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PSCI 318 Emergence of the Modern Congress

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  • Spring 2004

    Through intensive reading and discussion, we will analyze major issues in congressional history and legislative institutions. We will examine the basic institutions of the House and Senate--committees, parties, leaders, and rules. We will also examine the development of careerism, the seniority system, agenda-setting, electoral concerns, the relationship between Congress and the president, divided government, and efforts at institutional reform. The course is designed to introduce students to the principal approaches used by political scientists to study Congress, with special emphasis on the development of congressional institutions over time. This is an advanced seminar, primarily for graduate students but open also to juniors and seniors with substantial background in political science, economics, and history.