UW Today

Department of Political Science

March 22, 2016

Rebecca Thorpe’s book ‘American Warfare State’ honored

"The American Warfare State: The Domestic Politics of Military Spending," by Rebecca Thorpe, UW assistant professor of political science. Published in 2014 by University of Chicago Press.

UW political scientist Rebecca Thorpe’s book “The American Warfare State: The Domestic Politics of Military Spending,” has been honored by the Lyndon Baines Johnson Foundation — the second award the well-received book has earned.

January 28, 2016

Iowa caucuses: Expectations can trump votes, but will Trump meet expectations?

CNN News announces Mike Huckabee the winner of the 2008 Republican Iowa caucus. But winning Iowa does not always lead to the nomination, which that year went to Sen. John McCain.

In the Iowa caucuses, expectations are nearly as important as votes and front-runners must watch their backs, say University of Washington professors who are closely watching this year’s presidential race. The 2016 Iowa caucuses will be held Monday, Feb. 1, pitting Democratic leader Hillary Clinton against Sen. Bernie Sanders and Gov. Martin O’Malley and Republican…

December 8, 2015

Culture wars, Christianity at heart of UW political scientist Mark Smith’s book ‘Secular Faith’

Mark A. Smith's "Secular Faith: How Culture Has Trumped Religion in American Politics" was published in September by University of Chicago Press.

Mark A. Smith is a University of Washington professor of political science and adjunct professor of comparative religion. He is the author of “Secular Faith: How Culture Has Trumped Religion in American Politics,” published in September by University of Chicago Press. He answered a few questions about his book for UW Today. What’s the concept…

October 22, 2015

UW Tacoma historian Michael Honey’s film about Rev. James Lawson to screen locally

Rev. James Lawson

UW historian Michael Honey and filmmaker Errol Webber have produced a documentary about the life of Methodist minister and civil rights activist Rev. James Lawson that will be screened in Tacoma on Oct. 28, Seattle on Oct. 29

October 22, 2014

Traditional, tea party conservatives seem split on foreign policy

A Tea Party Express bus.

Foreign policy looms large as the 2014 midterm elections approach. But traditional conservatives and their tea party counterparts may bring different concerns and motivations to the November ballot, according to a University of Washington political scientist. While traditional conservatives seem most motivated by concern over American security, Christopher Parker, UW professor of political science, suggests…

July 15, 2014

Sustainable, sharing communities explored in Karen Litfin’s book ‘Ecovillages’

The forest provides firewood for the 40,000 Tamil villagers who live around Auroville. "Founded in 1968 upon a severely eroded plateau in south India, the first order of business for the pioneers was to revitalize the land. Three million trees later, Auroville is home to over 2,000 people from 43 different countries and is one of the few places on Earth where biodiversity is actually increasing," Litfin writes.

UW political scientist Karen Litfin spent a year traveling to 14 ecovillages worldwide in researching her book “Ecovillages: Lessons for Sustainable Community.”

June 30, 2014

Rebecca Thorpe studies military spending in new book ‘The American Warfare State’


UW political scientist Rebecca Thorpe discusses her new book, “The American Warfare State: The Domestic Politics of Military Spending.”

April 25, 2014

Online ‘Legislative Explorer’ uses big data to track decades of lawmaking

John Wilkerson, creator of the Legislative Explorer

University of Washington political scientist John Wilkerson has matched data visualization with the study of lawmaking to create a new online tool for researchers and students called the Legislative Explorer. Think of it as big data meeting up with How a Bill Becomes a Law. “The goal was to get beyond the ‘Schoolhouse Rock’ narrative…

April 14, 2014

When job security becomes insecurity: Inequality the topic of April 25 conference


Economic inequality will be the topic when activists, academics and policymakers meet the public for a conference presented by the Harry Bridges Center for Labor Studies titled “Working Democracy: Labor and Politics in an Era of Inequality.”

February 18, 2014

Personal stories behind Exxon Valdez spill in book ‘Red light to Starboard’

"Red_Light_at_Starboard," by Angela Day, University of Washington doctoral student in political science.

Angela Day, UW doctoral student in political science, discusses her book, “Red Light to Starboard: Recalling the Exxon Valdez Disaster.”

May 21, 2013

The tea party and the politics of paranoia

Cover of "Change They Can't Believe In: The Tea Party and Reactionary Politcs in America"

New research argues that the tea party owes more to paranoid politics of the John Birch Society and others than traditional American conservatism. “True conservatives aren’t paranoid,” says political scientist Chris Parker. “Tea party conservatives are.”

February 5, 2013

Scholars urge Supreme Court to keep Voting Rights Act provisions ensuring equal access

Voters cast ballots in the 2012 election.

Political science and law scholars from the UW and elsewhere file a brief saying the Supreme Court should fully uphold the Voting Rights Act in a case out of Shelby County, Alabama.