Spring 2020: US as Empire

POLT 40114: (Selected Topics) The US Empire: Tuesdays/Thursdays, 2.35 p.m.

This seminar is about the U.S.'s political history as an empire and its implications for democracy, human rights, and social justice for both U.S. citizens and those of other countries. To this end, we will focus on the ideologies and practices that enabled U.S. global ascendancy; the social and political costs it exacted from nations and people around the world, and the ethical dilemmas involved in maintaining it. Of particular interest to me in teaching this course is the question of whether over-reaching power can ever be an agent of good in the world.

This is a discussion based class that requires regular attendance and class participation, in addition to written work (two essays and two journals). Texts include Graham Greene, The Quiet American; Daniel Immerwahr, How to Hide an Empire (2019); Lila Rajiva,The Language of Empire (2005); and others TBA.

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