Politics 116
World Politics
Spring 2006


Vincent Ferraro
103 Skinner Hall
vferraro@mtholyoke.edu
538-2669

Purpose and Structure of the Course

This course will introduce some of the basic concepts in the study of world politics. It is a survey course and assumes no prior knowledge or experience in the study of International Relations. The first half of the course will focus on the traditional perspectives in world politics; the second half of the course will emphasize new challenges to the study of world politics. The course will be run as a lecture, although questions, comments, and discussion are always welcome.

Course Requirements

There will be a weekly quiz on the readings, discussions, lectures, and current events. I will take the ten highest grades from these quizzes (which means you can miss some or I will drop some low grades). The quiz grades will constitute 50% of your final grade.

There will be an exercise in navigating the World Wide Web. The project will count for 50% of your final grade. If you wish to see examples of last term's projects, click here. The criteria I will use for evaluating the final projects are outlined in an evaluation sheet that can be accessed here. LITS has a special office to help students develop web projects for courses. It is supervised by Mary Glackin (mglackin@mtholyoke.edu) who will advise all students on web techniques. Submission procedures for the web page can be found here.

Procedural Matters

The readings in the syllabus are on the Internet and can be accessed at http://www.mtholyoke.edu/acad/intrel/pol116/spring06.htm. There are no books to purchase for this course. However, you are required to keep abreast of current events in world politics, and I strongly urge reading a prominent daily newspaper. A subscription to a newspaper would be highly recommended. I will choose questions for the weekly quizzes and post them on a blogsite that can can be accessed at: http://www.bloglines.com/blog/vferraro

My office is 103 Skinner, and my office hours are Tuesdays from 10-12 and Thursdays from 10-12. I can also be reached on e-mail: vferraro@mtholyoke.edu.

Course Schedule

30 January Introduction

1-6 February Realism and the Causes of War

Lecture Notes on Political Realism

Hans J. Morgenthau, "Six Principles of Political Realism," Politics Among Nations: The Struggle for Power and Peace, Fifth Edition, Revised, (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1978, pp. 4-15

Morton Kaplan's Rules on the Balance of Power

Some statistics from the Milgram experiment

8-20 February Imperialism and the Westernization of International Politics

Lecture Notes on Imperialism

Some Statistics on the Extent of European Colonialism

Micheline R. Ishay, The History of Human Rights (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2004), 64-75

J. M. Roberts, The Triumph of the West (Boston: Little, Brown, 1985), pp. 13-33

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights

Shashi Tharoor, "Are Human Rights Universal?" World Policy Journal, Vol. XVI, No. 4 (Winter 1999/2000)

22 February Session on Building a Web Page

27 February-8 March The Great European War, 1914-1945: The Struggle for Hegemony

Lecture Notes on the Theory of Hegemonic Stability

Statistics on Hegemonic Predominance

F.S. Northedge and M.J. Grieve, A Hundred Years of International Relations, (New York: Praeger, 1971), Chapter 5, "The Approach to the First World War," pp. 71-90 and Chapter 6, "The Morrow of Armageddon," pp. 91-111.

Marc Ferro, The Great War, 1914-1918 London: Ark Paperbacks, 1987, Chapter 3, "Inevitable War," pp. 19-25

13-15 March The Cold War: Just War Doctrine

Lecture Notes on Just War Doctrine

William R. Keylor, The Twentieth Century World: An International History, 2nd edition (New York: Oxford University Press, 1992), CHAPTER 8, "The Formation of the Bipolar World in the Truman-Stalin Era, (1945-1953)," pp. 261-95.

NSC 68: United States Objectives and Programs for National Security, (April 14, 1950) (Only read Section I)

John Lewis Gaddis, "On Moral Equivalency and Cold War History," Ethics & International Affairs, Volume 10 (1996)

27-29 March The Post-Cold War World: The Redefinition of Security

Lecture Notes on Non-Proliferation

Niall Ferguson, "A World Without Power," Foreign Policy, July/August 2004

James F. Hoge, Jr., "A Global Power Shift in the Making," Foreign Affairs, July/August 2004

Human Security Centre, The Human Security Report, Part 1, The Changing Face of Global Violence, University of British Columbia, 2005

Fred Kaplan, "What Peace Epidemic?" Slate, 25 Janury 2006

3-5 April The Post-Cold War World: The Resurgence of Nationalism

John R. Bowen, "The Myth of Global Ethnic Conflict," Journal of Democracy 7.4 (1996) 3-14

William Hagan, "The Balkans' Lethal Nationalisms," Foreign Affairs, Vol. 78, no. 4 (July 1999)

Michael Ignatieff, "We Are Not the World," The New Republic, 13 August 2001

10-19 April The Post-Cold War World: Economic Interdependence and Globalization

Levels of World Economic Performance, 1500-1992

The Ten Leading Economies in 1820 and 1992

PricewaterhouseCoopers, "Companies Should Seize Opportunities Posed By Major Shift In Power To Emerging Economies By 2050," 3 March 2006

David J. Rothkopf, "Globalization We Hardley Knew Ye: A Reflection on Messiness, American Economic Exceptionalism, Perpetual Creative Destruction, Jobs, Language and the Current State of the U.S. Debate About International Economic Engagement." A Discussion Paper for a Carnegie Endowment for International Peace Roundtable Discussion, Washington, DC, 2004

Vincent Ferraro, "Dependency Theory: An Introduction," July 1996

International Monetary Fund, "How Might a Disorderly Resolution of Global Imbalances Affect Global Wealth?" by Warnock, Francis E., Authorized for Distribution: July 1, 2006

24-26 April The Post-Cold War World: Environmental Protection

US, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, "Global Warming" 2001

John Browne, "Beyond Kyoto," Foreign Affairs, July/August 2004

Edward Goldsmith, "Can the Environment Survive the Global Economy?" The Ecologist, Vol. 27, no. 6 (1997)

1-3 May The Post-Cold War World: Economic Justice

Levels of Per Capita GDP and Interregional Spreads, 1000-1998

Shares of World GDP, 1000-1998

Statistics on External Debt

United Nations Millennium Declaration, G.A. Res. 55/2, U.N. GAOR, 55th Sess., Supp. No. 49, at 4, U.N. Doc. A/55/49 (2000).

Vincent Ferraro "Globalizing Weakness: Is Global Poverty a Threat to the Interests of States?" Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, Environmental Change and Security, 8 August 2003

Michel Chossudovsky, "Global Poverty in the Late 20th Century," Journal of International Affairs, Vol. 52, no. 1 (Fall 1998)

Nancy Birdsall, "Life is Unfair: Inequality in the World," Foreign Policy, No. 111 (Summer 1998)

8 May Conclusions


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