This skills enrichment course is designed to help students prepare for the LSAT, the standardized examination required by most U.S. law schools as part of the application process. Students will learn the core content as well as the tricks standard to the LSAT. NOTE: This course does NOT count toward major credit in the Politics Department.
An introduction to the Constitutional institutions and structures of U.S. government, how they have evolved, and the actors who participate in the process. Topics include electoral politics, social issues, economic policy, federalism, interest groups, the Presidency, Congress, the courts, and related subjects. Offered every semester.
A course which situates and compares the political institutions, cultures, and processes of states in a variety of world regions. Special attention is paid to the comparison of non-Western regions, including Africa, Asia, and Latin America. Offered every semester.
First Year Seminars are designed and taught by faculty who have a special passion for the topic. All FYSeminars are small classes (16 students) that count toward the university Core. Many FYSeminars include enrichment activities such as excursions into the city or guest speakers. FYSeminars are only open to students in their first or second semester at USF, and students may only take one FYS, in either Fall or Spring. For a detailed description of this course, and other FYSeminars this semester, go to this webpage by cutting and pasting the link: http://www.usfca.edu/artsci/firstyearsem/
Provides a critical survey of Western political theory. The course focuses on authority and resistance, including how political authority is justified, and arguments for civil disobedience, passive resistance, and revolution. Readings include works by Plato, Hobbes, Locke, Rousseau, Marx, Martin Luther King, Jr., Malcolm X and contemporary feminists. Offered every year.
The Community Engagement course emphasizes a focus on the multidimensionality of service in order to be most effective in one's community. Leadership development, theory-practice integration, reflection, critical thinking, negotiation and conflict management skills provide relevant learning opportunities for students throughout the semester.
A case study approach is used to examine major themes such as the role of the administrator, intergovernmental relations, personnel motivation, the concept of administrative ecology, and ethics in public service. Class discussion is emphasized as students are introduced to the complex world of public administration. Offered every year.
This course exposes students to the fundamentals of applied political research and critical social analysis, from developing a research problem to making recommendations for policy reform and social justice changes at the local, national, and international levels of governance.
An interpretive political history of the world since 1945, focusing on major actors, events, and international affairs, Western and non-Western. Cross-listed with HIST 300. Offered every other year.
A critical examination of the origin, nature, and development of American political thought from the founding(s) to 1865. Central themes include the relationship between the individual and the political community, the tensions between equality and liberty, and the meaning of democracy. Offered every other fall.
A critical examination of the nature and development of American political thought from the Civil War to the present. Central themes include the the tensions between democracy and capitalism, the role of race, ethnicity and gender in political life, and the development of the American empire. Offered every other spring.
Explores this new field, an interdisciplinary area of study that began in legal studies and has emerged as a force in political theory, cultural studies, and post-colonial studies. Examines the role of race as a social construct that organizes political interactions. Explores fresh approaches to race relations in the new millennium, particularly through the intersection of theories of political identity and structural explanations of racial and ethnic inequality. Active class participation and a research paper required. Offered intermittently.
Cross-listed with Humanities Honors 336. Must be in Honors Humanities Program or have permission of the instructor. Seminar examines the key writings of the Socialist tradition in Europe, the United States, and elsewhere around the world. Readings will include classic works of Socialist non-fiction and fiction, Socialist biography and autobiography, and Socialist perspectives on areas such as art, music, literature, film, photography, community, work, gender, race, class, and political consciousness. Socialism's historic development and impact and its present condition will also be examined. Offered every other Spring.
Examines the relationship between politics and literature. Readings include works of literature by writers chiefly known for their political writings (Machivelli and Montesquieu) and literary works that speak to central political issues (works by Shakespeare, Melville, Morrison, Kundera, DeLillo). Central questions include: What can literature teach us about political life and power? How can writing serve as a means of resisting or eroding power? Offered every other year.
Course explores the relationship between politics, movies and the Hollywood film industry. Students will examine the political history of Hollywood movies, explore the politics in those films, and how Hollywood has influenced American and foreign politics. Issues considered include censorship, war and Cold war, terrorism, race, class, gender, political ideology, genre politics, law, religion, science, sports, and the American dream. Film series will accompany the course.
This cultural diversity immersion class explores Beijing – the heart and soul of China – to understand its current influence in the world. We experience China’s complex culture, economy, politics, business, and society. Please contact professor to find out about the program cost.
This is an intensive service learning and cultural diversity justice immersion class on the Philippines. During Philippines Today, you will experience the Philippines’ rich and complex environment, culture, economy, politics, and society firsthand. An overriding theme for the service learning immersion is the Philippines rural and urban environment, particularly in the aftermath of Typhoon Haiyan, and the social justice work that still needs to be done.
Study of theory and practice of modern democracies, with an emphasis on recent democratization. Topics include causes of democratization, threats to newly formed democracies, and consolidation of democratic regimes through building state institutions and constitutional structures, designing electoral systems and political parties, establishing civilian control over the military, and creating democratic culture. Other topics include the relation between economic development and democratic consolidation, and between globalization and democratization. Course assesses the state of democracy throughout the world, and explores what democracy should mean today. Offered every other year.
Examines a variety of social science methods and their application to the study of the politics of race and ethnicity in American society. Four general cases are examined: African-Americans, American Indians, Asian-Americans, and Hispanic/Latino-Americans. Offered intermittently.
An examination of the relationship between sports and politics, and of the evolution of the American political economy through the lens of baseball. Using the fictional and non-fictional literature of the national pastime, the course will examine the origins, history and contemporary state of the American dream. The U.S. national pastime will be used to reflect on issues of class, gender, race and ethnicity, law and society, foreign policy, labor-management conflicts, and the evolving political economy. Legal cases and debates will be used, in particular, to examine these themes.
The study of the linkages between religion and politics. Religion as a political construct and as an instrument of power in society. Is religion simply a matter of faith? Is it only personal or is it the opiate of the masses? Given the political capital of religion in modern society, is it even possible to maintain the great wall of separation between church and state? Course will focus on the writings of Montesquieu, Marx, Jefferson, David Walker, Malcolm X, Angela Davis, Reinhold Niebuhr, Martin Luther King, Jr., and Hannah Arendt. Individual and group projects will be employed. Offered every year.
Cross-listed with Honors Humanities 326. Must be in Honors Humanities program or have Permission of Instructor. Works of principal eighteenth century French, English and American studies on the nature of human society are read and discussed. Eighteenth century art, literature and music, especially the opera, are examined as well. Offered every other year.
Examines urban politics in 20th century America. Topics and issues include: machine and reform politics, federal intervention, the dependent city, and urban economic development; the impact of race, ethnicity, and class; pro-growth politics; housing policy and homelessness, city finances and service delivery, crime, transportation policy, urban violence, community control movements, and black political ascendancy. Offered every other year.
An analysis of presidential politics, constitutional functions and personalities. Assessments of the elective process, policy-making, leadership, power relations, and past and future directions. Offered every other Fall.
Evaluation of justice and injustice in the U.S. system, stressing political, economic and social issues, the legal process, crime and victimization, and the relationship between political economy and human rights. Offered every Fall.
How a bill becomes a law is examined from the perspective of the institutions and individuals that participate in that process. Focusing on the U.S. Congress, the course covers such topics as elections, institutional change, issues of representation, and the implications for policy. Offered every other Fall.
This course surveys African-American political activity and the politics of race in the United States, primarily in the 20th century. Topics to be covered include: black city politics; blacks and American political institutions: law and the courts, Congress, the Presidency; political mobilization in the post-World War II era; popular movements for civil rights, black power, and community control; as well as electoral politics, its promises and consequences. Offered every other year.
Examination of contemporary Latino political communities in the U.S. Field-based research project required. Offered intermittently.
A critical overview and evaluation of U.S. media, emphasizing their political, social and economic foundations and influences; their impact on American politics, life, culture and consciousness; and media alternatives. Offered every other year.
A people's political history of modern America as seen through 20th century political movements and through the lives and times of reformers and revolutionary leaders such as Eugene Debs, Big Bill Haywood, John Reed, Emma Goldman, Jack London, Dorothy Day, Cesar Chavez, Malcolm X, Angela Davis, and Tom Hayden. Readings include a political overview, but emphasize a series of political biographies. Offered every other Spring.
Examines both the political thinking and the political activity which strongly challenged the stability of the American system during the 1960s. Includes detailed analyzes of the various civil rights struggles of the '60s as well as the anti-Vietnam War and counter-culture movements. Offered intermittently.
Historical and contemporary focus on the way women have influenced and participated in American politics. Includes women as voters and as office holders, as well as women's influence on public policy areas such as social welfare, war and peace, suffrage, ERA, and affirmative action. Offered intermittently.
Examines the procedural and substantive meanings of the concept of due process of law found in the 5th and 14th Amendments of the United States Constitution and the other Bill of Rights provisions that protect people accused of crime. Course will analyze a series of landmark Supreme Court cases on this subject, the response to those decisions, and their impact on criminal justice and law enforcement. Offered every other year.
An introduction to the major economic, cultural, and institutional factors that shape contemporary Latin American politics, including the role of the United States, the changing international economy and its impact on public policy and political behavior. Offered every other year.
This seminar in political theory considers writings by leaders and theorists of the ongoing struggle for decolonization. It examines different tactics for independence and/or liberation such as violent versus nonviolent approaches, nationalism and culture as tools of empowerment, difficulties with achieving economic independence, and religion as a tool of resistance. It also considers the legacies of colonialism today including migration, economic inequalities and regime instability. Specific topics covered include African socialism, Latin American Marxism, Islamic Fundamentalism, negritude, and Indian Independence. Texts by Gandhi, Fanon, Guevara, and Khomeini will be studied. It is highly recommended that students have taken courses in Political Theory or Political Philosophy. Offered every other year.
A critical examination of the origin, nature, and development of American political thought from the founding to the present. Central themes include the relationship between the individual and the political community, the tensions between equality and liberty, and the meaning of dmocracy. Offered every other year.
Introduction to the topics and recent developments in feminist thought. Topics include gender inequality, issues of class and race, the family, and gender and political power. Explores the varieties of feminist thought, how they complicate and enhance political thought, and their effects on moral, social, and political issues. Offered every other year.
The politics of constitutional history and development, including the constitutional framing, Supreme Court policy-making, and the clash of constitutional rights versus political and economic power. Course will examine 19th and 20th century legal conflicts over federalism and the separation of powers, and over property, privacy, criminal justice, and the war powers. Course will also feature case studies of American political trials and the treatment of constitutional liberties during both hot and cold wars. Offered every other year.
Explores the historical relationship of race and ethnicity to the law, the courts, and the judicial system of the U.S. Course will examine the competing definitions of equality, and how certain concepts have predominated from the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and in Supreme Court decisions, including landmark cases such as Brown v. Board of Education, the impact of the law on African-American, Asian-American, Latino-American and Native-American communities, from the grassroots and lower courts to national legal policy making. The legal writings of W.E.B. DuBois, Mary Francis Berry, Derrick Bell, Angela Davis, Thurgood Marshall and others will be emphasized. Offered every other year.
This course surveys the relationship of women to American law. Topics examined include legal issues related to employment and education; constitutional issues such as the equal protection clause, sex as a semi-suspect classification, the politics of ERA, and Roe v. Wade and the issue of abortion; family law: marriage, divorce, and other arrangements; sexual harassment; criminal law and juvenile delinquency; the crime of rape and its treatment in American law and courts; women as lawyers and judges; and the impact of race, sex, identity, ideology, and the women's movement on issues of women and the law. Offered every other year.
This course explores how political phenomena, from the state to public policy, are informed by gender inequality. It also surveys how people have fought discrimination on the basis of gender and sexual preference. Throughout, case studies from the developed and developing world are integrated with service learning experiences.
This course examines the politics of constitutional law, focusing on the scope, meaning, and practice of individual rights and liberties in the American political system. The course primarily concerns the First Amendment's protection of free speech, free press, assembly, and religious freedom. The course examines issues such as flag burning, pornography, hate speech, censorship, school prayer and regulating the internet. Offered every other year.
Investigates the reasons behind the collapse of the Soviet Union. Describes and analyzes the challenges facing post-communist Russia and nearby states, including Ukraine, Belarus, and the states of Central Asia and the Caucasus. Evaluates progress towards creating economic prosperity and political democracy, focusing on both domestic and foreign policies. Offered every other year.
Prerequisite: At least two courses in Politics or Sociology or permission of instructor. An examination of the theory and practice of nonviolence and nonviolent action and related movements for social change, including the secular and religious foundations of pacifism as well as the ethical and utilitarian bases of nonviolent political movements. Offered every other year.
A comparative analysis of the political cultures, institutions, and societies of contemporary European states. Emphasis on post-Cold War developments leading to the erosion of regional differences in Europe, but also on forces that reflect residual nationalisms. Course will include case studies of selected individual European states. Offered every other year.
Studies the political traditions of the region, including the post-war communist experience. Explains the upheavals of 1989, including the collapse of the Berlin Wall. Discusses post-1989 efforts to reform economies and political systems, and create Western style democracies. Focuses on the re-emergence of nationalisms in the region, particularly in the Balkan states. Offered every other year.
This course examines revolutionary movements for change in Latin America and the forces which try to stop them. Topics include the conditions which lead to revolt, liberation theology, Marxist-Leninism, the U.S. role, and nonviolent and armed methods of resistance. Offered every other year.
This course offers a critical inquiry into the politics, economics and ethical questions regarding inequality, poverty, population growth, the environment, globalization, energy consumption and related issues, with special attention given to relations between countries of the North (industrialized countries) and the South (the Third World). Offered every other year.
A comparative political study of India, Pakistan, Malaysia, the Philippines, and other South/Southeast Asian states, focusing on state-society relations, the military, religion, race, ethnicity, culture, nationalism, and the challenges for economic development and nation-building. Offered every other year.
A study of the emergence of modern East Asia; political changes in China, Japan, Korea, and Taiwan after 1945; survey of international developments. Offered every other year.
This course surveys the organization and diversity of African states, especially in the post-colonial period. Topics include: the impact of European colonialism and neocolonialism, nationalism and revolution, problems of nationhood and governance, ethnic conflict, obstacles to sustainable economic development, political change in South Africa, emerging democracy movements throughout the continent, and U.S. policy towards the region. Offered every other year.
An overview of the politics and the governmental systems of Middle Eastern nations, including the historic, religious, ideological, economic and cultural forces that shape government policies, social movements and ongoing conflicts. Topics include the role of Arab nationalism, Zionism, human rights, the Islamic resurgence, terrorism, imperialism and globalization. Offered every other year.
A study of the influence of law on the relations of nation-states; a survey and assessment of the activities of international and transnational organizations. Offered every other year.
An overview of differing approaches to international conflict resolution and various institutional actors in the process. Includes an examination of some of the major current and recent conflicts in the world and efforts to resolve them. Offered every year.
Domestic and global human rights, and their role in a changing world order. Impact of governments, multinationals, churches, universities, and human rights advocates on political and economic development, and the level of repression in the world. Strategies for global justice and change, with a focus on human rights activists and movements. Offered every year.
An examination of the causes of war in relations among and within nation-states; a study and evaluation of efforts to create lasting peace through diplomacy and political action. Offered every other year.
An examination of the foreign relations of Middle Eastern governments, including the impact of pan-Arab and pan-Islamic movements, international terrorism, the United Nations, Western intervention, and the politics of oil. Case studies include the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, the U.S. invasion of Iraq, and the role of Iran. Offered every year.
Studies the American foreign policy tradition as well as the evolution of the leading institutions of foreign policy-making, including the office of the President, and executive agencies such as the State Department, the Pentagon, and the CIA. Examines the roles of Congress, interest groups, and public opinion on foreign policy. Discusses select issues of contemporary significance in U.S. foreign policy. Offered every other year.
Describes and analyzes the role of the Vatican as a sovereign state in international relations. Discusses the Vatican's relations with other nation-states, as well as international organizations including the United Nations. Explores the Vatican's position on major issues of peace and war as well as human rights, economic and social development.
Analysis of efforts reducing national barriers and creating common institutions and supra-national authorities in Europe since the 1950s. Attention paid to the impact of the fall of communist states, the reunification of Germany, and contemporary crises in the European community. Offered every other year.
A study of the post-war foreign relations of India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Indonesia, the Philippines, and other selected countries of post-war South/Southeast Asia. An analysis of nonalignment, Cold War impacts, Indo-Pakistani conflicts, Sino-Indian disputes, SEATO, ASEAN, SAARC, APEC and intra-regional issues. Offered every other year.
A study of the foreign relations of China, Japan, Korea, and Vietnam from the 19th century encounters with Western powers and each other through the late 20th century. An analysis of post-war U.S.-China, Sino-Soviet, U.S.-Japan, divided Korea, revolutionary Vietnam, and other selected international relationships. Offered every other year.
Study of the North-South divide and the challenges it poses for global environmental cooperation. Focus on the politics and processes that underlie environmental negotiation and lawmaking at the U.N., international organizations and selected nation-states, including the problems of implementation and enforcement, sustainable development and the Rio conference. Offered every other year. Cross Listed with: ENVA - 360
The course seeks to answer the question, "Why do bureaucrats behave the way they do?" It begins with a general theory in an effort to explain the seemingly mundane to the more dramatic examples of bureaucratic behavior. Students will discover that often there really is a "method" behind the "madness" that is the bureaucracy. Offered every other year.
Unravel the world of public policy--how it is formulated, implemented, changed, evaluated. Emphasis on understanding the role played by the political institutions and on learning about subtle interplay between institutions and the public. Homelessness, punishment, welfare, and illegal drugs are among the issue areas used as case studies. Offered every other year.
Course focuses on problem of homelessness and evaluates homeless public policy, examining how the homeless are defined and counted, exploring the various paths to homelessness and appreciating the impact of race, gender and the globalization of the economy.
An examination of the role of state governments in the setting and implementing of public policy. The course will discuss the structural context of state politics, state institutions, and focus on specific policy areas such as education financing, health care, and welfare. Offered every other year.
Prerequisite: POLS - 118. Applied Policy Analysis is an opportunity for students to work as part of a research team using the tools of policy analysis to analyze real life problems. Students will participate in all stages of a research project from defining its objectives to reporting on the findings. Offered every other year.
The purpose of this course is to introduce students to the processes, participants, and institutions that surround the making and implementing of environmental policy. It combines lectures, case studies, and some "hands on" field exercises to illustrate how these elements interact. Cross Listed With: ENVA - 366.
This course focuses on how the government has responded to the problem of illicit drugs to illustrate how policy is made in the U.S. It will also examine methods used to evaluate public programs. Topics include how drug policy intersects with issues of crime, sport, race and class, foreign policy and civil liberties. Offered every other year.
This course emphasizes the process of social science research while focusing on issues of demographic incarceration patterns, constitutional "rights of the accused," and the history of punishment in the U.S. from the 17th century to the present. Particular attention given to the "prison-industrial complex" which has emerged with the "crack epidemic" and the "war on drugs" initiated at the national policy level. Offered every other year.
Asia Advocacy and Activism is a unique USF service learning and cultural diversity fieldwork course that immerses the student in advocacy, action, and activism among San Francisco¿s Asia and Asian American social justice organizations. The first part of the course discusses critical issues concerning international and transnational relations of Asia and Asian Americans. The second part exposes students to the influence and consequences of the Asian diasporas through Asiatown ethnotours and fieldwork activities. The third part of the course requires the student to perform faculty supervised political action, community advocacy, or public service that relates directly to the social justice worlds of Asians in North America and elsewhere.
Examines the recent history and current manifestations of U.S. foreign policy toward the Middle East, including the ¿war on terrorism,¿ the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, the war in Iraq, the confrontation with Iran, oil interests, non-proliferation issues, Islamic movements and related topics. Offered every other year.
In examining this conflict through the lenses of social justice and activism, this course de-exceptionalizes this ostensibly exceptional struggle, empowering students to understand ways to end conflicts that plague those living in Israel, Palestine, and beyond. We will explore ideas such as communal narratives, human rights, power, and sovereignty.
This course introduces students to the subfield of feminist international relations. Its goal is to question prevailing conceptions of world politics, to examine feminist challenges to the discipline of International Relations and to develop gender-sensitive ways of thinking about issues of identity, security, the political economy and global violence.
This course is a critical exploration of the premise and implementation of international development activities. It will examine the theoretical concept of development and then delve into topics including; sustainability, environmental impacts, governance and corruption, bilateral and unilateral foreign aid, and international aid bureaucracies.
This class prepares students to think in a theoretically-informed manner about International Politics. While it also introduces students to some major theoretical orientations in the field (including Realism, Liberalism, Marxism, Post-colonialism, Feminism, Post-structuralism, and Constructivism), it is concerned with raising larger questions about the nature of inquiry in International Relations: What counts as knowledge? Whose knowledge counts as International Relations? It also encourages students to realize, and critically examine, how their own approaches to politics are already shaped by different theoretical orientations. Pre-requisite: Pols 113 Intro to International Politics or Pols 203 Intro to Political Theory.
This courses focuses on special subjects and issues of politics. It may be repeated for credit when a different subject is the focus. Offered intermittently.
Boxing and Social Justice is a unique combined recreational sports, cultural diversity, and service learning course. After the fundamentals of Filipino studies are reviewed and reinforced, students will be trained to teach boxing as a recreational and self-defense activity to at-risk new migrant populations in the San Francisco Bay Area. They will act as mentors, tutors, and service providers. Immersed at their service learning sites, students will reflect on the health, recreational, social, economic, and political issues new migrants to the United States face. Prerequisite: YPSP 222: Philippine Boxing and Culture or instructor’s permission.
Students do interesting work six to ten hours per week in a federal, state, or municipal agency, giving them a chance to strengthen their skills, and network. They will prepare journal themes, read relevant assigned material, and meet every two weeks in a seminar. Permission of the instructor required. Offered every semester.
Field placement with Bay Area public interest groups, including peace, human rights, legal, media, and community organizations. Students work 6 to 8 hours per week, complete common readings, and write final reports. Offered every semester.
The written permission of the instructor and dean is required. Offered every semester.
Study of the politics of ethnicity and nationalism in the contemporary world and ramifications for state sovereignty, international cooperation and security. Case studies from a wide variety of settings (i.e., South-Southeast Asia, Africa, the Middle-East, Canada, Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union, Yugoslavia) will be used to illustrate conceptual and empirical issues. Offered every other year.
A study of theory and methodology of competing political-economy approaches to development. Topics include: role of the state and market in development, roots of the poverty problem, multinationals, foreign aid, debt-crisis, gender, the role of the World Bank, the IMF, and sustainable development. Offered every other year.
This seminar examines the role of public service in our society. It explores themes such as what motivates individuals to serve, do individuals have an obligation to serve, and what is the role of the government in encouraging/coercing service. Students will have the opportunity to complete an original piece of research in the form of a senior thesis. Enrollment is limited to students enrolled in the McCarthy Center Honors Minor program or with instructor permission. Offered every other fall.