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Politics Major Requirements

Politics major leading to BA degree

A major in politics leading to a Bachelor of Arts degree requires completion of at least 41 credits as follows:

  1. POL 100, 105, 111; ECON 101 and 102; INTR 201, 202
  2. Five additional courses of 3 credits or more in politics, including completion of one of the following four sequences and including at least one 300-level seminar course which entails an independent research and writing component. All 300-level courses except POL 374 (SOAN 374) count towards the seminar requirement
    1. General Study: completion of five courses chosen from at least two of the three subfields below
    2. American Government: completion of four courses chosen from POL 203 (JOUR 203), 229, 232, 233, 234, 235, 236, 250, 251 (SOAN 251), 342, 360, 370, 397, 466 and at least one course chosen from the remaining 200- and 300-level courses in international/global politics or political philosophy
    3. International/Global Politics: completion of four courses chosen from POL 214, 215, 221, 227, 240, 245 (SOAN 245), 246 (SOAN 246), 247,249, 255, 272 (SOAN 272), 279, 281, 282, 288, 296, 327, 380, 381, 385, 392, 395 and at least one course chosen from the remaining 200- and 300-level courses in American government or political philosophy
    4. Political Philosophy: completion of four courses chosen from POL 210, 265, 266, 281, 297, 360, 370, 396 and at least one course chosen from the remaining 200- and 300-level courses in international/global politics or American government
  3. Six additional credits which must include courses from two of the following disciplines: anthropology, economics, history, philosophy, psychology, religion, or sociology.
  1. Required courses:
    • POL 100 - American National Government

      FDR: SS2
      Credits: 3
      Planned Offering: Fall, Winter
      Credits: 3


      A study of the constitutional origins and historical development of the national government with special attention to Congress, the presidency, the judiciary, and the role of political parties, interest groups, and the media in the policy process.

    • POL 105 - Introduction to Global Politics

      FDR: SS2
      Credits: 3
      Planned Offering: Fall, Winter
      Credits: 3


      A survey of the comparative study of national and international politics and the interaction between the two. Topics may include power relations among and within states, changes in the conduct of international affairs and conflict resolution, contrasting ideas about democracy, economic development, justice, globalization, terrorism, causes and alternatives to war, social movements and the role of the nation-state.

    • POL 111 - Introduction to Political Philosophy

      FDR: SS2
      Credits: 3
      Planned Offering: Fall, Winter
      Credits: 3


      An introduction to some of the perennial themes of politics, such as the relationship between human nature and political institutions, individual freedom and community, private conscience and civic virtue, the claims of reason and faith, the nature of law, obligation, and rights, among others. Our inquiry is guided by selections from influential works in the history of political thought, ancient, modern and contemporary, as well as plays, dialogues, comedies, tragedies, novels, and films. Consult with instructor for specific reading assignments and course requirements.

    • ECON 101 - Principles of Microeconomics

      FDR: SS1
      Credits: 3
      Planned Offering: Fall, Winter
      Credits: 3


      Survey of economic principles and problems with emphasis on analysis of consumer behavior, firm behavior, market outcomes, market structure, and microeconomic policy. The first half of a two-term survey of economics. Should be followed by ECON 102.

    • ECON 102 - Principles of Macroeconomics

      FDR: SS1
      Credits: 3
      Planned Offering: Fall, Winter
      Credits: 3


      Prerequisite: ECON 101.

      Continuation of survey begun in ECON 101, with emphasis on performance of the aggregate economy. Analysis of unemployment, inflation, growth, and monetary and fiscal policies.

    • INTR 201 - Information Technology Literacy

      Credits: 1
      Planned Offering: Fall, Winter
      Credits: 1


      Prerequisite: First-year or sophomore standing

      Through the use of interactive online tutorials, students gain proficiency in and a working knowledge of five distinct areas of information technology literacy: Windows Operating System, spreadsheets (Microsoft Excel), word processing (Microsoft Word), presentation software (Microsoft PowerPoint), and basic networking (the Washington and Lee network, basic Web browsing, and Microsoft Outlook). Lessons, exercises, practice exams and exams mix online efforts and hands-on activities.

    • INTR 202 - Applied Statistics

      Credits: 4
      Planned Offering: Fall, Winter
      Credits: 4


      Prerequisite: INTR 201.

      An examination of the principal applications of statistics in accounting, business, economics, and politics. Topics include descriptive statistics, probability, estimation, hypothesis testing, and regression analysis.

  2. Five additional courses of 3 credits or more in politics, including completion of one of the following four sequences and including at least one 300-level seminar course which entails an independent research and writing component.
  3.  All 300-level courses, except POL 374 (SOC 374), count towards the seminar requirement

    • General Study:

      completion of five courses chosen from at least two of the three subfields below

    • American Government:
      • Completion of four courses from:
      • POL 203 - State and Local Government

        FDR: SS2
        Credits: 3
        Planned Offering: Fall
        Credits: 3


        An introduction to the structures and functions of United States subnational governments, with particular emphasis on the policy-making process and on the relationships between policy makers and the public. Computer-assisted analysis of survey-research data is included.

      • POL 229 - Political Parties, Interest Groups, and the Media

        FDR: SS2
        Credits: 3
        Planned Offering: Winter
        Credits: 3


        Prerequisite: POL 100.

        A study of the three central extra-constitutional mediating institutions in the American political system: political parties, interest groups, and the media. The course explores theoretical and practical, historical and contemporary developments in party politics, interest group politics, and media politics. Special attention to the debate between the Federalists and the Anti-Federalists.

      • POL 232 - Public Policy

        FDR: SS2
        Credits: 3
        Planned Offering: Fall
        Credits: 3


        Prerequisite: POL 100.

        Introduction to public policy formation and implementation, decision making in government, the concepts and techniques of policy analysis, and ethical analysis of policy. Policy issues such as education, the environment, and public health are used as illustrations.

      • POL 233 - Environmental Policy and Law

        FDR: SS2
        Credits: 3
        Planned Offering: Winter
        Credits: 3


        Prerequisite: ECON 101 or POL 100.

        A study of major environmental laws and the history of their enactment and implementation. Discusses different theoretical approaches from law, ethics, politics, and economics. Reviews significant case law and the legal context. Emphasis is on domestic policy with some attention to international law and treaties.

      • POL 234 - Congress and the Legislative Process

        FDR: SS2
        Credits: 3
        Planned Offering: Fall or Winter
        Credits: 3


        Prerequisite: POL 100.

        A review of the constitutional origins and historical development of Congress as a representative and deliberative institution. Course focus includes the relation between the President and Congress, bicameralism, congressional elections, congressional reform, legislative rules and procedures, and the policy process. The course follows the current Congress using C-SPAN and Congressional Quarterly Weekly Report.

      • POL 235 - The Presidency

        FDR: SS2
        Credits: 3
        Planned Offering: Fall or Winter
        Credits: 3


        Prerequisite: POL 100.

        A review of the origins and development of the office of the presidency from Washington to the present, with an emphasis on post-war administrations. Topics include constitutional issues arising from presidential powers, policy making within the executive branch, and modern presidential leadership styles.

      • POL 236 - The American Supreme Court and Constitutional Law

        FDR: SS2
        Credits: 3
        Planned Offering: Fall
        Credits: 3


        Prerequisite: POL 100.

        A survey of the development of American constitutional law and a study of the role of the Supreme Court as both a political institution and principal expositor of the Constitution.

      • POL 250 - Black American Politics

        FDR: SS2
        Credits: 3
        Planned Offering: Fall or Winter
        Credits: 3


        Prerequisite: POL 111 or AFCA 130.

        A study of important black figures in American political thought. The course focuses on the intellectual history of black Americans but also considers contemporary social science and public policies dealing with race in America.

      • POL 251 - Social Movements (SOAN 251)

        FDR: SS4
        Credits: 3
        Planned Offering: Winter
        Credits: 3


        Prerequisites: POL 100, 105 or 111 or instructor consent.

        A survey of American social movements, including an evaluation of competing theoretical approaches to the study of social movements and an examination of the strategies, successes, failures, and political and social consequences of the civil rights, labor, student, and women's movements. Close attention is given to factors contributing to the rise and decline of these

      • POL 295 - Special Topics in American Politics

        FDR: SS2
        Credits: 3 in fall and winter, 4 in spring
        Credits: 3 in fall and winter, 4 in spring


        Prerequisites: First-year or sophomore standing or instructor consent.

        A seminar in political science for students at the introductory or intermediate level. Topic, hour, and instructor are announced prior to registration. May be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different.

      • POL 342 - Seminar: Law and the Judicial Process

        FDR: SS2
        Credits: 3
        Planned Offering: Winter
        Credits: 3


        Prerequisite: POL 100 or POL 111, or instructor consent.

        A survey of legal theories and the problems of reconciling such theories with the realities of administering a legal system. The course draws upon readings from literature, philosophy, legal scholarship, and political science. Topics include the nature of law and justice, constitutionalism, the role and power of courts and judges, and the function of a legal system.

      • POL 360 - Seminar: Lincoln's Statesmanship

        FDR: SS2
        Credits: 3
        Planned Offering: Fall or Winter
        Credits: 3


        Prerequisite: POL 100.

        This seminar examines the political thought and practice of Abraham Lincoln. Emphasis is on his speeches and writings, supplemented by scholarly commentary on his life and career.

      • POL 370 - Seminar in American Political Thought

        FDR: SS2
        Credits: 3 credits in fall or winter; 4 credits in spring
        Planned Offering: Offered when interest is expressed and departmental resources permit
        Credits: 3 credits in fall or winter; 4 credits in spring


        Prerequisite: POL 100 or POL 111.

        An examination of classic themes and current issues in American political thought. Depending on the instructor, emphases may include the Federalists, Anti-Federalists, Alexis de Tocqueville, Abraham Lincoln, and voices from the Progressive and civil rights eras. Course readings stress primary sources including speeches, essays, and books by politicians and theorists. The course explores the effort to reconcile liberty and equality, individualism and community, liberalism and republicanism, politics and religion, among other themes. The course highlights the contemporary relevance of the enduring tensions between political principles and practice.

      • POL 397 - Seminar in American Government

        FDR: SS2
        Credits: 3 in fall and winter, 4 in spring
        Planned Offering: Offered when interest is expressed and departmental resources permit
        Credits: 3 in fall and winter, 4 in spring


        Prerequisites: POL 100 or instructor consent.

        Examination of selected topics in American political institutions, ideas, and processes. May be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different.

      • POL 466 - Washington Term Program

        Credits: 6
        Planned Offering: Spring
        Credits: 6


        Prerequisites: Grade-point average of 3.000 overall and in politics courses; POL 100, 105, or 111.

        The Washington Term Program aims to enlarge students' understanding of national politics and governance. Combining the practical experience of a Washington internship with academic study, it affords deeper insight into the processes and problems of government at the national level. A member of the politics faculty is the resident director, supervising students enrolled in this program while they are in Washington, D.C.

      • and at least one course chosen from the remaining 200- and 300-level courses in international/global politics or political philosophy
    • International/Global Politics:
      • completion of four courses chosen from:
      • POL 214 - The Conduct of American Foreign Policy

        FDR: SS2
        Credits: 3
        Planned Offering: Fall 2014
        Credits: 3


        Prerequisite: POL 100 or 105.

        Constitutional basis, role of the President and the Congress, the State Department and the Foreign Service, role of public opinion, political parties, and pressure groups. Relation to other political areas and to the United Nations and other international agencies.

      • POL 215 - International Development

        FDR: SS2
        Credits: 3
        Planned Offering: Fall or Winter
        Credits: 3


        A study of international development and human capability, with a focus on Africa, Asia, and Latin America. The course analyzes theories to explain development successes and failures, with a focus on the structures, institutions, and actors that shape human societies and social change. Key questions include measuring economic growth and poverty, discussing the roles of states and markets in development, and examining the role of industrialized countries in reducing global poverty. The course explores links between politics and other social sciences and humanities.

      • POL 227 - East Asian Politics

        FDR: SS2
        Credits: 3
        Planned Offering: Fall 2013 and alternate years
        Credits: 3


        An investigation of East Asian political systems and the global, historical, and cultural contexts in which their political institutions have developed. Students consider the connections between political structure and the rapid social and economic changes in East Asia since World War II, as well as the effectiveness of varied political processes in addressing contemporary problems. Emphasis is given to China, Korea, and Japan.

      • POL 240 - Elections and Law in Comparative Perspective

        FDR: SS2
        Credits: 3
        Planned Offering: Fall
        Credits: 3


        Prerequisite: POL 100 or 105 or instructor consent.

        A comparative analysis of the constitutions, elections, and political processes around the world. The course addresses issues of election law, theories of good government, issues of political and institutional reform, and the debates about democratization.

      • POL 245 - European Politics and Society (SOAN 245)

        FDR: SS4
        Credits: 3
        Planned Offering: Fall 2015 and alternate years
        Credits: 3


        A comparative analysis of European political systems and social institutions. The course covers the established democracies of western and northern Europe, the new democracies of southern and east-central Europe, and the post-Communist regimes in eastern and southeastern Europe. Mechanisms of European integration are also discussed with attention focused on institutions such as European Union, NATO, OSCE, and Council of Europe.

      • POL 246 - Post-Communism and New Democracies (SOAN 246)

        FDR: SS4 as sociology only
        Credits: 3
        Planned Offering: Fall 2014 and alternate years
        Credits: 3


        A comparative analysis of transition from Communism in the countries of the former Soviet bloc. Cases of successful and unsuccessful transitions to civil society, pluralist democracy, and market economy are examined. The comparative framework includes analysis of transition from non-Communist authoritarianism and democratic consolidation in selected countries of Latin America, the Mediterranean, Southeast Asia, and South Africa.

      • POL 247 - Latin American Politics

        FDR: SS2
        Credits: 3
        Planned Offering: Fall 2013 and alternate years
        Credits: 3


        This course focuses on Latin American politics during the 20th and 21st centuries. Major topics include: democracy and authoritarianism; representation and power; populism, corporatism, socialism, and communism; and questions of poverty, inequality, and economic growth. The course places particular emphasis on the Cuban and Mexican Revolutions, Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Guatemala, and Peru. In addition, the course examines political and economic relations between the United States and Latin America.

      • POL 249 - African Politics

        FDR: SS2
        Credits: 4
        Planned Offering: Spring 2014 and every fourth year
        Credits: 4


        This course focuses on the politics, society, and economy of Africa during the 20th and 21st centuries. Major topics include: politics and economics of development, poverty, and human capability; authoritarian rule and transitions to democracy; causes and consequences of social change; and relations between Africa and the rest of the world. The course enables students to select country case studies for individual and group research, with a view toward testing hypotheses and formulating theories about comparative politics in Africa.

      • POL 255 - Gender and Politics

        FDR: SS2
        Credits: 3
        Planned Offering: Winter
        Credits: 3


        Prerequisite: POL 100, 105 or 111 or instructor consent.

        This course investigates the gendered terms under which women and men participate in political life. Attention is given to the causes of men's and women's different patterns of participation in politics, to processes that are likely to decrease the inequalities between men's and women's political power, and the processes by which society's gender expectations shape electoral and institutional politics. The different effects of gender on the practice of politics in different nations are compared, with a special emphasis placed on advanced industrial democracies.

      • POL 272 - Social Revolutions (SOAN 272)

        FDR: SS4
        Credits: 3
        Planned Offering: Not offered in 2013-2014
        Credits: 3


        Prerequisite: SOAN 101, 102, or instructor consent.

        This seminar provides an in-depth exploration of a variety of social revolutions. The overarching goal of the course is to discern whether or not a single "theory of revolutions" can be constructed. Are there common patterns to be observed in (and common causes behind) events as separated by time, place, and ideology as the 17th-century "Glorious Revolution" in England, the French Revolution, Latin American revolutions (including the Wars of Independence and the Mexican Revolution), the Russian Revolution, and more recent events such as the revolution that brought the current regime in Iran to power? To this end, students read and discuss a variety of such theories that have been put forward by sociologists, historians, and political scientists and then consider case studies of the aforementioned social revolutions in order to scrutinize these theories.

      • POL 279 - Comparative Political Analysis

        FDR: SS2
        Credits: 4
        Planned Offering: Spring
        Credits: 4


        This course provides students with an accelerated introduction to the conduct of comparative political analysis. Students develop complementary expertise under a unifying theme, working together with the faculty member and fellow students to write a collective product based on individual and group research. Students gain practice with the comparative method, hypothesis formation and testing, historical-institutional analysis, theory building, and scholarly critique. Students define case studies for comparative examination in conjunction with a team of peers, with each encouraged to study historical moments of their choosing, in consultation with faculty.

      • POL 281 - The Politics of Marriage and the Art of Democracy

        Credits: 4
        Planned Offering: Spring 2014 and alternate years
        Credits: 4


        Are marriage and democracy a good match? Does heterosexual couplehood sustain a health democratic community? We examine conceptions of the connection between marital alliances and egalitarian, individualist political practices. Using three novels -- Anthony Trollope's Phineas Finn , Vikram Seth's A Suitable Boy , and selections from Tom Wolfe's A Man in Full -- in which the dramas surrounding marriage partners are embedded in the struggle for a more democratic politics in their protagonists' respective communities, we consider how marriage practices in earlier, undemocratic regimes are challenged by the demands of democratic political life. Students work in groups to write their own fictions about contemporary courtship and marriage politics.

      • POL 282 - Politics and Film

        FDR: SS2
        Credits: 4
        Planned Offering: Spring
        Credits: 4


        No prerequisites. Open to non-majors and majors of all classes. Meets the global politics field requirement in the politics major. Recommended for students interested in cinema, political dynamics, Russian area studies.

        This is an interdisciplinary study combining social science and humanistic models to help explain the dynamics of political entities. Grading based on class discussion and essays.

      • POL 288 - Supervised Study Abroad

        FDR: SS2
        Credits: 4
        Planned Offering: Spring 2012 and every third year
        Credits: 4


        Prerequisites: Instructor consent and other prerequisites as specified in advance.

        This spring-term course covers a topic of current interest for which foreign travel provides a unique opportunity for significantly greater understanding. Topics and locations change from year to year and is announced each year, well in advance of registration. This course may be repeated if the topics are different. Offered when interest and expressed and department resources permit.

      • POL 296 - Special Topics in Global Politics

        FDR: SS2
        Credits: 3 in fall and winter, 4 in spring
        Credits: 3 in fall and winter, 4 in spring


        Prerequisites vary by topic. Meets the global politics field requirement in the politics major.

        A seminar in political science for students at the introductory or intermediate level. Topic, hour, and instructor are announced prior to registration. May be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different.

      • POL 327 - Seminar: Japanese Political System

        FDR: SS2
        Credits: 3
        Credits: 3


        Prerequisite: POL 105 or POL 227, or instructor consent.

        An examination of the origin, structure, operation, and evolution of Japanese political institutions. Students discuss the importance of Japan's international position and historical experience to contemporary politics and address the development of the modern Japanese electoral system, political party system, and policy-making processes. The relationships between political leaders and their constituents on the national and local levels are also examined.

      • POL 380 - Global Politics Seminar

        FDR: SS2
        Credits: 3
        Planned Offering: Offered when interest is expressed and departmental resources permit
        Credits: 3


        Prerequisite: Normally POL 105 or instructor consent, though prerequisite may vary with topic. Open to majors and non-majors of all classes. Meets the global politics field requirement in the politics major.

        Examination of selected topics dealing with international and comparative politics. May be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different.

      • POL 381 - Seminar in International Political Economy

        FDR: SS2
        Credits: 3
        Planned Offering: Offered when interest is expressed and departmental resources permit
        Credits: 3


        Prerequisite: ECON 102 or POL 105, or instructor consent. Meets the global politics field requirement in the politics major.

        This course provides an intermediate-level introduction to the major actors, questions, and theories in the field of international political economy (IPE). Course participants discuss political and economic interactions in the areas of international trade, fiscal and monetary policy, and exchange rates; discuss globalization in historical and contemporary perspectives; and examine the international politics of the major intergovernmental organizations, multinational corporations, states, and other institutional actors in the global economy.

      • POL 385
      • POL 392 - Seminar in Asian Politics

        FDR: SS2
        Credits: 3
        Planned Offering: Fall
        Credits: 3


        Prerequisite: Vary with topic.

        A topical seminar focusing on Chinese politics, other Asian countries, or selected subjects in Asian politics. May be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different.

      • POL 395
      • and at least one course chosen from the remaining 200- and 300-level courses in American government or political philosophy
    • Political Philosophy:
      • POL 210 - Autobiography

        FDR: SS2
        Credits: 4
        Planned Offering: Spring. Not offered 2012-2013 or 2013-2014
        Credits: 4


        A study of autobiographies, as philosophical, literary, and theological genres, and as disciplines of self-awareness, self-knowledge, self-deception, and self-creation. While attentive to events, circumstances, and places of a life, we examine and employ varied psychic, mental, spiritual, and written practices that enable one to give an account of oneself, to oneself, to a person, public, and gods, imagined or otherwise. Augustine's Confessions , Descartes' Meditations on First Philosophy , Rousseau's Reveries of a Solitary Walker , and Nietzsche's Ecce Homo each represent a mode of autobiographic practice and presentation: confession, meditation, reverie, and reflection. Students write their own spiritual and philosophical autobiography.

      • POL 265 - Classical Political Philosophy

        FDR: SS2
        Credits: 3
        Planned Offering: Fall or Winter
        Credits: 3


        Prerequisite: POL 111.

        An examination of some of the central questions and concerns of classical political philosophy. The course is not restricted to a historical period but extends to classical themes within contemporary culture. A mixture of plays, novels, epics, dialogues, treatises, and films are used. Authors, texts, and themes vary from year to year. Consult with the instructor for specific course details or visit http://contemplativepoliticalphilosophy.com/classicaleddievcpp265/.

      • POL 266 - Modern Political Philosophy

        FDR: SS2
        Credits: 3
        Planned Offering: Fall or Winter
        Credits: 3


        Prerequisite: POL 111.

        An examination of some of the central questions and concerns of modern political philosophy. The course is not restricted to a historical period but extends to modern themes within contemporary culture. A mixture of plays, novels, epics, dialogues, treatises, and films are used. Authors, texts, and themes vary from year to year. Consult with the instructor for specific course details or visit http://contemplativepoliticalphilosophy.com/moderneddievcpp266/.

      • POL 281 - The Politics of Marriage and the Art of Democracy

        Credits: 4
        Planned Offering: Spring 2014 and alternate years
        Credits: 4


        Are marriage and democracy a good match? Does heterosexual couplehood sustain a health democratic community? We examine conceptions of the connection between marital alliances and egalitarian, individualist political practices. Using three novels -- Anthony Trollope's Phineas Finn , Vikram Seth's A Suitable Boy , and selections from Tom Wolfe's A Man in Full -- in which the dramas surrounding marriage partners are embedded in the struggle for a more democratic politics in their protagonists' respective communities, we consider how marriage practices in earlier, undemocratic regimes are challenged by the demands of democratic political life. Students work in groups to write their own fictions about contemporary courtship and marriage politics.

      • POL 297 - Special Topics in Political Philosophy

        FDR: SS2 (except for 297H)
        Credits: 3 in fall and winter, 4 in spring
        Credits: 3 in fall and winter, 4 in spring


        Prerequisites: First-year or sophomore standing or instructor consent.

        A seminar in political science for students at the introductory or intermediate level. Topic, hour, and instructor are announced prior to registration. May be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different.

      • POL 360 - Seminar: Lincoln's Statesmanship

        FDR: SS2
        Credits: 3
        Planned Offering: Fall or Winter
        Credits: 3


        Prerequisite: POL 100.

        This seminar examines the political thought and practice of Abraham Lincoln. Emphasis is on his speeches and writings, supplemented by scholarly commentary on his life and career.

      • POL 370 - Seminar in American Political Thought

        FDR: SS2
        Credits: 3 credits in fall or winter; 4 credits in spring
        Planned Offering: Offered when interest is expressed and departmental resources permit
        Credits: 3 credits in fall or winter; 4 credits in spring


        Prerequisite: POL 100 or POL 111.

        An examination of classic themes and current issues in American political thought. Depending on the instructor, emphases may include the Federalists, Anti-Federalists, Alexis de Tocqueville, Abraham Lincoln, and voices from the Progressive and civil rights eras. Course readings stress primary sources including speeches, essays, and books by politicians and theorists. The course explores the effort to reconcile liberty and equality, individualism and community, liberalism and republicanism, politics and religion, among other themes. The course highlights the contemporary relevance of the enduring tensions between political principles and practice.

      • POL 396 - Seminar in Political Philosophy

        FDR: SS2
        Credits: 3 in fall and winter, 4 in spring
        Planned Offering: Offered when interest is expressed and departmental resources permit
        Credits: 3 in fall and winter, 4 in spring


        Prerequisite: POL 111 or instructor consent.

        An examination of selected questions and problems in political philosophy and/or political theory. May be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different.

        Topic for Fall 2013:

        Politics 396: Seminar in Political Philosophy: Social Media, Science, and Technology (3). On the nature and meaning of "science" and "technology" (early to late modernity, with particular attention to Husserl, Heidegger and the origins of Neurophenomenology). What light does our study shed on political, social and cultural reorganizations (liberal education principal among them) in our day? On the distinction between science and technology. On the meaning of identity, individuality, public and private in a digital age. Cultivate awareness of the relationship between and among individuals, social groups, state and society technologically tethered. Would social media make possible "global culture" and if so what remains for politics? What remains for "culture?" Indeed, what remains "human?" A practical mindful and contemplative course teaching how to avoid slavish and servile attachments to critical modes of thinking. Collaborative class project, to create a SOOLAC (Selective Open On-Line Liberal Arts Courses) that celebrates student awareness of the content and character of a technologically savvy and humane liberal arts and sciences. Website: contemplativepoliticalphilosophy.com/socialmediaeddievcpp/ Velásquez.

      • and at least one course chosen from the remaining 200- and 300-level courses in international/global politics or American government
  4. Six additional credits which must include courses from two of the following disciplines:
  5. anthropology
    economics
    history
    philosophy
    psychology
    religion
    or sociology