Structure and working of major parts of the United States national government, such as the Constitution, the presidency, Congress, the courts, the electoral process, and others. How these institutions help Americans deal with significant current issues.
How governments interact to further their different political, military, and economic interests; basic factors affecting international cooperation and conflict; topics such as summit meetings, terrorism, arms control, and food and energy resources distribution; one or more international crisis simulation exercises. Prerequisite: Second-semester-freshman standing or higher.
Major problems of politics and international relations, such as the proper goals of political life, the nature of justice, and the role of the state. Methods of inquiry. Development of the student's personal political stance and its relation to his or her maturing faith. Prerequisite: One prior course in political science.
The development of cities over the past two centuries, with emphasis on how they are governed and by whom, how their built environment evolved and who made the decisions, and how technological and cultural changes shaped this development. Prerequisite: GES130 Christianity and Western Culture or GES145, 146 Western Humanity in Christian Perspective I and II.
Major modern American ideologies. Liberalism, conservatism, democratic socialism, anarchism, liberation theology, fascism, and gender and ethnic politics. Christian interfaces with various political theories. Prerequisite: GES130 Christianity and Western Culture or GES145, 146 Western Humanity in Christian Perspective I and II or consent of instructor.
Process and problems of building a political order. Present political systems of specific nations in Africa, Asia, and Latin America, and the historical evolution of a modern political order in the developed countries of Europe and North America. Prerequisite: GES130 Christianity and Western Culture or GES145, 146 Western Humanity in Christian Perspective I and II. (Carries cross-credit in history.)
Development of civil rights and liberties in Western nations since the 17th century. Implications of this trend for Christian faith and action. Application of critical thinking and research skills and media literacy to analysis of contemporary rights and liberties conflicts. Prerequisite: GES130 Christianity and Western Culture or GES145, 146 Western Humanity in Christian Perspective I and II.
Examination of the role of the state in social policy provision with particular attention to the 19th and 20th centuries. Application of theories of social provision to the contemporary United States social policy context with an emphasis on the relationship between faith communities and the state. Prerequisite: GES130 Christianity and Western Culture or GES145, 146 Western Humanity in Christian Perspective I and II; POS100 recommended.
Organization and activities of American political parties. The electoral process, including candidate nominations, campaigns, conduct of elections, and voting behavior. Issues relating to the contribution of parties and elections to American democracy, and the capacity of citizens to participate in politics. Prerequisite: Open to sophomores with consent of instructor; POS100 recommended.
How public policy is put into effect through the administrative agencies of government and the problems of management of such agencies and their relations with the public. Prerequisite: Sophomore standing with consent of instructor; POS100 recommended. (Carries cross-credit in business.)
Development of United States foreign policy since the end of World War II, with particular attention to contemporary issues, long-range historical trends, and the ways in which foreign policy is formulated and carried out. Independent study on specific topics and issues. Prerequisites: Sophomore standing with consent of instructor; POS100 or POS202E recommended.
Causes of international conflict and the institutions designed to build a more cooperative world order. Peacekeeping strategies, the international monetary system, and the policies and institutions used by the industrialized nations of the world to build a more harmonious international system. Prerequisites: Cultural Diversity (E) course or one year of a modern world language at the college level; sophomore standing with consent of instructor; POS202E or POS310 recommended.
The meaning of democracy in theory and practice through history and in the modern political systems of Great Britain, Japan, and Mexico. Independent research in other democratic systems. Prerequisite: POS100 or POS211 recommended.
Political, social, and historical manifestations of communism/post-communism in Russia and China in the 20th century. Comparative analysis of communist systems; exploration of maintenance of a communist state in China and transition to a non-Communist state in Russia. Prerequisite: Cultural Diversity (E) course or one year of a modern world language at the college level. (Carries cross-credit in history.)
Examination of the U.S. Congress, Supreme Court, and presidency, with attention to the effects of institutions on the democratic and policy processes. Consideration of political science research on political institutions and contemporary issues facing them. Prerequisite: POS100 or consent of instructor.
Examination of public policy--the result of government action--through consideration of the policy process, policy design, and current status of American Public Policy. Special attention devoted to social policy with student investigation and research in public policy. Prerequisite: POS100 or consent of instructor.
Examination and consideration of selected political thinkers of the 19th and 20th centuries, including Freud, Nietzsche, Kuyper, Arendt, Rawls, Berlin, Yoder, Foucault, Mouw, and others. Concentrates on primary sources and Christian responses to the "end of political theory" in the 20th century. Prerequisite: One course in political science, philosophy, or Western history; or consent of instructor.
Selected political theorists. Such writers as Plato, Aristotle, early Christian writers, Machiavelli, Luther, Calvin, Locke, Marx, and Niebuhr. Concentrates on primary sources. Prerequisite: One course in political science, philosophy, or European history. (Carries cross-credit in philosophy and history.)
Examines the changing understanding of democracy across the context of American life from the Puritans to the present, with special attention to Toqueville's classic Democracy in America; how best to carry democracy into the 21st century. Prerequisites: Two political science or related courses.
An off-campus working experience in a government agency or political organization under appropriate supervision. Placement is individually arranged with the Department of Political Science. Prerequisite: Consent of department chairperson.
Advanced research and analysis in selected problems and value questions in political science. Prerequisite: Senior standing or consent of department chairperson.
Firsthand experience in Washington, D.C., for academic credit is available through the American Studies Program of the Christian College Consortium. See an advisor in the Department of Political Science.