10336 Individual Liberties and Constitutional Structure in a Federal Democracy: Continuity and Change in United States Government 1

Credits: 6 advanced credits in Modern History or in Political Science & International Relations

Prerequisites: 36 credits, including one course in Modern History,2 and one course in Political Science or International Relations.3 Students must also fulfill all English requirements and take bibliographic instruction in the Library.

Author: Giora Kulka

American government is a standard topic, albeit basic and essential, in all disciplines dealing with the United States. This course is designed to present and analyze the American government from a somewhat different point of view and with innovative emphases. The course presents both a historical-developmental approach and an institutional-functional approach to answer the needs of students of history and of political science.

Topics: Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness; The constitutional enterprise; Federalism; Stability and change amendments to the Constitution; Secession and disobedience the right to constitutional suicide; The individual taking political action; Voter behavior and voting patterns; Homogeneity and heterogeneity in the ethnic fabric of the United States; Principles of liberty in the 20th century.


1Students may write a seminar paper in this course, although it is not required. Students who write a seminar paper in this course may not write one in Idea and Practice: Thomas Jefferson and the Making of American Federalism (10317).

2or any course in History, for those who took it before Fall 2009.

3Students who took The Age of Revolution: 1760-1830 (10217) before Fall 2008, are exempt from a course in Political Science or International Relations.