The Department of Government
The Department of Government

GOV 310L • American Government

37680 • Prindle, David
Meets MWF 900am-1000am MEZ 1.306
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Course Description, Spring, 2016

Gov. 310L, "Introduction to American and Texas Politics"

Professor David Prindle

 

Statement of Purpose

 

                        The purpose of this course is not only to provide useful information and a point of view with which to understand politics in the state and the nation.  I am an explicitly normative teacher; that is, I try to supply students with the ideal of a democratic polity as well as the reality of the system, in order that they may compare the reality with the ideal and evaluate the results.  In other words, I hope to help my students to become better citizens.

 

Prerequisites

 

            Students must have one semester’s worth of credit before they are allowed to enroll for this class.  That is, a freshman can enroll, but not until after his or her first semester at UT.

 

Assigned Reading

 

American Government and Politics Today, 2014-2015 Brief ed. by Steffen Schmidt, Mack Shelley, and Barbara Bardes

 

Texas Politics, 13th ed., by Charldean Newell, David Prindle, and James Riddlesperger

 

There is a variety of ways to purchase these two books:

 

    1. In printed form, they are available as a “streamlined custom text” at the Co-op. This single volume consists of selected chapters from the two textbooks that are substantially discounted. You can also buy the whole printed books off the Cengage Website, but

you will pay more than for the custom package at the Co-op.

   2. Virtually, they are available as e-books on the Cengage Publisher Website.  This way is substantially cheaper than buying the paper copy.

 

Grading Policy

            There are three tests in this class, the score on each of which, in general, counts one third of your grade.  For a few students, I may make some minor adjustments in these averages to reflect class participation. Here are the average numerical grades, and their corresponding letter grades:

A:              92.3 or higher

A minus:   90 to 92

B plus:      88 to 89.7

B:              82.3 to 87.7

B minus:   80 to 82

C plus:      78 to 79.7

C:              62.3 to 77.7

C minus:    60 to 62

D:              50 to 59.7

F:               Below 50

 

            People who have missed one or more of the three assignments, in addition to those who average below 50, will receive an “F.”  I may make some minor adjustments in these averages to reflect class participation.


GOV 310L • American Government

37685 • Branham, James
Meets MWF 1100am-1200pm UTC 3.102
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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

37690 • Shaw, Daron
Meets TTH 1100am-1230pm SAC 1.402
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COURSE DESCRIPTION

Semester:                              Spring 2016

Course:                                  Government 310L

Unique #:                               37690

Professor:                               Shaw

Prerequisites:                                   

None

Course Description:    

This course is an introduction to American government and politics.  While our main focus is on the national level, additional attention is paid to the state and local governments of Texas.  In some instances, the American case is placed in a comparative context derived from the experience of other western democratic nations.  In other instances, we focus on changes over time within the American political system to demonstrate how principles often change with context.  At all times we are interested in a better understanding of how this particular system has developed and what it means for citizens of the United States.

There are three primary objectives in this course.  The first is to provide basic descriptive information about the American and Texas political systems by examining important political processes, institutions, and actors.  The second is to develop analytical skills by which to understand complex relationships and phenomena.  The third is to introduce the work of the political scientist by concentrating on the paradigms and techniques of the discipline.

Grading Policy

There will be two in-class midterm examinations that will determine your grade. Each exam will have two equally weighted components worth a total of 100 points. There are thus 200 total points available in the class.

MIDTERM 1                         POINTS                 QUESTIONS

 

Multiple Choice                          50                           50

 

Short-Answer                            50                           10

 

 MIDTERM 2                         POINTS                  QUESTIONS

 

Multiple Choice                          50                            50

 

Short-Answer                            50                            10

 

 TOTAL                                      200

 

 

 

Texts:  

“American Government: Power and Purpose,” Lowi, Ginsberg, and Ansolabehere. 13th edition (2014 election update). 978-0-393-27029-7


GOV 310L • American Government

37695 • Hardee, Benjamin
Meets MWF 1200pm-100pm MEZ B0.306
show description

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

37700 • Kelly, Kristin
Meets MWF 1200pm-100pm WAG 201
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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

37705 • Sparrow, Bartholomew
Meets TTH 1230pm-200pm MEZ B0.306
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Government 310L             Introduction to U.S. and Texas Government

                                                            The University of Texas at Austin

 

Course Description

This course introduces you to the politics and government of the United States (a lot) and the state of Texas (some).  Among the issues we address are the following:

•  What is politics? 

•  What is democracy?

•  What is political science?

•  What ideas about the political system have been most relevant to understanding the United States as a representative democracy? 

•  What political processes and principal policies characterize the governments of the United States and of Texas, past and present?

•  What events, documents, and political realities lie behind the development of the United States from thirteen Atlantic colonies to its emergence as a superpower?

•  How do you, the citizen, fit into state and national politics and government?

 

The course concentrates on the political philosophy and political history of the United States and Texas.  It also takes a critical look at the institutions and processes of American and state government as they have developed up to the present.

Films and guest lectures will supplement course lectures.  Class attendance and participation is expected, and students may be called upon in class. The course is accompanied by a required text and a required course packet.  The packet contains documents from the founding, Supreme Court cases, the texts of U.S. treaties, readings from American political science, and other materials.

 

Text

Lowi, Ginsberg, Shepsle, Ansolabehere, American Government: Power and Purpose. Brief 13th Ed.  New York: Norton.


GOV 310L • American Government

37710 • Leal, David L.
Meets TTH 330pm-500pm CLA 0.130
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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

37715-37720 • Theriault, Sean
Meets MW 230pm-400pm
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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

37723 • Albertson, Bethany L
Meets MW 400pm-530pm CLA 0.126
show description

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-Wb

37730 • McDaniel, Eric
Meets
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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 312L • Iss & Policies Amer Gov-Ut/Dc

37735 • RICHTER, BRIAN
Meets
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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 • Iss & Policies In Amer Gov-Hon

37740 • Roberts, Brian
Meets TTH 200pm-330pm PAR 308
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Issues & Policies in American Government (Honors):

American Government & Business

(GOV 312L)

 

 

Course Description

The relationship between the private and public sectors in the United States has, in many ways, defined us as a country.  The Founders struggled to produce a constitution that offered blueprints for both the government and the economy and how they should interact.  This course explores the history of this interaction through a variety of lens, tackling just topics as property rights, regulation, corporate political behavior, and, of course, the political economy of pirates....

This course fulfills second half of the legislative requirement for government. 

Required Readings

In addition to occasional readings posted on the course Canvas site there are three books and one newspaper subscription:

Eisner. 2011. The American Political Economy.  Routledge

Lehne. 2013. Government and Business. Sage

Coen et al. 2010.  The Oxford Handbook of Business and Government.  Oxford

The Wall Street Journal.  Students must subscribe or have daily access to The Wall Street Journal for the 15 weeks of the course.  There are great student rates available at http://wsj.com/studentoffer .

Grading

  • 60% of your class grade is determined by performance on two (2) tests, each of which will have a take-home and an in-class component.  Each test will count for 30% of your grade. Test dates are listed below and are posted on the course calendar in Canvas.
  • 15% of your class grade is based on ten (10) short writing assignments based on Wall Street Journal news articles.  Due dates for these assignments are listed below and on the course calendar in Canvas.  Assignment requirements are also posted on Canvas.
  • 25% of your class grade is based on a research paper.

GOV 312L • Issues & Policies In Amer Gov

37745 • Lamm, Jennifer E.
Meets MWF 1000am-1100am MEZ B0.306
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GOV 312L / 37745

Issues and Policies in American Government

Spring 2016

 

Instructor: Jennifer Lamm

jenniferlamm@utexas.edu

 

 

Class Meeting: MWF 10-10:50am

Location: Mezes B0.306

 

Prerequisites

This course fulfills the second half of the legislative requirement for government. No prerequisites are required.

 

Course Description

This course introduces students to some current debates about how to reform the American political system. This course is unique in that it devotes a substantial amount of class time for discussion and debate. Each week the class will learn about some aspect of the U.S. political system, i.e. federalism, and then debate a contemporary issue related to that topic, i.e. the legalization of marijuana by certain states.

 

Required texts

Robert Dahl, 2002, How Democratic is the American Constitution? New Haven: Yale University

Press.

Richard J. Ellis and Michael Nelson, ed. 2014. Debating Reform: Conflicting perspectives on how

to fix the American political system, 2nd ed. Los Angeles: Sage/ CQ Press.

Thomas E. Mann and Norman J. Ornstein, 2012, It’s Even Worse than it Looks, New York: Basic

Books.

Other required reading is available on Canvas.

 

Grading Policy

Grades are based on 3 multiple choice exams (15 percent each, 45 percent total), 3 short papers (15 percent each, 45 percent total), and class participation (10 percent).

 

This course uses the plus and minus system to assign grades as follows:

A          93-100             B+        87-89.99          C+        77-79.99          D+        67-69.99

A-        90-92.99          B          83-86.99          C          73-76.99          D          63-66.99

                                    B-         80-82.99          C-         70-72.99          D-        60-62.99

                                                                                                            F          Below 60


GOV 312L • Issues & Policies In Amer Gov

37750 • Weyland, Kurt
Meets MWF 100pm-200pm JGB 2.324
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Kurt Weyland

GOV 312L/unique 37750: Issues & Policies in American Government: The U.S. in Comparative Perspective

 

 

Course description:

 

This course will compare the U.S. political system with Great Britain, Sweden, Russia/Soviet Union, and Mexico. The main purpose is to analyze how different models of democracy as well as non-democratic types of political regime operate in practice and how they have changed over time. Specifically, we will examine liberal democracy (the case of the U.S.); social democracy (Sweden); the move from social to liberal democracy (Great Britain); Communist totalitarianism (Soviet Union), its move toward democratization, and the slide into authoritarian rule (Russia); & authoritarian rule & its democratization (Mexico). Through this wide-ranging approach, we will also examine how countries of very different historical and regional background and of different development levels deal with fundamental political issues. Thus, the course will examine political decision-making in different institutional and societal settings and analyze how these political differences affect public policies and the lives of common citizens.

 

 

Grading:

 

3 examinations + 3 quizzes about the readings. Strict attendance norm. Rigorous enforcement of scholastic honesty rules.

 

 

Texts (probable – but may potentially be replaced):

 

David Held, Models of Democracy, 3rd ed. (Polity Press, 2006)

 

Benjamin Ginsberg & Martin Shefter, Politics by Other Means, 3rd ed. (W.W. Norton, 2002)

 

M. Donald Hancock et al., eds., Politics in Europe: An Introduction to the Politics of the United Kingdom, ... Sweden, Russia,.. 5th ed. (Congressional Quarterly Press, 2011/12). [NOTE: We will use the 5th edition so students can obtain used copies; the 6th edition (2014) is very expensive].

 

Daniel Levy & Kathleen Bruhn, Mexico: The Struggle for Democratic Development, 2nd ed. (Univ. California Press, 2006).

 

Coursepack with xeroxed journal articles and book chapters

 

 


GOV 312L • Issues & Policies In Amer Gov

37755 • Dietz, Henry
Meets MWF 200pm-300pm CLA 0.130
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Course Description

 

Henry Dietz

Spring 2016

 

 GOV 312L (#37755) – Poverty and Politics

 

Prerequisites

 

None.

 

Course description

 

            This course is divided into three sections.  The first examines the various meanings of poverty and inequality in the US and Texas and how poverty and inequality have been defined for policy purposes.  It also looks at various explanations as to why poverty and inequality exist and persist, again in the US and in Texas.

 

            The second looks at poverty policy in the US and what, how, and why US poverty policy has been so debated over time.  The same topics are also examined for Texas.

 

            The third part of the course is a brief overview of global poverty and inequality and of what approaches have been taken to confronting these issues, especially since the end of World War II.

 

Grading Policy

 

            Grades will be determined on the basis of three in-class essay exams that are part short-answer and part essay.  Each one of these exams counts for a third of the grade.  There is also an optional paper that will count the same as an exam (i.e., one quarter of the semester grade).  The optional paper grade does not replace an exam grade; it is in addition to the three exam grades.

 

Texts (tentative)

 

DiNitto and Johnson, Essentials of Social Welfare

Rodgers, American Poverty in a New Era of Relief

Ehrenreich, Nickel and Dimed to Death in America

Isbister, Promises Not Kept


GOV 312L • Issues & Policies In Amer Gov

37760 • Brownlee, Jason
Meets TTH 200pm-330pm MEZ B0.306
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No prerequisites.

 

Course description:

 

This course addresses how United States officials have formed and pursued their ideas of national security from the Spanish-American War of 1898 to the Arab Spring of 2011. The class will focus on the patterns and effects of US political and military interventions abroad. We will give particular attention to US foreign policy in the Middle East, including the United States' relationships with such influential countries as Egypt, Iran, Israel, and Saudi Arabia. 

 

Grading policy:

 

Map and history quiz (10%), Exam 1 (30%), Exam 2 (30%), Exam 3 (30%).

 

Texts:

 

There is no textbook for this course. 


GOV 312L • Issues & Policies In Amer Gov

37765 • Buchanan, Bruce
Meets TTH 200pm-330pm UTC 2.102A
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Government 312L

Issues and Policies in American Government

Spring, 2016 Topic: The Citizen’s Presidency

Unique #37765

Professor Bruce Buchanan                                                

Spring, 2016

T, Th 2-3:30 

UTC 2.102A                           

Office:  BAT 3.122                           

Instructor Office Hours:  T, Th 11:30 a.m.-1:00 p.m.

 

Course Description

          

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.  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 tasks of presidential citizenship: evaluation of presidential performance and of 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 Obama

            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

 

 

Required Readings

 

J.A. Pika, and J.A. Maltese. 2014.  The Politics of the Presidency, (revised 8th Edition).

 

M. Nelson, ed. 2016. The Evolving Presidency. (5th Edition).

 

Presidency news from a national daily paper:  e.g., The New York Times, or  Wall Street Journal.

 

 

Student Responsibilities

 

            a. Timely completion of weekly reading assignments

            b. 2 multiple choice mid-term examinations                                   30% each

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

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

            d. Attendance is required. 

e. Take scheduled exams. Make-up exams are for emergencies only. 


GOV 312L • Issues & Policies In Amer Gov

37770 • Barany, Zoltan
Meets MW 300pm-430pm WAG 101
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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

37775 • 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 with each question worth one point 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+, 72-66 = C, 65-64 = C-, 63-54 = D, 53-0 = 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. Each exam covers only material since the exam just before it.

 

Students with disabilities: Students with disabilities may request appropriate academic accommodations from the Division of Diversity and Community Engagement, Services for Students with Disabilities, 471-6259, www.utexas.edu/diversity/ddce/ssd/

 

Use of Canvas

 

Canvas will be used for announcements, the syllabus, PowerPoint slides, grades, main points of the lectures, organizing principles of the lectures, maps, sample questions, and study sheets for the exams. You will be notified during lecture or by e-mail if additional information is added as the semester progresses.

 

Lectures

 

The lectures are the major source of information for the tests, so it is important to come to every class. The study guide for each test will tell you what material to take notes on. It is a good idea to read the assigned material before coming to class, so you will better understand the lectures. Everything covered in lecture and assigned from your book can be the subject of exam questions unless explicitly excluded by me. If you have any questions, you are always welcome to see me during my office hours or anytime I’m in my office.

 

Advice from a previous “A” student on how to study for exams:

 

“…I retain a lot from lecture. But, I fill out the study sheet and put the main points together with their matching “organizing principle.” I use the text if I have something missing from my notes or I need more information about something on the study sheet. Also reading the text helps me clarify events and keep things in chronological order.”


GOV 312L • Issues & Policies In Amer Gov

37780-37785 • Moser, Robert
Meets TTH 1230pm-200pm
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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 the legislative requirement for government. It may be taken for credit only once. 

 

This course carries the Ethics and Leadership flag. Ethics and Leadership courses are designed to equip you with skills that are necessary for making ethical decisions in your adult and professional life. You should therefore expect a substantial portion of your grade to come from assignments involving ethical issues and the process of applying ethical reasoning to real-life situations.

 

The class is designed to accommodate 800 or more students. The 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/online/courses/ to test their computer and network connection and learn about the course structure.

 

Grading Policy:

 

Quizzes                                     15%     

Take-home essay                        25%                  

First exam                                  20%                 

Second exam                              20%

Third exam                                20%     

 

Required Textbook:

 

  • TBD

GOV 312L • Issues & Policies In Amer Gov

37787 • Rhodes-Purdy, Matthew
Meets TTH 930am-1100am UTC 4.104
show description

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 312P • Constitutnl Prins: Core Texts

37790 • Ives, Anthony
Meets MWF 1000am-1100am WAG 308
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Prerequisites

 

GOV 310 or equivalent

 

Course Description

 

This class is a study of the basic concepts that define American political life: democracy, equality, and liberty. Through a close reading of core texts of the American political tradition, we will attempt to see how these ideals took hold in the US, what arguments were made on their behalf, and what possible pitfalls there are for a society dedicated to those ideals. Along the way we’ll also look at the ethical questions involved when leaders seek to put those ideas into practice.

 

The course will proceed entirely through a close reading of primary sources. We’ll have units on the concepts of constitutionalism, democracy, liberty, and equality.  In the first three units we will probe the Founding period and the nineteenth century for the source of our nation’s political ideals.  Proceeding to the last unit we’ll read work by Frederick Douglass, Abraham Lincoln, Booker T. Washington, W.E.B. Du Bois, Martin Luther King, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, and Angela Davis. The concept of freedom is not an abstract or academic matter to these thinkers, activists, and leaders.  We will engage in a critical dialogue with their thought to see how constitutional principles can animate political and social change.  Reflecting on their work will help us to better grapple with the possible problems in the foundation of our political tradition and explicate the possible tensions between equality and liberty.

 

Grading Policy

 

Two 1500-1800 Word Essays              54%

Quizzes                                               8%

Attendance and Participation                8%

Final Exam                                         30%

 

Texts

1. Hamilton, Madison, Jay. The Federalist Papers. Introduction by Charles Kesler, edited by Clinton Rossiter. Signet Classics. ISBN 0451528816.

2. The Anti-Federalist: An Abridgement. Edited by Herbert Storing, selected by Murray Dry. The University of Chicago Press. ISBN 0226775658.

3. John Locke, Letter Concerning Toleration. Hackett Publishing Company. ISBN 091514560X.

4. Mill, John Stuart. On Liberty. Dover Thrift. ISBN 0486421309.

5. Frederick Douglass. Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass. Signet Classics. ISBN 0451529944.

6. WEB DuBois. The Souls of Black Folk. Dover Classics. ISBN 0486280411.

7. Alexis de Tocqueville. Democracy in America. Trans. Arthur Goldhammer. The Library of America. ISBN 1931082545.


GOV 312P • Constitutnl Prins: Core Texts

37795 • Stauffer, Dana
Meets MWF 1200pm-100pm WAG 214
show description

312P Spring 2015 37795

Dana Stauffer

 

This course examines American political life and development primarily through the lens of one book: Alexis de Tocqueville’s Democracy in America. This classic of political science, written in the 1830s, takes up questions and themes that continue to resonate almost two centuries later. As a French aristocrat trying to understand and adapt to the rise of democracy, Tocqueville examined American life from all sides. In particular, he was interested in understanding what made American democracy work, and what it main drawbacks were. We will read as much of his two-volume work as possible, focusing particular attention on its main themes: the relationship of religion to American political life, the vitality of local government, the love of material goods, and the dangers of majority tyranny. Along the way, we will also read primary texts from the American colonial period and the American Founding, and reflect on Tocqueville’s view that the former was at least as important as the latter in shaping the polity that developed. We will also discuss his wide-ranging observations on American intellectual life, family life, and the relations between the sexes. We will consider such questions as: What are the sources—intellectual, cultural, and social—of American’s political outlook? What are the strengths and weaknesses of American democracy? What legislators and citizens do to ensure that American polity remains vital, and American citizens active and engaged? In the last third of the course, we will read authors who challenge Tocqueville’s key arguments, or take his assertions in a new direction, and we will consider how well his predictions have been borne out.

 

This course fulfills the second half of the legislative requirement for government.

 

Requirements: A mid-term exam, an optional paper, a final exam, quizzes, and attendance.

 

Texts:

Democracy in America by Alexis de Tocqueville, Volumes I and II, Vintage Classics edition

 

A Course Reader


GOV 312P • Constitutnl Prins: Core Texts

37800 • Siddiqi, Ahmed
Meets TTH 330pm-500pm CLA 1.108
show description

GOV 312P

Constitutional Principles: Core Texts

 

Course description:

 

            This class is a study of the basic principles of American political life: Democracy, equality, and    liberty.  Through a close reading of core texts of the American political tradition, we will attempt to see how these ideals took hold in the US, what arguments were made on their behalf, and what possible pitfalls there are for a society dedicated to those ideals.  We will also be looking the ethical questions involved when leaders seek to put those ideas into practice.

 

            The course will proceed entirely through a close reading of primary sources. There will be units on John Locke and the basic principles of liberal democracy, on the ratification debate, on Alexis de Tocqueville’s Democracy in America, and on race. The class will close with a study of Abraham Lincoln’s political thought, which will also be an occasion for a comprehensive reflection on the  main themes of the course.

 

Grading policy:

 

            50% - Two Papers (25% each): You will write 3 medium length (1500 word) papers on topics to be assigned in class.  Papers will be due at the beginning of class on October 9 and November 20. In each case, please be sure to bring two printed copies to class. You’ll give the second to another student who will write a response to it.  Your papers will be graded on their content and on the quality of your writing.

 

            You will be given the opportunity to rewrite both papers if you wish.  In each case, the rewrite will be due one week after the paper is returned to you.  By rewriting, you can bring your grade up by as much as one full letter grade, with a maximum grade of A-. If you don’t turn in your original paper with my markings together with the rewrite, I won’t grade it.

 

            30% - Final Exam: There will be a cumulative final given on Thursday, December 10, from 2-5 PM.  It will include quote identifications, short answer questions, and two long, comprehensive essays. I will distribute study questions in advance.

 

            10% - Quizzes and Paper Reviews: There will be short pop quizzes on the reading at the beginning of many of our classes. These will be easy if you have done the reading.  If you miss class, you will be allowed to make up the quiz only if your absence is excused.

 

            When you turn in a paper, you will exchange your work with another student’s and write a short (1-2 page, single-spaced) review of what he or she has written.  These will be due at class meetings after papers are due.  Each paper review will have the same value as a quiz.

 

            10% - Attendance and Class Participation: Attendance is required at every class meeting.  You get one unexcused absence for free.  After that, for every class you miss, your overall final average will drop by 1%. Having more than 8 unexcused absences classes will result in automatic failure of the course.  I will excuse absences if you have a serious reason for missing class, such as illness or a religious observance, but you need to consult with me as early as possible.   

 

           Grade Calculation:  Papers and class participation will be given letter grades.  In order to calculate your final grade, these will be translated into number grades as follows:

 

           A: 97; A-: 91; B+: 88; B: 84.5; B-: 81; C+: 78; C: 74.5; C-: 71; D: 65; F: 30

 

            Final grades are calculated numerically, then translated into a letter grade using the following scale.  Please note that your final grade will not be rounded up. A 92.7 is an A-.

 

            A: 93-100; A-: 90-93; B+: 87-90; B: 83-87; B-: 80-83; C+: 77-80; C: 73-77; C-: 70-73; D+: 66-70; D: 60-66; F: below 60.

 

Required Texts:

 

            1. Course Packet, available in Co-Op Bookstore

 

            2. John Locke. Second Treatise of Government. Hackett Publishing Company. ISBN 9780915144860.

 

            3. Hamilton, Madison, Jay. The Federalist Papers.  Introduction by Charles Kesler, edited by Clinton      Rossiter. Signet Classics.  ISBN 0451528816.

 

            4. The Anti-Federalist: An Abridgement. Edited by Herbert Storing, selected by Murray Dry. The             University of Chicago Press. ISBN 0226775658.

           

            5. Alexis de Tocqueville. Democracy in America. Trans. Harvey Mansfield. The University of Chicago      Press. ISBN 0226805360.

           

            6. Frederick Douglass. Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass. Signet Classics. ISBN 0756967104.

           

            7. Booker T Washington. Up From Slavery. Dover Classics. ISBN 0486287386.

           

            8. WEB DuBois. The Souls of Black Folk. Dover Classics. ISBN 0486280411.

           

            9. James Baldwin. The Fire Next Time. Vintage. ISBN 067974472X.


GOV 314 • Latino Pol:voter Id/Health/Edu

37805 • Rivera, Michael
Meets MWF 1100am-1200pm MEZ 2.124
(also listed as MAS 319)
show description

Course number:  GOV 314

Course Title: Latino Politics: Voter ID/ Health/ Education

 

 

Description:

This course is designed to introduce undergraduate students to the tools researchers use when examining key topics in Latino politics.  Students will focus on contemporary issues affecting Latinos and immigrants, including, but not limited to, policies that: 1) regulate state elections (e.g. voter identification laws); 2) expand or constrict access to health care; and 3) offer in-state tuition to undocumented students.

 

Students will become familiar with the research design and methods used in contemporary social science research.  The course will provide students with the knowledge and tools to become capable consumers of social science literature.  Students will also learn how to critically assess surveys presented in the media. 

 

Students will learn basic methods that can be applied to many disciplines; however, case studies in this course will come from Latino politics.  While the focus of this course is on policy issues that affect Mexican-Americans and/or Latinos, students will learn that policies often have widespread impact on many groups.

 

Assignments and grading: 2 exams; 3 written assignment; in-class participation (this is subject to change slightly)

 

Texts: Babbie, Earl. 2015. The Practice of Social Research (14th Edition). Boston: Cengage Learning.  

 

Prerequisites: None

 

Flags: CULTDIVR; INDPINQY


GOV 314 • Intro M East: Adj/Chg Mod Tm

37810 • Di-Capua, Yoav
Meets MWF 100pm-200pm CLA 0.102
(also listed as HIS 306N, MES 301L)
show description

Introduction to the Middle East:  Adjustment and Change in Modern Times

This is an introductory class to the history of the Middle East in the 20th century. The main question for consideration is which forces and what sort of developments transformed this region from a relatively peaceful region to a radicalized environment and a source for opposition against the “West.” By exploring critical political, social, intellectual and economic themes such as colonialism, Arab nationalism, secular modernism, the impact of Zionism and military conflict, the rise of political Islam, the status of women and the oil revolution, we would identify the main internal and external forces, as well as the critical processes, that shaped the region during the last century.

 

 

Texts:

·        James Gelvin, The Modern Middle East; A History (Oxford: Oxford 

                 University Press, 2004).

·        James Gelvin, The Israel-Palestine Conflict : One Hundred Years of War 

                  (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2005).


GOV 314 • Competing Visions Good Life

37815 • Abramson, Jeffrey
Meets TTH 200pm-330pm MEZ 1.120
(also listed as CTI 303)
show description

Course description: Government 314: Competing conceptions of the good life

Professor: Jeffrey Abramson

 

COMPETING VISIONS OF THE GOOD LIFE

    This is a basic introductory course to political philosophy. Through a reading of works of political thought from Plato to        the present, we confront enduring debates about the meaning of liberty, tolerance, equality, justice and the good life.

 

Prerequisites: none

 

Grading Policy:  plus or minus grades.   Midterm Exam counts 30%; Final exam counts 50%; attendance and participation counts 20%

 

Books for Purchase:

Plato:   Euthyphro, Apology, Crito (Library of Liberal Arts)

Plato:       Republic (Basic Books)

Sophocles:   Three Theban Plays (Penguin)

Aristotle:   Nichomachean Ethics (Hackett)

Aristotle:   Politics (Oxford)

Augustine:   Confessions (Penguin)

Machiavelli: The Prince and the Discourses (Modern Library)

Hobbes:      Leviathan (Penguin)

Locke:       Letter Concerning Toleration (Hackett)

Locke:       Second Treatise on Government (Hackett)

Rousseau:    Basic Political Writings (Hackett)

Mill:        On Liberty (Hackett)

Abramson:    Minerva’s Owl (Harvard)           


GOV 314 • Big Power Polits In Se Asia

37820 • Liu, Xuecheng
Meets TTH 930am-1100am MEZ 1.216
(also listed as ANS 301M)
show description

COURSE DESCRIPTION

GOV 314 (Unique 37820) 

 

Spring Semester 2016

Instructor: LIU, Xuecheng

Bldg / Room: MEZ 1.216

Days & Time: TTh 9:30-11:00 am

=======================================================

 

Big Power Politics in Southeast Asia 

The Association of Southeast Asian Nations, or ASEAN, is a successful case of regional cooperation in Asia. It also has posed a puzzle for the study of regional integration in the volatile and fragmented Southeast Asia. Its member states signed the ASEAN Declaration in 1967and the Treaty of Amity and Cooperation in Southeast Asia (TAC) in 1976, containing the guiding principles for dealing with their relations with one another. Starting in the new century, the ASEAN is committed to establishing an ASEAN Community by 2015. The ASEAN Charter entered into force in 2008, serving as a foundation in achieving the ASEAN Community by providing legal status and institutional framework for ASEAN. This lower division undergraduate course is designed to introduce some basic themes of ASEAN's theory and origins, achievements and challenges in its development, and the so-called the ASEAN Way, codifying norms and values of the ASEAN institutionalization. This course also explores the ASEAN’s contributions to peace and development in the region by creating the ASEAN-centric dialogue mechanisms such as ASEAN plus One, ASEAN plus Three, ASEAN Regional Forum, and East Asian Summit.

 

Prerequisites:

Since this is an introductory course, a background in Asian studies or Government is recommended but not required.

 

Grading Policy:

We will adopt UT's new "plus& minus" grading system in this course. The following is a list of letter grades, their corresponding GPA values, and the percentage values that I plan to use for your assignments. Note that these percentage grades will be recorded on Blackboard for our purposes only, not be noted on your transcript.

 

First midterm exam 30 %; Second midterm exam 30 %

Term paper on the ASEAN (6-7 pages) 30 %

(The first draft 15% and the second draft 15%)

Class attendance 10%

 

Textbooks:

1. Alice D. Ba, (Re) Negotiating East and Southeast Asia (Stanford: Stanford University press, 2009) (Electronic Resource).

2. Amitav Acharya and Richard Stubbs, Theorizing Southeast Asian Relations: Emerging Debates (Dewey: Taylor and Francis, 2013) (Electronic Resource)

3. Cillian Ryan, EU-ASEAN: Facing Economic Globalisation (Dordrecht: Springer, 2008). (Electronic Resource)

4. Murray, P., Europe and Asia: Regions in Flux (New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2008). (Electronic resource)

5. Ian Storey, The United States and ASEAN-China relations: All Quiet on the Southeast Asian Front (Carlisle, PA: Strategic Studies Institute, U.S. Army War College, 2007). (Electronic Resource)

6. Selected Documents of the ASEAN (distributed by email)


GOV 314 • Classics Of Socl/Polit Thou

37825 • Dempsey, Erik
Meets MWF 900am-1000am WAG 208
(also listed as CTI 302)
show description

 

CTI 302: Classics of Social and Political Thought

This course explores the changing role of human psychology in the history of political thought through the study of classic texts in philosophy and psychology. In roughly chronological order, we will examine several key philosophers’ accounts of the deepest human concerns—justice, happiness, and love—and the potential political life has to fulfill those yearnings. In the final part of the course, we will study Darwin’s evolutionary theory of human mental faculties in The Descent of Man, Freud’s theory of unconscious psychological drives, and current theories of evolutionary psychology. We will discuss how these different views of human nature suggest different approaches to politics and ethics.

We will read selections from the following works:

Plato The Republic, The Symposium

St. Augustine: The Confessions, City of God

Hobbes The Leviathan

Rousseau Discourse on the Origin of Inequality

Nietzsche Beyond Good and Evil

Darwin The Descent of Man

Freud Civilization and its Discontents

And selected articles on evolutionary psychology

Grading: Your grade will consist of two medium lengths papers (25% each), a final exam (30%), and class participation and reading quizzes (20%). Attendance is mandatory.


GOV 314 • Classics Of Socl/Polit Thou

37830 • Koefoed, Jonathan
Meets TTH 200pm-330pm PAR 303
(also listed as CTI 302)
show description

CTI 302 Classics of Social and Political Thought

Instructor: Liebeskind, Louise

 

No Prerequisites

 

This course will explore the changing role of human psychology in the history of political thought through the study of classic texts in philosophy and psychology. In roughly chronological order, we will examine several key philosophers’ accounts of the deepest yearnings of the human soul and the potential for political life to fulfill those yearnings, noting the dramatic changes between the ancient, medieval, early modern, and late modern periods. In the final section of the course, we will study Darwin’s evolutionary theory of human mental faculties in The Descent of Man, Freud’s theory of unconscious psychological drives, and current theories of evolutionary psychology. We will discuss how these developments in our understanding of the origin and character of human mental phenomena affect the place of psychological study in political thought.

 

We will read selections from the following works:

 

Plato The Republic, The Symposium

St. Augustine  The Confessions, City of God

Hobbes The Leviathan

Rousseau Discourse on the Origin of Inequality

Nietzsche Beyond Good and Evil

Darwin The Descent of Man

Freud Civilization and its Discontents

And selected articles on evolutionary psychology

 

 

Assignments and Grading:

 

25%: Weekly Short Writing Assignments

20%: First Paper

25%: Second Paper

20%: Final Exam

10%: Attendance and participation


GOV 314 • Classics Of Socl/Polit Thou

37840 • Dempsey, Erik
Meets MWF 200pm-300pm WAG 208
(also listed as CTI 302)
show description

 

CTI 302: Classics of Social and Political Thought

This course explores the changing role of human psychology in the history of political thought through the study of classic texts in philosophy and psychology. In roughly chronological order, we will examine several key philosophers’ accounts of the deepest human concerns—justice, happiness, and love—and the potential political life has to fulfill those yearnings. In the final part of the course, we will study Darwin’s evolutionary theory of human mental faculties in The Descent of Man, Freud’s theory of unconscious psychological drives, and current theories of evolutionary psychology. We will discuss how these different views of human nature suggest different approaches to politics and ethics.

We will read selections from the following works:

Plato The Republic, The Symposium

St. Augustine: The Confessions, City of God

Hobbes The Leviathan

Rousseau Discourse on the Origin of Inequality

Nietzsche Beyond Good and Evil

Darwin The Descent of Man

Freud Civilization and its Discontents

And selected articles on evolutionary psychology

Grading: Your grade will consist of two medium lengths papers (25% each), a final exam (30%), and class participation and reading quizzes (20%). Attendance is mandatory.


GOV 314 • Intro To Politics In E Asia

37845 • Maclachlan, Patricia
Meets TTH 1230pm-200pm WAG 420
(also listed as ANS 301M)
show description

Introduction to Politics in East Asia

Global Cultures Flag

Spring 2016

GOV 314  (#37845) & ANS 301M (#30735)

TTH 12:30-2:00; WAG 420

 

Patricia L. Maclachlan

 

 

Course Description:

            This lower-division survey course introduces students to the politics and political systems of Japan, China, and North and South Korea.  For each country, we explore key political institutions and processes as well as relevant social and economic themes—all from historical and comparative perspectives. As the semester unfolds, students will address many of the issues and questions that have intrigued scholars of East Asian politics, including East Asian models of economic development, regional paths to democracy and the legacies of strong states, and the nature of state-society relations. By the end of the semester, students will have acquired the background knowledge to not only interpret current events in East Asia, but also to pursue more in-depth scholarly study of this critically important part of the world.           

 

            Introduction to Politics in East Asia, which carries the “Global Cultures Flag,” is designed to increase student familiarity with cultural groups outside the U.S. Over the course of the semester, we will pay close attention to the cultural and institutional foundations of East Asian politics, and with reference to comparable Western experiences.

 

 

Prerequisites:

            This course requires no prior coursework in either political science or East Asian Studies.

 

 

Texts:

           

            All required readings will be made available to students via Canvas.

           

Requirements:

1. Quizzes on readings                                                                        15%

2. Midterm Exam #1                                                                           20%

3. Midterm Exam #2                                                                           20%

Students may choose to write a short (6-8 pp.) research

paper on a topic of their choice in lieu of this exam.

4. Midterm Exam #3                                                                           25%

            5. Take-Home Essay Exam                                                       20%


GOV 322M • Politics In China

37850 • Lü, Xiaobo
Meets MWF 200pm-300pm PAR 101
(also listed as ANS 322M)
show description

Politics in Contemporary China

GOV 322M

 

Prerequisite:

Six semester hours of lower-division coursework in government.

 

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.

 

This course primarily focuses on domestic politics in post-1978 China. We start the course by introducing the key institutions and players in order to understand the distribution of political power in China. We then detail various forms of political participation by different individuals, which allow us to understand the political logic and consequences of policymaking and selective policy issues in China. We conclude the course by discussing the political reforms implemented in the last three decades and contemplating the potentials political development in the future. The course consists of lectures and in-class discussions in order to enhance students’ learning.

 

Course Requirement and Grading:

 

1.         Four (randomly scheduled) quizzes                                                                           15%

2.         First in-class midterm exam (Feb. 22):                                                                      20%

3.         Second in-class midterm exam on material covered since first midterm (Mar. 28):        25%

4.         Final (cumulative) exam (TBD):                                                                                40%

 

Course Materials:

 

The readings for this course are based on book chapters and articles. All the readings, except for the required textbook, can be accessed through the Canvas website for this class.

 

Required Textbook:

Lieberthal, Kenneth. 2004. Governing China: from revolution through reform. 2nd ed. New York: W. W. Norton.

 

Optional Textbook:

Wasserstrom, Jeffrey. 2013. China in the 21st Century: What Everyone Needs to Know, 2nd edition. New York, N.Y.: Oxford University Press.


GOV 328L • Intro To Lat Amer Gov & Pol

37860 • Dietz, Henry
Meets TTH 800am-930am MEZ B0.306
(also listed as LAS 337M)
show description

GOV 328L/LAS 337M – Introduction to Latin American Politics

 

 

Prerequisites

 

            Government 310L and 312L

 

Course Description

 

            The course is divided into three parts.  The first deals with some basic concepts and background – e.g., what is Latin America?  What are some of the historical features of the region that have had an impact on today’s nations?  And what are some relevant social and economic issues that affect politics?  Readings for this part of the course are largely topical.

 

            Second, since World War II Latin American nations have seen four basic types of rule: democratic, populist, authoritarian, and revolutionary.  The course examines some of the strengths and weaknesses of all four, but especially compares democracy with the other three.  Readings for this part of the course are country case studies.

 

            The third part of the course is an overview of US-Latin American relations.  It covers some of the historical highlights and also examines specific contemporary issues, including immigration and drugs.

 

Grading Policy

 

            Grades will be determined on the basis of three in-class essay exams that are part short-answer and part essay.  Each one of these exams counts for a third of the grade.  There is also an optional paper that will count the same as an exam (i.e., one quarter of the semester grade).  The optional paper grade does not replace an exam grade; it is in addition to the three exam grades.

 

Texts (tentative)

 

            Vanden and Prevost, Politics of Latin America, 5th edition

            Gregory weeks, US and Latin American Relations


GOV 330K • The American President

37865 • Buchanan, Bruce
Meets TTH 930am-1100am CLA 0.112
show description

Government 330K

The American President

Unique #37865

Professor Bruce Buchanan                                                

Spring, 2016

T, Th 9:30 -11                            

CLA 0.112                            

Office:  BAT 3.122                           

Office Hours:   T, Th 11:30 a.m.-1:00 p.m.

 

Course Purpose

 

This course explores the nature of presidential leadership through an examination of the leadership strategies of past presidents and the current incumbent.  The goals are to deepen your understanding of how the presidency works and to sharpen your ability to assess the qualifications of candidates and the job performance of presidents.

 

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

 

  1. Development of the Presidency:  How and why did presidential power grow?  What does presidential history teach the American people to expect of presidents?  How does historical precedent affect current presidential performance? What is the nature of presidential leadership?

 

            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 are the responsibilities of the institution and what resources are available to meet them?  What are the “state of the art” strategies for deploying resources to achieve a president’s political and policy objectives?  How can the quality of a president’s performance in office be reasonably measured?   

 

 

            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

 

  1. Evaluating Presidential Candidates:  What are the grounds for choice among presidential candidates?  How important is character, relative to issue positions and track-record, in appraising the qualifications of candidates?  How well does the presidential selection system work?

 

            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. Two short-answer essay mid-term examinations (30% of grade each)
  2. Combination take-home final/mini-term paper (40% of grade)
  3. Attendance is required.

            (Note:  Pluses and Minuses will not be used for final course grades.)

           4.  Timely completion of weekly readings

                                                                

Required Readings

 

 

J. Pfiffner (2011) The Modern Presidency, 6th ed.

M. Nelson, ed. (2016) The Evolving Presidency, 5th ed.

F. Greenstein (2009) The Presidential difference, 3d.ed.

Regular newspaper reading—presidency stories in New York Times, Washington Post or Wall Street Journal.


GOV 335M • Natural Law Theory

37870 • Budziszewski, J.
Meets MW 430pm-600pm MEZ 1.210
(also listed as PHL 342)
show description

 

 GOV 335M / PHL 342: 

NATURAL LAW THEORY-W 

Professor J. Budziszewski 

Unique numbers: Gov unique number 37870, Phl unique number 41740 

Class meets: MW 4:30-6:00pm in Mezes 1.210 

Prof's office hours: MW 2:30-4:00pm in Mezes 3.106 

Prof’s email: jbud@undergroundthomist.org 

Prof’s office phone: 232-7229; phone does not record messages; email strongly preferred 

Course website: Canvas 

Prof’s website: The Underground Thomist, http://www.undergroundthomist.org 

Course policies: See the FAQ at the “Other Things My Students May Need” section of the Teaching page at my personal website. 

 

PREREQUISITES, FLAGS, AND FIELD 

The course can be taken as either GOV 335M or PHL 342. It carries a writing flag and fulfills part of the basic education requirement in writing. If taken as a government course, enrollment requires six semester hours of lower-division government. The subfield is Political Theory / Political Philosophy. 

 

DESCRIPTION 

“Natural law” refers to moral law – in particular, the fundamental moral principles that are built into the design of human nature and lie at the roots of conscience. Natural law thinking is the spine of the Western tradition of jurisprudence. Historically, it has provided the basis for talking about all of the 'hot button' issues in past and present culture wars; if you wanted to talk about war, slavery, political liberty, or relations between men and women, you talked about natural law. The distinctive mark of natural law thinking is that it begins from what the mind can know about these things by reasoning alone, rather than by the authority of revelation. This in no ways denies revelation, for although the earliest natural law thinkers were pagans, the most influential natural law thinkers have been Christians who held that reason and revelation work together. 

The founders of the American republic believed in the natural law -- in universal and "self-evident" principles of justice and morality which the Declaration of Independence called "the laws of Nature and of Nature's God." For generations afterward, most Americans took the reality of natural law for granted. The Declaration of Independence had appealed to it to justify independence; Abraham Lincoln appealed to it to criticize slavery; Martin Luther King appealed to it to criticize racial discrimination. You would hardly guess any of this from the present day, because belief in natural law has come to be viewed as "politically incorrect." Nevertheless, the tradition of natural law is experiencing a modest renaissance. 

Is there really a natural law? What difference does it make to society and politics if there is? 2 

 

Is it really "natural"? Is it really "law"? To consider these questions, we will read a variety of influential works on natural law from the middle ages to the present. Probably, most of your liberal arts education has implicitly rejected the whole idea, but in this course, for a change, you have an opportunity to hear the other side. 

Unit 1: The Classical Synthesis 

Unit 2: The American Reception of Natural Law Tradition 

Unit 3: Contemporary Writing by Natural Law Theorists 

Unit 4: Natural Law in Broader Perspective 

 

REQUIREMENTS 

For Unit 1, a required analytical outline (20%). For Units 2, 3, and 4, take-home essays (20% apiece). Short-answer quizzes (20%). Extra credit for analytical outlines for Units 2, 3, and 4 (up to 8 points per unit, added to exam grades). Analytical outlines may also be used during quizzes. I do use plusses and minuses. Attendance and participation significantly affect the final course grade. 

 

TEXTS 

Even if you prefer to use the reserves room or read online, you must bring copies of the readings to class, even if only photocopies or printouts. 

Recommended: 

J. Budziszewski, Commentary on Thomas Aquinas’s Treatise on Law. On reserve at Perry-Castaneda Library. Can be purchased online if you want to have a personal copy. 

J. Budziszewski, Companion to the Commentary. Free online resource available at http://undergroundthomist.org/book/commentary-on-thomas-aquinass-treatise-on-law. 

J. Budziszewski, What We Can't Not Know: A Guide. On reserve at the Perry-Castaneda Library. Can be purchased online if you want to have a personal copy. 

Required: 

Thomas Aquinas, Treatise on Law. Available online at http://www.newadvent.org/summa/2.htm (scroll down to LAW, and read Questions 90-97, entire, and 105, Article 1 only). 

Readings packet. Available for purchase at the UT Copy Center, McCombs 3.136, phone: 471-8281. McCombs is the Business School building, right behind Mezes Hall. 3 

 

Additional online readings listed on the Contents page of the readings packet. 

C.S. Lewis, The Abolition of Man. On reserve at the Perry-Castaneda Library. Also online at https://archive.org/details/TheAbolitionOfMan_229 .


GOV 335M • Intel World Amer Founders

37875 • Budziszewski, J.
Meets MW 600pm-730pm MEZ 1.212
show description

 GOV 335M: 

The Intellectual World of the American Founders-W 

(Unofficial title: WHAT THE FOUNDERS WERE READING) 

Professor J. Budziszewski 

Unique numbers: Gov unique number 37875 

Class meets: MW 6:00-7:30pm in Mezes 1.212 

Prof's office hours: MW 2:30-4:00pm in Mezes 3.106 

Prof’s email: jbud@undergroundthomist.org 

Prof’s office phone: 232-7229; phone does not record messages; email strongly preferred 

Course website: Canvas 

Prof’s website: The Underground Thomist, http://www.undergroundthomist.org 

Course policies: See the FAQ in the “Other Things My Students May Need” section of the Teaching page at my personal website. 

 

Course Description 

Contains a substantial writing component and fulfills part of the basic education requirement in writing. Government field: Political Theory. 

We often read what the Founders of the country wrote. But what were they reading themselves? What were the intellectual influences on thinkers like Thomas Jefferson, George Washington, James Madison, and Alexander Hamilton? The answers shed an unusual light on what they were trying to do when they initiated the American experiment in self-government. 

The readings for this course are selected mostly from James Madison's famous reading suggestions to the Continental Congress (the "Report on Books.") I have also drawn from the favorites of John Witherspoon, "the schoolmaster of the republic," who was a university mentor to several of the Founders, as well as from political sermons which the Founders were known to admire. These controversial readings about politics, history, economics, ethics, religion, and law provide an intriguing way to enter into the minds of the men who began the new nation. 

 

Grading Policy 

One short-answer quiz for each reading (25%). One required set of analytical outlines, for Unit 1 (25%); after that, analytical outlines are for extra credit (up to 5 points per unit, added to exam grades). Two take-home essays, for Units 2 and 3 respectively (25% each). 

 

Texts 

Twelve of the readings are online. Three will be in a short readings packet available from the UT Copy Center, McCombs 3.136, phone: 471-8281. McCombs is the Business School building, right behind Mezes Hall, where my office is located.


GOV 335N • Southern Political History

37880 • Enelow, James
Meets TTH 200pm-330pm PAR 201
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

Description

The course will review the political history of the American South 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, “Redemption,” 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, approximating the following distribution: 30% A’s, 35% B’s, 20% C’s, 10% D’s, and 5% F’s. Plus and minus grades will be given for total raw scores falling above or below the boundary lines between grades. 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. 


GOV 337M • Intnatl Politics Latin Amer

37885 • Weyland, Kurt
Meets MWF 1100am-1200pm SZB 296
(also listed as LAS 337M)
show description

GOV 337M/LAS 337 – unique 37885/: International Politics of Latin America

 

Course description:

This course will analyze Latin America’s international relations in a wide-ranging, theoretically informed perspective. The first week will introduce students to a variety of theoretical approaches to this topic. For a few weeks thereafter, the course will examine U.S. policy toward Latin America, starting with the long list of U.S. interventions during the twentieth century (before and during the Cold War); we will focus on emblematic cases, such as Mexico (1910s), Guatemala (1954), Cuba (1959 ff), Chile (1970-73), Grenada (1983) & Panama (1989). We will then analyze how U.S. – Latin American relations have changed with the end of the Cold War. Thereafter, the course will investigate the impact of economic structures and forces on the region’s international position and influence; in particular, what have the repercussions of Latin America’s “economic dependency” been, and how has international economic integration (e.g., NAFTA) changed the region’s insertion into the international economic and political system? Finally, the last few weeks of the course will discuss a variety of new issues that have arisen on Latin America’s international agenda, such as democracy and human rights; international migration; drugs and (other) international criminal activities; and the protection of the environment and of indigenous populations. How have the U.S. and Latin America dealt with all of these novel issues, and how do we need to adjust our theoretical frameworks to account for these new developments?

 

Grading:

1 six to seven page essay paper about questions distributed by the instructor; midterm and final examinations; 2 quizzes about the readings. Strict attendance rule & policy. Rigorous enforcement of scholastic honesty norms.

 

 

Texts (probable – but may potentially be replaced):

Michael Grow, U.S. Presidents and Latin American Interventions. University Press of Kansas, paperback edition, 2012.

Robert Pastor, Exiting the Whirlpool. Westview Press, 2001.

Russell Crandall, The United States and Latin America after the Cold War. Cambridge University Press, 2008.

Coursepack with xeroxed journal articles and book chapters

 

Pls. note: The readings will amount to about 100 pp. of material per week.


GOV 341M • Decision Theory

37890 • Enelow, James
Meets MW 300pm-430pm WAG 214
show description

DECISION THEORY

 

Required Reading

Joel Watson, STRATEGY: An Introduction to Game Theory. 2nd edition. W.W. Norton, 2008.

Below each reading are a chapter number and a list of exercises, which can be found at the end of the chapter. It is strongly recommended that these exercises be attempted before they are done in class. Parts of the Appendix (App) are also assigned. If you bought the 3rd edition of Watson, see me for the assignments.

There is no T.A. for this class, so I am available outside of my office hours. You can e-mail me and request an appointment or you can simply stop by my office anytime.

This is an applied math course and carries the Quantitative Reasoning flag. It is assumed that you are able to do simple calculations with fractions or decimals, solve linear equations in one or two variables, solve quadratic equations, and understand sets, functions, probability, expected value, and infinite series. If you are unfamiliar with any or all of these topics, please seek my help outside of class.

In addition, this course is supported by Peer-Led Undergraduate Studying. PLUS study groups provide an opportunity to collaboratively practice skills and knowledge you need for success in this course. Feel free to attend any study group at any point in the semester; more information on times and locations will be available through Blackboard or announced in class. Go to wikis.utexas.edu/display/PLUS or Facebook to find out more about PLUS.

 

Exams

There will be three in-class multiple-choice exams covering material from each of the three sections of the course. Each exam is of the problem-solving type, similar to the SAT math exam. There is no final exam. A make-up exam (not multiple-choice) will be given only if an exam is missed for a valid reason. There will also be three announced quizzes. There are no make-up quizzes.

 

Grades

The first two exams will have about 16 to 20 questions, the third 14 to 16 questions. Each quiz will have 2 or 3 questions. Each question is worth one point. The points you receive on the three exams and the highest-scoring quiz are added together to determine your total score. These scores will be curved to determine your final grade, approximating the following distribution: 30% A’s, 35% B’s, 20% C’s, 10% D’s and 5% F’s. Plus and minus grades will be given for total scores falling just above or below the boundary lines between grades. After the boundary lines have been determined, the score a student receives on his second-highest quiz will be added to his total score to determine his final grade.


GOV 342N • Public Choice

37895 • Moser, Scott
Meets TTH 800am-930am GAR 1.126
show description

 

GOV 342N-37895

Public Choice

 

a)  Prerequisites (if any)

Some exposure to mathematical reasoning will be helpful. While there are no formal requirements, student should be comfortable with analytical reasoning (logic, basic mathematics, etc.). No sophisticated mathematics will be involved, but logical, rigorous thinking will be required.

 

b)   Course Description

 This course is about how groups make choices. From friends deciding on a place for lunch to cities deciding on tax schemes, the essence of public choice involves groups of individuals selecting a common (ie collective) alternative (be it restaurant, movie, budget or policy). At its heart, questions of public choice are central to issues of governance. This course introduces students to the fundamentals of collective choice: ``` How are/ should collective decisions be made?’’ ``What does it mean for a group to decide `democratically?’’’ ``Does voting lead to `good’ outcomes?’’

At a broad level, the goal of the course is for students to understand the possibilities and limitations of voting (and of Democracy more generally). Along the way, it is important that students learn some ideas and constructs of contemporary social science that are relevant to the study of government and politics. More specifically, a significant part of the course will focus on voting theory – different ways groups may vote on options. Both the variety of different voting systems and their strengths and shortcomings will be examined.

 

 

c)    Grading Policy

Students mastery of the material will be assessed via  home works, participation,  in-class examinations and a final exam. Final marks will make use of the "plus/minus" grading scheme.

 

d)   Texts

Analyzing Politics (second edition) by Kenneth Shepsle published by W. W. Norton

& Company (2010)

 

Populism Against Liberalism by William Riker published by Waveland Pr Inc

 

Selected sections of Electoral Systems: a Comparative Introduction by David Farrell

published by Palgrave Macmillan (2001)

 

Additional materials, lecture notes, and articles 


GOV 350K • Statistical Anly In Polit Sci

37900 • McIver, John
Meets MWF 1100am-1200pm GAR 1.126
show description

GOV 350K Course Description/McIver

 

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


GOV 350K • Statistical Anly In Polit Sci

37905 • Jessee, Stephen
Meets TTH 1100am-1230pm WAG 308
show description

Prerequisites

None

 

Course Description

This course will provide an introduction to probability and statistics with a focus on political applications. Students will learn how to learn from data and to interpret the substantive implications of these results. Topics will include estimating means, associations between variables and regression modeling.

 

Grading Policy

Course grades will be based on a combination of problem sets, in class activities (including quizzes and group work), a midterm and a final exam.

 

Texts

Agresti and Finlay. “Statistical Methods for the Social Sciences” (4th Edition). Pearson/Prentice Hall.

[Optional: Rowntree. “Statistics Without Tears: A Primer for Non-Mathematicians.”]


GOV 350K • Statistical Anly In Polit Sci

37910 • Moser, Scott
Meets TTH 1230pm-200pm JES A217A
show description

GOV 350K-37910

STATISTICAL ANLY IN POLIT SCI

 

 

a)  Prerequisites (if any)

 

High-school level mathematics is required.

 

b)   Course Description

 

This course introduces basic concepts and methods of statistical inference, with a strong focus on politics and political science. This course lays the groundwork for answering ``What can we learn about political systems and political processes from the world?" This course carries the Quantitative Reasoning flag. Quantitative Reasoning courses are designed to equip students with skills that are necessary for understanding the types of quantitative arguments  regularly encountered in adult and professional life. You should therefore expect a substantial portion of your grade to come from your use of quantitative skills to analyze real-world problems.

 

The goals of the course are two-fold. At a broad level, the objective of this course is to help students acquire the literacy for understanding social science research based on quantitative data and reasoning -- to be good consumers of statistics, and to identify the misuse of statistics and data in arguments, be they academic, political, popular.1 Specic goals of the course include competence thinking rigorously about quantitative evidence. At a minimum, students should be able to understand and perform simply hypothesis tests as well as estimate and interpretet ordinary least squares regression.

 

The main activities of the class include (in order of importance): readings, lectures, in-class activities, homeworks and computer lab exercises. This is a very hands on class  -- lectures are meant for summary and review of the assigned readings. Completing the assigned readings prior to attending class is required. An important (and graded) component of this course are in-class activities in which students will work in small groups to discover and highlight principles and topics. Approximately 40-50% of the class time will be lecture, 25-30% is occupied by in-class activities; 15-20% spent in the computer lab (the remaining time is occupied by logistic concerns, two in-class exams, etc.).

 

 

c)    Grading Policy

Grades will be based on homeworks, several in-class activities, lab assignments,  two in-class examination, and a final exam. Grades will employ the university plus/minus grading scale.

 

d)   Texts

Statistical Methods for the Social Sciences (4th ed.) by Agresti and Finlay. Pearson (ISBN-10:

0205646417). 

 

A Stata Companion to Political Analysis [required] by Philip H Pollock III, CQ Press College (ISBN-10: 1608716716)  Note: this is a workbook, check carefully any second-hand copy for all pages.

 

Statistics Without Tears [required] by Derek Rowtree. Penguin (ISBN-10: 0140136320)

 

###Computer software: STATA (available on campus)


GOV 350K • Statistical Anly In Polit Sci

37915 • Jessee, Stephen
Meets TTH 200pm-330pm MEZ 1.208
show description

Prerequisites 

None

 

Course Description

This course will provide an introduction to probability and statistics with a focus on political applications. Students will learn how to learn from data and to interpret the substantive implications of these results. Topics will include estimating means, associations between variables and regression modeling.

 

Grading Policy

Course grades will be based on a combination of problem sets, in class activities (including quizzes and group work), a midterm and a final exam.

 

Texts

Agresti and Finlay. “Statistical Methods for the Social Sciences” (4th Edition). Pearson/Prentice Hall.

[Optional: Rowntree. “Statistics Without Tears: A Primer for Non-Mathematicians.”]


GOV 351D • Theor Foundtns Modern Politics

37920 • Viroli, Maurizio
Meets TTH 1100am-1230pm WAG 420
(also listed as CTI 321)
show description

 

 

Theoretical Foundations of Modern Politics

 

GOV 351D/CTI 321

Spring 2016

 

 

Professor Maurizio Viroli

 

Class: TTH 11:00 AM – 12:30 PM in WAG 420

 

Email: viroli@utexas.edu

 

The main goal of this course is to offer students a historical and philosophical introduction to political philosophy. Unlike most introductory courses in political theory, GOV 351 does not attempt to cover the whole history of political philosophy from ancient Greece to our time, but focuses on a main theme, namely, the excellence of politics. It uses a few ancient and modern philosophers whose writings are particularly relevant for the topic of the course: Arendt, Aristotle, Cicero, Erasmus, Hobbes, Kant, Machiavelli, Marx, Montesquieu, Rousseau, Tocqueville, Thucydides.

 

 

Laptop Policy - No laptops or cell phones should be used, seen, or heard during class. All power point slides will be available online. Please take any additional notes by hand.

 

 

 

Reading List - Books marked with * are required; all the others are recommended.

 

Arendt, The Origins of Totalitarianism, Harcourt Brace

 

*Aristotle, Politics, University of Chicago Press

 

*Cicero, On Duties, Cambridge University Press

 

Constant, “Of the Liberty of the Ancients” in Constant, Political Writings, Cambridge University Press

 

*Dostoevsky, The Legend of the Grand Inquisitor, Filiquarian Publishing

 

Erasmus, The Education of a Christian Prince, Cambridge University Press

 

Gentile, Politics as Religion, Princeton University Press

 

*Hobbes, Leviathan, Cambridge University Press

 

*Locke, Second Treatise of Government, Cambridge University Press

 

*Kant, “What is Enlightenment?,” “Perpetual Peace,” and “Idea for a Universal History,” in Kant, Political Writings, Cambridge University Press

 

*Machiavelli, The Prince, Oxford University Press

 

Machiavelli, Discourses on Livy, University of Chicago Press

 

Marx, “The Communist Manifesto” in The Marx-Engels Reader, Tucker ed., Norton

Montesquieu, The Spirit of the Laws, Cambridge University Press

*Rousseau, “Discourse on Inequality” and “Discourse on Political Economy,” in Rousseau, Basic Political Writings, Hackett

 

Skinner, Renaissance Virtues (selection), Cambridge University Press

 

*Tocqueville, Democracy in America, Mayer ed., Harper Collins

 

*Thucydides, The History of the Peloponnesian War, Martin Hammond edition, Oxford University Press

Walzer, Just and Unjust Wars, Basic Books

*Walzer, Exodus and Revolution, Basic Books

 

Assignments and Grading

 

This course will use plus/minus grading. The midterm will consist of a six-page paper (typed and double-spaced) and will constitute 40% of your grade. The final will consist of an eight- page paper (typed and double-spaced) and will constitute 50% of your grade. For each paper you will be given four prompts of which you will choose one to address in your paper.

Attendance will constitute 10% of your grade. You may miss two classes without penalty to your attendance grade, but you will lose one percentage point for each unexcused absence after that. All requests for excused absences must be submitted in writing to your TA with proper documentation at least one week in advance, except in cases of emergency.


GOV 351L • Morality And Politics

37925 • Stauffer, Dana
Meets MWF 1100am-1200pm MEZ B0.306
(also listed as CTI 325)
show description

GOV 351L/CTI 325: Morality and Politics  37925/33125

 

Do the ends justify the means? If they don’t, what does? When the moral and the expedient conflict, which one should you choose? Is revenge just? Is it a good idea? What, if any, are legitimate grounds for starting a war? Is it always better that the truth come out in politics? Is loyalty to our friends and family more important than the common good? How much should ethical considerations guide our political decision-making? Does the best political order aim at a morally decent life for individuals and communities? Or are moral aims misplaced in politics? We will examine the ways in which great thinkers both ancient and modern have grappled with these questions. About half of the course will be devoted to examining the arguments that political philosophers—Aristotle, Cicero, and Machiavelli—make about the role of morality in politics. We will spend the other half of the course examining moral dilemmas, and how various characters resolve them, in plays and novels by authors such as Euripides, Shakespeare, Addison, and Ibsen.

 

Required Texts:

 

1. The Theban Plays. By Sophocles. Agora.

 

2. Euripides II. By Euripides. Complete Greek Tragedies Series. University of Chicago.

 

3. Euripides IV. By Euripides. Complete Greek Tragedies Series. University of Chicago.

 

4. Politics. By Aristotle. Oxford University Press.

 

5. The Prince. By Niccolo Machiavelli. University of Chicago Press.

 

6. Julius Caesar. By William Shakespeare. Bantam Classics.

 

7. Darkness at Noon. By Arthur Koestler. Bantam Books.

 

8. Ibsen: Four Major Plays, Volume II. By Henrik Ibsen. Signet Classics.

 

9. On Duties. By Marcus Tullius Cicero. Cambridge Texts.

 

10. Cato: A Tragedy and Selected Essays. By Joseph Addison. Liberty Fund.

 

11. Aristotle’s Nicomachean Ethics. By Aristotle. University of Chicago.

 

Grading and Requirements:

 

First Exam 30%          Second Exam 30%       Paper 30%

 

Class Participation and Quizzes 10%


GOV 353D • Darwin & Politics Of Evolution

37930 • Prindle, David
Meets MWF 1100am-1200pm PAR 301
(also listed as CTI 372)
show description

 

“Darwin and The Politics of Evolution”

Spring,  2016

Professor David Prindle

 

Purpose of the Course

 

            Charles Darwin's On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, generally shortened to The Origin of Species, is one of the two or three most influential science books ever published.  But unlike the case with other science books, The Origin, published in 1859, is also of profound political importance.  Part of this political importance—the implications of Darwin's theory for religious explanations of the diversity of life—is well understood by all socially-aware citizens.  But there is much less awareness of the political implications of controversies within the science of evolutionary biology founded by Darwin.

     In this class I will explicate and explore both the "outside" and "inside" political implications of the science launched by the Origin, and ask the students to evaluate them.

 

Assigned Reading

 

1)  Charles Darwin,  The Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, first edition,

      (Barnes and Noble Classics, 2004) [first published 1859]

2)  Jerry Coyne, Why Evolution is True  (Viking, 2009)

3)  Phillip Johnson, Darwin on Trial, second edition, (InterVarsity Press, 1993)

4)  David Prindle, Stephen Jay Gould and the Politics of Evolution  (Prometheus Books,

      2009)

5)  A package of readings, available online.

 

Grading Criteria

 

        There are three assignments due in this class. I may make some minor adjustments in a few of the final grades to reflect excellent class participation, but in general, each of the three assignments counts one-third of the final grade.

        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.

            At the end of the semester, an average of 92.3 or higher will earn an "A,", 90 to 92 will earn an “A-,” 88 to 89.7 will earn a “B+,” 82.3 to 87.7 will earn a "B," 80 to 82 will earn a "B-," 78 to 79.7 will earn a "C+," 62.3 to 77.7 will earn a "C," 60 to 62 will earn a "C-," and 50 to 59.7 will earn a "D."  People who have missed one or more of the three assignments, or who average below 50, will receive an “F.” 

           

 

Prerequisites

 

            Student are able to enroll in this class through two channels.  First, Government majors who are eligible for upper-division standing may enroll through the usual departmental processes.  Second, students who are participating in the Thomas Jefferson Center’s “great books” program (officially, CTI in the catalogue), may enroll in the class through that program.


GOV 355M • Human Behav As Rational Actn

37940 • Lin, Tse-min
Meets TTH 200pm-330pm CLA 1.102
show description

Semester Spring 2016

GOV 355M – Title: Human Behavior as Rational Action

 

Writing Flag & Quantitative Reasoning Flag

 

Unique           Days   Time                                       Bldg/Room     Instructor

37940              TTH    2:00-3:30pm                           CLA 1.102      LIN

 

Course Description

 

The term “rational action” as used in the economic approach is generally equated with maximizing behavior. Individual human agents are assumed to have consistent and stable preferences over alternatives each of which is assigned some “utility.” Maximization entails choosing the course of action that yields the highest expected utility. One is rational to the extent one uses the best means to achieve one’s goals.

 

In this course we will learn a variety of social and political models based on such a notion of individual rationality and to investigate the collective consequences that can be logically inferred from its assumptions. In particular, we will find through the “Prisoner’s Dilemma,” the “Tragedy of the Commons,” and the “Free-Rider Problem” a contrast between rational man and irrational society. Self-serving behavior of individuals does not usually lead to collectively satisfactory results.

 

So this course is about the stories of the Prisoners, the Herdsmen, and the Free-Riders. As a matter of fact, we will show that the Dilemma, the Tragedy, and the Problem share essentially the same mathematical structure, and hence they are essentially the same story - a story about human destiny. We will also introduce the various approaches that have been proposed for the escape from such a destiny.

 

Prerequisites

 

Upper-division standing required.

6 semester hours of lower-division coursework in government.

 

Grading Policy

 

1. First Paper (6-8 pages): 25%                      2. Second Paper (7-9 pages): 25%

3. Third Paper (8-10 pages): 30%                  4. Presentation: 10%

5. Attendance: 10%

 

Texts

 

1. Thomas C. Schelling (1978), Micromotives and Macrobehavior (Norton).

2. Robert Axelrod (1984), The Evolution of Cooperation (Basic Books).

3. Dennis Chong (1991), Collective Action and the Civil Rights Movement (Chicago).

4. Elinor Ostrom (1990), Governing the Commons (Cambridge).

5. Howard Rheingold (2002), Smart Mobs: The Next Social Revolution (Basic Books).


GOV 357L • Judicial Process And Behavior

37945 • Sager, Alan M
Meets MW 300pm-430pm MEZ B0.306
show description

Course Description

This course focuses on understanding and explaining judicial behavior. In order to do this, this course examines not only what judges do, but also all aspects of the judicial process such as juries, attorneys, prosecutors, judicial selection, plea bargaining, court structures and the social and political settings in which courts operate.

Most of the assignments involve reading and analyzing judicial opinions in actual cases. These opinions not only reveal what the judge is thinking and how judges think and reason, but also explain how the judicial process works. Some assignments include viewing videos. We will also look at some of the quantitative analyses of judicial behavior.

The cases are drawn from a variety both “public’ and “private” law areas. Case topics include international law, negligence and product liability law, criminal law and procedure, the interpretation of federal statutes, and constitutional law Some cases used in this course come from the most recent terms of the U.S. Supreme Court. Several of the cases we will cover have been the subject of major movies or discussed in movies and popular T.V. series. Lastly, some cases appear in commonly used law school case book.

This course is designed for students who want a general understanding of the legal and judicial process, students  who are thinking about attending law school  or are already planning to attend law school,  students interested in government work and students who intend to teach in the area of the social sciences in the public schools.

Course Requirements and Grading

Grades will be based on a plus and minus system.

  1. 3 hours exams approximately 63%(40% objective,60% essay)
  2. 2 short papers 3-4 pages approximately 22%
  3. Class attendance and participation approimately 15%

Texts

1. Courts, Judges and Politics: An Introduction to the Judicial Process, Water Murphy, C. Herman Pritchett, Lee Epstein and Jack Knight, 6th Edition, 2006(5th addition also can be used)

2 Judicial Process and Behavior Cases Compilation available at Co-op

3. Benjamin Cardozo   The Nature of the Judicial Process

4. Clarence Thomas    My Grandfather’s Son


GOV 357M • Civil Liberties

37950 • Perry, Jr., H. W.
Meets TTH 1230pm-200pm PHR 2.110
show description

Gov 357M Civil Liberties

2016 Spring

H. W. Perry, Jr.

 

General Description of the Course

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

            Civil Liberties is primarily a course in Constitutional interpretation that focuses on some of the rights and liberties guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution.  The course is designed to familiarize students with approaches and concepts related to certain freedoms, particularly as enuciated by the U.S. Supreme Court.  Particular attention is given to the First and Fourteenth Amendments, which involve issues of freedom of expression, freedom of religion, equal protection, and due process.  

            One objective of the course is for the student to learn what the Supreme Court has said about certain parts of the Constitution and to examine the implications of the rulings for the American polity.  The student should become comfortable with relevant legal analysis and doctrine so that he or she can evaluate intelligently the 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.  Engaging in constitutional reasoning can assist in developing intellectual precision and political persuasiveness.  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.

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.  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.

 

Text

 

TBA    


GOV 357M • Constitutional Interpretatn

37951 • Perry, Jr., H. W.
Meets TTH 330pm-500pm UTC 1.146
(also listed as CTI 326)
show description

Gov 357 Constitutional Interpretation

Spring 2016

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 • Structure Of Indiv Liberties

37955 • Jacobsohn, Gary J.
Meets TTH 1100am-1230pm CBA 4.324
(also listed as CTI 326)
show description

G. JACOBSOHN

 

Gov 357M: THE STRUCTURE OF INDIVIDUAL LIBERTIES

 

The focus of this course is on the ways in which the Constitution protects individual rights as it accommodates the competing claims of groups, communities, and the state. While the emphasis is on the United States Supreme Court, the class will also look at how other constitutional polities address similar issues.  We examine rights under the Constitution as they have evolved and been defined through judicial interpretation during periods of crisis and normalcy.  Some of the topics to be considered include: equal protection under law, substantive and procedural due process, freedoms of speech and religion, and privacy. Under these rubrics are to be found such issues as affirmative action, capital punishment, hate speech, property rights, abortion, and gender discrimination. Much of the reading is 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. 2), 3rd. ed., another book TBA


GOV 358 • Introduction To Public Policy

37960 • Rivera, Michael
Meets MWF 900am-1000am PAR 1
show description

Course number:  GOV   358  

Course Title: INTRODUCTION TO PUBLIC POLICY

 

Description:

This course examines contemporary public policy from the perspective of a policy analyst. Students will learn the basic tools of policy analysis and will apply them to a variety of issues and proposed policy solutions.  We will cover policy topics such as global warming, immigration, same-sex marriage, health, education, etc.

 

The course has three objectives: (1) To identify relevant policy actors and to understand their motivations and incentives; (2) To train students how to produce objective policy analysis, and; (3) To help students understand why public policy decisions often diverge from the recommendations made by policy analysts.  In other words, this is a course about both policy analysis and the politics behind policymaking.

 

Assignments and grading: 2 exams; 3 written assignment; in-class participation (this is subject to change slightly)

 

Texts: TBD.

 

Prerequisites: 6 semester hours of lower division coursework in Government

 

Flags: WRITCRSE; INDPINQY


GOV 662L • Government Rsch Internship-Dc

37975 • Swerdlow, Joel L
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 • War/Peace: China/Japan/Taiwan

37985 • Wolford, Scott
Meets TTH 800am-930am WAG 214
(also listed as ANS 361)
show description

GOV 365L: War/Peace: China/Japan/Taiwan

 

Prerequisites:

None

 

Course description:

This course will use the modern theory of war and diplomacy to learn about patterns of international war and peace in the East Asian region, with a particular focus on China, Taiwan, and Japan, since 1984.

 

Grading policy:

Students will be graded on three exams (60%) and a combination of quizzes and short writing assignments throughout the semester (40%).

 

Texts:

Paine, S.C.M. 2012. The Wars for Asia 1911-1949 Cambridge University Press.

Stueck, William. 2004. Rethinking the Korean War Princeton University Press.


GOV 365L • Japanese Foreign Policy

37990 • Maclachlan, Patricia
Meets TTH 930am-1100am PAR 101
(also listed as ANS 361)
show description

JAPANESE FOREIGN POLICY

 

GOV 365L (#37990)/ ANS 361(#30835)

TTH 9:30-11:00, PAR 101

 

Patricia L. Maclachlan

 

 

Course Description:

            This course introduces upper level undergraduates to the foreign and domestic determinants of Japanese foreign policy-making and international relations from the beginning of the modern era (1868) to the present.  We will address a wide range of topics, including the causes and consequences of the Sino-Japanese and Russo-Japanese wars, the expansion of Japan’s colonial empire and role in World War II, the U.S. Occupation (1945-52) and its impact on policymaking institutions and Japan’s subsequent position in the world, and the history and significance of the U.S.-Japan military alliance. We will also address issues affecting the contemporary balance-of-power in East Asia, such as the rise of Japanese nationalism, ongoing conflicts with China and North and South Korea, and Japan’s decision to participate in collective self-defense.

 

 

Course Requirements:

  1. Quizzes on Readings                                                                                  10%
  2. Midterm #1:                                                                                              25%
  3. Midterm #2:                                                                                              30%                              In lieu of this exam, students may write a short (6-8 pp.)                                                      research paper on a topic of their choice                            
  4. Final exam                                                                                                 35%

 

 

Texts:

            Kenneth B. Pyle.  Japan Rising: The Resurgence of Japanese Power and Purpose

            (Public Affairs, 2008).              

 

All additional readings will be posted on the Canvas site for this course.


GOV 365L • Asian Rgnlism/Multilat Coop

37995 • Liu, Xuecheng
Meets TTH 1230pm-200pm MEZ 1.210
(also listed as ANS 361)
show description

Spring Semester 2016

GOV 365L, unique 37995

Instructor: Xuecheng Liu

Bldg / Room: MEZ 1.210 

Days & Time: TTH 12:30-14:00

 

PREREQUISITE: 6 SEMESTER HOURS OF LOWER-DIVISION COURSEWORK IN GOVERNMENT, INCLUDES CROSS-CULTURAL CONTENT.

 

***********************************************

 Asian Regionalism and Multilateral Cooperation

 

Course Description:

Asia’s rise as a region will shape the future world order. Asian regionalism as a vitally important dimension of Asia’s rise has attracted critical attention of Asia experts and policy makers. This course first addresses the nature, functional principles, leadership, and policy-making process of contemporary Asian regionalism in comparison with the experiences of European integration. We also explore the linkage between the momentum of Asian integration and contemporary Asian nationalism. Then we will introduce and assess the origins and its developments of leading regional cooperation mechanisms: ASEAN, Six-Party Talks (Northeast Asian Security Cooperation Architecture), SAARC, and SCO. Finally, in terms of engaging with the Asian multilateral cooperation we will discuss polices and strategies of major powers, particularly, the United States and China.

 

This course contains four main parts:

1, Comparison between Asian Regionalism and European Experiences: Concept, principles, leadership, and policy-making process;

2. Asian Regionalism and Asian Nationalism: explore the linkage between the emerging Asian cooperation and contemporary Asian nationalism, focusing on Chinese nationalism, Indian nationalism, and Japanese nationalism;

3. Introduce four most important cooperation mechanisms: Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) in Southeast Asia; Six-Party talks (Northeast Asian Security Cooperation Architecture) in Northeast Asia; South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) in South Asia; and Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) in Central Asia;

4. Major Powers' Responses to Asian Cooperation: Focus on American and Chinese Strategies for engaging with Asian Integration and multilateral cooperation.

 

Grading Policy:

 

  1. Two take-home essays (6-7 pages) 40%
  2. One 12-page term paper, 50%

   Note: Writing of the term paper includes the paper proposal, the first draft (15 points), and the second (revised) draft (25 points), and the final draft (10 points).

  1. Class participation, 10%

 

Textbooks:

1. Frost, Ellen L., Asia’s New Regionalism ANR

  (Boulder. Colorado: Lynne Rienner Publications, 2008)

  ISBN 978-1-58826-579-1 [Selected chapters distributed by email]

2. Shambaugh, David, Power Shift: China and Asia’s New DynamicsPS

  (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2006) [electronic bk.]

3. Aggarwal, Vind K.,Asia’s New Institutional Architecture ANIA

Dordrecht: Springer, 2007. [electronic bk.]

  1. Saez, Lawrence, The South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation

(SAARC): An emerging collaboration Architecture, Hoboken: Taylor & Francis, 2012. [electronic resource]

5. Pempel, T. J., Regionalism, Economic Integration and Security in Asia (REISA),

  Northamptom, USA: Edward Elgar Publishing Inc., 2011. [Electronic Resource]

6. Mahbubani, Kishore, The New Asian Hemisphere: The Irresistible Shift of Global Power to the East (NAH),New York: PublicAffairs, 2009. [electronic resource]

7. Webber, Douglas, Regional Integration in East Asia and Europe. Hoboken: Taylor & Francis Ltd., 2004. [electronic resource].

8. Ikenberry, G. John, Regional Integration and Institutionalization: Comparing Asia and Europe (RII), Shoukadoh: Research Institute, Aoyama Gakuin University, 2012. [Selected Chapters distributed by email]

9. Selected chapters of the recently published books and journal articles distributed by email.


GOV 365N • Authoritarianism

38000 • Brownlee, Jason
Meets TTH 1230pm-200pm PAR 208
(also listed as MES 341)
show description

Authoritarianism (GOV and MES) - upper division with writing flag and independent inquiry flags

 

Description: This upper-division course is designed for students in Government, Middle Eastern Studies, and other fields who want to learn about the phenomenon of modern authoritarianism and how scholars study it. Authoritarianism is often defined, minimally, as any form of government short of electoral democracy. Some specialists and laypersons, however, consider authoritarianism not as the absence of democracy but as a system that violates individual liberty in the pursuit of some competing political goal. This course will address various forms of authoritarianism, from labor repression in the Appalachian Valley of the United States of America to the absolutist monarchies of the Middle East. By the end of the course, students will have a working knowledge of current theories and debates about authoritarianism, especially in political science.

 

Grades: 4 short quizzes (20%); 4  writing assignments (60%); End of semester presentation (20%)

Texts: Course packet with significant articles and book sections on authoritarianism.


GOV 365N • Comparative Political Parties

38004 • Somer-Topcu, Zeynep
Meets TTH 1100am-1230pm CBA 4.340
show description

GOV 365N: Comparative Political Parties

Professor: Zeynep Somer-Topcu

zsomer@utexas.edu

Office: BAT 3.124

 

 

Course Objectives and Outline:

Political parties are central actors mediating voters’ policy preferences and political outcomes.

Therefore, their role in the practice of modern liberal democracy cannot be underestimated. As

Robertson (1976) states, “to talk, today, about democracy, is to talk about a system of

competitive political parties.”

In this upper-level seminar, we will explore the vast literature on comparative political parties,

party systems, elections, and representation.

The course is scheduled into four parts. The first and longest part (covering the first seven

weeks) is about understanding parties and party systems. We will answer questions like where

parties come from, why we see different party systems, how parties are organized, how these

party organizations have changed, and how and why parties adopt certain ideologies. The final

lecture in this section will examine the dominant party systems. Professor Kenneth Greene, who

is an expert on dominant party systems will guest lecture for that class.

The literature on electoral systems and their consequences for parties, party systems, and

representation is vast and still growing. We will, therefore, spend a few lectures to understand

the details of different electoral systems from across the world and their consequences for

parties, party systems, and representation. Professor Robert Moser will share his expertise on

mixed electoral systems and their consequences with us in another guest lecture.

We will then have one class on the details of representation. Professor Christopher Wlezien, who

is an expert on representation in the US, will discuss the classical approaches to and more recent

work on the quality of representation in the US.

In the final part of the class we will focus on the “new” parties in established democracies. Since

the late 1970s we have been witnessing the rise of “niche” parties both on the left (green parties)

and on the right (anti-immigration parties). We will answer the questions of how the

establishment of new and ideologically extreme political parties threatens the more established

parties in advanced democracies, and how the mainstream parties respond to this threat.

 

Requirements:

Class attendance: 5%

Class participation: 10%

Discussion questions: 10%

Two short-essays: 15% each

Midterm: 20%

Final paper: 25%

 

Required Readings:

There are no required books for this class. I will post the readings (chapters or articles) required

for each week on Canvas by the end of Thursday the previous week. If you would like to have

access to the readings before Thursday the week before the lecture, please email me, and I will

email you the readings.

You must bring the readings to the class for the in-class discussion.


GOV 365N • Human Rights & World Politics

38010 • Evans, Rhonda L.
Meets TTH 330pm-500pm MEZ B0.306
(also listed as WGS 340)
show description

Human Rights and World Politics

Dr. Rhonda Evans

Spring 2016

 

Prerequisites:  None that I know of

 

Grading Policy:  Three exams and participation in a simulation exercise

 

Course Description:  Human rights form a central part of contemporary international politics. International human rights provide activists with a powerful discourse that can be used to frame and legitimate contested claims. Moreover, its legal and institutional manifestations offer activists new political opportunities for pressuring human rights violators to change their behavior. This course takes human rights activists as its focus, examining them from a distinctly political perspective. It traverses the ways in which advocates and their organizations give meaning to human rights and mobilize these meanings in pursuit of political and policy objectives. In so doing, the course engages three key questions: (1) What are the mechanics of international human rights advocacy? (2) Does international human rights advocacy work? (3) And, does it ultimately promote democratic practices and values? This course introduces you to the political and policy dimensions of human rights. It explores the philosophical, legal, and moral foundations of human rights and surveys the legal and institutional infrastructure and processes that exist at domestic and international levels for promotion of human rights. In so doing, the course examines various actors involved in human rights advocacy, including states, international organizations, international tribunals, nongovernmental organizations, and the media. Answers to the three key questions that animate this course will be pursued through critical engagement with important contemporary issues in human rights policy. By the semester’s end, you should understand basic laws, policies, institutions, processes, and debates in the evolving international human rights regime and appreciate the role of human rights advocacy in world politics.

 

Texts: 

 

Beth A. Simmons, Mobilizing for Human Rights: International Law in Domestic Politics (New York: Cambridge University Press, 2009)

 

A course packet of readings


GOV 365N • Islam And Politics

38013 • Ayoub, Samy
Meets MW 330pm-500pm PAR 201
(also listed as ISL 373, MES 341, R S 358)
show description

This course is an introduction to modern Islamic political thought. It seeks to provide both an overview of key ideas and themes that have informed mainstream Muslim politics during the 20th century as well provide an engagement with influential thinkers and texts that have shaped Muslim political behavior during this period. We will examine the way in which modernity was negotiated in the emerging Muslims states, the debate on God’s sovereignty versus popular sovereignty and more broadly the moral bases of legitimate political authority. We will also explore how prominent Muslim thinkers have sought to engage with and respond to the rise of nationalism, socialism, capitalism, democracy, human rights, colonialism, imperialism and Zionism.

Texts

Roxanne Euben and Muhammad Qasim Zaman eds., Princeton Readings in Islamist Thought: Texts and Contexts from al-Banna to Bin Laden (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2009). Sayyid Qutb, Social Justice in Islam, translated by John Hardie, revised translation and introduction by Hamid Algar (Oneonta, NY: Islamic Publications International, 2000).

Grading Policy

Response Papers 30% Class participation 20% Midterm 20% Final Paper 30% 30%


GOV 365N • Monarchies And Mini-States

38015 • Barany, Zoltan
Meets MW 500pm-630pm PAR 303
show description

Monarchies & Mini States

 

GOV365N – Unique # 38015 – Parlin Hall 303 – MW 5-6:30

Spring 2016 – Instructor: Z. Barany

 

This course focuses on the historical evolution, political power, socio-economic development, and extraordinary diversity of the monarchy as a form of government in the modern age.  There are twenty-eight sovereign monarchies in the world today and about 550 million people are ruled – in various ways and to different extents – by a monarch.  (Queen Elizabeth II remains the head of state of an additional 15 countries besides the United Kingdom, ranging from Australia to Tuvalu.)  The course will also deal with mini states – some are also monarchies – around the world.  We define mini states as countries whose territory is less than 1,000 square miles.  What impact does size have on these countries?  What advantages and disadvantages do they have owing to their modest territory?

 

For those of us living in republics it might appear odd that, in this day and age, there are still kings and emirs and sultans.  Moreover, we might well find it extraordinary that many of these kings essentially hold the fate of their subjects in their hands.  Yes, there are still numerous absolute monarchs around, not all that different in terms of their power from, say Louis XIV of France.  How is it possible for any one person to have such authority in the modern age?  In a different vein, there are numerous West European liberal democracies – those we associate with the most progressive political traditions: Denmark, the Netherlands, Norway, and Sweden – whose head of state remains a monarch.  Why do Belgians, Brits, and Spaniards preserve their monarchies?  Can we expect them to continue to do so?  Under what circumstances?

 

The monarchy as a form of government is also sufficiently flexible to include a number of rather unusual institutional arrangements, such as the “electoral” monarchy of Malaysia and an absolute monarchy based on religion: the Vatican (yes, Pope Francis is the “king” of not only all Catholics but, less broadly, of all Vaticaniens!).  In this class we will analyze all these questions as well as issues such as the role of pomp and pageantry, what sort of behavior by “celebrity princes” might undermine popular support for the monarchy, and why some seemingly well-entrenched kingdoms were abolished relatively recently (such as Iran in 1979 and Nepal in 2008).

 

Assignments

 

The most important assignment for this class is an independent video project which will result in an 6-8 minute film.  Students will select a specific kingdom (i.e., Sweden or Saudi Arabia) or mini state (i.e., Andorra or Singapore) and create a video essay focusing on that state.   You may concentrate on specific aspect(s) of the monarchy or mini state – say the position of women in Saudi society, the role of the monarch in the evolution of Swedish social democracy, or the banking sector in Luxembourg – or you may create a film that introduces the kingdom more generally to an audience.  Because this project is the main requirement for the class, I will provide continuous guidance throughout the course of the semester, both in-class and during office hours.  More specifically, as the class progresses, I intend to set aside about 15 minutes of every meeting discussing how your projects are taking shape.  There will be specific hurdles you will have to clear as the course progresses.  For instance, you will have to pick a monarchy to focus on by the end of the second week, you will be asked to give me an outline of how you intend to proceed by the fifth week, etc. 

 

The plan is to view and discuss together the videos in the last few class meetings  and we will all vote for different categories, etc., to make the project even more (!) fun.  My hope is that approaching this class in this way will not only allow you to learn deeply about one of the monarchies but, just as importantly, to be creative, independent, and leave the class with a sense of accomplishment and a “tangible” result of your efforts.

 

Aside from the video project, I will expect your active class participation and close engagement with the assigned readings.  Although there are three books they are relatively light readings and will hopefully allow you to have plenty of time for your video project.

 

Grading

 

Participation

            -- Student-of-the Day performance             5%

            -- contributions to class discussion             10%

Pop-quizzes on readings                                        10%

Examination                                                         25%

Film project and its presentation                            50%

 

Required Readings

 

Conradi, Peter. The Great Survivors: How Monarchy Made It Into the Twenty-First Century  (Alma Books, 2013) ISBN: 978-1846882340

 

Davidson, Christopher M. After the Sheikhs: The Coming Collapse of the Gulf Monarchies (Oxford University Press, 2013) ISBN: 978-0190244507

 

Eccardt, Thomas. Secret of the Seven Smallest States of Europe (Hippocrene Books, 2005) ISBN: 0-7818-1032-9


GOV 365N • Rule Of Law In The Mid East

38017 • Ayoub, Samy
Meets MW 200pm-330pm PAR 1
(also listed as ISL 373, MES 341, R S 358)
show description

The rule of law has become one of the foundations of modern government. Its purpose is to limit the exercise of state power and to prevent its abuse. This course explores modern legal structures - legislative and judicial - in the Muslim World. The course engages with questions such as how modern legal orders respond to war, conflict, and revolution. It introduces students to the process by which traditional Islamic law was transformed into state law in the 19th and 20th centuries CE, by investigating debates on codification, legal modernity and legal borrowing. With the emergence of the modern nation-states across the Muslim World, many countries accorded constitutional status to Islamic law as "a source" or "the source" of law, and some states purport to base their entire systems on particular versions of Islamic law. The formation of the modern legal regimes in Muslim societies was a hybrid product of Islamic and western legal traditions, which raises questions about legal authority, legality, and the creation of modern legal and judicial institutions.

Texts

The Rule of Law in the Middle East and the Islamic World: Human Rights and the Judicial Process, eds. Eugene Cotran, Mai Yamani (I. B. Tauris (September 2, 2000) Mallat, Chibli. Introduction to Middle Eastern Law (Oxford University Press, 2009) Supplemental readings: To be placed on the course website

Grading Policy

Response Papers 30%

Class participation 20%

Midterm 20%

Final Paper 30% (on a topic selected in consultation with the instructor)


GOV 365N • Iss Third-World Development

38035 • Elkins, Zachary
Meets TTH 200pm-330pm WAG 101
show description

Government 365N

Professor Elkins

Spring 2016

 

Issues in Third-World Development 

 

Course Description and Objectives

This course surveys important topics in the politics of developing countries.  The course begins conceptually with a closer look at the idea of “development” and the classification of cases along such lines.  We then examine the historical foundations of political systems in the developing world.  We briefly explore the constraints of geography before turning to aspects of colonialism, the rise of nationalism, the movements for independence, and transitions to and from democratic rule.  The second part of the course then investigates particular demographic challenges to (and policy solutions for) governance in the developing world, including the problem of population, urban migration, and agrarian reform.  In the third part, we turn to sources of political change and upheaval in these societies, including globalization, ethnic violence, and the role of women in politics.

Prerequisites:  None

Required Materials

The following materials are available for purchase at the UT.  You will also find them online.

 

  1. Baker, Andy.  2013.  Shaping the Developing World: The West, the South, and the Natural World. CQ Press.  ISBN: 9781608718559
  2. Reef Polling app (to replace i>clicker)

All other readings are available on the course website.

Requirements and Grading

The assignments in this course are designed to assess your understanding of the readings on a regular basis.  The expectation is that you complete the reading before each lecture.  Your grade will be based on the following components.

(1)   Geography Tests (15%).  To help contextualize the topics, you will be responsible for learning the location of the various countries in Africa, Asia, and Latin America, as well as their capital cities and several major geographical features.  There will be three geography tests, one for each region.  More details are posted on the course website.

(2)   Two Exams (50%).  These will be in-class, non-cumulative exams with three components: multiple choice, concept identification, and essay.  The multiple choice questions are designed to test your understanding of the readings and lectures.  You should expect at least two questions based on each reading or lecture.  The essay questions and concept identifications, which will be distributed prior to the exams, test your command of major concepts, themes, and arguments. 

(3)   Participation (15%).  This is simply the number of lectures that you attend, as a percentage of all lectures minus two [i.e., lectures attended/(all lectures - 2)].  So, you can miss two lectures (or forget your i-clicker) and still receive a perfect score.  You can also score over 100% on this component.

(4)   Short Writing Assignment (20%).  At the end of the semester, you will write a short paper, styled as an opinion piece that might appear on the “op-ed” pages of the New York Times. 

Grading Scale.  Grades will be assigned on a (+/-) basis according to the following scale: 94-100 = A; 90-93 = A-; 87-89 = B+; 84-86 = B; 80-93 = B-; etc.


GOV 365N • Europe Environmntl Politics

38037 • Mosser, Michael W
Meets TTH 930am-1100am JES A209A
(also listed as EUS 348)
show description

Course concept

Environmental politics is one area where Europe arguably leads the world. Europe has, at both the national and European-Union level, committed itself to achieving reductions in carbon emissions far greater than anywhere else in the world.

This course will examine the history of environmental politics in both the member states of the European Union and the EU itself. Beginning with a conceptual treatment of general environmental politics and policies, the course moves to a history of European environmentalism, before shifting to a discussion on the institutional responses at important ‘traditional’ Member States (Germany, France, Italy and the UK) as well as ‘new‘ Member States (Czech Republic, Poland and Hungary). The final section of the course examines EU environmental policies themselves, such as the EU Emissions Trading System and its institutional commitment to meeting Kyoto Protocol goals.

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. All assignments will be converted to a 100-point scale with no curve. All grades, including final grades, will use the plus (+) and minus (-) system. Grade standards for all assignments are as follows:

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

Assignment grade percentages are as follows:

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 one of the five topics chosen by the instructor. 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:

     Topic choice: due 31 January . Worth 10% of paper grade (3% of course grade).

     Topic outline and list of references: due 14 February. Worth 20% of paper grade (6% of course grade).

     First draft of paper:  due 18 March.  Worth 20% of paper grade (6% of course grade).

     Final draft of paper: due 2 May.  Worth 50% of paper grade (15% of course grade).

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. Participation will be divided into two sections:  Discussion questions and in-class participation. Since not everyone enjoys speaking in class, discussion questions will count for more than in-class participation. Discussion questions will count for 15% of your course grade, while in-class participation will count for 5% 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.

The total number of discussion postings will be counted at the end of the semester, and also will be examined throughout the semester for evidence of consistent posting. Do not expect to “catch-up” post only at the end of the semester and receive full participation credit.

 

         12-15 postings: Full credit

         8-11 postings: 70% credit

         5-7 postings: 50% credit

         Less than 5 postings: No credit

 

A word on late or missed assignments. Over the course of the semester, it is inevitable that some event will cause a time management issue, which might lead to a missed assignment deadline. Though normally handled on a case-by-case basis, there are some baseline penalties for missed or delayed assignments, detailed here:

     Late topic choices will receive a 1% deduction per day before grading.

     Late topic outline and list of references will receive a 2% deduction per day before grading.

     Late paper drafts will receive a 5% deduction per day before grading.

     Missed exams will receive a 5% deduction per day until made up.


GOV 370K • African American Politics

38040 • Philpot, Tasha
Meets TTH 1100am-1230pm GAR 2.128
(also listed as AFR 374D)
show description

African-American Politics

GOV 370K/AFR 374D

 

 

Description

 

This course focuses upon the evolution, nature, and role of African-American politics within the American Political System. The concern is with African Americans as actors, creators and initiators in the political process. Specifically, this course will examine various political controversies that surround the role of race in American society and how these controversies affect public opinion, political institutions, political behavior, and salient public policy debates. This course will assess and evaluate the contemporary influence of race in each of these domains while also exploring their historical antecedents.

 

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

 

Six semester hours of lower-division coursework in government.

 

Required Text Books

 

There are two required text books for this course, which are available at the University Co-op:

 

Walton, Hanes, Jr. and Robert C. Smith. 2014.  American Politics and the African American Quest for Universal Freedom.  7th  Edition. New York: Addison Wesley Longman.

 

Philpot, Tasha S., and Ismail K. White, eds. 2010. African-American Political Psychology: Identity, Opinion, and Action in the Post-Civil Rights Era. New York: Palgrave Macmillan.

 

Grading

 

Exam 1                                                20%

3 Critical Essays                                   45%

Exam 2                                                20%

Quizzes and in-class assignments           15% 


GOV 370L • Policy-Making Process-Dc

38045
Meets
show description

Please check back for updates.

Prerequisite: Six semester hours of lower-division coursework in government.

 


GOV 370L • Public Opinion/Representation

38050 • Bullock, John
Meets TTH 1230pm-200pm CBA 4.342
show description

38080, Gov 370L, Public Opinion and Representation in the United States

No prerequisites.  Prior coursework in statistics or data analysis is an advantage.

Course description:

This is an upper-division seminar.  We study Americans' views on political issues and the extent to which their views influence, and are influenced by, elected officials. Special attention to opinion polarization, the roles of partisanship, and the effects of public opinion on legislators. Online datasets help answer questions about politics and public opinion.  Previous experience with regression analysis helpful but not required.  See http://johnbullock.org/teaching for the syllabus.

Required course book:

Fiorina, Culture War?, 3rd ed.  This book will not be placed on order at any local bookstore.  Enrolled students will need to acquire copies on their own.

Journal articles and book chapters from other sources will also be required.  They will be made available to students through Canvas.  (There will not be a printed course reader.)


GOV 370L • Election Campaigns

38060 • Luskin, Robert
Meets MW 300pm-430pm CMA 3.114
show description

Please check back for updates.

Prerequisite: Six semester hours of lower-division coursework in government.

 


GOV 370L • The United States Congress

38065 • Theriault, Sean
Meets MW 400pm-530pm GSB 2.126
show description

Please check back for updates.

Prerequisite: Six semester hours of lower-division coursework in government.

 


GOV 370L • Social Movements: Thry/Prac

38070 • O'Brien, Shannon Bow
Meets MWF 200pm-300pm MEZ B0.306
show description

Social Movements

GOV 370 38070

Course Description

This course is about social movements.  Social movements involve groups of people organizing or coalescing around issues.  This course is designed to be an introduction to the topic.  Groups of people have been organizing together towards joint goals for centuries.  People with differing opinions about actions, policies, and behaviors want to have their voice heard about their concerns.  Social movements often develop when a large enough number of people with similar problems come together.  Some movements are total failures.  Some succeed and thrive and others succeed and subside.  Still, many others fall somewhere between success and failure.

This course plans to introduce broad ideas about social movements, raise important questions, and help students develop a better understanding about them.  Every movement is different, but elements within them can be categorized and understood.  The analysis of these elements can give you the tools to look at movements or groups within society and make educated guesses about their long term viability. 

The literature of social movements can be very theoretical and difficult to decipher.  The class will only have 1 assigned book for the semester.  This book is a compilation of many important articles, papers, and readings regarding social movements.

 

Grading Policy (subject to change/modification)

3 tests, three written assignments (2 short written, 1 longer written)

I will plus/minus

 

Text:

The Social Movements Reader: Cases and Concepts, 3rd edition.  Edited by Jeff Goodwin and James M. Jasper.  Wiley Blackwell, 2015 ISBN: 978-1-118-72979-3  (ebook ISBN: 978-1-118-72995-3)


GOV 370L • Urban Politics

38075 • O'Brien, Shannon Bow
Meets MWF 1100am-1200pm CLA 0.130
(also listed as URB 350)
show description

Urban Politics GOV 370  38075

Course Description

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). 

 

Grading Policy (subject to change/modification)

3 Tests

2 Short Assignments

I will use plus/minus

Text

Judd, Dennis R. and Todd Swanstrom.  City Politics 9th edition. Pearson, 2015 ISBN-10: 0-205-99639-6  ISBN-13: 978-0-205-99639-1 


GOV 370L • Political Psychology

38080 • Bullock, John
Meets TTH 330pm-500pm PAR 301
show description

38080, Gov 370L, Political Psychology

Prerequisite: ability to multiply simple fractions with only pencil and paper.

Course description:

Examination of mental processes that underpin political judgments. Conformity and social pressure, the influence of political parties and other groups, reactions to political news, common decision-making heuristics and biases, and causes and effects of political ignorance. Emphasis on the political thinking of ordinary citizens, with some attention to political elites.

Required course book:

Milgram, Obedience to Authority.  This book will not be placed on order at any local bookstore.  Enrolled students will need to acquire copies on their own.

Journal articles and book chapters from other sources will also be required.  They will be made available to students through Canvas.  (There will not be a printed course reader.)


GOV 379S • Complex Emergen Human Act

38095 • Newberg, Paula
Meets M 330pm-630pm CBA 4.338
(also listed as LAH 350)
show description

 

Climate change.  Conflicts.  Coups d’etat.  Displacement.  Ethnic cleansing. Floods.  Genocide.  Pandemics. Refugees.  Rights violations.  War crimes.

When these phenomena occur together, in varying combinations, they comprise complex emergencies –- overlapping, intersecting processes that can overwhelm a government and possibly an entire country, create and deepen humanitarian disasters, interrupt economic development, and lead to foreign policy crises.  (Think, for example, of the crisis in Syria today, Ebola in west Africa, or Nepal’s most recent earthquake.)  The causes of these crises are many, ranging from political extremism, poverty, resource scarcity and weak states to inadequate governance and diplomatic failures. 

We will spend the semester investigating complex emergencies and the ways that states, societies and international humanitarian actors respond to them.  Along the way, we will explore competing philosophies of humanitarian response (including neutrality and impartiality), international humanitarian law, thorny problems that arise when humanitarians meet difficult political actors, efforts to use international human rights law to resolve seemingly intractable problems, and ways the international community responds to (and sometimes does not) - and tries to solve (and often does not) -- these emergencies. 

We will study recent and contemporary cases (from different regions), and seminar members will also explore elements of emergencies in their essays.

Readings and reference materials

Source material for this subject is voluminous, varied and invariably interesting.  We will use David Keen’s Complex Emergencies ({Polity Press 2008) to help anchor our early class discussions and debates.  It will be available for purchase before the term begins.  For those who are interested, two additional volumes will be available for purchase:  Elizabeth Ferris’s, The Politics of Protection (Brookings Institution 2011); and Didier Fassin and Mariella Pandolfi’s edited collection, Contemporary States of Emergency (Zone Books 2013).  

Much of our reading (and viewing) will be based around current and historical news reports, articles, participant testimonies, websites, videos, blog sites and case studies.  The library will also maintain a collection of relevant volumes on reserve.

 Prerequisites for enrolling

This seminar is intended for upper division students. Previous experience in this field is not required; all seminar members should have completed University prerequisites in Government and History.  

 Course requirements

Our seminar will be successful if everyone attends every class, prepares carefully, and participates actively.   The subject is constantly changing, and our collaborative work will help to further our collective understanding of the problem of complex emergencies.

Written work will be graded on the basis of clarity, structure organization, quality of argument, familiarity with class material, and improvement as we all become more comfortable with the subject.

 Clearly drafted memoranda responding to each week's readings will be due by 9 AM each Monday (posted on Canvas); everyone is expected to review all of these short memos before class.  (This requirement counts toward class participation.)

 Three carefully crafted papers (approximately 2500 words in length) will be assigned during the semester. (50% of the course grade)

 Seminar members are expected to participate actively in every class session, lead class discussions as designated (including reporting on written assignments), and work together as needed to further our collective conversation.  (50% of the course grade.)

 I will expect seminar members to meet with me individually during the course of the semester to discuss classroom and written assignments.

 Honor code and academic integrity 

 The core values of the University of Texas at Austin are learning, discovery, freedom, leadership, individual opportunity, and responsibility. Each member of the University is expected to uphold these values through integrity, honesty, trust, fairness, and respect toward peers and community.  Should you have any questions regarding University policies concerning academic integrity, please visit the website of the Office of the Dean of Students: http://deanofstudents.utexas.edu

 Accommodations 

 The University provides, on request, appropriate academic accommodations for qualified students with disabilities.  Students for whom such services are needed should contact  -- at the beginning of the semester -- the Division of Diversity and Community Engagement, Services for Students with Disabilities.  (512-471-6259:  http://www.utexas.edu/diversity/ddce/ssd/

 Religious holidays

The University requires students to notify instructors at least fourteen days prior to a pending absence due to religious observance.  If you must miss a class, an assignment or a project in order to observe a religious holiday, you will be given an opportunity to complete the missed work within a reasonable time after the absence.

Emergency evacuation policy 

The Office of Campus Safety and Security (512-471-5767:  (http://www.utexas.edu/safety) recommends the following safety practices: When a fire alarm is activated, please evacuate the building, assemble outside and follow instructions from the faculty; do not re-enter the building until instructed by the Austin Fire Department, the UT /Austin Police Department or the Fire Prevention Services office.  Please familiarize yourself with the closest exit doors in the building.   Should you need assistance for possible evacuation, please inform me during the first week of class.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


GOV 379S • Pope Francis's Cath Church-Ita

38100 • Theriault, Sean
Meets
(also listed as LAH 350, T C 357)
show description

Students may only enroll in this course if accepted into the 2016 Maymester Program: 

Pope Francis’s Catholic Church: The Making of the Modern Papacy 

Course offered in Rome, Italy May 24-June 21, 2016

This program offers the unique opportunity to explore first-hand the history and politics of papal succession and church policy in Rome, Italy. Specifically, we will concentrate on Pope Francis, the Holy See, the Vatican, and the world that it serves. The course will introduce, describe, and analyze how the Church makes its decisions and why. In addition to a regular classroom schedule, we will visit the great churches of Rome, meet with the Princes of the Church, and observe the church's far-reaching influence. By the end of the course, students will have developed an understanding of the church as a historical, religious, and political organization. Local program staff in Rome will organize orientation and housing and support students throughout the program's duration.

For more information visit:

http://www.utexas.edu/cola/plan2/current_stdnts/abroad/italy.php


GOV 379S • Regime Persp On Amer Politics

38105 • Tulis, Jeffrey
Meets TH 330pm-630pm GAR 1.134
(also listed as CTI 335, LAH 350)
show description

GOV 379S   Regime Perspectives on American Politics

Spring 2016

Jeffrey K. Tulis

 

This is a seminar on American politics and culture.   Two purposes govern the selection of texts for the course and guide our discussion of them.  All of our texts attempt to look at American politics as a whole.  Most books and courses on America look at only a part, such as the Presidency, or elections, or popular culture.  Here we attempt to think about how the parts of America fit together.  Even when these texts speak about a part, for example an institution such as the presidency or the Congress, they present the topic from a vantage point on the whole polity.   To see the polity as a whole also means that we will have to revisit and rethink aspects of our political life that we take for granted – that we don’t examine because those parts have become so natural or familiar to us.  Seeing the polity whole enables us to render the familiar unfamiliar, to make what we take for granted strange and new.

 

To see the polity as a whole requires that we get some distance from our subject, much as to see the planet earth as a whole requires one to look at it from outer space.  Just as it is difficult to get visual perspective on a place living within it, it is difficult to understand the promise or pathologies of a regime from within.  To get critical distance from our politics, we will closely study three sets of texts that look at American politics from a distance.   The first part of the course will recover the perspective of the founding debate between Federalists and Anti-federalists.   This fundamental debate reveals what is a stake in the basic architecture of the American regime.  The second part of the course is a close study of Tocqueville’s Democracy in America.  Regarded by many as the best book ever written on democracy and the best book written on America, Tocqueville sees our polity whole because he looks at it from the vantage point of Europe, in general, and France, in particular.  In the third part of the seminar we think about American politics from the perspective of thoughtful commentators who feel only nominally included in the polity.   Half in and half out, these extraordinary black American writers reveal fissures and fault lines in the American regime.  We end the class with a discussion of America’s place in the world today – examining a speech by a writer who articulately raises challenges to our self-understanding that are inarticulately expressed today in rage and ranting from enemies of the United States.

 

Requirements:

 

Three take home analytic essays, chosen from a list of topics I provide, each weighted 25% of the course grade.  Late essays will not be accepted, except with a doctor’s excuse or a Dean’s excuse for family emergency.

 

OR as an option: you may write the two short essays (both together weighted 25%) and do a longer 15 page paper on a topic of your choice in consultation with me (weighted 50% of your course grade).   Government honors students who are thinking of doing an honors thesis next year may prefer this option to begin to develop research and writing skills for longer work.  Students who prefer this option will need to designate their preferred third short essay and have discussed with me a topic for their long paper by March 30. 

 

Texts:

The Federalist

Selected Anti-Federalist writings

Tocqueville, Democracy in America

Essays, speeches and articles by Frederick Douglass, W.E.B. Dubois, Booker T. Washington, James Baldwin and Ralph Ellison



  • Department of Government

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    158 W 21st ST STOP A1800
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    512-471-5121

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