Courses

In this program, students explore the major issues of international politics today, as well as the evolution of the current international system. Coursework in international relations requires students to grapple with the politics of peace and war, the nature and exercise of power within the international system, and the changing character of the actors (both state and non-state) who participate in the various dimensions of international decision making.  As an interdisciplinary program, the international relations major relies upon the perspectives, theories, insights and methods of several liberal arts disciplines, including economics, history and political science.

Students who wish to major in international relations should consult the director of the program to develop a course of study with an appropriate balance among the disciplines. They should acquire proficiency in a foreign language, especially if they plan to study abroad. Completing the intermediate level of a second foreign language is also recommended.

International relations majors are encouraged strongly to participate in a faculty-led Global Awareness program or any other college-approved study-abroad program.

International Relations Courses

IR/POL-400 SENIOR SEMINAR IN INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS (4)
Required seminar for international relations seniors that allows for independent research on a topic of current interest and importance in international relations. It provides opportunities for majors to integrate the theoretical, historical and geographical components of the major through readings, discussion, research and writing on the topic of their choosing.
Prerequisite: POL-103, POL-226, POL-326 (for IR majors)
Open only to senior IR and political science majors

IR-410 DIRECTED READING (1-4)
Supervised study in a selected field of international relations.

IR-490 SENIOR THESIS (4)
Independent research arranged under the supervision of a department member.

ECO-104 INTRODUCTION TO MACROECONOMICS (4)
Macroeconomics examines aggregate aspects of the economy. Topics covered include economic growth, the business cycle, unemployment, inflation and interest rates. International topics covered include balance of payments and exchange rates.

ECO-105 INTRODUCTION TO MICROECONOMICS (4)
Microeconomics studies how individuals and firms allocate scare resources via markets. In addition to an introduction to microeconomics, this course examines topics such as monopoly and competition, taxes and government interventions in the economy, and international trade.

ECO-334 ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT (4)
Historical patterns and contemporary theories of economic development are used to clarify major issues such as the distribution of income, stabilization policy and problems of trade and finance.
Prerequisite: ECO-104, ECO-105

ECO-351 INTERNATIONAL TRADE (4)
This course introduces the basics and theory of international trade. Students will discuss various trade models, the welfare and distributional effects of free trade among countries, trade policy instruments, reasons for limiting trade, and economic integration.
Prerequisite: ECO-105

ECO-352 INTERNATIONAL FINANCE (4)
This course will introduce the basics and theory of international finance. We will discuss the balance of payments, functioning of foreign exchange markets, automatic and policy adjustments in the balance of payments, coordination of national economic policies, and international monetary system.
Prerequisite: ECO-104

ECO-353 INTERNATIONAL ECONOMIC INSTITUTIONS (4)
This course will discuss the role of international economic institutions in promoting trade, development and financial stability in the global economy. It will focus on three main institutions: the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank, and the World Trade Organization.
Prerequisite: ECO-104, ECO-105

GA-203 GLOBAL AWARENESS EXPERIENCE (2-4)
The Global Awareness Experience includes an on-campus course focused on a specific topic within the context of a particular country, which is followed by an in-country experience. This course provides a “connection” with and international extension of existing ASC courses.
Prerequisites and co-requisites vary depending on the selected Global Awareness topic and country.

ENG-215 LITERATURE OF IRELAND (4)
As a site of constant invasion and as “England’s first colony and her last,” Ireland has engaged the struggle for national and cultural identity in its literature from the earliest texts (myths, monastic and bardic poetry, ballads) to the satirical works of Jonathan Swift, the Celtic Revival led by Yeats and Gregory, the Gaelic language movement, the postcolonial subjects and arguments of Irish modernism, representations of The Troubles, and the cross-border, cross-boundary perspectives of contemporary literature. We will explore these and related themes in works by Swift, Edgeworth, Synge, Yeats, Gregory, O’Crohan, O’Casey, Kavanagh, Macneice, Deane, Friel, Heaney, Boland, Carr, and others.

ENG-217 TOPICS IN LITERATURE AND EMPIRE (4)
Exploration of themes of colonization and imperialism across periods and genres (for example, the Adventure Novel, Narratives of the Empire, Orientalist Texts and Contexts), focusing on cultural and social anxieties generated by the imperial project, the dynamics of domination and exploitation, the nature of constructed identities, and the dialectic of gender roles and relationships. Approved topics listed below.
Counts toward post-1800 requirement
(Cross-listed with WS-217 when topic applies)

ENG-217A: NARRATIVES OF EMPIRE: EXPLORERS, ADVENTURERS, CHARLATANS, COLONIZERS (4)
Thieves and adventurers, pirates of the high seas and unscrupulous deceivers, wise old men, resourceful teenagers, horse-traders, spies; women, clever, witty, perspicacious; natives, sharp, skillful, and accomplished—a thrilling journey through the British Empire in the process of its formation, from the South Seas and Polynesia to Afghanistan and central India, from North Africa to the Belgian Congo, and the Sudan to southern Africa. Will explore dynamics of domination and exploitation, nature of constructed identities, the dialectic of gender roles and relationships. Texts may include works by Henty, Marrayat, Stevenson, Haggard, Schreiner, Kipling, Conrad, and Forster, among others, as well as films and documentaries.

ENG-317 STUDIES IN RESTORATION AND 18TH-CENTURY LITERATURE (4)
Thematic, generic or period studies (for example: The Colonial Imagination or Forms of Fiction). Approved topics listed below.
Counts toward pre-1800 requirement
(Cross-listed with WS-317)

ENG-317B: THE COLONIAL IMAGINATION (4)
A study of how fiction, drama, letters, poetry, and nonfiction of the late seventeenth- and eighteenth-centuries represent English encounters with other peoples and cultures. We will explore how these representations are themselves part of the colonial project, reinforcing English domination and exploitation; how factors such as gender and class complicate our understanding of colonial situations, and how colonized peoples co-opt and subvert elements of English culture in their own literatures. Authors include Behn, Defoe, Swift, Equiano.

ENG-321 STUDIES IN ROMANTICISM (4)
Thematic, generic or period studies (for example, British Romantic Writers, Transatlantic Romanticisms, Romanticism Through the Ages, or Romanticism, Orientalism and Imperialism). Approved topics listed below.

ENG-321A: VARIETIES OF BRITISH ROMANTICISM (4)

ENG-321B: GETTING MEDIEVAL (4)
With Malory's fifteenth century Le Morte d’Arthur as a starting point, the course explores the ways in which medieval chivalry has been nostalgized and mythologized by later ages. Other readings include such works as Scott's Ivanhoe, Tennyson's Idylls of the King, Twain's A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court, Connie Willis's Doomsday Book, Michael Crichton's Timeline, John Le Carré's The Honourable Schoolboy, and film versions of the Arthurian cycle. How do we construct our images of the past? Why are we fascinated with the Middle Ages, and what do the forms of our fascination tell us about ourselves?

ENG-352 STUDIES IN POSTCOLONIAL LITERATURE (4)
Study of literature written in nations that were formerly European colonies (for example, the literature of South Asia, South-East Asia, the Middle East, Africa, the Caribbean, Australia, New Zealand and Canada). Approved topics listed below.
Counts toward post-1800 requirement
(Cross-listed with AS-352)

ENG-352A: LITERATURE OF SOUTH ASIA, MIDDLE EAST, AND AFRICA (4)
Using a historical introduction to provide a background for the debates involving the postcolonial condition and the struggle for personal, cultural, and/or national autonomy in formerly colonized areas or states, we shall proceed to an overview of the field of postcolonial literary theory to establish the context for our study before looking at postcolonial literature and films from former British colonies (and areas formerly under British control) in South-Asia, the Middle East, and Africa. Occasionally, translations from works in the indigenous languages may be introduced to highlight contrasts and correspondences with work originally composed in English, or give a more inclusive view of the range and nature of responses to the colonial experience in these areas. Texts to be selected from works by, among others, Arundhati Roy, Salman Rushdie, Anita Desai, Sara Suleri, Bapsi Sidhwa, Mohsin Hamid, Faiz Ahmad Faiz, Ghassan Kanafani, Furugh Farrukhzad, Mahmoud Darwish, Adonis, Sami-ul-Qasim, Chinua Achebe, Wole Soyinka, Ngugi wa Thiongo, Tayyib Salih, Ama Ata Aidoo, and Bessie Head.

FRE-243 FRANCOPHONE IDENTITIES (4)
An introduction to selected texts representing the diversities of Francophone identities will afford students the opportunity of refine their reading, writing, and speaking skills while learning the richness, variety and complexity of the Francophone world.
Prerequisite: FRE-230

FRE-355 TOPICS IN FRANCOPHONE LITERATURE AND CULTURE (4)
Francophone literary and other texts will be analyzed with particular emphasis on colonization, decolonization, neocolonialism and nationalism, slavery, marginalization, identity and otherness, language and orality. Specific regions of Francophone production may include Canada, Africa, Europe, the Caribbean and Asia.
This course may be repeated when specific content varies
Prerequisite: FRE-230, one 200-level literature course
(Cross-listed with AS-355)

FRE-390 SPECIAL TOPICS IN FRENCH LITERATURE AND CULTURE (4)
Topic changes by semester, as determined in advance by the instructor and in consultation with the French faculty. This course may be repeated as specific content varies.
Prerequisite: FRE-230, any one of FRE-241, FRE-242, FRE-243
(Cross-listed with WS-365 when topic applies)

GER-200 INTRODUCTION TO GERMAN CULTURAL STUDIES (4)
This course introduces students to theories and methods that facilitate an interdisciplinary approach to German cultural texts, ranging from literature to music and to visual arts. Taught in English.

GER-340 THE HISTORY, LITERATURE, AND CULTURE OF AFRO-GERMANS (4)
This course focuses on the history, literature and culture of people of African descent living in German-speaking countries and on discourses of German identity.
Prerequisite: GER-202 or permission of the program director
(Cross-listed with AS-340)

GER-351 TOPICS IN CONTEMPORARY GERMAN LIFE AND THOUGHT (4)
This course investigates the memory of the Holocaust and its impact on postwar German politics, society, and culture through a series of memoirs and autobiographies.
Prerequisite: GER-210
(Cross-listed with WS-351 when topic applies)

HIS-102 EUROPE IN MODERN TIMES (4)
European culture, society and politics since the French Revolution, with a focus on nations and nationalism, women and gender, romanticism and modernism, war and peace, communism and post-communism, and Nazism and the Holocaust.

HIS-113 INTRODUCTION TO JAPANESE HISTORY (4)
A survey of Japanese cultural, literary and institutional history from ancient times to the present.

HIS-115 INTRODUCTION TO MODERN CHINESE HISTORY (4)
This course surveys the major social, intellectual and political developments in China from the Opium War of 1839 to the present. Themes include the fall of imperial China, the Chinese revolutions, post-Mao reforms and contemporary Chinese social issues.

HIS-220 EUROPEAN WOMEN SINCE THE MIDDLE AGES (4)
Experiences of and ideas about European women in the public and private spheres from the late Middle Ages through the 20th century.
(Cross-listed with WS-220)

HIS-230 THE VIETNAM WARS (4)
An examination of the origins, expansion, and consequences of the Vietnam War from Vietnamese and American perspectives. Topics include French colonialism, the rise of nationalism in Vietnam, the responses to imperialism, American foreign policy and the “wars” at home.

HIS-311 EUROPE IN THE VICTORIAN ERA (4)
Industrialization, nationalism, imperialism, international affairs, culture, gender and public and private life in 19th-century Europe.

HIS-312 RUSSIA AND THE SOVIET UNION IN THE 20TH CENTURY (4)
Revolution, ethnicity, reform, stagnation and disintegration in Russian and Soviet politics, culture, economy and society from 1905 to the present.

HIS-313 EUROPE IN THE ERA OF THE WORLD WARS (4)
World War I, Nazism, the interwar years, World War II and the Holocaust, with emphasis on ideology, culture and diplomacy.

HIS-314 EUROPE FROM THE COLD WAR TO THE EUROPEAN UNION (4)
Society, economy, culture and foreign affairs in Western and Eastern Europe since the end of World War II, with emphasis on European division and unity, the welfare state, immigration and diversity as well as relations with the United States.

HIS-318 THE HOLOCAUST (4)
Victims and perpetrators of German genocide, with emphasis on anti-Semitism, origins of the Final Solution, Nazi ideology, survivors’ memories and historiographical controversies.

HIS-352 THE CHINESE REVOLUTIONS (4)
A study of the complex sociopolitical crises of modern China, including an evaluation of the revolutions and their impacts on recent Chinese history; particular focus on the Republican Revolution of 1911, the Communist Revolution of 1949 and the Cultural Revolution.

HIS-354 CHINESE WOMEN ON FILM: HISTORY AND THE CINEMATIC IMAGINATION (4)
This course examines the history of women and gender in China as depicted in film. Emphasis will be placed on the ways in which modernization, imperialism, and globalization have shaped women’s roles and representations of women throughout the 20th century.
(Cross-listed with WS-354)

HIS-360 WORLD WAR II IN ASIA ON FILM (4)
This course explores the history of World War II in Asia, especially as (re)presented and remembered in films. Special attention is devoted to the cross-cultural aspects of World War II and to how films shape the collective memory of different Asian countries and the United States.

HIS-362 MODERN CHINA THROUGH LITERATURE AND FILM (4)
This course uses literature and film as primary sources to examine cultural and political changes in Modern China. It is organized as a research seminar and will focus on research methods, primary sources and writing.

POL-103 INTRODUCTION TO WORLD POLITICS (4)
Examines the evolution of the international state system, as well as the current challenges to it. Course also explores some of the major issues in international politics today, including economic development, human rights, globalization, and environmental and gender issues. We also explore some of the majors theories that help explain and predict international political events.

POL-226 APPROACHES TO POLITICS AND INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS (4)
This course will introduce students who plan to major in political science or international relations to the core competing theoretical approaches needed for upper-level study in the two disciplines. Studies will also be exposed to basic methods of research in political science and international relations and to workshops on the art of reading, writing, and presenting one’s work.
Prerequisite: One 100- or 200-level POL course

POL-282 U.S. FOREIGN POLICY SINCE 1945 (4)
Analysis of the Cold War, the Vietnam War and especially the post-Cold era. Examines the historical and global context of U.S. foreign policy making and the governmental and societal factors that influence key foreign policy areas including the economy, environment and national security.

POL-313 GENDER POLITICS (4)
Engagement with the theoretical and empirical literature on women, gender and politics. Topics include representation, sexuality and reproductive politics and gender politics at the local and global levels. Uses feminist theory to understand politics.
Prerequisite: one 100-level POL course, 201 or 226 strongly recommended
(Cross-listed with WS-313)

POL-322 THEORIES OF DEVELOPMENT AND ANTI-DEVELOPMENT (4)
Overview of development theory, including the modernization paradigm. Also examines criticisms of development theory and practice in the south (Latin America, Asia and Africa), which call into question many of the tenets of modernization and work consciously to define antidevelopment strategies. Includes examination of postcolonial social theory as well as environmental, feminist and other social movements in the south.
Prerequisite: one 100-level course, POL-201 strongly recommended

POL-326 APPROACHES TO INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS (4)
Examines the development of international relations as an academic field, the major theories used to understand international relations and the ways research is carried out.
Prerequisite: POL-103 and POL-226

POL-329 ISSUES IN GLOBAL MIGRATION (4)
Provides a theoretical framework and empirical information needed to examine critically the structures conditioning migration and people's lived experiences of migration. Includes analysis of labor migration and development, borders and national identities, forced migration, and gender and migration.
Prerequisite: One 100-level course and POL-226

POL-337 POLITICS OF THE EUROPEAN UNION (4)
Explores the evolution of the European experiment from the aftermath of World War II to the present. The course examines the functioning of the major EU institutions as well as some of the major issues facing the EU today, which may include EU enlargement, EU reform, EU immigration and asylum policy, and the development of EU foreign policy.
Prerequisite: one 100-level POL course, POL-201 or 226 strongly recommended

POL-392 MANIFEST DESTINY IN A GLOBAL WORLD (4)
Examines the ongoing changes in the meaning of deeply resonant categories in U.S. foreign policy particularly after the Vietnam War. Topics include captivity narratives, race war, gender, and patriotism. Case studies include Iran, Somalia, Afghanistan, and Iraq.
Prerequisite: POL-210, POL-226, or POL-326

REL-233 TIBET THROUGH FILM AND LITERATURE (4)
This course examines the construction of Tibet as a mythic object of fantasy in the Western imagination. Close attention will be given to the way Tibet has been portrayed in a variety of literary and film genres.

REL-334 SEX, GENDER AND EMBODIMENT IN BUDDHISM (4)
This course examines the ways that different Buddhist societies have addressed the challenges of human sexuality, gender, and physical embodiment. Attention will be given to Buddhism in India, Tibet, and America.
Prerequisite: REL-232 or instructor permission
(Cross-listed with WS-334)

SOC-356 COMPARATIVE BLACK FEMINISMS (4)
Interdisciplinary analysis and critique of the history of ideas which make up African and African Diasporic feminist thought and practice.
Prerequisite: SOC-101 or ANT-101
(Cross-listed with AS-356 and WS-356)

SPA-307 SPANISH CIVILIZATION AND CULTURE (4)
Important historical events, trends and ideas of Spain from earliest times to the present.
Prerequisite: SPA-202 with a minimum grade of C-

SPA-361 20th-CENTURY SPAIN (4)
Examines how societal changes throughout the century are reflected in representative works of literature and other forms of artistic expression such as film and painting. Topics include the avant-garde, the dictatorship of Francisco Franco, the rise of mass media and the transition to democracy.
Prerequisite: SPA-323

SPA-365 BLACK LITERATURE IN CUBA AND IN PUERTO RICO (4)
This course provides an examination of the Caribbean literary movement of “negrismo.” Literary texts and interdisciplinary readings examine the impact of ethnicity on Cuban and Puerto Rican national identities. More contemporary media illustrate the present role of Afro-Caribbean religious traditions, such as Santería.
Prerequisite: SPA-323

WS-245 MARRIAGE, SEXUALITY AND POWER IN CROSS-CULTURAL PERSPECTIVE (4)
This course reviews marriage around the world, such as polygyny, monogamy, polyandry, and homosexual and heterosexual unions, and discusses the consequences for emotional bonds, power, sexuality, children, and financial arrangements.
(Cross-listed with ANT-245)

WS-334 SEX, GENDER AND EMBODIMENT IN BUDDHISM (4)
This course examines the ways that different Buddhist societies have addressed the challenges of human sexuality, gender, and physical embodiment. Attention will be given to Buddhism in India, Tibet, and America.
Prerequisite: one course in Asian Religions
(Cross-listed with REL-334)

WS-360 GLOBAL FEMINISMS (4)
This interdisciplinary course explores global/transnational feminist issues as individual and collective practices and as organized movements.
Prerequisite: WS-100, or permission of the instructor