Schedule Fall 2010

General Directions

1. This course will use the following books, available for purchase in the student bookstore:

  • Gordon = Gordon, April A. and Donald L. Gordon (eds.), 2007 Fourth Edition. Understanding Contemporary Africa.
  • Herbst = Herbst, Jeffrey. 2000. States and Power in Africa.Princeton: Princeton University
  • Taylor = Taylor, Ian. 2010 The International Relations of Sub-Saharan Africa.New York: Continuum

2. All other texts are available via hyperlink. Please note that many, if not all, are only available to students via login.

3. This is a reading-intensive course. All readings should be read in the order presented. That is also their order of priority.

4. This schedule is subject to change.

I recommend you keep up with African news and scholarship. Some great sources include:

Africa specific: Africa Confidential, allAfrica.com

General news with good Africa coverage: The Economist, BBC News Online, The Financial Times, Reuters (has a great Africa website)

Academic: Journal of Modern African Studies

Think Tanks: Center for Global Development Working Papers

Blogs:

http://developmentdrums.org/

http://chrisblattman.blogspot.com/

http://africacan.worldbank.org/

http://africaunchained.blogspot.com/

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September 2010
Su Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa
1 2 3 4
5 6 7 8 9 10 11
12 13 14 15 16 17 18
19 20 21 22 23 24 25
26 27 28 29 30
October 2010
Su Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa
1 2
3 4 5 6 7 8 9
10 11 12 13 14 15 16
17 18 19 20 21 22 23
24 25 26 27 28 29 30

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November 2010
Su Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa
31 1 2 3 4 5 6
7 8 9 10 11 12 13
14 15 16 17 18 19 20
21 22 23 24 25 26 27
28 29 30 31
December 2010
Su Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa
1 2 3 4
5 6 7 8 9 10 11
12 13 14 15 16 17 18
19 20 21 22 23 24 25
26 27 28 28 29 30

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7 September. 2:40 – 4:00 pm

Introduction to Africa, Locating Africa in World Politics.

Is Africa different from the rest of the world? What are some of the challenges Africa poses to international relations scholars?

Course Activities: Introductions

Readings:

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9 September. 2:40 – 4:00 pm

Africa’ Pre-Colonial International Relations.

Were there international relations between African polities prior to the colonial period? With the rest of the world?

Course Activities: (1) Sign-up for blog responsibilities; (2) Lecture/Discussion

Readings:

Recommended:

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14 Sept. 2:40 – 4:00 pm

Africa’s Colonial Period

Does Africa’s colonial heritage shape its international relations today? What was the nature of the colonial period? How did African colonies relate to each other and the rest of the world? How did their relationships with colonial masters affect their foreign policies after independence?

Next Assignment: You will prepare a one-page description of your proposed research question. The question should be substantively interesting and relevant. Moreover, it should be a question that can be answered using evidence, given the time and resource constraints of the course. You should be prepared to discuss your question during the class session. See the “Project” page for more detailed instructions.  EMAIL TO PROFESSOR BY FRIDAY AT 5 PM.

Course Activities: (1) Assignment above; (2) Lecture/Discussion

Readings:

Recommended:

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16 Sept. 2:40 – 4:00 pm

African Independence

What is the significance of African interdependence for its international relations? For the international community more generally?

* Journal 1. Compare the impacts of pre-colonial and colonial legacies for your country’s politics and foreign relations. Remember that you can react as well to the readings relevant to this topic and use other countries’ experiences as a point of comparison.

Course Activities:Lecture/Discussion

Readings:

Recommended:

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21 Sept. 2:40 – 4:00 pm

Neo-patrimonialism & the African State

Course Activities: Lecture/Discussion.
Readings:

Recommended:

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23 Sept. 2:40 – 4:00 pm

The African State System

Course Activities: Lecture/Discussion

Readings:

Recommended:

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28 Sept. 2:40 – 4:00 pm

African Foreign Policy-Making

How do African States develop their foreign policies? What are some of the factors that African states take into account in their foreign policy decision-making?

* Journal 2. Describe the current political institutions and political culture of your country. Is there evidence of neo-patrimonialism? How might the political institutions and political culture affect your country’s foreign policy and international relations? Remember that you can react as well to the readings relevant to this topic and use other countries’ experiences as a point of comparison

Next Assignment: Due Friday, October 1. You will prepare a 2-3 page annotated bibliography listing sources relevant to the research you will conduct to answer your research question. Some of these sources will be academic articles; others may be policy reports, quantitative data sets, or interviews you plan to conduct. The bibliography is due to me before class, and you should be ready to talk about the sources you have identified and the types of information you are finding during the seminar. See the “Project” page for more detailed instructions. See also, “Annotated Bibliographies”.

Course Activities: Lecture/Discussion

Readings:

Recommended:

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30 Sept. 2:40 – 4:00 pm

African International Relations: The case of South Africa

Course Activities: Lecture/Discussion

Readings:

Recommended:

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5 October. 2:40 – 4:00 pm

The United States and Africa

* Journal 3. Discuss United States relations with your country.

Course Activities: Lecture/Discussion

Readings:

  • Taylor. Chapter One: The Times They Are(n’t) A-Changing: American Policies in Africa.
  • Council on Foreign Relations. 2006. More than Humanitarianism: A Strategic U.S. Approach Toward Africa. PDF available for free at: http://www.cfr.org/publication/9302/more_than_humanitarianism.html. Read pages: 5 – 27 (no need to print entire document!)Lyman, Princeton N. 2006. Chapter 4 “A Strategic Approach to Terrorism.” Africa-US Relations: Strategic Encounters. Boulder: Lynne Rienner Publishers.
  • Rothchild, Donald. Here

Recommended:

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7 Oct. 2:40 – 4:00 pm

Africa in Global Governance

Next Assignment: You will prepare a 3 – 5 page narrative description of the evidence you have gathered. This should include a clear specification of the dependent variable you wish to explain. It should highlight what is puzzling about the evidence you observe and what data supports your claim. A strong narrative description will conclude with some thoughts about the factors that might explain the patterns you have found. See the “Project” page for more detailed instructions. EMAIL TO PROFESSOR BY NEXT TUESDAY (Oct. 12) BEFORE CLASS.

Course Activities: (1) Assignment above; (2) Lecture/Discussion

Readings:

Recommended:

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12 Oct. 2:40 – 4:00 pm

Africa in the Global Economy

Is Africa peripheral to the global economy? What does that mean? Why is most of Africa poor?

Narrative Description Due Today. Email to professor prior to class and bring 1 copy.

Course Activities: Lecture/Discussion

Readings:

Recommended:

  • Herbst. Chapter 7, “The Coin of the African Realm.”

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14 Oct. 2:40 – 4:00 pm

Foreign Aid

Is foreign aid a good thing for Africa?

Course Activities: (1) Lecture/Discussion; (2) Sign-up for Group Presentations

Readings:

Recommended:

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19 Oct. 2:40 – 4:00 pm

Fall Break – No Class

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21 Oct. 2:40 – 4:00 pm

Resource Politics

Next Assignment. Group draft outline due October 28 November 4.

* Journal 4. What are the current economic conditions in your country? What goods and services does it specialize in? What economic activities employ people in your country? Relate your country’s experiences with economic development to our readings on foreign aid. Remember that you can react as well to the readings relevant to this topic and use other countries’ experiences as a point of comparison.

Course Activities: Lecture/Discussion

Readings:

Recommended:

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26 Oct. 2:40 – 4:00 pm

Economic Development – Peter Kilby – Guest Lecture

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28 Oct. 2:40 – 4:00 pm

Conflicts and Conflict Management (I): Central Africa

Group Draft Outline Due Today

Course Activities: Lecture/Discussion

Readings:

Recommended:

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2 Nov. 2:40 – 4:00 pm

CLASS: Remember that we are one day behind. We will focus on the DRC and on general theories of conflict in Africa for our class today (see the readings for the previous class).

Conflicts and Conflict Management (II): Darfur

* Journal 5. Discuss and analyze any violent conflicts involving your country (civil or interstate). Consider also the roles played by regional and international actors. Remember that you can react as well to the readings relevant to this topic and use other countries’ experiences as a point of comparison.

Course Activities: Lecture/Discussion .

Readings:

Recommended:

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4 Nov. 2:40 – 4:00 pm

Europe and Africa

Group Draft Outline Due Today

Course Activities: Lecture/Discussion

Readings:

  • Taylor. Chapters 2, 3, and 6.

Recommended:

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9 Nov. 2:40 – 4:00 pm

China, the Global South, and Africa

* Journal 6. Which foreign countries matter most to your country? How and why? Compare your country’s foreign relations with at least three countries, including China. Remember that you can react as well to the readings relevant to this topic and use other countries’ experiences as a point of comparison.

Course Activities: Lecture/Discussion

Readings:

Read at least ONE of the following:

Recommended:

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11 Nov. 2:40 – 4:00 pm

Writing and Presentations; the World & Africa

Individual Rough Draft Due Today. Email copy to professor prior to class.

Course Activities: (1) Individual Rough Drafts; (2) Lecture/Discussion

Readings:

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16 Nov. 2:40 – 4:00 pm

The Environment: Water

Group Rough Draft Due Today. Email copy to professor prior to class.

Course Activities: Lecture/Discussion

Readings:

Recommended:

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18 Nov 2:40 – 4:00 pm

The AIDS Crisis

Where is the AIDS crisis a crisis in Africa? What roles do external players play in the AIDS crisis?

Course Activities: Lecture/Discussion

Readings:

Recommended:

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23 Nov. 2:40 – 4:00 pm

Class Research Presentations

Instructions for Panel Presentations.  Presentations should last 25 minutes. There will then be 15 minutes of time for Q&A. Presentations should stress the overarching themes you all find in your work. The point is to view this as a workshop and an opportunity to get feedback from your colleagues. You should then be able to incorporate some of that feedback into the final drafts.

Course Activities: Presentations
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30 Nov. 2:40 – 4:00 pm

Class Research Presentations

Course Activities: Presentations
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2 December. 2:40 – 4:00 pm

Class Research Presentations

Course Activities: Presentations
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7 Dec. 2:40 – 4:00 pm

Class Research Presentations

Course Activities: Presentations
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9 Dec. 2:40 – 4:00 pm

LAST DAY OF CLASS → Future Directions for Africa

* Journal 7. Based on what you have discovered this term, how would you advise your country’s leaders in their engagement with the world?

Part 1: Finish presentations, if necessary.
Part 2: What have we learned? What are some of the likely future scenarios for political relationships within Africa and between Africa and the rest of the world?

Readings:

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end of classes
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no final exam
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final research projects due Thursday, December 16 at 5 pm.

email one copy to professor, put one complete group copy in box outside of the Government department
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individual assessment of group project due Friday, December 17 at 5 pm. email to professor.

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