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Syllabus CORRECTED 2009 Spring Ana Tostes

Syllabus CORRECTED 2009 Spring Ana Tostes - PLS 422...

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PLS 422 1/14/2009 Department of Polit ical Science – Spring 2009 Michigan State University – MSU Tu Th 3:00p – 4:50p Berkey Hall – Room 219 Professor Ana Paula Tostes E-mail: [email protected] Office Hours: Monday 12:30-14:30p COURSE DESCRIPTION The process of European integration has brought new challenges for the consolidated democracies in Western Europe, such as constitutional adjustments and institutional reforms. The proposal of the course is to study the European Union institutions in the context of its development, interactions with European countries, and new political structures. The course will focus on the historical background of the development of democracy in Western European countries, national gains and losses, as well as the consequences of the European Union for national institutions. We are living in extraordinary times. Political and institutional changes that took place in Central and Eastern Europe since 1989 marked the disintegration of a bipolar world. Post-Cold War political changes and the transformation of the global balance of power have produced new forms of international cooperation and competition. Also, since the end of World War II, new forms to coordinate political interests have been emerged in Europe. This course introduces important concepts about European politics in comparative perspective. It is organized in two Parts: the first, Consolidated Democracies in Europe , and the second, New challenges in European Union . In the part I, we will study some key concepts on comparative politics applied to country cases focusing on the historical process of different paths of democracy in Europe. I selected the most important players for the process of European integration that are considered consolidated democracies: England, France, Germany, Spain and Italy. In the part II of the course, we will study the European Union as a very new and unique political system, the development and challenges of all European countries involved in the process of integration, the structure of the new European institutions, and the interaction between them. We also will examine the potential side effects of the European Union, as well as the emergence of a new extreme right populism, and the concept of human security. COURSE REQUIREMENTS AND EVAVUATION 1. The Final Grade will be calculated from the following components : a. Quizzes (15% of the final grade) – Classes will involve both lectures and discussion of the reading material assigned for each day. During the semester, there will be four (4) short quizzes which will focus on the readings. They are listed on the syllabus. Because these quizzes also measure attendance, students will have only one chance to take them. When missed, they cannot be made up later. For students who are present for all four quizzes (and only for these students--no exceptions), I will drop your lowest nonzero quiz grade 1
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in determining your quiz average. I repeat: you must be present for all four quizzes, and receive more than a zero grade on all four, in order to have your lowest quiz score dropped.
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