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POLISCI 102: Introduction to American Politics and Policy: In Defense of Democracy (AMSTUD 123X, PUBLPOL 101, PUBLPOL 201)

American democracy faces a series of unprecedented challenges. This course will identify the greatest areas of weakness in the American political system, make sense of the most pressing threats facing democracy, and contemplate how democracy can be strengthened. With this theme - in defense of democracy - in mind, we will examine several questions: What guiding principles, norms, and institutions organize and structure American politics, and how do they affect the health and effectiveness of American democracy? What do patterns of political participation and representation in the United States tell us about the health of our democracy? How do partisan and social identities breed hostility and antagonism among the mass public? How does information from the media and other sources advance or frustrate democratic outcomes? What does increased violence - political, racially motivated, or otherwise - reveal about the trajectory of democracy in the United States? This is a course built on the science of politics, and our aim is to bring the scientific study of politics to bear on these pressing questions.
Terms: Spr | Units: 5 | UG Reqs: GER:DB-SocSci, WAY-SI
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