Politics, Week 12

Politics, Week 12 Instructional Plan

This week

  • Chapter 12 Government Systems and Regimes (week 12)
  • Applied knowledge: use our knowledge of politics to understand recent events (Thursday)

Coming soon

  1. November 23 –  Chapter 13 Political Executive and Leadership (week 13) and quiz #2
  2. November 30 – review (week 14)
  3. December 7 – reading week, no classes (week 15)
  4. December 14 – final exam

UPDATE: QUIZ #2 STUDY GUIDE

Introduction

Next week, you will have a quiz. The quiz questions are designed to cover the material  in chapters 7 (Politics, Society and Identity) and Chapter 8 (Political Culture and the Media). Of course, you may use additional material from other sources.

The purpose of the quiz is evaluate your ability to answer a complex question with an intelligent, thoughtful mini-essay that:

  1. begins with a question
  2. pulls together evidence
  3. establishes rules that justify evidence
  4. ends with a conclusion that answers the question

In this challenge, your answers should include a good number of key concepts and terms from the readings and lectures. In addition, I am looking for reasoned, well argued ideas. Answers filled with doxa, the ancient Greek word for opinion (the lowest form of knowledge) may lead to disappointing results.

Quiz Questions

  1. Describe the nature of conflict in the post-modern world.
  2. Explain the meaning of this sentence: “The consciousness of people does not create their world. Rather, their world creates their consciousness.” Be sure to include what you regard to be its strengths and weaknesses in terms of understanding politics and society.

 

IN CLASS MATERIAL (pdf file)

VOCABULARY

  • Aristotle, Asian values, Confucianism
  • Dictatorship, Ethnocentric, Fundamentalism
  • Government, Islam, Junta
  • Montesquieu, New democracy, Oligarchy
  • Polity, Polyarchy, Proxy war
  • Regime, Republicanism, Telos
  • The golden mean, Theocracy, Third world
  • Totalitarianism, Tyranny

COMPREHENSION AND DISCUSSION QUESTIONS

  1. How did Aristotle define democracy?
  2. What is Aristotle’s ideal form of government? Most practical? What do you think?
  3. Can Aristotle’s concept of the state and telos help us understand and evaluate governments today?
  4. Describe the three world model including the sorting criteria. Why has the three world model been largely abandoned?
  5. Describe the five world model and its sorting criteria.
  6. Describe some of the features of East Asian regimes. How do they differ from western polyarchies?
  7. Why have some post communist regimes experienced difficulties in making the shift to capitalism and liberalism?
  8. Compare and contrast the criteria used to define the Aristotle’s six models, the three world model and five world model of regimes.

OTHER MATERIALS

  • An excellent speech that describes the link between capitalism, globalization and democracy by Robert Reich. Start watching at the 20:00 mark.
  • Interested in Aristotle’s politics? Read the book online.
  • A good story and graphic about the troubles with democracy in the world today by The Economist.
  • Two stories that might help you understand something about Islam, one from The Economist and one story from the BBC.

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