Skip Navigation
UT wordmark
College of Liberal Arts wordmark
government masthead
Robert G. Moser, Chair BAT 2.116, Mailcode A1800, Austin, TX 78712 • 512-471-5121

Summer 2009

GOV S365N • Politics of New Democracies

Unique Days Time Location Instructor
84685 MTWThF
10:00 AM-11:30 AM
MEZ B0.306

Course Description

One of the most important developments in the last quarter century has been the expansion of democracy around the world. The most dramatic events of the late 20th century — the fall of the Berlin Wall, the end of apartheid, the collapse of the Soviet Union, and the end of the Cold War — have all been associated with what scholars have called the "third wave" of democratization, in which authoritarian regimes around the world collapsed in favor of varying degrees of democratic governance. With the end of the Cold War and the emergence of the threat of international terrorism, the spread of democracy, particularly in the Middle East, has become a central tenet of U.S. foreign policy and the “war on terror.” International terrorism has presented consolidated and emergent democracies with their greatest challenge to date. Democracy is seen as a primary antidote to this threat as well as its chief target.

This course will examine the process of democratization in an attempt to determine which factors make the consolidation of democracy in a formerly authoritarian system more likely. The course will be organized thematically rather than regionally, meaning that we will deal primarily with broad issues that (conceivably) can be generalized to all cases. The examples of democratization used in the course will be drawn from many geopolitical regions including Latin America, post-communist states (Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union), the Middle East, Asia and Africa. After a survey of the central concepts surrounding democratization, the class will focus on specific factors related to successful democratization including: modernization, political culture, institutional design, civil society, and globalization.

Grading Policy

Grades will be assigned as follows: First Take-Home Essay 25% First Multiple Choice Exam 20% Second Take-Home Essay 25% Second Multiple Choice Exam 20% Participation (based on in-class quizzes) 10%


The following book has been ordered at University Coop: Fareed Zakaria, The Future of Freedom (New York: W.W. Norton, 2003). Most readings are to be found in a large reading packet available at Paradigm Copies, 407 W. 24th Street. These readings are marked by an asterisk (*). These readings are also available on Blackboard.


bottom border