Political Science | Democracy and National Security
Y311 | 5396 | Brasher


How do we balance freedom and order in the wake of September 11th?
Do recent laws, such as the USA Patriot Act, protect both national
security and civil liberties? Or are these incompatible goals? How
do other democracies resolve the tension between liberty and
tolerance versus security from international terrorism? When do
foreign policy decision-makers pursue freedom and democracy in the
world, and when simply their national interests? How do governments
in multi-ethnic post-conflict societies, such as Bosnia,
Afghanistan, and Iraq, attempt to ensure public safety and create a
sense of national identity, all the while pushing towards
democratization?

We will discuss the meaning of concepts such as democracy, nation,
and the state, honing our critical thinking skills, so that we can
tackle these current issues within American, Comparative, and
International Politics thoughtfully and intelligently. While some
lecture from the instructor will be necessary to provide context,
this class is also envisioned as a forum for discussion, where
students will learn from the reading, each other, and some helpful
film material. The course will culminate in studentsí substantive
research projects to be shared at the end of the semester.