GOV s312L • Issues and Policies in American Government
10:00 AM-11:30 AM
Fulfills second half of legislative requirement for 6 hours of American government. This course will analyze the origins and consequences of U.S. policies toward Latin America. As a basic course in American government, one objective of this class is to increase your understanding of U.S. foreign policy. U.S. foreign policy toward Latin America will be used as a means to help achieve that objective. The first third of the course will provide some basic background on U.S.-Latin American relations. We will identify the important actors for U.S. policymaking toward the region and discuss different theories that seek to explain U.S.-Latin American relations. We will also examine the history of U.S.-Latin American relations from the colonial period until World War II. The second part of the course will examine U.S.-Latin American relations during the Cold War (1945-1990). The final section of the course will examine current issues in U.S.-Latin American relations, including trade, promotion of democracy, narcotics, immigration, and the environment. By the end of the course, you should not only be more familiar with U.S. foreign policymaking and U.S. foreign policy toward Latin America, but you should also be a little more familiar with Latin America and Latin American politics more generally. You should have a greater ability to understand and analyze the political information that is presented in the media and newspapers in regard to U.S. foreign policy.
There will be three exams in the course, each worth 30 percent of the final grade. The remaining 10 percent will be based on attendance and participation in class.
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. Smith, Peter. Talons of the Eagle: Dynamics of U.S.-Latin American Relations. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2000. In addition, a course reading packet will be required.