Political ideologies



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Political ideologies

(POLI 105B)

Tuesdays & Thursdays, 4:00 – 5:15, Rm. 316 Elizabeth Hall

Dr. William R. Nylen



Spring 2012
Ideologies are ideas on steroids; ideas that literally force us to take action ... if we believe in them (they might scare us, otherwise). Political ideologies are what make people die for their country, or for their cause, or to stand up for what’s right, or to stand against what’s wrong. Ideologies tell us what we’re dying for and why, and what actually is right and wrong. Ideologies tell us who and what we should care about, and who and what we should ignore or even destroy.
Ideologies are different from theologies, philosophies, and theories. But they coexist with these other ‘ideational systems’ in various and sundry ways. Because they are predicated on the notion that we can actually change or at least affect the course of human history, “political ideologies are products of the modern world.” They are the antithesis of beliefs that humans are simply the passive objects of fate, predestination, tradition, or randomness.
The modern Western world has quite literally been constructed upon the ideologies of republicanism and liberalism. Both of these ‘classical’ ideologies emerged, or were reconstructed in the case of republicanism, alongside the global evolution of capitalism (i.e. market-based economies and market-friendly states); and all three have combined to construct political democracy as the political-institutional shell of what Terence Ball and Richard Dagger call “The Democratic Ideal.” Around this Ideal, new ‘modern’ ideologies have emerged: neoclassical liberalism, social democracy, welfare liberalism, neoliberalism, etc. Contemporary manifestations of these new ideologies in the United States include the Tea Party Movement, on one ‘side of the aisle,’ and the Occupy Movement, on the other ‘side.’
In fact, so central is “the global evolution of capitalism” to the emergence of classical and modern political ideologies, that this course focuses extensively on what has long been called “political economy.” Indeed, most of the ideological and political struggles of our day are rooted in questions of ‘How much market?’ and ‘How much government?’ Political economy, in other words, in the empirical field upon which much ideological debate and action is played out, including this year’s U.S. Presidential election. And because the most familiar playing field to most of us is the United States, we will focus most particularly on the political economy of the United States.
REQUIRED BOOKS:
Terence Ball & Richard Dagger. Political Ideologies and the Democratic Ideal, 8th edition (New York: Pearson/Longham, 2011).
Marc Allen Eisner. The American Political Economy: Institutional Evolution of Market and State (New York: Routledge, 2011).
-- Additional Readings may be required as the course progresses and will likely be posted as full text articles in Blackboard

COURSE OUTLINE:
INTRODUCTION (Th. 1/19)
I. What is Ideology? (T. 1/24)

-- Reading: Ball & Dagger, Chapter One

-- Writing Assignment: “My Ideology” (2-4 pages): e-copy to wnylen@stetson.edu


II. Political Economy & the Historical-Institutional Perspective on Political Economy

-- Reading: Eisner, Chapter One & Two


III. Democracy & The Democratic Ideal

-- Reading: Ball & Dagger, Chapter Two


IV. Pre-20th Century Liberalism

-- Reading: Ball & Dagger, Chapter Three (partial)


V. Pre-20th Century Conservativism

-- Reading: Ball & Dagger, Chapter Four (partial)


VI. Pre-20th Century Socialism & Communism: Mostly Marx

-- Reading: Ball & Dagger, Chapter Five


VII. Pre-WWII American Political Economy

-- Reading: Eisner, Chapters Three and Four


VIII. Pre-WWII Ideologies
A. Liberalism Divided

-- Reading: Ball & Dagger, Chapter Three (partial)


B. Conservativism in the Twentieth Century

-- Reading: Ball & Dagger, Chapter Four (partial)


C. Socialism & Communism

-- Reading: Ball & Dagger, Chapter Six (partial)


D. Fascism

-- Reading: Ball & Dagger, Chapter Seven


IX. Post-WWII American Political Economy

-- Reading: Eisner, Chapters Five, Six & Seven

X. Post-WWII Ideologies
A. Liberalism

-- Reading: Ball & Dagger, Chapter Three (the rest)


B. Conservativism Divided

-- Reading: Ball & Dagger, Chapter Four (the rest)


C. Socialism & Communism

-- Reading: Ball & Dagger, Chapter Six (the rest)


D. Liberation Ideologies & the Politics of Identity

-- Reading: Ball & Dagger, Chapter Eight


E. “Green-ism”: Ecology as Ideology

-- Reading: Ball & Dagger, Chapter Nine


F. Radical Islamism & America’s ‘War of Terror’

-- Reading: Ball & Dagger, Chapter Ten


XI. The American Political Economy in the 21st Century & Beyond

-- Reading: Eisner, Chapters Eight, Nine, Ten & Eleven


XII. Ideologies in the 21st Century & Beyond

-- Reading: Ball & Dagger, Chapter Eleven


COURSE REQUIREMENTS:

  • Attendance and participation in class discussions: 10%

  • Periodic Reading-based Quizzes: 15%

  • Periodic Research and Writing Assignments, details forthcoming: 10%

  • Midterm Exam: 20%

  • Final Exam: 25%

  • Final Paper, details forthcoming: 20%

-- Prof. Nylen stands by Stetson's official statement on grades:


Grades represent the instructor's final estimate of the student's performance in a course. The grade of A (+ or -) may be interpreted to mean that the instructor recognizes exceptional capacity and exceptional performance. The grade of B (+ or -) signifies that the student has gained a significantly more effective command of material than is generally expected in that course. The grade or C or C+ is the instructor's certification that the student has demonstrated the required mastery of the material. A student is graded C- or D (+ or -) when his/her grasp of the course essentials is minimal. The F grade indicates failure to master the essentials and the necessity for repeating the course before credit may be earned. [Stetson University Bulletin, 2008-2009]

-- Any form of cheating or plagiarism will result in an automatic F grade for the entire course. According to the Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary, to "plagiarize" means:



  • to steal and pass off (the ideas or words of another) as one's own

  • to use (another's production) without crediting the source

  • to commit literary theft

  • to present as new and original an idea or product derived from an existing source.

In other words, plagiarism is an act of fraud. It involves both stealing someone else's work and lying about it afterward.

Source: http://www.plagiarism.org/plag_article_what_is_plagiarism.html
-- No late papers or make-ups of exams will be allowed unless you have a really, really, really good excuse accompanied by documentary evidence.
-- Significant improvement through the semester can result in an upgrade of half a letter grade.
NOTICE:
If you anticipate any barriers related to the format or requirements of this course, and if you determine that disability-related accommodations are necessary, please register with the Academic Resources Center (822-7127; www.stetson.edu/arc). You and the ARC staff can plan how best to coordinate your accommodations.  You may notify me of your eligibility for reasonable accommodations, but are not required to do so.



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