PSCI 307
American National Identity and State Power Fall 2023
Division II Writing Skills
This is not the current course catalog

Class Details

Debates over American national identity, or what it means to be an American, have intensified in recent years, with a resurgent white Christian nationalism challenging progressive aspirations for a multiracial, environmentally sustainable, liberal democracy. At the same time, Republicans and Democrats fight over the scope and limits of government power on policies ranging from taxation and spending, to abortion, immigration, healthcare, policing, gun ownership, and voting rights. Are these conflicts related, and if so, how? Does how Americans define themselves as a nation inform the shape of the American state and the types of policies it creates? Or is it the reverse? Does the state and its policies make the nation, as many scholars claim? This tutorial investigates the relationship between state and nation over time in the United States. We will explore conflicts over how “the people” are defined in different moments, and we will examine how these conflicts connect to the exercise of state power in areas including territorial expansion, census taking, public health, immigration, social welfare, and policing.
The Class: Format: tutorial
Limit: 10
Expected: 10
Class#: 1707
Grading: no pass/fail option, no fifth course option
Requirements/Evaluation: Five 5- to 7-page essays, five 2- to 3-page critiques, and a revised and extended 10- to 12-page final essay
Prerequisites: At least one political science class or permission of instructor.
Enrollment Preferences: Political science majors
Distributions: Division II Writing Skills
WS Notes: Extensive written feedback will be provided on tutorial essays and critiques. Additionally, the tutorial sessions will include attention to the quality of the written argument in the paper that is the focus of each session. At the end of the semester, students will be required to revise one of the tutorial papers incorporating the feedback, oral and written, provided by their tutorial partner and the instructor.
Attributes: PSCI American Politics Courses

Class Grid

Course Catalog Archive Search



Start Time
End Time