POLS 449 Middle East Politics [CRN 75654]
Overview of Course
The Middle East has uninterruptedly been at the forefront of international geopolitics for almost a century. This enduring geopolitical visibility has important cultural, societal, economic, and security implications at national, regional, and international levels. This course is designed to tackle some of these issues by providing students with a historical, cultural, politico-economic, and geo-strategic survey of the Middle East. It will explore and investigate the emergence of the Middle East into the modern international system and political and governance structures and processes of key Middle Eastern countries. The course will familiarize students with significant issue-areas like democratization, human rights, and political Islam that the regions has grappled with since the mid-twentieth century. Additionally, we will explore key events in shaping the contemporary Middle East including the discovery of oil, decolonization, the Cold War, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and great power interventionism. The course has no specific prerequisites and will appeal to a broad audience as it analyzes a wide spectrum of issues, events, and themes that have shaped the modern Middle East.