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Instructor Class Description

Time Schedule:

Murat Somer
SIS 498
Seattle Campus

Readings in International Studies

Reading and discussion of selected works of major importance in interdisciplinary international studies. Restricted to majors in International Studies.

Class description

Why do ethnic or ethnic-religious divisions influence who people trade or socialize with, how they vote, or which social movement they join? How does ethnic conflict or cooperation affect economic and democratic development, and vice versa? This is a seminar designed to enable you to think critically on such questions by reading, writing on, and discussing with others some of the major works on the political economy of ethnic conflict and development. The seminar will review a segment of the research on ethnicity and nationalism, nation-building, conflict, and development. While expanding your knowledge in these areas, the seminar will also familiarize you with the way political economists conceptualize and examine questions such as trust, cooperation, and social-political movements. Country case studies will be used to apply theoretical knowledge to actual problems with implications for international relations.

Student learning goals

General method of instruction

Instruction will be based on readings, writing assignments, and interactive learning through class discussions under the guidance of the instructor. You will also be expected to contribute to class discussions by discussing an article from the syllabus and/or by acting as discussion leaders.

Recommended preparation

A good way of preparing for this course is to start thinking and reading about ethnic-religious tensions, conflicts, and developmental problems throughout the world.

Class assignments and grading

Good reading and writing skills are necessary to do well in this class, and the class assignments should assist you in honing your existing skills. Doing all of the assigned readings, regular attendance, and active class participation will ensure that you reach your full potential in the writing assignments. The latter will include five short reports that will be based on the readings and one term paper at the end of the term.

Grading will be based on short reports, term paper, and class participation.


The information above is intended to be helpful in choosing courses. Because the instructor may further develop his/her plans for this course, its characteristics are subject to change without notice. In most cases, the official course syllabus will be distributed on the first day of class.
Additional Information
Last Update by M Jane Meyerding
Date: 06/17/2002