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POLI 4934 Honors Seminar: American Politics from the Ground Up (Spring: 3 )


Course Description

The populist upsurge landing Donald Trump in the White House has evident economic causes. But it also reflects critical developments in society and culture that challenge conventional modes of political analysis. This course will take up this challenge by examining the social and cultural dimensions of politics, including the dynamics between prepolitical institutions (e.g. families and kin groups) and informal social relationships (street gangs, neighborhood associations, bowling leagues, social media) on the one hand; and formal civic, political, and governmental organizations on the other. Contemporary US politics will be the focus, but examples from other eras and contexts will be drawn on. Topics will include: the social/cultural dimensions of corruption; churches and mosques as community institutions; Alinsky community organizing; the impact of changing values and culture; identity politics; and the impact of expert, professional knowledge.


Instructor(s): Peter Skerry

Prerequisites: None

Cross listed with:

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Last Updated: 20-Feb-17