17.50 Introduction to Comparative Politics, Fall 2003
Author(s)Lawson, Chappell H., 1967-; Rodden, Jonathan
Introduction to Comparative Politics
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Why are some countries democratic and others not? How do political institutions affect economic development and political conflict? How do politics in the United States compare to politics in other countries? This class first reviews cultural, social, and institutional explanations for political outcomes. It then turns to more detailed examination of specific topics: ethnic conflict in India, democratic collapse in Weimar Germany, regional disparities in Italy, market-oriented reform (or lack thereof) in Brazil, corruption in Mexico, ethnic violence in Yugoslavia, the impoverishment of post-Communist Russia, and the prospects for democracy in China. Each of these examples is meant to stand in for a range of cases, allowing you to extrapolate to new material. At the end of the course, you should be able to analyze political events around the world, drawing on the theoretical explanations provided in the class.
Democracy, political institutions, economic development, political conflict, ethnic conflict, India, Weimar Germany, market-oriented reform, Brazil, Corruption, Mexico, ethnic violence, Yugoslavia, post-Communist Russia, China, Comparative government