GOV 381L • Interpretations of American Politics
3:30 PM-6:30 PM
This graduate seminar looks at American politics through perspectives that treat it as a whole regime, rather than through studies of particular institutions, processes, groups, or other parts. The organizing questions of the seminar will include: What are the core features of the polity as distinguished from the peripheral? What are the permanent aspects of the regime as opposed to the transient? What are the main competing theories of change or development? What is the relation of origins of political order to subsequent development? What kind or type of polity is the American regime? What is the relation of liberalism and anti-liberalism in American political development?
Theodore Lowi, The End of Liberalism Samuel Huntington, American Politics: The Promise of Disharmony J. David Greenstone, The Lincoln Persuasion Michael Sandel, Democracy's Discontent Rogers Smith, Civic Ideals Rick Perlstein, Before the Storm Sacvan Bercovitch, Rites of Assent Michael Rogin, Ronald Reagan, The Movie The Federalist Anti-Federalist writings (several articles to be provided).