2004-2005
UNDERGRADUATE RECORD
College of Arts and Sciences
General Information  |  Academic Information  |  Departments and Programs  |  Faculty
Course Descriptions

Woodrow Wilson Department of Politics

232 Cabell Hall
University of Virginia
P.O. Box 400787
Charlottesville, VA 22904-4787
(434) 924-3192 Fax: (434) 924-3359
www.virginia.edu/politics

Overview It should come as no surprise that, at the University of Virginia, Politics is one of the most popular and prestigious departments. After all, Thomas Jefferson, author of the Declaration of Independence, founded this University to educate and prepare citizens for participation in the governance of this country.

The department studies government, public law, and politics of the national, state and local levels, and among states in international relations. Its course offerings are divided into four fields: American politics, comparative politics, international relations, and political theory. These fields permit two undergraduate majors. The government major emphasizes American politics and political theory, while the foreign affairs major emphasizes comparative politics and international relations. Both degree programs require study in all four of the department’s fields; at the same time, they are designed to allow each student latitude in selecting courses that meet specific interests.

Students who major in government or foreign affairs develop a critical understanding of the practical and theoretical dimensions of national and international governmental processes and institutions, as well as essential analytical and methodological skills. Rather than narrow specialization or vocational training, the department’s programs are designed to prepare students for teaching and research, public service at all levels of government, and fields such as business, foreign affairs, journalism, and public affairs.

Faculty With more than thirty-five faculty members, the department offers students access to a diverse group of internationally recognized scholars and teachers. This group includes the immediate past president of the American Political Science Association, a recipient of Fulbright, Rockefeller, N.E.H. and American Council of Learned Societies fellowships, and a Rhodes Scholar, who is a frequent political commentator on national news broadcasts. The faculty has published numerous influential books.

Students More than 650 students are currently seeking a degree in one of the two majors available in the department. As a result, introductory lecture courses are large (200-plus students) and designed to give students an overview of a major topic (e.g., national government of the United States). In courses with large enrollments, teaching assistants lead discussion sections, which are limited to twenty students. Upper-level courses and seminars focus on more specific topics, such as Virginia government and politics, Japan in world affairs, or Marxist theories. While upper-level courses average thirty to forty students, seminars are limited to twenty. The department offers approximately 100 courses each year. Advanced students may enroll in graduate course work or pursue independent study topics.

Most students who receive a degree in politics go immediately into the workforce. Corporations from around the country come to the University to recruit students. However, graduate work is being pursued by an increasingly large percentage of students. Law is the most popular option, at Virginia’s law school or other top schools, such as Harvard and Stanford. Others choose graduate work in international relations, foreign affairs, or business.

Internships Several internship programs are available to students through various research centers located within the University, including the Center for Politics. There also are internships available through state agencies and in Washington, D.C. These must be approved by both the internship coordinator at the Weldon Cooper Center for Public Service and the undergraduate advisor. The Department does not grant credit for internships.

Requirements for Major Students planning to major must see the assistant to the undergraduate director (in Cabell 240) for admission and assignment to a faculty advisor. Completion of at least three credits of work in this department with no grade below C and a cumulative grade-point average (GPA) of 2.000 are prerequisites for majors in government or foreign affairs.

Government The major concentration in government requires 30 credits of course work, as specified below, including the three prerequisite hours. No more than nine credits taken at the 100 level may be counted toward the major. At least fifteen credits of course work in the department must be earned at the 300 level and above. At least six of these must be earned at the 400 or 500 level.

The government concentration requires the following minimum distribution of courses among the four fields:

  1. American Politics - three credits
  2. Comparative Politics - three credits
  3. International Relations - three credits
  4. Political Theory - three credits; majors should take this distribution requirement by the end of their third year
  5. Students choosing the PLAP track must take nine additional credits in PLAP; students choosing the PLPT track must take nine additional credits in PLPT.

The remaining nine credits required for the government major may come from departmental offerings in any of the four fields, depending on student interests and objectives.

In addition to the 30 credits required in the Department of Politics, 12 credits of courses in closely related disciplines, such as history, philosophy, the social sciences and, in appropriate cases, in other related subjects, are required. No more than six of these credits should be taken at the 100 and 200 levels. The other six credits should be in advanced courses. Students should seek to construct their related course "package" in such a way that it contributes to their major subject field in as direct a fashion as possible, and must have this list of courses approved by their major advisor.

Foreign Affairs The major concentration in foreign affairs requires 30 credits of course work, as specified below, including the three prerequisite credits. No more than nine credits taken at the 100 level may be counted toward the major. At least fifteen credits of course work in the department must be earned at the 300 level and above. At least six of these must be earned at the 400 and 500 levels.

The foreign affairs concentration requires the following minimum distribution of courses among the four fields:

  1. American Politics - three credits
  2. Comparative Politics - three credits
  3. International Relations - three credits
  4. Political Theory - three credits; majors should take this distribution requirement by the end of their third year
  5. Area Courses - six credits in a pair of courses that specialize in one area of the world, of which three should be in comparative politics and three in international relations. Area courses may deal with all or part of Latin America, Western Europe, the Middle East, South Asia, East Asia, Africa, or Eastern Europe and Russia.
  6. Six additional credits in either international relations or comparative politics

The remaining six credits required for the foreign affairs major may come from departmental offerings in any of the four fields, depending on student interests and objectives.

In addition to the 30 credits required in the Department of Politics, 12 credits of courses in closely related disciplines, such as history, philosophy, the social sciences, and in appropriate cases, in other related subjects, are required. No more than six of these credits should be taken at the 100 and 200 levels. Students should seek to construct their related course "package" in such a way that it contributes to their major subject field in as direct a fashion as possible, and must have this list of courses approved by their major advisor.

Both Majors A grade of C or better is necessary in any course counted toward the major. Students who earn a grade of C- or lower in three courses in the department or who drop below a 2.000 GPA in the department are not allowed to continue as majors.

In most cases, up to six Politics credits and up to six related-course credits from another institution may count toward the major, subject to the approval of the Undergraduate Director. Such approval is not automatic. Work done elsewhere must be of a suitable nature and quality and must be offered in compliance with departmental rules available from the Undergraduate Director. Students already enrolled at the University who wish to take courses at other institutions must obtain advance approval from the Dean of the College. In the case of courses transferred to the University from other U.S. institutions, the transferred Politics credits may only count toward the elective requirement within the major. In the case of courses transferred from non-U.S. institutions, the transferred Politics credits may count toward any requirement within the major, so long as the student’s advisor approves. Students who study abroad for the equivalent of two complete semesters may count up to nine transferred Politics credits, and up to nine related-course credits, toward the major, subject to their advisor’s approval.

Under no circumstance may advanced placement credit count toward fulfilling the major.

Requirements for Minor A minor program in politics consists of at least 15 credits of course work taken at the University in at least two of the four fields of the department, with a grade of C or better. At least nine credits must be in one field. Of the 15 credits, no more than six may be taken at the introductory (100) level. At least three credits must be taken at the 400 or 500 level. No advanced placement credit is allowed for a minor.

Students taking the minor in government or foreign affairs should fill out a minor application in the department’s academic office (Cabell 240). The department’s rules for satisfactory standing apply.

Honors Program The Honors Program of the Department of Politics is for students with a deep and abiding interest in the study of politics. Students apply for the program during in February of their second year. Successful applicants usually maintain a 3.700 GPA or above and have a record of sustained interest and promise in political studies. Students enter the program at the start of their third year and begin a special, ungraded curriculum that integrates small seminars in different fields of political analysis with a limited number of courses taken outside the department. Honors students explore their special interests by working with a faculty member on a one-to-one basis in writing an honors thesis. The John White Stevenson Prize is awarded annually to the best honors thesis. Students can graduate with honors, high honors, or highest honors depending on their evaluations and performance on written and oral examinations taken at the end of their fourth year. For further information access the Honors Program webpage www.virginia.edu/politics/undergrad/honors1.html or contact the program director.

The Distinguished Majors Program Students of high academic achievement are eligible for the department’s Distinguished Majors Program (DMP). Students completing the program graduate with distinction, high distinction, or highest distinction. A prerequisite of three credits of course work in the department and departmental and University GPA’s of 3.400 or above are required for admission. Students wishing to apply should submit an application form, a statement of interest in the DMP, a copy of their current transcript, and two sealed letters of recommendation from faculty members. Students may apply in the second semester of their third year. The application deadline is April 1.

GPA Requirements Students in the DMP must maintain grade point averages of 3.400 or better, both cumulatively and in the department.

Requirements of the DMP Students in the DMP are required to take 3 credits in the Department as a prerequisite plus 30 credits in the major. These 30 credits must include: (1) At least l5 credits at the 400 and 500 levels including six credits of PLAD 496. (2) Courses to satisfy general departmental distribution rules for Government or Foreign Affairs majors.

The DMP Seminar In the fall semester, members of the DMP will meet regularly (but not weekly) to discuss issues related to conceptualizing, researching, and writing social-science theses. A small amount of readings will be assigned to inform that discussion. In the spring semester, members of the DMP will present their preliminary hypotheses and findings to the seminar.

The DMP Thesis Students in the DMP are required to write a thesis of high quality, earning six credits, during the fourth year. The thesis course, PLAD 496, is a year-long course, carrying six credits, and graded at the end of the second semester. Students are responsible for obtaining a faculty member to serve as their thesis advisor for both semesters of the PLAD 496 course. Complete first drafts of theses must be submitted by April 1; the final deadline for completed theses, reflecting all revisions, is the third week of April, on a date set each year by the director.

Program Evaluations Students who successfully complete the requirements of the DMP will be evaluated according to the following rankings: Distinction, High Distinction, or Highest Distinction. Evaluations will be based on the following: (l) quality of the thesis, (2) overall work in major field of study, (3) overall College record.

Faculty thesis readers will forward evaluations to the Department’s DMP faculty director, will review the evaluations and students’ records, and forward recommendations to the College Committee on Special Programs.

Superior theses will be nominated by faculty advisors for the Emmerich-Wright Prize, which is given annually to the outstanding thesis, as determined by a faculty committee. The prize carries a cash award.

For more information on the Department’s DMP, contact Paul Freedman, 924-1372.

Conferences and Special Activities Students and faculty of the department meet frequently in informal and off-the-record conferences throughout the session at which discussions are led by visiting authorities from government, business, and educational institutions. Speakers of distinction are also brought to the Grounds by student organizations, including those consisting primarily of students in the department. When appropriate, field trips are organized to study the operation of government and international relations firsthand in nearby Richmond, Washington, and the United Nations.

The Quincy Wright Library (Cabell Hall 211) is the department’s special reference collection. It is available to undergraduates as a supplement to their explorations in Alderman and Clemons Libraries.

Additional Information For more information, contact John Owen, Director of Undergraduate Programs, Department of Politics, B011 Cabell Hall, P.O. Box 400787, Charlottesville, VA 22904-4787; (434) 924-3523; www.virginia.edu/politics.

Weldon Cooper Center for Public Service

The Weldon Cooper Center for Public Service was created in 1987 by the merger of the former Institute of Government and portions of the former Tayloe Murphy Institute. With research programs in government, public policy, business and economics, and demographics, the center brings multiple perspectives to the study of Virginia. It assists both state and local governments in the Commonwealth with research into specific issues, management expertise, planning, and social and economic data. The center also sponsors professional education programs for government managers and elected officials, through the Virginia Institute of Government, and it hosts the Virginia Institute of Political Leadership. In all its work, the center aims to apply the University’s resources to improving the public life of Virginia.

The center employs both work-study students, who serve as office staff, and graduate research assistants, who gain firsthand experience in research and government by participating in center projects. The center’s publications program provides a wealth of data on Virginia to supplement course work in political science, economics, history, and sociology. Besides its central offices in Charlottesville, the center maintains a Southwest Virginia office in Wise County and a Richmond office.

Center for Politics

The Center for Politics, founded in 1998 by government professor Larry J. Sabato, maintains a close tie with the department. The center is dedicated to the non-partisan study and development of practical solutions to the problems facing our political system. The center is currently sponsoring a dozen projects and seminars, including the annual National Post Election Conference, the Youth Leadership Initiative, the Governors Project, and studies of the referendum process and non-voting. For more information, contact Larry Sabato or Ken Stroupe at (434) 243-8474.


Course Descriptions

BACK TO TOP

Departmental Seminars

PLAD 100 - (3) (Y)
Introductory Seminar in Politics
Prerequisite: open to first- and second-year students; only one PLAD seminar per student.
Introduces the discipline of political science through intensive study of the political dimensions of a selected topic.

PLAD 496 - (6) (Y)
Thesis for Distinguished Majors Program
Prerequisite: Admission into the department’s Distinguished Majors Program.

American Politics

PLAP 101 - (3) (S)
Introduction to American Politics
Surveys the fundamentals of American government and politics, systematically covering the major institutions of our system (the presidency, the Congress, the courts) as well as the system’s essential processes.

PLAP 227 - (3) (Y)
Public Opinion and Political Behavior
Study of the nature of public opinion and its relationship to politics and public policy.

PLAP 266 - (3) (Y)
Ideas, Institutions, and Public Policy
Examines and critically assesses the ideas, institutions, and public policies that constitute the foundation and have influenced the development of liberal democracy in the United States.

PLAP 314 - (3) (Y)
Mass Media and American Politics
Examines the role of mass media in the political process including such topics as print and broadcast news, media and election campaigns, political advertising, and media effects on public opinion and political participation.

PLAP 319 - (3) (Y)
Judicial Process and Policy-Making
Prerequisite: PLAP 101 or permission of instructor.
Survey of empirical and, to a lesser extent, normative questions concerning actors and institutions in American judicial politics. Topics include the selection of judges, judicial decision making, the legal profession, the impact of court decisions, and the role of judges in a democracy.

PLAP 321 - (3) (Y)
Political Parties and Group Politics
Introduces the roles of parties, interest groups, public opinion, and elections in democratic government.

PLAP 322 - (3) (Y)
President and Congress
Studies the political bases, structures, and functions of Congress and the institutionalized presidency, and their interaction in political leadership and policy making.

PLAP 331 - (3) (IR)
American Presidency
Prerequisite: Two courses in PLAP, or instructor permission.
Examines the power, purposes, and problematics of the presidency as a role of national leadership in the American and political constitutional system. While the emphasis is on the modern presidency (1933-present), attention is given to its historical development.

PLAP 335 - (3) (Y)
American Congress
Prerequisite: Two courses in PLAP or instructor permission.
Focuses on the contemporary organization and workings of the United States Congress. Emphasizes elections, the committee system, political parties, staff, and the law-making process, as well as the role of Congress in the national policy making system.

PLAP 338 - (3) (Y)
Politics of the Policy Process
Prerequisite: One course in PLAP or instructor permission.
Study of the politics of American national policymaking. Course examines the dynamics of agenda-setting and policy implementation; the policymaking role of elected officials, interest groups, and the media; and the substance of current policy debates in areas including welfare and education.

PLAP 341 - (3) (Y)
State and Local Politics
Prerequisite: One course in PLAP or instructor permission.
Investigates the political dynamics of subnational political institutions, parties, and elections. Includes state parties and elections, intergovernmental relations and institutional powers, representation and democracy in federal systems, and subnational policy processes.

PLAP 351 - (3) (Y)
Minority Group Politics
Prerequisite: Any course in PLAP or instructor permission.
Examines the problems and politics of minority groups in the United States. Studies both the theoretical and practical aspects of minority group politics, including their comparative experience in the U.S.

PLAP 355 - (3) (Y)
Gender Politics
Prerequisite: Two social science courses or instructor permission.
Examines the legal and political status of women, and the politics of changes in that status. How are gender identities forged, and how do they affect law, public policy, political rhetoric, and political movement? Explores, more generally, the clash between "difference" and "equality" in democratic societies, using gender as a case-study.

PLAP 361 - (3) (S)
Introduction to Public Administration
Prerequisite: PLAP 101, PLCP 101, or instructor permission.
Studies the role of public administration in contemporary government, emphasizing administrative structure, control, and relations with other branches of government.

PLAP 370 - (3) (Y)
Racial Politics
Prerequisite: One course in PLAP or instructor permission.
Examines how attributions of racial difference have shaped American Politics. Topics include how race affects American political partisanship, campaigns and elections, public policy, public opinion, and American political science.

PLAP 381 - (3) (Y)
Constitutional Interpretation: Separation of Powers and Federalism
Studies the legislative, executive, and judicial branches and the functional and territorial distribution of powers as reflected by Supreme Court decisions. Includes the nature of the judicial process. (No CR/NC enrollees.)

PLAP 382 - (3) (Y)
Constitutional Limitations: Civil Liberties and Civil Rights
Studies judicial construction and interpretation of civil rights and liberties reflected by Supreme Court decisions. Includes line-drawing between rights and obligations. (No CR/NC enrollees.)

PLAP 412 - (3) (IR)
Electoral Behavior and Political Participation
Prerequisite: PLAP 227.
Surveys current theories and research on electoral behavior, including political participation, partisanship, voting behavior, and the impact of electoral institutions.

PLAP 415 - (3) (Y)
Political Psychology
Prerequisite: One course in PLAP or instructor permission.
A seminar introducing students to the study of political psychology. Topics include authoritarianism, tolerance, altruism, ethnocentrism, the role of affect and cognition in political choice, the role of racial stereotyping in political campaigns, and psychological challenges to rational choice models of political decision-making.

PLAP 424 - (3) (S)
Seminar: Special Topics in American Politics
Prerequisite: One course in PLAP or instructor permission.
Investigates a selected issue in American government or American political development.

PLAP 430 - (3) (Y)
Political Analysis
Prerequisite: One course in PLAP or instructor permission.
Seminar examining basic issues in the design, execution, analysis, and interpretation of political research. Familiarizes students with practical tools, such as quantitative analysis and computing skills, which enable them to carry out an original research project.

PLAP 434 - (3) (IR)
American Political Leadership
Prerequisite: PLAP 101 or instructor permission.
Studies the theory and practice of political leadership at the national level with comparisons to state, local, and foreign government. Includes leadership in different institutional and policy settings, techniques of leadership, types of leaders, bargaining among leaders, experience of specific leaders, and conditions and opportunities of leadership.

PLAP 436 - (3) (Y)
Campaigns and Elections
Prerequisite: Instructor permission.
Reviews and analyzes the techniques and technologies of modern American election campaigns. Enrollment is limited.

PLAP 438 - (3) (Y)
The Politics of the Policy Process
Prerequisite: PLAP 101 or instructor permission.
Analyzes cross-institutional and inter-level (federal/state/local) public policy processes. Emphasizes how domestic policy issues are defined and treated by executive and legislative units, as well as interest group involvement.

PLAP 471 - (3) (Y)
Values, Resources, and Public Policy
Prerequisite: Any course in PLA, economics, or philosophy, or instructor permission.
Examines the political, economic, and ethical content of enduring domestic policy issues.

PLAP 483 - (3) (Y)
First Amendment
Prerequisite: PLAP 382 or fourth-year government major.
Examines the constitutional law of the first amendment from the founding of the United States to the present. Considers and analyzes Supreme Court decisions and scholarly works.

PLAP 484 - (3) (S)
Race and Constitution
Prerequisite: PLAP 381 or 382, or instructor permission.
Examines the constitutional law of racial discrimination in the United States from the founding to the present. Considers Supreme Court decisions and congressional civil rights acts. (No CR/NC enrollees.)

PLAP 498 - (3) (S)
Senior Thesis
Prerequisite: Three courses in PLAP and instructor permission.
Supervised work on a thesis in American politics for especially motivated students.

PLAP 514 - (3) (Y)
Sex Differences: Biology, Culture, Politics and Policy
Prerequisite: Instructor permission.
An exploration of sex and gender differences–in traits such as sexuality, cognition, nurturance, and aggression–with a consideration of their causes, significance, and political/policy implications.

PLAP 526 - (3) (IR)
Special Topics in Public Policy or Public Administration
Prerequisite: Any PLA course or instructor permission.
Intensive analysis of selected issues in public policy or public administration.

PLAP 530 - (3) (IR)
Politics of Mental Health
Prerequisite: One course in PLAP or instructor permission.
A seminar examining the relationships between politics, policy and psychological well-being. Topics include institutionalization, deinstitutionaliztion, civil rights, mandated treatment, the role of government in service delivery and insurance coverage, social determinants of health, public opinion about mental health and illness.

PLAP 543 - (3) (Y)
Intergovernmental Relations
Prerequisite: Six credits of PLAP or fourth-year standing.
Analyzes the contemporary relations of national, state, and local governments. Examines urban and metropolitan growth problems and their implications for public policy and administration in relation to the federal system.

PLAP 545 - (3) (Y)
Virginia Government and Politics
Prerequisite: Instructor permission.
Analyzes Virginia government at the state, county, municipal, and special district levels. Considers legislative, executive, judicial organization, intergovernmental relations, and structural and political arrangements in the existing and emerging metropolitan areas. Enrollment is limited.

PLAP 592 - (3) (Y)
Judicial Policymaking
Prerequisite: Nine credits in PLAP and instructor permission.
Examines the structure and process of judicial policymaking, focusing on agenda-setting, deciding cases and opinion writing, implementation, compliance, and impact. Particular attention is given to the United States Supreme Court and its relationship to lower federal and state courts and the political environment.

PLAP 595 - (3) (S)
Selected Problems in American Politics
Prerequisite: Instructor permission.
Independent study under faculty supervision, for students who are preparing for intensive research on a specific topic.

Comparative Politics

PLCP 101 - (3) (Y)
Introduction to Comparative Politics
Provides a basis for understanding and explaining similarities and differences in the character of political life as observed in different settings. Issues include the political role of parties and interest groups, management of political conflict, establishment of legitimate political authority, and the consequences of federal and unitary systems of government.

PLCP 201 - (3) (Y)
The Politics of Advanced Industrialized Countries
Surveys politics in industrialized societies including Japan, North America, and Western Europe. Focuses on the rise of social movements in response to industrial and social change, the changing bases of political parties and democratic rule, attempts to manage increasingly international economies, and prospects for political cooperation and integration.

PLCP 212 - (3) (Y)
The Politics of Developing Areas
Surveys patterns of government and politics in non-Western political systems. Topics include political elites, sources of political power, national integration, economic development, and foreign penetration.

PLCP 242 - (3) (Y)
Politics of Modernity
Introduces key analytical concepts used by Karl Marx, Max Weber, and Emile Durkeim in their analysis of how the development of modern society has shaped the nature of modern politics.

PLCP 311 - (3) (Y)
The Politics of Western Europe
Prerequisite: Some background in comparative politics and/or history of Europe.
Surveys recent developments in selected political systems of Western Europe, as well as the European Union. Emphasizes the impact of political culture on governmental institutions and political processes.

PLCP 313 - (3) (Y)
Political Economy of Development
Prerequisite: PLIR 205 or instructor permission.
Examines the political prerequisites (and impediments) to economic development, focusing on agricultural exporters in the 19th century and manufactured goods exporters in the 20th century. Draws on empirical material from North and South American, Europe, Asia and Africa.

PLCP 321 - (3) (Y)
Russian Politics
Prerequisite: Some background in comparative politics and/or history of Russia.
Analyzes the political system of the former USSR and Russia from 1917 to the present. Focuses on evolution of the Soviet state, modernization and social change, efforts to reform the system, the collapse of the USSR, as well as the economic and political transformation taking place in the newly independent states.

PLCP 341 - (3) (Y)
Politics of the Middle East and North Africa
Prerequisite: Some background in comparative politics and/or history of the Middle East.
Introduces contemporary political systems of the region stretching from Morocco to Iran.

PLCP 351 - (3) (Y)
Chinese Politics
Prerequisite: Some background in comparative politics and/or the history of China.
General introduction to Chinese politics in its societal context. Conveys a concrete appreciation of China’s societal reality and how it interacts with the political system. Covers China’s changing role in Asia and the world.

PLCP 363 - (3) (Y)
Politics in India and Pakistan
Prerequisite: Some background in comparative politics and/or study of history and society in South Asia.
Surveys political development in India and Pakistan examining the process of nation-building, the causes of democratization and authoritarian rule, the development of ethnic and religious conflict, environmental politics, the political impact of cultural globalization, and gender-related political issues.

PLCP 401 - (3) (IR)
Theories of Comparative Politics
Prerequisite: One course in PLCP or instructor permission.
Critical examination and analysis of basic approaches to the study of political systems.

PLCP 413 - (3) (IR)
Political Economy of Advanced Industrial Economies
Prerequisite: PLIR 205 or instructor permission.
Examines how the U. S., Germany, and Japan politically organize their major industries, and the economic consequences of this regulation. Compares financial systems, unionization, and firms’ internal organization, looking at relations between firms and labor, labor and the state, and firms and the state.

PLCP 414 - (3) (IR)
Democracy and Dictatorship
Prerequisite: One course in PLCP or instructor permission.
Surveys and critically evaluates theories of origins of democratic and authoritarian governments, and the causes of subsequent transitions to, and away from, democratic regimes.

PLCP 415 - (3) (Y)
Comparative Public Policy
Investigates why policies in areas like social welfare, education, and trade differ across time and across countries in advanced industrialized nations.

PLCP 424 - (3) (S)
Seminar: Topics in Comparative Politics
Prerequisite: One course in PLCP or instructor permission.
Intensive analysis of selected issues and concepts in comparative government.

PLCP 498 - (3) (S)
Senior Thesis
Prerequisite: Three courses in PLCP and instructor permission.
Supervised work on a thesis in comparative politics for especially motivated students.

PLCP 502 - (3) (IR)
Comparative Political Systems of Southern Europe
Prerequisite: PLCP 201, 311, or instructor permission.
Surveys selected political systems in Southern Europe, such as France, Italy, Spain, and Portugal.

PLCP 506 - (3) (Y)
Political Development and Developmental Politics
Prerequisite: One course in PLCP or instructor permission.
Critical examination and analysis of the basic theories of political development. Emphasizes development of the modern nation state in Europe and the Developing World from 1400-2000.

PLCP 507 - (3) (Y)
Rational Choice in Comparative Politics
Prerequisite: Two courses in PLCP and/or economics, or instructor permission.
Introduces rational choice theory, one of the most important recent approaches to studying politics. Addresses the challenge of applying both classic and newer theories to democratic transitions and constitutions, elections and voting, coalitions, social movements, and political reform.

PLCP 511 - (3) (Y)
Government and Politics of Western Europe
Prerequisite: Graduate status or instructor permission.
In-depth analysis of the institutional structures and policy processes of selected political systems in Europe today. Focuses on legislatures, political executives, administrative bureaucracies and their interrelationships as they effect policymaking and policy implementation.

PLCP 520 - (3) (IR)
Comparative Political Parties
Examines political parties in a variety of institutional and socioeconomic settings, focusing on parties in the democratic political systems of Europe, the United States, and Japan.

PLCP 521 - (3) (Y)
Soviet and Post-Soviet Politics
Prerequisite: Graduate status or instructor permission.
Studies the political institutions and processes in the former Soviet Union and its successor states from 1917 to the present. Focuses on modernization, social change, changing structures and institutions, political mobilization, political cultures, nationality issues, and the problems of reform, system transformation and democratization.

PLCP 523 - (3) (Y)
Politics of Eastern Europe
Prerequisite: Some background in comparative politics and/or history of Eastern Europe.
Studies the development of political institutions in Eastern Europe since 1989. Comparative analysis of the differing paths of development taken by the East Europe regimes. Includes the history of the region. Examines the transitions, the development of political parties, economic reforms, and institutional development, as well as security issues, including the Yugoslav conflict and the expansion of Western security arrangements into Eastern Europe.

PLCP 525 - (3) (Y)
Politics of Economic Reform
Prerequisite: Previous course in PLCP, PLIR, or economics is recommended.
A wave of economic change has swept across countries from Argentina to Zimbabwe over the last 15 years. The unfolding of these changes has been structured by and, in turn, has shaped the politics of the countries in which they have occurred. Formulates an analytical framework for understanding the politics of economic reform. Studies cases in Latin America, Africa, Asia, and Eastern Europe.

PLCP 531 - (3) (IR)
Politics of Latin America
Prerequisite: Some background in comparative politics and/or history of Latin America.
Studies the constitutional, political, and administrative system of the major countries of Latin America; the political implications of economic development and social reform; and nationalist theories of socio-political development.

PLCP 533 - (3) (IR)
Political Parties and Movements in Latin America
Prerequisite: Some background in comparative politics and/or history of Latin America.
Studies the origins, activities, and contemporary position of the major political parties and movements in Latin America and Spain, and their relationship to economic development, social reform, and the conduct of government in the principal Latin American states.

PLCP 536 - (3) (IR)
Role of the Military in Latin America
Prerequisite: Some background in comparative politics and/or history of Latin America.
Studies the impact of the military on government and society, the conditions effecting military intervention against constitutional governments, and the circumstances in which military intervention occurs and is likely to occur in Latin America and Spain.

PLCP 541 - (3) (Y)
Islam and Democracy in the Middle East
Prerequisite: PLCP 341 or equivalent.
Studies the prospects for democratic transitions in Middle Eastern states, emphasizing the role of Islamic political movements.

PLCP 551 - (3) (Y)
Politics of China
Prerequisite: Some background in comparative politics and/or history of China.
Studies the structure and process of the Chinese political system, emphasizing political culture, socio-economic development and political socialization.

PLCP 553 - (3) (Y)
Politics of Japan
Prerequisite: Some background in comparative politics and/or history of Japan.
Surveys contemporary Japanese society and political behavior including such topics as political culture, interest groups, political parties, parliamentary democracy, decision-making, and public policy.

PLCP 563 - (3) (E)
Politics of Vietnam
Prerequisite: Some background in comparative politics and/or history of Asia.
Comprehensive introduction to Vietnamese politics, including its domestic political development and its international relations. Focuses on contemporary Vietnam, but also considers the historical development of Vietnamese politics.

PLCP 581 - (3) (Y)
Politics of Sub-Saharan Africa
Prerequisite: Some background in comparative politics and/or history of Africa; not open to students who have taken PLCP 381.
Studies the government and politics of sub-Saharan Africa. Includes the colonial experience and the rise of African nationalism; the transition to independence; the rise and fall of African one-party states; the role of the military in African politics; the politics of ethnicity, nation- and state-building; patromonialism and patron-client relations; development problems faced by African regimes, including relations with external actors; and the political future of Southern Africa.

PLCP 583 - (3) (Y)
Politics of South Africa
Prerequisite: PLCP 212, PLCP 581, or instructor permission.
Studies the socio-political structures of white supremacy and the political transition to majority rule. Emphasizes the confrontation between African and Afrikaaner nationalisms, the consequences of economic growth on the patterns of racial stratification, and the complicated process contributing to the creation of the multi-racial democratic society.

PLCP 595 - (3) (S)
Selected Problems in Comparative Politics
Prerequisite: Instructor permission.
Independent study, under faculty supervision, for intensive research on a specific topic.

International Relations

PLIR 101 - (3) (Y)
International Relations
Studies the geographic, demographic, economic, and ideological factors conditioning the policies of states, and the methods and institutions of conflict and adjustment among states, including the functions of power, diplomacy, international law and organization.

PLIR 202 - (3) (Y)
Foreign Policies of the Powers
Comparative analysis of the content and definition of foreign policies of select states in historical and contemporary periods.

PLIR 203 - (3) (Y)
International Relations of East Asia
An introduction to leading theories in the field of international relations with reference to major events in the history of diplomacy, war, and economic relations in the East Asian region.

PLIR 205 - (3) (Y)
Introduction to Political Economy
Introduces core concepts in political economy, including the institutional bases for states and markets, and the way these interact through the exercise of exit, voice, and collective action. Empirical material drawn from the last five centuries.

PLIR 301 - (3) (Y)
Theories of International Relations
Prerequisite: One course in PLIR or instructor permission.
An introductory survey of the key theoretical perspectives used to analyze foreign policy behavior and international outcomes.

PLIR 305 - (3) (Y)
Philosophy of International Relations
Prerequisite: PLIR 101 or 201, or instructor permission.
Analyzes the philosophical foundations of the study of international relations as formulated by classical and contemporary thinkers.

PLIR 306 - (3) (Y)
Military Force in International Relations
Prerequisite: One course in PLIR or instructor permission.
Examines the threat and use of military force in international relations. Includes deterrence theory and recent critiques, ethical and international legal considerations, domestic constraints, and the postwar U.S. and Soviet experiences with the use of force.

PLIR 308 - (3) (Y)
International Politics in the Nuclear Age
Prerequisite: One course in PLIR or instructor permission.
Considers the impact of nuclear weapons on the relations among states.

PLIR 311 - (3) (Y)
International Law: Principles and Politics
Prerequisite: One course in PLIR or instructor permission.
Investigates international legal rules, how they originate and evolve, their political consequences, and their relationship to morality. Emphasizes the international legal rules governing territoriality, nationality, human rights, and the recourse to armed force.

PLIR 321 - (3) (Y)
International Organizations
Prerequisite: One course in PLIR or instructor permission.
Introduces the nature, functions, and significance of international organizations in international relations. Focuses on the United Nations.

PLIR 331 - (3) (Y)
Ethics and Human Rights in World Politics
How do issues of human rights and ethical choice operate in the world of states? Do cosmopolitan ideals now hold greater sway among states than traditional ideas of national interests during the Cold War? Considers ideas of philosophers like Thucydides and Kant in addition to concrete cases and dilemmas taken from contemporary international relations. Specific issues include defining human rights, "humanitarian intervention," just war theory, and the moral responsibilities of leaders and citizens.

PLIR 338 - (3) (Y)
Theories of International Political Economy
Prerequisite: PLIR 205 or instructor permission.
Examines international conflict and cooperation over economic issues, using a variety of theoretical perspectives. Includes the domestic sources of foreign economic policy and the relationship between economic and military security in the 19th and 20th centuries.

PLIR 340 - (3) (Y)
Foreign Policy of the United States
Prerequisite: Some background in the field of international relations or in U.S. history.
Analyzes major themes in American foreign policy, emphasizing security issues, from World War I through the Nixon administration.

PLIR 351 - (3) (Y)
Western Europe in World Affairs
Prerequisite: Some background in international relations or the history of Western Europe.
Studies the content and formulation of the foreign policies of the major Western European countries in the twentieth century.

PLIR 355 - (3) (Y)
Russia/USSR in World Affairs
Prerequisite: Some background in international relations or the history of Russia.
Surveys the international relations of the Russian state, looking at Imperial legacies, the Soviet era from 1917-85, the Gorbachev era, and post-Soviet problems of Russian foreign policy.

PLIR 356 - (3) (Y)
Russian-American Relations
Prerequisite: Some background in international relations or the history of Russia; PLIR 355 or 340 recommended.
Analyzes Soviet-U.S. and Russian-U.S. relations, with a focus on the post-1945 period; Cold War and contemporary issues.

PLIR 365 - (3) (Y)
International Relations of the Middle East
Prerequisite: Some background in international relations or the history of the Middle East.
Studies the emergence of the contemporary inter-state system in the Middle East; the important role played by outside powers, especially the United States; the effect of the Cold War on the region; the persistent conflict between Israel and its Arab neighbors and the efforts to reach peace; and the difficulty of constructing a stable order in the Persian Gulf.

PLIR 375 - (3) (IR)
South Asia in World Affairs
Prerequisite: Some background in the field of international relations or in the history of South Asia.
Topics include the international relations of India; factors that condition its foreign policy; relation between internal need for unity, stability and development, and foreign policy; and India as a regional power and as a global leader of nonalignment.

PLIR 415 - (3) (Y)
Economics and National Security
Prerequisite: One course in international relations, history, or economics.
Explores the connections between economics and national security from three angles. First, does economic interdependence between nation-states foster a peaceful world, as liberals argue, or does it increase the likelihood of war, as realists contend? Second, what are the economic causes of the rise and decline of great powers? Third, what are the economic roots of great power imperialism against smaller states?

PLIR 421 - (3) (Y)
World Order
Prerequisite: Two courses in PLIR or instructor permission.
Seminar analyzing the problem of world order and examining various theoretical approaches to its solutions.

PLIR 424 - (3) (S)
Seminar: Topics in International Relations
Prerequisite: One course in PLIR or instructor permission.
Intensive analysis of selected issues and concepts in international relations.

PLIR 438 - (3) (Y)
America in a World Economy
Prerequisite: PLIR 205 or instructor permission.
Seminar focusing on politics of the international trade and monetary systems, emphasizing third world industrialization, trade conflicts between the U.S. and Japan, and the global debt crisis.

PLIR 498 - (3) (S)
Senior Thesis
Prerequisite: Three courses in PLIR and instructor permission.
Allows especially motivated students to receive credit for supervised work on a thesis in the area of international relations.

PLIR 504 - (3) (Y)
Nationalism and World Politics
Prerequisite: PLIR 101 or PLIR 102, or instructor permission.
Explores the effects of the ideology of nationalism on relations among states and the international system in general, particularly as regards war and conflict.

PLIR 507 - (3) (Y)
Norms and Value Systems in International Relations
Prerequisite: Two courses in PLIR or instructor permission.
Analyzes the formation, operation, and effect of norms, values, and "regimes" in international relations. Considers topics such as human rights, the role of religion and ideology, and the relationship of norms to international institutions.

PLIR 522 - (3) (IR)
Political Conflict Management in International Organizations
Prerequisite: PLIR 321 or 421, or instructor permission.
Analyzes the principles and methods involved in the management of political conflicts by international organizations. Includes case studies of peaceful settlement, peacekeeping operations, and sanctions. Emphasizes the political role of the secretary general and the problems of organizing international sanctions.

PLIR 538 - (3) (IR)
International Political Economy
Prerequisite: PLIR 205 or instructor permission.
Intensive analysis of concepts and selected issues, both historical and contemporary, found in the interfacing of politics and economics in international relations.

PLIR 542 - (3) (Y)
Patterns and Processes of United States Foreign Policy
Prerequisite: Some background in American government or international relations; PLIR 340 and 341 are strongly recommended.
Studies the politics of the American foreign policy process as illustrated through comparative analysis of case studies.

PLIR 555 - (3) (Y)
Russian/Soviet Foreign Policy
Prerequisite: Instructor permission.
Thematic analysis of Soviet and Post-Soviet Russian foreign policy.

PLIR 562 - (3) (Y)
Latin America in World Affairs
Prerequisite: Some background in international relations and/or the history of Latin America.
Includes relations of Latin-American states with each other, the United States, Western Europe, and other states; inter-American security; Latin American relations with the Soviet Union and Cuba; and the United States security doctrine.

PLIR 571 - (3) (Y)
China in World Affairs
Prerequisite: Some background in international relations and/or the history of China.
Includes international relations of China; conditioning historical, political, economic, and social forces; and the aims, strategy, and tactics of China’s foreign policy.

PLIR 572 - (3) (Y)
Japan in World Affairs
Prerequisite: Some background in international relations and/or the history of Japan.
Studies the international relations of Japan; domestic and foreign factors and forces that condition its foreign policies; and the political, economic, military, and social problems resulting from contacts with China, the Soviet Union, and the Western powers.

PLIR 582 - (3) (IR)
Africa and the World
Prerequisite: Some background in international relations and/or the history of Africa.
Overview of the international politics of sub-Saharan Africa, including inter-African relations as well as Africa’s relations with the major powers, and the international dimensions of the Southern African situation. Explores alternative policy options open to African states. Considers a number of case studies which illustrate the policy alternatives.

PLIR 595 - (3) (S)
Selected Problems in International Relations
Prerequisite: Instructor permission.
Independent study, under faculty supervision, for intensive research on a specific topic.

Political Theory

PLPT 101 - (3) (Y)
Introduction to Political Theory
Introduces political philosophy as a mode of inquiry, and consideration of selected problems and writers in Western political theory.

PLPT 301 - (3) (Y)
Ancient and Medieval Political Theory
Studies the development of political theory from Greek antiquity through the medieval period.

PLPT 302 - (3) (Y)
Modern Political Thought
Studies the development of political theory from the Renaissance through the nineteenth century.

PLPT 303 - (3) (Y)
Contemporary Political Thought
Prerequisite: One course in political theory or instructor permission.
Studies the course of political theory from the late 19th century through the present. Includes the major critical perspectives on modern politics and culture (existentialism, feminism, post-modernism, "critical theory") and explores the problems that have preoccupied political theory in this period (alienation, language, individualism and discrimination).

PLPT 305 - (3) (Y)
Survey of American Political Theory
Surveys the development of the American tradition of free government emphasizing the major contributors and their critics.

PLPT 320 - (3) (Y)
African-American Political Thought
Prerequisite: one course in PLPT or instructor permission.
This course examines key figures and central concepts in African American political thought from the 19th through the 21st centuries. Issues addressed include the relationship between slavery and American democracy, separation vs. integration, and the promise and limitations of formal equality.

PLPT 403 - (3) (Y)
Democracy and Its Critics
Prerequisite: One course in PLPT or instructor permission.
Surveys the major contributors to democratic theory, the central problems that any democratic theory has to answer, and the criticisms leveled at the various philosophical attempts to give a firm ground for democratic practices.

PLPT 407 - (3) (Y)
Liberalism and its Critics
Prerequisite: At least one course in PLPT (preferably PLPT 302).
An exploration of the sources and origins of liberal political ideas, of the recent development of Rawlsian liberal theory, and of the most prominent contemporary critical responses to this body of thought.

PLPT 424 - (3) (Y)
Seminar: Topics in Political Theory
Prerequisite: One course in PLPT or instructor permission.
Investigates a special problem of political theory such as political corruption, religion and politics, science and politics, or the nature of justice.

PLPT 480 - (3) (Y)
Political Economy
Prerequisite: Previous course work in PLA, economics, or philosophy.
Focuses on historical and contemporary theorists who relate politics and economics.

PLPT 498 - (3) (S)
Senior Thesis
Prerequisite: Three courses in PLPT and instructor permission.
Supervised work on a thesis in political theory for especially motivated students.

PLPT 501 - (3) (Y)
Nature of Political Inquiry
Prerequisite: Only for undergraduates with instructor permission.
Analyzes important conceptual issues encountered in the scientific study of politics.

PLPT 502 - (3) (Y)
Basic Problems of Political Philosophy
Prerequisite: PLPT 101 or PLPT 302, or instructor permission.
Examines the character of political philosophy and its justification under contemporary circumstances.

PLPT 503 - (3) (Y)
Marxist Theories
Prerequisite: PLPT 101 or PLPT 302, or instructor permission.
Studies the basic political, sociological and philosophical ideas advanced by Marx and Engels, and their historical backgrounds; the later developments and varieties of Marxist thought in the twentieth century; and the principal critic, and chief debates.

PLPT 505 - (3) (Y)
Concepts of Law
Prerequisite: Two courses in PLPT or philosophy, or permission of the instructor.
An in-depth exploration of recent and contemporary analytical jurisprudence, covering the work of such writers as Hart, Dworkin, Finnis, Raz, and others.

PLPT 506 - (3) (Y)
Plato and Aristotle
Prerequisite: PLPT 101 or 301.
Studies the political and philosophical ideas of the founders of the tradition of political philosophy.

PLPT 515 - (3) (Y)
Continental Political Thought
Prerequisite: One course in PLPT or instructor permission.
Surveys the main currents of Continental political thought from the eighteenth century through the present.

PLPT 595 - (3) (S)
Selected Problems in Theory and Method
Prerequisite: Instructor permission.
Independent study, under faculty supervision, for students who are preparing for intensive research on a specific topic.


Undergraduate Record Home  |  College of Arts & Sciences