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Although some protest that the U.S. is heading toward European-style socialism, social welfare programs in the U.S. differ in important ways from those in other wealthy and democratic nations. This course focuses on the adoption and development of policies to address poverty and inequality in the U.S. The issues we will explore include: What is poverty, and how do Americans perceive its dangers to individuals as well as the political community? What economic, historical, and sociological theories have been advanced to explain poverty? Why has the U.S. adopted some approaches to reduce poverty but not others? What enduring political conflicts have shaped the U.S. welfare state?
Format: seminar; In spring 2021, this course will be taught remotely.
Grading: no pass/fail option,
no fifth course option
class participation, two or three short papers, and a final paper
Political Science, Political Economy, and Women's, Gender and Sexuality Studies majors and concentrators in Public Health
This course is cross-listed and the prefixes carry the following divisional credit:
PHLH Decision-Making by Institutions + Individuals
PHLH Social Determinants of Health
POEC U.S. Political Economy + Public Policy Course
PSCI American Politics Courses