PLSC 300C: Islam in Different Political Situations
T 4:15pm / LSC
A good understanding of current events in the Middle East and in other regions with Muslim majorities requires a good grasp of ideologies and worldviews that have served as a source of legitimization, identity and inspiration for many state actors and non-state actors in the Muslim world. This course examines the interaction between politics and different expressions of Islam in the contemporary world. We will explore the diverse interpretations of Islam by different political organizations through specific case-studies from different parts of the Muslim world, from West Africa to Central Asia, from the Middle East to South Asia in the light of contemporary dominant political theories. We will discuss the positions of pacifist and violent traditionalists, liberal and autocratic secularists in our different case-studies.
PLSC 337: Terrorism
TTh 2:30pm / LSC
PLSC 342: African Politics
TTh 8:30am / LSC
This course introduces you to the extremely diverse and exciting world of African politics. We will focus on the general trends affecting the 53 countries that comprise the African continent, although an emphasis will be placed on the special case studies of the Democratic Republic of Congo, Somalia, Sudan, South Africa, and Tunisia. Since an understanding of the past is crucial to our understanding of the present, we will first explore the politics of African political kingdoms during the precolonial independence era (prior to 1884), followed by an assessment of the impact that colonial rule (roughly 1884-1951) exerted on these political systems. The primary focus of the course, however, is the nature and evolution of a wide variety of topics within African politics during the contemporary independence era (roughly 1951-present), with a particular focus on the post-9/11 era (2001-present). Among the topics to be discussed include the relationship between ethnicity and class, gender and the evolving roles of African women, nature of Islam in modern African politics, military coups and authoritarian governance, and democratic experiments in multiparty politics.
PLSC 359: Revolutions
TTh 1:00pm / LSC
This course will explore major works on the theory of revolutions. We will conduct a review of historical revolutions, including, but not limited to, the Chinese Revolution, the Russian Revolution, and the French Revolution. A special focus will be placed on the Iranian Revolution. In particular, we will study the roles that private citizens, peasants, the educated elite, media, and past revolutions play in the recent uprisings. Students will leave the course with a better understanding of why and how revolutions occur.