition of elected bodies, the positions politicians take, and government policy actions themselves.  Along the way, we consider the roles played by characteristics of issues, electoral competition, political institutions, and political inequality, among other things.  By the end of the course, students should have a good sense for how well and why elected officials represent the public in the US. 

Course Format

The course will consist of lectures and discussion.  Thus, while the course is not a seminar, class participation is essential.  Student will need to keep up with the substantial reading and then be prepared to participate.  To encourage this, students will receive extra credit based on the quality—not just quantity—of their contributions to class discussion.  (See the description of “Grades” for details.)

Grades (tentative)

The main graded components for this class are the midterm and final examinations. Performance in the class will be assessed as follows:

  40%         General class performance

  60%         Final examination

+0-5 %      Participation

NOTE: A short “think” paper may be required in lieu of a final examination, in which case the final examination would be replaced by a 2nd midterm examination worth 40% of the final grade and the paper would be worth 20%. 

Readings (tentative)

The course readings will include numerous articles and books, including the following:

 

Erikson, Robert and Kent Tedin. 2011.  American Public Opinion, 8th edition.  New York: Pearson,

 

Erikson, Robert S., Gerald C. Wright, and John P. McIver. 1993.  Statehouse Democracy: Public Opinion and Policy in the American States. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, 1993.

Soroka, Stuart and Christopher Wlezien. 2010.  Degrees of Democracy: Politics, Public Opinion and Policy.  New York: Cambridge University Press.

GOV 370L • Presidency In Constitutl Order

38977 • Tulis, Jeffrey
Meets TTH 930am-1100am CBA 4.332
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Jeffrey K. Tulis

The Presidency in the Constitutional Order

 

A study of the place of the presidency in the American political order that stresses

    tension between power and accountability inherent in the office and the system.

    Topics include: separation of powers, presidential selection, impeachment,

    relations with Congress and bureaucracy, emergency powers, presidential

    character, and leadership.

 

This is a very demanding writing flag class.  If you are enrolling in this class just in order

to satisfy the writing flag, you are in the wrong class.  Interest in political theory and willingness

to work very hard are necessary for success in this class.

 

 

Readings (tentative):

 

Joseph M. Bessette, The Constitutional Presidency

Andrew Rudalevige, The New Imperial Presidency

Bruce Ackerman, The Rise and Decline of the American Republic

Michael Nelson, ed., The Presidency in the Political System

Michael Nelson, ed., The Evolving Presidency

Louis Fisher, Constitutional Conflicts Between Congress and the President

 

 

Requirements:

 

Active and prepared class participation

Regular quizzes on the reading

Four analytic essays (approximately 1200 words).

One term paper, (approximately 5000 words).

GOV 370L • Election Campaigns

38980 • Luskin, Robert
Meets TTH 330pm-500pm MEZ 1.102
show description

Course Description:

Analysis of varying topics in the study of American government and politics.

Prerequisite:

Six semester hours of lower-division coursework in government.

Grading:

TBD

Readings:

TBD

 

 

 

GOV 370L • Congress And The Presidency

38985 • Prindle, David
Meets TTH 800am-930am GAR 0.102
show description

THE PURPOSES OF THIS CLASS:  To help students become better scholars and citizens by helping them to understand how to apply the concepts of political science to an understanding of the functioning of the American political system, and by showing them how to compare the normative concepts of the public interest and democratic theory to the actual functioning of national institutions.  The first third of the class is about Congress as an institution, the second third is about the Presidency as an institution, and the final third is about individual Presidents.

 

CLASS PREREQUISITE:  Upper-division standing in Government.

 

ASSIGNED READING:

 

  • Lawrence Dodd and Bruce Oppenheimer (eds.) Congress Reconsidered ninth edition  (CQ Press, 2009; see note below)
  • Michael Nelson (ed.) The Presidency and the Political System ninth edition (CQ Press, 2010; see note below)
  • Roger Davidson, Walter Oleszek, and Frances Lee, Congress and Its Members, 13th edition  (CQ Press, 2010; see note below)
  • Julian Zelizer, (ed.)  The Presidency of George W. Bush: A First Historical Assessment (This is a paperback, available at the usual bricks-and-mortar venues in town).    
  • Some news articles, to be distributed in class

 

NOTE: Because this course description had to be submitted far in advance of the beginning of the Fall 2014 semester, I may make some adjustments in the assigned reading to update some of the books.

 

NOTE:  Instead of making you buy these three CQ Press books, and then assigning you to read only some of the chapters, I will choose relevant chapters from each and put them into an electronic textbook, which you can access through the CQ Website.  The cost to download all the chapters will be considerably less than the cost of the three paper books.  Notice, however, that you must buy or otherwise acquire a copy of the Zelizer book, which is not published by CQ Press—if, in fact, I end up assigning the Zelizer book rather than finding a more recent analysis.

 

REQUIREMENTS

 

            Each of the three assignments in this class will be counted equally; that is, each will count one‑third toward the final grade.  At the end of the semester, the three numerical scores will be averaged, and final grades will be assigned on the basis of the conventional scale: 92.3 and above will receive an “A” in the course, 90 to 92 will receive an "A minus," 88 to 89.7 will receive a "B plus," 82.3 to 87.7 will receive a “B,” 80 to 82 will receive a "B minus," 78 to 79.7 will receive a "C plus," 72.3 to 77.7 will receive a “C,” 70 to 72 will receive a "C minus," 68 to 69.7 will receive a "D plus," 62.3 to 67.7 will receive a “D,” 60 to 62 will receive a "D-minus, and below 60 will receive an “F.”  Anyone missing a grade (that is, anyone failing to take a test or turn in an essay) will also receive an “F.”  I may make some small adjustments in these averages to reflect the quality of contribution to class discussion.

 

     For your three assignments, you may choose to write two essays and take one test, or take two tests and write one essay.  It is up to you to decide how you mix the tests and essays, and in what order you choose to do them.  You may not, however, "load up" by turning in an essay at the same time that you take a test, thus getting two‑thirds of the assignments out of the way on the same day.

GOV 370L • Urban Politics

38990 • O'Brien, Shannon Bow
Meets MWF 1200pm-100pm MEZ B0.306
show description

URBAN POLITICS

 

This course introduces and explores the development of the urban landscape in America.  Cities did not simply spring into existence.  Their geographical and physical constraints combined with social, ethnic, and political pressures shaped and continue to shape their development.  This course is designed to mostly introduce you to some ideas of urban politics in America.  The first part of the semester concentrates on the development of the cities.  This part of the class will focus primarily on the rural to urban shift in America.  The second part of the semester will explore the move from urban to suburban living.  This part of the class will look at more modern issues and topics in the cities (i.e. problems created by people moving out, financial attempts to solve these problems, new urbanism, gated communities, social/racial strife). 

 

 

Grades:

Grades will based on the following:

Test 1  25%

Test 2  30%

Test 3 35%

 

Paper Assignments (5% each) 10%

 

Required Readings

There is ONE Book:

Judd, Dennis R. and Todd Swanstrom.  City Politics  Pearson.  (latest edition, likely 9th).

GOV 370L • Congressional Elections

38995 • Theriault, Sean
Meets TTH 200pm-330pm WAG 214
show description

 

Government 370L:

Congressional Elections

 

Fall 2014

 

Course Description

In this course, we’ll examine congressional elections historically and contemporaneously.  We’ll also analyze them from a political science as well as political junkie perspectives.  The first half of the course will discuss campaigning and the second half of the course will deal with election outcomes and their consequences on policy making.  Each student will be required to become an expert on a particular congressional and senate race. 

 

Course Format

Though there will be more than 100 students in the class, it will be a personal challenge of mine to make it feel like 30 students.  As such, I expect all of the students to do all of the readings for all of the classes.

 

Grades

Grades will be determined by a major paper, several midterms, and in-class participation:

  • 20% Midterm 1
  • 20% Midterm 2
  • 20% Midterm 3
  • 20% Course Project
  • 20% Class Participation

 

 

Readings

The course readings TENTATIVELY consist of the following:

  • Gary Jacobson’s The Politics of Congressional Elections
  • Sean Theriault’s The Gingrich Senators
  • A on-line course packet

GOV 370L • Leader/Follower In Am Polit

39000 • Buchanan, Bruce
Meets MW 300pm-430pm BEN 1.108
show description

GOV 370L

Leaders and Followers in American Politics

Fall 2014 topic:  Presidential Power and Accountability

 

Course Description

 

 

 

Professor Bruce Buchanan

Fall, 2014

 

Course Prerequisite

 

Upper-division standing

 

Course Content and Objectives

 

            Presidential Power and Accountability is a lecture/discussion course whose fall 2014 topic is the recent uses and abuses of presidential power.  Its goals are to increase your understanding of the topic while sharpening your thinking, research, writing and speaking skills. All course requirements are aimed at helping you to achieve these goals.

 

Responsibilities

 

                                                            Preconditions

 

  1. 1.    Regular attendance (After 2 “free” absences course grade subject to decrease by 1/2 letter grade per subsequent absence).
  2. 2.    Daily reading of relevant stories in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal or Washington Post
  3. 3.    Timely completion of news and text reading assignments

           

           

                                                            Graded categories

 

  1. 1.    Mid-Term and Take-Home Final Examinations on common readings, relevant presidential news and instructor presentations (40%)
  2. 2.    Research Project Formal presentation  (25%
  3. 3.    Research Project rough draft and12 page final report (25%)
  4. 4.    Regular participation in discussions (10%)

  

Required Readings  

 

Buchanan, Bruce.  2013.  Presidential Power and Accountability

Savage, Charlie. 2007. Takeover. 

Readings Packet and Blackboard articles TBA.

  

Flag: Writing

GOV 370L • Political Communication

39005 • Jarvis, Sharon
Meets M 300pm-600pm CLA 0.128
show description

Course Description:

Analysis of varying topics in the study of American government and politics.

Prerequisite:

Six semester hours of lower-division coursework in government.

Grading:

TBD

Readings:

TBD

 

 

 

GOV 370L • Political Psychology

39006 • Albertson, Bethany L
Meets MW 400pm-530pm GDC 1.406
show description

Political Psychology

Course Description:

 

This course examines the psychology behind political attitudes and behaviors. By using insights from psychology and (often, but not always) experimental methods, political psychology offers a unique way of understanding politics. We will address questions such 

How do people acquire their political beliefs?

What types of campaign advertisements are effective?

Do people approach politics in a rational way, or are they more emotional?

What are the causes of intolerance and racism? What are the prospects for change?

How does identity affect political choices?

 

Prerequisites:

 

None

GOV 370L • Campaigns And Elections

39010 • Shaw, Daron
Meets MWF 1000am-1100am CLA 0.128
show description

COURSE:

 

Government 370L

Campaigns and Elections

 

 

COURSE OVERVIEW:

 

This course is designed to introduce you to American political campaigns and elections through lectures and readings. It is not designed to serve as a “how to” manual for aspiring politicians or consultants. More often than not, it is more theoretical than practical. Still, some nuts and bolts information is essential and will be part of the curriculum. My main focus is on federal elections, though references are made to state and local elections. We spend some time revisiting past campaigns and elections in order to contrast and explicate contemporary American electoral politics. The lectures and readings pay particular attention to the presidential elections of 2004, 2008, and 2012. The races between Barack Obama and John McCain and Mitt Romney (respectively) and between George W. Bush and John Kerry are not only the most recent, but provide vivid details supplementing the theoretical and descriptive points raised in the course.

 

As with the lower division version of this course, there are three primary objectives.  The first is to provide basic information about American elections and electioneering by examining both the rules of the game and the players. The second is to develop analytical skills with which to analyze complex relationships and phenomena. The third is to introduce you to the work of the political scientist by concentrating on paradigms and techniques of the discipline. Unlike the lower division course, the emphasis is on the latter two goals. 

 

 

COURSE REQUIREMENTS

 

Midterm Examinations

                                                                                          Midterm #1                                            50 points (25%)

                                                                                          Midterm #2                                            50 points (25%)

 

Campaign Simulation

                                                                                          Group Presentation                          40 points (20%)

                                                                                          Individual Paper                                  50 points (25%)

 

Participation and Attendance                                                                                              10 points (5%)

 

There are two main requirements for this course. First, there will be two exams. The first is worth twenty-five percent (25%) of your grade and will probably be given in early October. The second will also be worth twenty-five percent of your grade and will probably be given in early December, on the last day of class. The examinations are not cumulative; exam #1 covers material through week 6, while exam #2 covers material from weeks 7-14. They will feature a mixed format, with multiple choice, short answer, and essay questions. The exams draw roughly equally from lecture and the readings. When taking the exams, you are not allowed to talk or use your notes, books or neighbor's test.  Anyone caught cheating will be treated per University guidelines.  Study groups, on the other hand, are encouraged.  Failure to take either of the exams at the appointed times results in a grade of F.  I allow cumulative exams for those with compelling excuses, but I am the sole arbiter of what constitutes a compelling excuse. You need medical or extreme personal difficulties before I will consent to such an action. There will be no early exams, nor can exams be taken at any place other than the scheduled room. If you cannot take the exams at the scheduled time and place, you should not enroll in the course.

 

Second, there will be a campaign simulation. I will select several candidates from competitive U.S. Senate elections. Each candidate will have a team of five students, each of whom will be responsible for a report on a selected aspect of the campaign. The individual reports will be 8-10 pages long and will count for twenty-five percent (25%) of your grade. Details on the expectations for the report will be provided in class, but suffice it to say that you are expected to provide a plan detailing how your candidate will deal with one of the following aspects of the campaign: (1) budget, resource allocation, and fundraising, (2) polling and GOTV, (3) paid advertising, (4) scheduling, advance, and media, and (5) online and social media outreach.

 

Each campaign team will also be responsible for a twelve (12) minute presentation. Presentations will be held during a Saturday session in mid-November. The audience will include myself, other professors and political consultants, and several graduate students currently studying campaigns and elections. The point of the presentation is to present a strategic overview of the candidate’s prospects. Unlike the reports, the grade for the presentation will be collective (everyone on the team gets the same mark), and will constitute twenty percent (20%) of your overall grade.

 

Finally, attendance and participation are strongly encouraged. I reserve the right to give pop quizzes at any time, and these quizzes are worth five percent of your final grade.

 

 

READINGS

There is one required text for the course, which will be available at the University Co-Op bookstore.

 

John Sides, Daron Shaw, Keena Lipsitz, and Matt Grossman. 2013 (2012 election update). “Campaigns and Elections: Rules, Reality, Strategy, Choice.” Norton Publishing. 

GOV 370L • Politics Of Food In America

39011 • Sparrow, Bartholomew
Meets MW 430pm-600pm CLA 0.112
show description

 

I. Course Description

This course examines the fundamentally political nature of food policy in the United States. It addresses the political economy of agricultural practices in the United States and of American food consumption (broadly interpreted to include food supplements and beverages).  It considers the political history of the production and regulation of food, ranging from the colonial era up to the present. It looks at food policy as it impacts public health—e.g., obesity, schoolchild nutrition.  It looks at the rules and customs of agricultural trade (including “fair trade”).  And it inquires into the ethics and moral aspects of how food is grown, processed, regulated, and consumed in the United States.

Food policy encompasses the whole of the political system: from the individual behavior of farmers and ranchers, to the group actions of companies, trade associations, commercial scientists, and food industry lobbyists, to the three institutions of government—the US Congress, the executive branch (Presidential leadership as well as the USDA, FDA, FTC, etc.), and the courts—to the global system of trade, energy, pollution, and climate change, and to restaurants, cafeterias, institutional food services, and consumers in their kitchens.

Lectures, in-class discussions, and in-class exercises will be supplemented by guest lectures and films.  News stories, relevant weblinks, and course-related comments will be posted on the course’s UT Blackboard website (BB).

Students must have 6 hours of government classes.

 

II: Materials

Required texts:

            • Eric Schlosser, Fast Food Nation, Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 2001.

• Paul Roberts, The End of Food, Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 2008.

• Timothy Pachirat, Every Twelve Seconds, New Haven: Yale University Press, 2011

• Other readings (“P” in the course schedule) will be available in a course packet at IT Copy, 512 West MLK, ph. 476-6662; itcopy@austin.rr.com

 

IV.  Grades:

Grades consist of the aggregate and weighted grades of tests (midterm, take-home final); quizzes; class exercises; class participation/attendance; and other assignments.

 

A. Tests (midterm and final)                            45%

The midterm test is worth 20 percent; the final take-home essay 25 percent of the course grade.  Tests must be taken and handed in when they are due; late tests will not be accepted.  Only hard copies are accepted; emailed copies or disk copies are not accepted.

 

B. Food Log and Analysis Paper                      25%

You must keep a food log for a 48-hour period (beginning on March 22, give or take a day, your choice), in which your keep track of what you ate and when.  You also need to trace down all the ingredients of what you eat for one of the days, describing where the food and its ingredients are from.  You are to then write a brief analysis of your experience and what patterns you found from keeping the journal.  The paper is to be no longer than 2500 words.

 

C. Quizzes                                                          15%

        There are four quizzes given over the semester.  Each quiz will review basic facts contained in the readings and lectures (including guest lectures and movie); each quiz (with the lowest score dropped) counts as 5% of your grade.

 

E. Class participation and attendance             10%

You are evaluated on your participation in the class.  You will be assessed on your engagement in the lectures and guest lectures, and in the questions and comments you contribute on the class’s BB discussion site.  You will receive a grade bonus if you miss on only two days or fewer (2 points added to your overall grade).  Failure to participate in class or to attend regularly, or misconduct (see under Rules below) will detract from your grade.

 

F.  Film review                                                     5%

You are to write a short summary of a film about the American food system or the global food system, and then analyze/interpret/criticize the documentary.  You may choose the film, as long as you check with your instructor.  The review should be no more than 1500 words in length.

 

G. Extra Credit                                                  up to 5%

You may take a field trip to a CSA, farmers’ market, or other local site, and write a short description and analysis of the visit (no more than 1500 words)

GOV 370M • Research On The US Congress

39015 • Theriault, Sean
Meets TTH 500pm-630pm MEZ 1.212
show description

Gov 370: Research on the U.S. Congress, part 1

 

Professors Theriault and Jones

Fall 2014

 

Pre-requisites

Gov 310, Gov 312, and permission of Professors Jones or Theriault

 

Course Description

This course will introduce the student to social scientific research by incorporating the students into the active research agendas of two professors who study American politics.  The project has three aims.  First, the students will learn the general principles of empirical research.  The second, the student will be active players in on-going research projects.  Third, the students will develop their own research papers in line with the research that they are conducting with the professor

            This course is the first semester of a two-semester research experience offered in conjunction with the Pickle Research Apprenticeship Program, which is under the direction of Professor Sean Theriault and Professor Bryan Jones.  Except in very limited circumstances, students enrolled in the fall semester will also enroll in the spring semester research class taught by Professor Jones.  Professors Jones and Theriault will work hard to make the transition from the fall to the spring as seamless as possible.

 

Readings

  • Sean Theriault’s The Gingrich Senators
  • Bryan Jones’s Policy Dynamics

 

Grading Requirements

  • 25%  Class Participation
  • 75%  Research Project

 

Flag:

Independent Inquiry

GOV 374N • Political Internship

39020 • Henson, James
Meets TH 500pm-630pm BAT 5.108
show description

 

Prerequisites: Upper-division standing (60 completed semester hours; 12 semester hours of government completed, including GOV 310L and GOV 312L or GOV 3TX & GOV 3US; Cumulative GPA must be 3.00 or higher AND Government GPA 3.00 or higher; and consent of the internship coordinator (Dr. Henson) via application process.  Applications and more information are available here: https://www.utexas.edu/cola/depts/government/internship/faqs/prospective-intern.php.

 

 

COURSE DESCRIPTION

 

The Government Department internship program provides students an opportunity to combine work experience in government and politics with academic coursework.  This course emphasizes guiding students through the design and execution of a carefully defined small-scale research project, and an analysis of their research that can be communicated intelligibly to a public audience.  The coursework is designed to sharpen students’ ability to use basic academic research skills as tools in a professional environment, and to convey the results of their research in ways that contribute to public discourse about politics, policy, and government.

 

Most of students’ time and energy will be directed toward performing the duties of their internships in a manner that reflects positively on them and on The University of Texas at Austin.  A solid performance as an intern provides a rich learning experience, the possibility of future intellectual and professional opportunities, and also reflects well on the program, paving the way for future students to have the same opportunities current interns enjoy.

 

However, interns should be clear about the nature of this course.  Students are not receiving credit from the Government Department primarily for fulfilling their internships.  Students receive grades and credit for completing the internships in conjunction with guided course work.  Supervisor evaluations are taken into account in assigning grades per the grading criteria below, but 75% of your course grade is based on assessment of academic work completed for the course. 

TEXTBOOKS

 

None.  A limited list of readings will be provided on the Canvas site for the course (see above).

 

COURSE REQUIREMENTS

  • Completion of 5 assignments connected to research project
  • 4 mandatory group meetings – dates listed below
  • Work hours:  9-12 hours per week, beginning first day of semester, concluding the last regular day of the semester.  The minimum total hours worked should be 150 hours.  How you track this is up to you and your supervisor/employer, but it should be verifiable if necessary.
  • Two evaluations by internship supervisor
  • Texas Politics Speaker Series attendance (times & dates TBA)

 

NOTE:  all requirements must be fulfilled to receive credit and a passing grade for the course.

 

GRADE CALCULATION

 

Course component

Percent of final grade

Project assignment #1:  Proposal

10%

Project assignment #2: Data Graphic Prototype

12.5%

Project assignment #3: 1st Draft – Analysis Text

12.5%

Project assignment #4: Final Research Project

30%

Project assignment #5:  Dissemination/Promotion

5%

Research presentation

5%

Mid term supervisor evaluation

10%

Final supervisor evaluation

15%

 

Grade scale for final grades:

A  94-100%

A- 90-93%

B+ 87-89%

B  84-86%

B- 80-83%

C+ 77-79%

C  74-76%

C- 70-73%

D+ 67-69%

D  64-66%

D- 60-63%

F  59 and below

 

Students must complete all of the assignments in order to receive a passing grade for the course.  Decimal points will be rounded. Sign up sheets from events and meetings will be considered in borderline cases.

GOV 679HA • Honors Tutorial Course

39025 • McIver, John
Meets T 330pm-630pm GAR 0.128
show description

GOV 679HA Course Description/McIver

 

Description

This course is the first semester of a two-semester sequence designed to help a select group of motivated students complete a Senior Honors thesis.   Students develop an initial research question, hypothesize an answer and propose a research strategy to test that hypothesis.  The research question is the student’s own as is the choice of advisor.  In most cases, students develop a question and then seek advice as to which member of the department faculty might be aide them in answering their question. 

The primary product of the fall semester is “Chapter 1”, a 20-25 page summary of the project to be completed during the spring semester.  This paper includes a research question or hypothesis to be considered, a review of the existing literature on the topic, a research design, a plan for the completion of the project and an extended bibliography of relevant documents. 

Throughout the fall semester writing assignments build on the students’ research interests as well as attempt to engage the student more broadly in the craft of writing.  Students develop bibliographies of prior research, writing and re-write literature reviews, provide proposed research designs, develop a preliminary/short version of Chapter 1 prior to a final chapter 1 of 20-25 pages plus figures, tables and references.

Classwork also engages practical issues underlying research.  A representative of the Office of Research Support regularly attends to describe the process of studying (and protecting) Human Subjects.  The School of Undergraduate Studies/Office of Undergraduate Research provides assistance in training class members in the creation of research posters.  

Requirements

Admission is restricted to applicants who apply during the prior spring semester. Applicants must show ability to sustain a 3.5 GPA in Government and to be accepted for mentoring by a faculty advisor.

Textbooks

As needed for individual projects.

Grading

 

Preliminary writing exercises

Term paper

Attendance and Participation

 

Flags:

 

Writing

Independent Inquiry

GOV 379S • Money In Politics

39030 • Roberts, Brian
Meets T 330pm-630pm CLA 0.122
(also listed as HMN 350, LAH 350)
show description

Title:   MONEY IN POLITICS-HONORS

 

Course Description

 

This course explores the nature and consequences of money in American politics and why, at this point in history, we find ourselves embroiled in the most significant debate over campaign finance reform in over thirty years. The debate goes to the heart of the U.S. Constitution, pitting the First Amendment rights of speech and assembly against the perceived fairness and efficacy of a republican government awash, some claim, in increasingly unaccountable money. 

Campaign finance issues lie at the crossroads of a bewildering number of analytical perspectives. We (must) examine the work of historians, social scientists, legal scholars, and interested parties on all sides of the debate in an effort not only to assess current policy debates but also to understand how we got here.

The objective of the course is not to persuade you of any particular point of view but, rather, to arm you with the substantive knowledge, theoretical foundation and analytical tools needed to be resolute in whatever conclusions you draw from this experience.

Course Requirements

 

This course is an honors seminar.  As such, there is a premium on preparation and participation.  Final grades are based on class participation, two tests and two class projects:

 

Participation:   10%

1st Project:     15%

2nd Project:   20%

First Test:      25%

Second Test: 30%

 

Grades will be based on the +/- scale.

 

Texts

 

La Raja, Raymond. Small Change: Money, Political Parties and Campaign Finance Reform. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press. 2008.

Lessig, Lawrence. Republic, Lost: How Money Corrupts Congress--and a Plan to Stop It. New York: Twelve. 2011.

Samples, John. The Fallacy of Campaign Finance Reform. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. 2006.

GOV 379S • Politics In Fiction

39034 • Sparrow, Bartholomew
Meets MW 300pm-430pm PAR 210
(also listed as LAH 350)
show description

What is at stake in politics and government?  Why do political events unfold as they do?  Why do politicians and public officials make the choices they do?  Theories of politics and government, statistical analyses, and archival research take us so far.  Many say that the best way to capture politics and government—and especially the personal and emotional nature of politics—is through fiction.

 In “Politics and Fiction” students read some of the best fiction writing extant on American politics and government.  The reading list is based on the quality of the texts, rather than on focusing particular authors, addressing particular subjects, or covering particular time periods.  Fortunately, particular topics and time periods do come into play.  The books’ subjects range from accounts of 19th century America, to works on Vietnam and the 1960s, to novels about city and state and national politics and elections, and to contemporary lobbying and radicalism.

 Students are asked to read critically, that is to uncover the assumptions of and perspectives of each text with respect to ideology and partisanship, to consider how politics function and the political system operates, to think about the role played by individual and social psychology, and to assess what the relevant institutions are each case.  What are the political foundations and philosophic premises of the texts?  What is the author’s writing style and the effect of that style on the reader’s understanding of the text?

19th Century

Harriet Beecher Stowe, Uncle Tom’s Cabin, IBSN: 1840224023

Gore Vidal, Lincoln, IBSN: 0375708763

Mark Twain and Charles Dudley Warren, The Gilded Age.  ISBN: 0452009995

Vietnam and the 1960s

Graham Greene, The Quiet American ISBN: 0140185003

Don DeLillo, Libra ISBN: 014015604

Philip Roth, American Pastoral ISBN: 0375701429

Tim O'Brien, In the Lake of the Woods ISBN: 0140250947

 Local and State Politics

Robert Penn Warren, All the King’s Men ISBN:0156031043

Edwin O’Connor, The Last Hurrah ISBN: 0316626597*

Billy Lee Brammer, The Gay Place  ISBN:0292708319

 Contemporary Issues

Christopher Buckley, Thank you for Smoking  ISBN: 0812976525

David Goodwillie, American Subversive  ISBN: 1439157065

Students are responsible for composing (2) books reviews, making an in-class presentation, participating in class discussion, and writing short response papers.   

Students need to have taken Government 310L and 312L

 Grades

Book Reviews, two (1500-2000 words): 2 x 15 = 30 percent

Comment Papers, six (500 words maximum): 6 x 5 = 30 percent

Class Participation, including attendance: 30 percent

Presentation/Discussion leadership: 10 percent

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