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Course List

PSCI/INTR 355 Democratic Political Processes

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  • Fall 2018
    G. Bingham Powell, Jr.
    Fall 2018 — W 14:15 - 16:55
    Course Syllabus

    This course is designed primarily as a graduate seminar in comparative politics. Its object is to introduce the participants to the comparative study of democratic political processes, a subfield focusing on choosing political leaders and making political decisions in the context of free and competitive elections. We begin by discussing the meaning and measure of contemporary democracy . We then turn to political parties, as key institutions linking citizens and policymakers, and to policymaking institutions. The last part of the course focuses on the comparative study of individual citizens' attitudes and behavior (political culture, participation and voting, interest groups.) Students are responsible for a variety of presentations as well as a midterm and a research paper.. No background in comparative politics is assumed. It is appropriate as an introduction for students new to the field or as an "outside" course. Undergraduates require permission of instructor.

  • Spring 2013
    G. Bingham Powell, Jr.
    Spring 2013 — T 9:30 - 12:15
    Course Syllabus

    This course is a graduate seminar, involving collective discussion of core readings and student presentations on special topics and specific countries. The comparative democratic political processes subfield focuses on the process of choosing political leaders and making political decisions in the context of competitive elections and relative freedom of political action. We begin by discussing the empirical meaning of contemporary democracies, the nature of democratic transitions, and the effect of social and economic context. We then take quick looks at differing citizen values, constitutional rules, and the comparative study of citizens' attitudes and behavior. The second half of the course focuses on groups and, especially, political parties: competition, organization, coalitions, legislative and executive behavior, connections between citizens and policy makers. Although for graduate students the course fulfills requirements for the democratic political processes subfield in comparative politics, no specific background is assumed and the course is appropriate for any graduate student.

  • Spring 2007

    This course is designed primarily as a graduate seminar in comparative politics. Its object is to introduce the participants to the comparative study of democratic political processes, a subfield focusing on choosing political leaders and making political decisions in the context of free and competitive elections. We begin by discussing the meaning and measure of contemporary democracy . We then turn to political parties, as key institutions linking citizens and policymakers, and to policymaking institutions. The last part of the course focuses on the comparative study of individual citizens' attitudes and behavior (political culture, participation and voting, interest groups.) Students are responsible for a variety of presentations as well as a midterm and a research paper.. No background in comparative politics is assumed. It is appropriate as an introduction for students new to the field or as an "outside" course. Undergraduates require permission of instructor.