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Gvt385SyllabusFinal.087

Gvt385SyllabusFinal.087 - 1 Government 385 America's...

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Government 385: America’s Imperium in a World of Regions Fall 2007 -- Ives 105 Professor: Peter Katzenstein (pjk2) White Hall 321 Office hours : posted each Monday morning for the coming week, normally on Wednesdays. If you cannot make posted office hours email me so that we can arrange for an alternative time. For quick consultations please see me after class. Teaching Assistants: Gaurav Kampani (gk58) White Hall B13; Office hours: tba. Pinar Kemerli (pk233) White Hall B13; Office hours: tba. Course web site URL : http://www.blackboard.cornell.edu Course Description: Many liberals and realists have regarded the triumph of neo-conservatism after 9/11 as a freak accident that will come to an end together with the Presidency of George W. Bush. And many neo- conservatives have regarded the war in Iraq as a noble experiment in democracy-building that the United States so successfully accomplished in Germany and Japan after World War II. In tracing the effects of America’s multiple identities on its foreign policies and analyzing how America relates to different world regions, this course disagrees with both views. Neo-conservatism is not a freak show but draws on America’s multiple political traditions and orders. And the Iraq war is not a noble experiment but arguably the greatest foreign policy disaster of the last generation, the consequence of a combustible mixture of astonishing arrogance and willful ignorance. Because the United States is enjoying an enormous preponderance in power in world politics, it can impose its ideologically inflected sense of national interest on an unwilling and resentful world. The course develops these two overarching arguments. The first half of the course challenges the simplified view that on questions of foreign affairs the main faultline in American politics has divided realist-nationalists from liberal-internationalists. This interpretation neglects America’s multiple foreign policy traditions. It reads religion and race out of the conflicts that have shaped American politics. It thus fails to accord proper importance to the pivotal role of the South in the dominant coalitions that have shaped American foreign policy in the last half century. Furthermore, a multiplicity of different kinds of values (encompassing both power and prosperity, Protestantism and prostitution) shape the American imperium (which combines hard/territorial with soft/non-territorial sources of power). The second half of the course argues that America is one among several civilizations (such as Europe, China, Japan and Islam) and that it is central in an increasingly international and global world. Its relationship to Europe and Asia differs from its relationship with other world regions. After their total defeat in World War II, American occupation and extensive domestic reforms converted Germany and Japan initially to client and later to supporter states that have made it easier for the United States to shape political outcomes in these two regions. In the Americas, Africa, and the Middle East the United States
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