History | Political Prisoners in the Modern World
J400 | 3887 | Kenney


Above class open to majors only
Above class open to undergraduates only
J400: P-HIST J300

What is a political prisoner, and why do they matter? One answer is
that the political prisoner is the quintessential citizen of the
twentieth century, an era of fierce ideologies and authoritarian
regimes. But democracies have also held political prisoners. This
class will explore prisoners and imprisoning regimes around the
modern world, including Northern Ireland, the Soviet Union, South
Africa, China, Egypt, and Argentina among others. We will read their
letters and memoirs, and look for ways to compare their experiences.

Weekly class meetings will center around discussion of texts and the
building of comparative modes of analysis. Grading will be based
upon a research paper, shorter writing assignment, and participation
in discussion. The class thus requires a willingness to engage in
intensive reading and writing, and to engage in comparative
explorations far outside that which is familiar.