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Our Web Syllabus is the sole source of information for this course. The pages of the paper syllabus that I pass out on the first day of class will soon be out of date. I will change assignments and add mandatory readings and links throughout the semester. You are responsible for knowing about any of these changes, especially those which are writing assignments. Thus, I strongly advise you to check this site at least three times a week. 

Paper Sources

  • John Kingdon, America the Unusual
  • Cas Mudde and Cristobal Kaltwasser, Populism: A Very Short Introduction
  • Ray Bradbury, Fahrenheit 451
  • Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels, The Communist Manifesto
  • Václav Havel, Open Letters: Selected Writings,1965-1990
  • Carolina Maria de Jesus, Child of the Dark

As the proud father of two Notre Dame graduates, I am especially mindful of the high cost of assigned readings for Notre Dame students. Therefore, I am not using a course reader.  Aside from the books, all of our assigned readings are available on this syllabus.  You should print all of the assignments marked PRINT.  This is especially important for your Friday discussion sections.  I recommend that you create a binder in which you assemble all of these readings.

In addition, I recommend that you get into the habit of reading any decent online newspaper or news magazine on a regular basis. Many are free.  Among the news sources I read on a daily basis are the New York Times, CNN, and the Guardian. To make your search easy, there are some excellent news links and articles on Blogsideinn.  I also highly recommend this survey of the world press:  Watching America  If you think our enemies are nasty, look at what our friends say about us!

Virtual Sources

You, your classmates, and your TAs will engage in regular discussions and debates over Google Doc. Participation in these virtual discussions is required. This format will help you prepare for your Friday sections by testing your ideas and arguing with your classmates. Oh, politics is all about conflict. A little (non-violent) conflict in the defense of one’s views is a good thing!

Other sources are available on this syllabus. These include: Web links and links to online electronic sources in the Hesburgh Library. If your assignment says PRINT, you must print it immediately for use at your discussion section.

Visual Sources

There are several required films in the course. The first and the third films will oblige you to attend evening showings on one of two alternative nights (i.e., you won’t have to attend both nights; you just choose the evening that works best for you).

Film #1:  “The War at Home” Showings and Location: 7:00 Monday, September 18 and 7:00 Tuesday, September 19 in 1050 Nanovic Hall (ground floor)
Film #2: TBA.   In-class on TBA
Film #3: “Mr. Johnson” Showings and Location TBA

Earning your Grades

You will earn your grades in this course by completing different types of assignments. We will have two take-home essays during the semester and one in-class final examination. Make sure you make the deadlines! The take-home essays will be docked 1/3 of a grade for every day they are late.

Your participation in discussion sections is a major part of your grade. By “participation,” I mean the quality of your comments during the section, your weekly written assignments, and your virtual discussions over Concourse: You will earn a lower grade by failing to attend class or discussion sections. We are watching!

First Reflective Essay                   15 percent
Second Reflective Essay              15 percent
Participation                                  30 percent
Final Examination                        40 percent

Human Resources

Both your teaching assistants and I are here to serve you.  Please do not hesitate to visit us during our office hours.  You may ask us questions about the course, but you should also free to talk with us about any subject you like, including the  and the meaning of life.  Each of you is required to visit your TA at least once during the semester.

POLS12400 – 04
View Books
Comparative Discussion 0 CL 13 0 17195 McAdams, A. James
Rosenberg, Emma
F – 9:25A – 10:15A 08/22/2017 12/07/2017 O’Shaughnessy Hall 202
POLS12400 – 06
View Books
Comparative Discussion 0 OP 14 1 17194 McAdams, A. James
Rosenberg, Emma
F – 11:30A – 12:20P 08/22/2017 12/07/2017 DeBartolo Hall 347
POLS12400 – 02
View Books
Comparative Discussion 0 CL 14 0 17197 McAdams, A. James
Shiraef, Mary
F – 9:25A – 10:15A 08/22/2017 12/07/2017 O’Shaughnessy Hall 305
POLS12400 – 05
View Books
Comparative Discussion 0 CL 14 0 17196 McAdams, A. James
Shiraef, Mary
F – 10:30A – 11:20A 08/22/2017 12/07/2017 O’Shaughnessy Hall 202

For information about your TA’s, consult the TA link on the right margin of this page. Your TAs’ addresses:  Emma Rosenberg (erosenbe@nd.edu) and Mary Shiraef (mshiraef@nd.edu)

I hold my office hours on Tu 1:30-2:30; and W 2:00-4:00 at the Nanovic Institute for European Studies, located in the fabulous, new Nanovic Hall (across from the Eck Alumni Center).

I want to meet you.  Visit me!


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