Gov20 Introduction to Comparative Politics
Pippa Norris Gov-20




Introduction to Comparative Politics - Fall 2005

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 For detailed materials, check the Gov-20 syllabi, class notes, and resources

Designed for FAS undergraduates, this course provides an introduction to key theoretical frameworks, concepts, and analytical methods commonly used today in comparative politics. The class focuses upon some of the seminal contemporary works in the field and evaluates them in the light of the arguments of their critics.

After reflecting upon the methods, frameworks and analytical tools in comparative political science, the class considers alternative ‘consociational’ and ‘majoritarian’ models of democratic institutions; analyzes the impact of economic development on the process of democratization; reviews the changing nature of political activism; considers the impact of civic society and social capital; examines the role of political culture; and finally discusses issues of ethnic conflict and cooperation. The conclusion draws together the core lessons from the class for effective research in comparative political science. A broad global comparison is adopted drawing upon materials and theories derived from many countries and regions of the world. There are no prerequisites for taking the class.

Copyright 2004 Pippa Norris, John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University, Cambridge MA 02138.

Last updated 12/06/2009