Spring 2015

PSC 300 – Politics of China – Syllabus

Course Description: China’s rise is arguably the most important feature of the 21st Century. Its growth-driven model of single- party rule challenges democratic ideals nurtured since WWII and its expanding economic and political weight threatens the existing world order. At the same time, China’s larger-than-life presence belies a fragile domestic environment, riddled with rampant corruption, extreme pollution, and bubbling social tensions. How did China get to this point and where is it going? In this class, we explore China’s transition from an impoverished agriculture society to leading world power and assess how China’s involvement in the global economy influences its domestic as well as its foreign policy aspirations. As such, this class should appeal to a broad audience, including those with personal or professional experience in China as well as those with no background in Chinese studies but with a curiosity and concern for the country and its future.


PSC 782 – China in Comparative PoliticsSyllabus

Course Description: This is a graduate level course on Chinese politics. Course material will focus almost exclusively on China and you will be exposed to debates that concern the China literature in great detail. More importantly, however, this is a graduate level course in comparative politics. Participation does not require any prior China experience nor does it assume that students will pursue a China studies focus. The course is designed to provide all interested students, regardless of background, the tools and background necessary to study China as an important case in comparative politics. To this end, we will explore the primary features of the Chinese political system, core debates in the Chinese politics literature, and different strategies for studying politics in the People’s Republic of China. These topics will be examined through a comparative politics lens and will be applicable, to varying degree, for studies of other countries, both democratic and authoritarian. Those interested in additional reading material on China, particularly from an international relations perspective, please see the Chinese Politics undergrad syllabus.