Social Science 100: Global Issues Spring 2001
An Introduction to Social Sciences M J Strada
Office: 303 Shotwell Hall (x 8015)
Monday, Thursday, and Friday: 12:00-1:00 P.M.
Tuesday and Wednesday at WVU: 293-7140
e-mail: email@example.com [best way to reach me!]
Organization of the course:
This course is divided into six units and a conclusion, with each providing a different perspective on the nature of the world at the end of the twentieth century. Each unit relates specifically to a section of my textbook. [See Lesson Plans (LP), p. 9, for day-to-day details]
Unit One covers background information on which the rest of the course is based. A brief chapter introduces you to the realities of global interdependence; another helps conceptualize the world beyond the borders of the U.S. and muses over the extent to which our species is currently divided or united. The third chapter examines in some detail the history and philosophy of the social sciences and asks what these disciplines can tell us about human behavior on the world stage.
Unit Two revolves around the pivotal role of the nation-state system as humanity’s central means of organizing its public affairs. Chapter four looks at the rise and decline of the modern nation-state, while chapter five introduces the newer actors trying to steal the thunder of the nation-state on the world stage. The changing status of the nation-state is one of the key factors shaping contemporary global affairs.
In Unit Three we focus on society and culture as influences on human behavior. Chapter six explicates the basic concepts of sociology and anthropology, providing us with tools to comprehend why we act as we do. We then delve into chapter seven’s cross-cultural analysis of the rich variety characterizing human social institutions around the world. Last, a chapter is devoted to some of the problems stemming from cultural differences, after which you will be thrilled to look forward to a mid-term exam.
Subjective aspects of the human experience highlight the approach of Unit Four. First we examine questions related to why individual people behave as they do, relying on psychology for insights and analytical tools. Then we explore the realm of human ideas--especially in their ethical, religious, and human rights contexts--on the world stage.
One undeniable fact about the modern world is that economic forces are driving it to an unprecedented extent. Dramatic events that occurred last year left residents of Weirton, WV, able to attest to this new reality. Herein lies the stuff of Unit Five. Chapter eleven touches on the basic concepts necessary to talk about economic affairs, applying them to the prospects for the American economy. The global economy gets highlighted in chapter twelve, which in some ways is blending into a seamless web with the U.S. economy (the world’s largest and most powerful economy).
Unit Six relates more to the physical realities of human life on planet earth and the range of ecological dilemmas currently facing our species. Chapter thirteen spells out geography’s contributions to new understandings of how we interface with the finite realities of spaceship earth. Chapter fourteen confronts the range of global problems resulting from human profligacy in developing the world around us. In chapter fifteen we ask the difficult question: how might we begin to reverse some of the ecological disasters which humanity has left in its wake?
Finally, in a concluding segment, chapter sixteen engages in conjectural analysis regarding current global trends. While we cannot be certain that these trends will continue to shape our future world, they provide the best peek which social scientists can offer us in the midst of an era of profound change.
My Through the Global Lens: An Introduction to the Social Sciences (Prentice Hall, 1998), 489 pgs. Available in bookstore - $46.75 (new). Please keep this syllabus in your book and bring both to all class meetings, because we will use them often. Since the content of this course follows the textbook very closely, you do not need to take copious notes. Illustrative mini-cases are included in each chapter and will be discussed in class. A Student Study Guide for my book is also available, but the Instructor’s Manual on closed reserve in the Library does the same thing much better.
Goal and Objectives:
The general goal of this course is to provide you with the tools needed to understand the nature of the rapidly changing and "shrinking"world in which we live; and, how these changes affect us in ways which did not exist for previous generations. The importance of the great global issues (environment, population, human rights, the nuclear dilemma, energy, and food) as contributors to interdependence will be carefully studied. We also explore whether the idea of an emerging global community of shared interests constitutes a genuine reality, or, merely an illusion. Within this broad analytical framework, more specific objectives can be identified. Through the use of class lecture and discussion, text readings, values clarification activities, films, case studies and a term paper; you will be expected to comprehend:
* the major ways in which humanity can be divided up into groupings (nation-states,east-west, north-south, economic divisions, religious civilizations, etc.)
* the role of geography in influencing society and culture
* Russia vs. U.S. as historic case studies in geographic impact on society/culture
* the relationship between society and culture vis-a-vis other related concepts
* comparative aspects of seven different cultures
* how cultures facilitate or inhibit the emergence of a community of world interests
* basic descriptors of the evolution of the nation-state
* the roles of other newer actors on the world stage
* the variety of serious challenges to the nation-state system
* the changing nature of world conflict (especially in relationship to democracy)
* historical examples of conflict and conflict resolution
* the nature and the components of global interdependence
* the global issues (environment, population, human rights, the nuclear dilemma, energy, and food) as both specific and general contributors to interdependence
* the meaning of the "new world order" in the post-Cold War
If you read a mystery novel at the beach last summer, that was an example of passive reading. A more aggressive kind of reading--active reading--is required when reading a college textbook, which is dense with facts and concepts. Active reading means attacking each chapter of the textbook by writing in the book and forcing yourself to react to what you read. A pen should be permanently attached to your phalanges. Make notes in the margins that capture the essence of each section, and jot down ideas that come to you as you read. Circle or use a squiggly line to identify recurring themes important to the author. Use the glossary to learn new words. Underline and highlight selectively, because if you merely highlight most of the text you have done little to help yourself when the inexorable exam appears. At the end of a chapter, make a few notes about what you have, and have not, learned thus far. And above all else, read the relevant chapters before we discuss them in class. That way I won’t be speaking a foreign language. If you need help with study skills, someone to proofread papers, or a tutor to assist in test preparation, please call Mrs. Lanny Couto (8020) at the WLSC Tutoring Service.
I attended a teaching seminar last summer. Among the things I learned there was something called the "motivational mantra," which you should repeat three times whenever you do not feel like concentrating on your studies. It goes like this: "Would you like fries with that?"
Conceptual Approach to the Subject:
There can be little doubt that we live in a rapidly changing world characterized by global interdependence: this means that our fate as Americans is more intimately tied to that of others in ways only dreamed about twenty or thirty years ago. Since what happens elsewhere affects us more than ever before, it is necessary to understand better the complex world around us. While numerous scholars have described this web of interdependence and called for greater cooperation between humans, international history is filled with massive conflict (wars have been present during 92% of recorded human history and 111 million people have died in wars this century alone.) There is no guarantee that humans will be able to overcome temptations for conflict in order to cooperate more effectively in the future, even though survival of our species may depend upon it. One of the basic questions to be addressed here relates to the influence of problems in the areas of the great global issues (environment, population, human rights, the nuclear dilemma, energy, and food) upon the development of a shrinking and more interdependent world.
Writing Across the Curriculum (WAC):
Since most of the ways in which global interdependence affects you are not immediately or overtly apparent, I will attempt to illustrate somewhat abstract concepts like "interdependence" and "world community" with a variety of activities. However, the recurrent pedagogical technique applied here is known as Writing Across the Curriculum (WAC). The WAC movement in higher education is about 25 years old--old enough to have learned what works via trial and error. You will be asked to write something just about every class period. Most of this writing is to help you process information and conceptualize the subject-matter, not to turn in for my evaluation. Keep these writings in a Journal.
My favorite activity of this type I call a "five-minute writing," which by its very brevity suggests that it is not polished writing well-pondered. NONE of the 5-minute writings will be graded by me. Rather, they provide a way for you to express yourself concerning something that we are covering in class. Five-minute writings also represent a way to break up lecture and discussion, and I will often ask you to discuss your views on a given subject with one or two fellow students. Please keep all 5-minute writings together in a personal Journal. Typically, the class format will look like this:
Mini-Lecture --- 5-Minute Writing --- Mini-Lecture --- 5-Minute Writing --- Group Discussion
Two more traditional writing assignments, involving illustrative case studies from chapters 4 and 9, will be turned in and graded by me. A case study is an historical situation examined in some depth to spur discussion intended to illustrate some concept or theme in a more personal and concrete manner. Unit 2 uses the case of the "Cuban missile crisis" to provide a look at problems of conflict and conflict resolution in international relations. Unit 4 examines the case of "Truman’s decision to drop the bomb on Hiroshima." These case studies require that you participate in a discussion based on background reading and handouts, and submit a reaction paper (minimum=750 words). The Reaction Papers should be analytical essays, in the sense defined below in detail. Print the computer word-count at the end of your Reaction Paper.
For the Cuban case, your Reaction Paper needs to incorporate these elements, of which #4 is the most important, and #1 is the least important: 1) an introductory paragraph briefly describing the essential facts of the case: what happened?; 2) an assessment of the behavior of the two leaders involved in the crisis: John Kennedy and Nikita Khrushchev; 3) your evaluation of why Khrushchev placed missiles in Cuba and whether the U.S. accurately perceived the motivations behind the behavior of the Russians; 4) the long-term global concrete effects and psychological effects of the Cuban missile crisis. You will receive extensive, detailed feedback on this assignment when it is returned to you (covering both "big things" and "little things.")
The Reaction Paper for the Hiroshima case is similarly analytical. The questions that you will want to integrate into your essay are these: What did Truman decide, and why did he do so? Was his decision an ethical one? Among the range of existing alternatives, which ones do you consider the best alternatives, and which the worst ones? What would you have done in his position?
Essential to your success in this course is a longer writing assignment, namely the Term Paper. It involves a regional treatment of current events during the course of the semester. You will choose from the following regions: 1) Russia, 2) Sub-Sahara Africa, 3) Asia, 4) Pacific Rim, 5) Europe, 6) Latin America, 7) Middle East, 8) North America.
A form of contract grading is used for the term paper:
C= An adequately written minimum 1,000 word paper DESCRIBING current events in your region this semester will earn a grade of C.
A or B= In addition to the 1,000 word DESCRIPTIVE account, to receive a grade higher than a C you must write a minimum 500 word ANALYTICAL treatment of the topic. Analysis requires that you think more complexly and go beyond mere reporting of events. It should ideally involve conceptualization, abstraction, and personalization. Analysis can be like an editorial, whereas description is like straight news reporting. You need to tie together varied events in a thematic essay expressing a point of view in the ANALYTICAL part. I will be looking for clarity, coherence, logic, depth, comprehensiveness, English usage, creativity, and neatness. ALL TERM PAPERS MUST BE TYPEWRITTEN. Separate the two sections and label each clearly. A listing of articles used should be included at the end of the paper. There is no maximum length for the papers. Please do NOT submit papers in covers or jackets.
Descriptive and Analytical Sections of Term Paper:
The descriptive part of your essay is intended to summarize, capsulize, or synthesize significant events reported this semester for the region that you have chosen. It is a straight-forward recounting of events in summary fashion. This section should be concerned with description or classification rather than explanation. The descriptive part is essentially the skeletal outline of major events which will be augmented later by the more substantive analytical section, if you choose to do that part. It is like an outline of events, although it should be written in regular paragraphs and in acceptable English prose. The key skill involved in the descriptive section is the ability to boil down (synthesize) broad information to a relatively terse summary essay.
While the descriptive essay is somewhat like straight news reporting, the analytical essay (what some refer to as critical thinking) is more akin to an editorial. It involves developing a theme or a consistent point of view related to this topic. It is generally more difficult because it requires that you think more creatively or complexly than in the descriptive part. There is not a clearly right or wrong answer or opinion in the analytical essay. Your ability to develop a coherent point of view clearly and convincingly is more important here than is supplying particular information. There is no specific formula for the analysis. It might assess the significance of something, compare and contrast different phenomena, predict on a topic, express preferences or values, or apply a concept from some other area to the events examined. If I had to identify three key elements of the analysis, they would be:
You are informally evaluated by others every day of your life according to your communications, both oral and written. If you choose to go to law school or graduate school, nothing will be as crucial. But regardless of your future career plans, writing and verbal skills certainly will be part of the assessment when you face your first employment interview. A paper, or an essay exam, in a social science course is no different in this respect. What you have to say is invariably affected by how you express yourself.
Since people learn by doing, students improve writing skills through repetition, unless what is repeated is faulty. The grading of essays and papers invariably involves an element of subjective evaluation. I have found that what influences me consists of roughly three-quarters content and one-quarter manner of expression. The human element involved in grading written work makes that process less than perfect. However, the alternative--reliance solely on objective multiple choice and true-false questions--can be sterile and pedantic.
In general, I am looking for these cumulative qualities:
for a D -- minimum length, on task, legibility/neatness
for a C -- spelling and grammar, accuracy, organization
for a B -- clarity, coherence, logic
for an A -- comprehensiveness, depth, creativity
Abbreviation key for textual comments:
sp. = spelling; w.w.=wrong word; awk.=awkward expression; unc.=unclear expression; cap.=capitalization; c.s.=choppy sentences; o.t.=on task; verb.=verbosity; leg.=legibility; neat.=neatness; pass.=passive voice; P=paragraph; ag.=agreement problems; trans.=transition problems.
Regular class attendance is considered to be an integral part of this course and is expected. As an incentive, students receive one (1) point for every class attended.
A varied mix of evaluative criteria will be used. Exams include a take-home analytical essay question, in-class descriptive essays, and objective questions. Questions come from the Instructor’s Manual for my textbook, which is on closed reserve in the Library. A total point system is used to determine grading with the following methods of evaluation.
Activity Points 3 Exams 300 (100 each) 2 Case Reaction Papers 50 (25 each) Term Paper 100 Attendance 40 Participation 10 Total 500
Exams (3) - A= 90-100, B= 80-89, C= 65-79, D=51-64, F= 0-50
Case Papers - A = 45-50, B= 40-44, C= 31-39, D= 20-30, F=0-19
Term paper - A = 90-100, B=80-89, C=65-79, D=51-64, F=0-50
Attendance - A = 38-40, B=35-37, C=28-34, D=21-27, F=0-20
Participation - A= 9-10, B=6-8, C=4-7, D=2-3, F=0-1
Total Points - A=452-500, B=401-451, C=323-400, D=247-322, F=0-246
Make-up Exams: (a fable)
Four students approached me the day after an exam with a dubious tale: they had experienced a flat tire while driving to campus for the exam. Their question was: "Can we take a make-up exam?" The answer is: "Sure, but it’s good news/bad news thing. The good news? That there is only one question, and if you get it right, you have an ‘A.’ The bad news? If you get it wrong, you have an ‘F.’ As for the make-up exam, take out a sheet of paper and in two words tell me which of the four tires went flat."
III--COURSE OUTLINE AND LESSON PLANS (LP):
INTRODUCTORY CLASS: 3 Icebreakers: "Hello, I’m...;" "Small group dyad introductions;" "Where do you fit?" Pus review of syllabus and course overview.
Unit I: Background for Studying Human Behavior on the World Stage
Objectives: To understand the global nature of modern life, the major ways of conceptualizing a complex world, and the historic and philosophical foundations of the social science disciplines. (Two weeks)
Readings: Text, chapters 1, 2, 3. [syllabus quiz for fun]
LESSON PLANS (LP): Chapters 1, 2, 3 [keep all 5-min.Writings together in a personal Journal]
Introductory Class: Getting Acquainted
5-min: "Hello, I’m ..." --Students get up, mill around, and introduce selves to all they do not know.
15-min: "Dyad Introduction of a Partner"--Students tell one other person next to them about themselves, then put students in circles with 6-8 chairs each, have each person introduce his/her partner to the group.
10-min: "Choosing where You Fit"--Push chairs back to wall, ask students to move to one side of room concerning a series of dichotomous preferences: night vs. day person; commuter vs. dorm; WV vs. out-of-state; smoker vs. non-smoker; cats vs. dogs; Coke vs. Pepsi; IBM vs. Mac; coffee vs. tea; etc.
20-min: "Reviewing Course Syllabus"--Have students skim over syllabus, review main themes of syllabus, and assign reading of syllabus for short quiz during class 2 on syllabus content.
3/5" cards: fill out for next class: name, hometown, major, year, career plans, outside interests
Chap. 1--LP: A
Key Concepts Introducing Global Interdependence
10-min: "Syllabus Quiz"--Review correct responses and answer any questions about syllabus.
10-min: "Metaphor Making"--Define meaning of metaphor, explain why essential to abstract topics, and discuss the ones used in chap. 1 to get at interdependence.
10-min: "Interdependence"--Explain how contemporary economics, the rise of global issues, and new technologies like the Internet serve to link all humans together.
10-min: "The Social Science Six"--Introduce the six social science disciplines, show how they all relate to human behavior, and distinguish the specializations of each.
5-min. Writing: "Which social science do you think is most interesting, and why?" Discuss in dyads.
Competing Social Identities: How Do We Divide Up the Human Family?
15-min: "One Human Division: Into Regions of the World"--Map Exercise:
Count off 1-8 for groups, distribute handouts of blank world maps, each group trace the region assigned to it based on social, political, geographic, and cultural characteristics of that region (WITHOUT BOOK), then using books, check on accuracy of group tracing for region, report to full class.
20-min: Mini-Lecture: "Defining Seven Other Competitors for Identity"
(nation-states, econ. super-regions, north/south, rival econ. systems, worlds of development, civilizations, 1 global community)
5-min. Writing: "Which of the rival identities do you see as most important?" Discuss in dyads.
Ask class how many chose each alternative.
Idealism Vs. Realism in Thinking About Human Behavior
5-min: "Define Idealism Vs. Realism as Key Concepts"
20-min: "Idealism Vs. Realism Applied to Human Social Identity"--
Relate Idealists to Optimists, and Realists to Pessimists, as discussed in book (p. 66), concerning feasibility of a Global Community (global citizenry).
Optimists Pessimists John Lennon, Howard Rheingold Samuel Huntington, Robert Ardrey Virtual Community based on Internet Territoriality and human history Lennon’s song, "Imagine" (symbol of optimism) Feature Film, Waterworld (pessimism)
10-min: "Read Kurile Islands Case Study on pgs. 33-34"
5-min. Writing: "How can we account for such seemingly self-defeating behavior on the part of Russia, and does it bolster the case of the Optimists or the Pessimists?" Discuss in triads.
Pre-History and Recorded History: Origins of Humanness
[Place time-line on board] or distribute handout:
35 mill.--Hominids down from trees
1 mill--out of Africa
2.5 mill.-100,000--Homo Erectus, fire and stone tools
300,000-100,000--Homo Sapiens, rituals
100,000--1st modern humans
10,000--last Ice Age
479 AD--fall of Roman Empire
500-1500 AD--Middle Ages
20 min: "Place students in triads to write tentative answers to these questions":
What were 2 humanlike predecessors of Homo Sapiens?
For how long were our ancestors hunter/gatherers?
Roughly when do we separate prehistory from recorded human history, and what development caused this change?
When were Neanderthals and Cro-Magnons alive?
Is the teaching of evolution incompatible with the teachings of mainstream Catholicism and Protestantism?
What was the flap all about in Kansas in the fall of 1999?
20 min: "Use student responses to these questions as a catalyst for a mini-lecture tying into the timeline spanning the human story."
10-min: "Mini-Lecture on background of Renaissance, Enlightenment, and Americanization of Social Sciences." [as preparation for next class, LP:B]
Origins of the Social Sciences and Their Two Progenitors.
50 min: "Activity: ‘Hearing Both Sides of Scientism and Humanism."
[Preparation: Place students in groups of 8 and have them count off 1-8].
5 min: "Mini-Lecture on Scientism versus Humanism." (Students follow along on p. 60)
In groups of 8: Two presenting pairs and four judges: 1 & 2 = Scientism; 3 & 4 = Humanism; 5-8 = judges
5 min: "All students review Scientism and Humanism on p. 60."
5 min: "1 & 2 present Scientism to judges."
5 min: "3 & 4 present Humanism to judges."
10 min: "Judges (5-8) take turns grading (A - F) each pair, giving reasons for grades."
THEN SWITCH ROLES (1-4 become judges)
5 min: "5 & 6 present Scientism to judges."
5 min: "7 & 8 present humanism to judges."
10 min: "Judges (1-4) take turns grading (A - F) each pair, giving reasons for grades."
Social Sciences "Roomy" Enough for Scientism and Humanism Through the Eyes of Case Studies
10 min: "Mini-Lecture: Review Steps of Scientific Method on p. 51."
THREE CASE STUDIES EXERCISE
[triads: students count off, 1-2-3]
10 min: "1 takes 3.1 (Anastasia), 2 takes 3.2 (Milburn) and 3 takes 3.3 (Saenger)--each student re-reads the assigned case study."
30 min: "Each student reports to the triad on: 1) what happened?; 2) who were the good guys and bad guys?; 3) how does this case fit in to make a point about this chapter?
[Process activity by filling in any gaps during plenary session]
Unit II: Pivotal Role of the Nation-State in Ordering Human Affairs
Objectives: To examine the evolution of nation-state system in historical context; to be conversant with the other major actors at work today; to know the various new challenges to the nation-state system; to understand how these challenges impact upon the central problem of violent conflict in international affairs. (Two weeks)
Readings: Text, chapters 4, 5.
Documentary film: Mirror, Mirror, Northern Ireland
Case Study: Cuban Missile Crisis (Reaction Paper).
Simulation game: "Starpower"--Human nature and political power in a 3-tiered society
LESSON PLANS (LP): Chaps. 4-5
The Nation-State System and Realism versus Idealism
20 min: "Background Mini-Lecture":
define n-s; Peace of Westphalia; increased # of n-s’s; heterogeneous world; mini-case 4.1: UK: 4 into 1; Realism vs. Idealism as megatheories
20 min: "Activity: Choosing between Realism and Idealism":
Students individually review Realism/Idealism dichotomy summarized on p. 66; Each writes a paragraph on which view they identify with, and why, then discuss in dyads. Take poll of whole class comparing number preferring each alternative viewpoint.
10 min: "Prepare class for film in next class": Mirror, Mirror, Northern Ireland, which relates to Case 4.1 (UK) and illustrates nationalism as a force threatening the viability of even a highly successful nation-state (UK).
View film: Mirror, Mirror, Northern Ireland (50 min.)
[Terms on Board and Define: Northern Ireland, Republic of Ireland, Loyalists, Republicans, The Troubles, IRA, Sinn Fein, Battle of Boyne, 12th of July, paramilitaries, symbolism of green and orange.]
The Protestant Loyalists of Northern Ireland belong to a nation-state (UK), but feel abandoned by it, believing that the United Kingdom is dominated by the English people (nation). The modern tension existing between feelings of nationalism and current nation-states is well illustrated. In 1945, there were about 55 nation-states in the world, today there are at least 194. This film asks the provocative question, "Is nationalism tearing apart the nation-state system?"
War’s Devastating Legacy
20 min: "Background Mini-Lecture on War in Human History":
Meaning of 1,000 X 1,000 X 1,000;
Meaning of 111 million in 20th Century;
Just War Doctrine (4 conditions) and 1991 Gulf War ;
The Nuclear Dilemma: BOT and MAD during Cold War; nuclear proliferation in post-Cold War
20 min: "Democratic Peace Activity":
Define the theory of the Democratic Peace; place students in dyads: one take Realist view, one take Idealist view; each talks about how Realism and Idealism would react to the claims of the Democratic Peace theory.
10 min: "Preparation for Discussion of Cuban Case in LP:D": Brief overview of facts and assign it for reading.
Case Study: The Cuban Missile Crisis (1962)
[handouts: Main Players; Events Synopsis]
Prologue: Sputnik; 1960 elections; Bay of Pigs fiasco; purpose of case studies?
20 min: "Discussion: What Happened?" (Background, players, and description of events)
10 min: "Brief film clip from Groupthink, and how it can be dysfunctional by intimidating potential dissenters into conformity."
10 min: "Introduce concept of ‘Groupthink’ (Irving L. Janis)"; Place students in triads to discuss: To what extent did the phenomenon of Groupthink occur, or not occur, in US deliberations over missiles in Cuba? Answer any remaining questions about Cuban case.
10 min: "Assign Reaction Paper (min=750 words)": follow guidelines on p. 5 of the syllabus.
New Actors on the World Stage
20 min: "Mini-Lecture on: 1) global issues, 2) four new actors":
[Place these questions on the board as catalyst for discussion; answer them if students cannot]:
What are NGOs, IGOs, MNCs, and IFIs? How are they becoming more important?
What are the six great global issues discussed in chapter 5? Why is the issue of cooperation (idealism) especially critical in responding to these global issues?
In the struggle for the hearts and minds of humanity, what is inherently competitive (realism) about the nation-state system, and how has this hurt the ability of the nation-state to solve global problems?
15 min: "Activity: In dyads, have students list as many NGOs and IGOs as they can think of." (Describe it as a competition to see who can come up with the longest valid list).
5-min. Writing: "Explaining IFIs": Using the book, one person in dyad look up the IMF, and one look up the World Bank, write down a brief description of what it does, and then explain that IFI to the other person.
Processing Case Studies on New Actors (NGOs, IGOs, MNCs, IFIs)
[list 9 cases on the board]
5.1: Flipper Factor; 5.2: Rainbow Warrior; 5.3: Perzent; 5.4: Tigers; 5.5: Waste Technology Industries; 5.6: European Union and Chocolates; 5.7: Globalization of ICI; 5.8: Indian Child Labor; 5.9: Mexican Scissors Crisis.
10 min: "Background Mini-Lecture," re-defining each category of actor (NGO, IGO, MNC, IFI), and how they all challenge the dominant position of nation-states in today’s world.
15 min:"Briefly Review Facts of all 9 cases."
10 min: "Students each review in the book the 3 cases that strike them as most important."
5-min Writing: "Which single case best illustrates something essential about one of the four types of new actors on the world stage?"
10 min: "Triads meet to discuss what each person has written about a case."
Unit III: Society and Culture in Cross-Cultural Perspective
Objectives: To understand the relationship between society and culture and to compare and contrast salient features of diverse cases; to use basic conceptual tools from sociology and anthropology in this process of comparison. (Two weeks)
Readings: Text chapters 6, 7, 8.
Documentary films: Baseball in Japan; The Baka People (Pygmies)
LESSON PLANS (LP): Chaps. 6-8
Reviewing Key Concepts From Sociology and Anthropology
[list key concepts on board]
Sociology vs. Anthropology, as related to, society vs. culture
Physical and cultural anthropology
World stage analogy
Groups: primary versus secondary
Societies: simple versus complex
Evolution of Means of Subsistence (from Lenskis): a) hunting and gathering; b) pastoral; c) horticultural; d) agricultural; e) industrial; f) post-industrial.
20 min: "Background Mini-Lecture on Key Concepts."
10 min: "Sample Quiz Exercise": Give students 10 multi-choice questions from Instructor’s Manual as bridge to discussion about key concepts in chapter.
15 min: "Processing Quiz Results": Place students in triads so that they can help each other figure out why they missed the questions that they did. Answer any questions that have triads stumped.
5 min: "Introduce the film about the Baka culture for next period. Explain how it illustrates the flexibility of culture in a simple, hunting/gathering society."
Documentary Film, The Baka People (Pygmies)
[distribute handout with questions about the Baka culture]
50 min: "View the documentary film narrated by Denzil Washington about this peaceful, sustainable culture located around the Ituri river forest in Cameroon (Africa). These hunter/gatherers practice a lifestyle much endangered by the encroachment of modern civilization.
[Have students complete questions as they view film]
Universal Social Institutions: Family and Religion
10 min: "Background Mini-Lecture on Family."
Cultural Universals; long maturation process for humans; marriage’s dual roles (sexual and economic ties); monogamy versus polygamy; arranged versus choice; nuclear versus extended.
15 min: "Marital styles in five cultures" :Pukapuka; Taramuit Inuit; Nayar; Khasi; Sri Lanka.
Place students in groups of 5, have each student look up one of the above cases, then report back to the small group about the interesting qualities of that assigned culture.
10 min: "Background Mini-Lecture on Religion."
The supernatural; animism, polytheism, and monotheism; anthropomorphism.
10 min: "Vital Question: Why do we always find religion in human cultures?"
Three main theories: 1) E. Durkheim (need for community); 2) E. Tylor (intellectual understanding); 3) B. Malinowsky (death anxiety).
5-min. Writing: "Which theory do you agree with, and why?"
Comparing Two Asian, Collectivist Cultures: Japan and China
20 min: "Background Mini-Lecture": Summarize some of the main themes in the text that describe Japan; then, repeat the process for China.
20 min: "Small group activity discussing Japan and China."
Have students count off 1-4, put them in groups of 4 people; then, 1 & 2 brainstorm together to come up with a list of 3-5 cultural DIFFERENCES between Japan and China. Likewise, persons 3 & 4 brainstorm to come up with a list of 3-5 cultural SIMILARITIES between Japan and China
5-min. Writing: "Which of these two Asian cultures would you prefer to visit for a summer?"
[poll class at end to see how many chose each country]
Comparing two Cultures more Familiar (than Japan and China) to Americans: Russia and Morocco
[use maps and put basic terms on board]
5 min: intro.: how these cultures are less exotic to Americans; culture as an elastic concept
30 min: "Background Mini-Lecture": Summarize some of the main themes in the text that describeRussia (a Slavic, Eurasian culture); then, repeat the process for Morocco (a divers Islamic culture); these are civilizations
15 min: "Activity: Selling a Culture." Put students in dyads, one person lists reasons why Russian culture is more interesting, other does same for Moroccan culture; Finally, students share their views.
Illustrative Case Studies and Discussing the Kohls Explanatory Model of Comparative Cultures
15 min: "Reporting on Case Studies:" Put students in dyads; one person reads the case on the Cultural Revolution (7.1), then explains to partner how it works as an example of social deviance; the other student reads case of the Tuvan Throat Singers (7.2), then explains to partner how it illustrates the concepts of heterogeneity and subculture.
15 min: "Background Mini-Lecture on Kohls Model and Comparing Cultures."
[put the "5 Orientations" on board and have students open to p. 153]
Define each of the orientations of culture (human nature, person/nature, time, activity, social), reviewing each of the 3 possible responses to each orientation.
5-min. Writing: "How is the U.S. unique among the cultures listed on the SOCIAL dimension?"
[discuss responses in plenary session]
Testing Cultural Relativism
5 min: Intro: "Read chapter Synopsis to class as concise overview of (brief) chapter 8."
10 min: "Min-Lecture": Define clearly the core concepts of ethnocentrism and cultural relativism.
10 min: "Activity--Three Moral Dilemmas": Have students read over cases 8.1 (Lydia Oluloro), 8.2 (Gui Bingquan), and 8.3 (Michael Fay).
5-min. Writing: "Which of these three cases seems most morally repulsive to you, and why?"
10 min: "Discussion": Process individual responses in triads.
10 min: "Summary": Re-cap chapter’s conclusions about cultural clashes in the context of human history’s tendency toward cultural imperialism by the most powerful nations, and the U.S.’s special responsibility in this regard today.
[distribute mid-term written feedback evaluation form: 1) strengths of course; 2) weaknesses of course; 3) suggestions for course]
Unit V: Subjective Experiences in the Human Drama
Objectives: To comprehend inward, individually-oriented factors influencing human behavior; to identify ways in which psychology contributes to insights and theories of human social experience, including cognitive and affective applications to world religions and issues of human rights. (Two weeks)
Readings: Text chapters 9, 10
Documentary film: Faces of the Enemy
Case Study: Decision to Drop the Bomb (Reaction Paper)
Simulation Game: "Alligator River"--Ethics in action: absolute or relative?
LESSON PLANS (LP): Chaps. 9-10
Evaluating Four Approaches to Understanding Human Motivation
[place jargon terms, and key names, on the board]
35 min: "Lecture on 4 Personality Theories in text": the two 20th century heavyweights--Psychoanalysis (Freud) and Behaviorism (Watson and Skinner)two more recent contenders: Humanism (‘60s) and Bio-psychology (‘90s)
5-min. Writing: "Which theory do you find most interesting, and why?"
10 min: "Discuss writings in dyads"
Applying Psychological Concepts to Case Studies
Intro: Psychology emphasizes individual behavior, but many of its concepts also have societal applications.
[Cases:9.1--Americanizing Vietnam War; 9.3--Czech and Dominican crises in ‘60s; 9.5--Timothy McVeigh and Oklahoma City]
15 min: "Reviewing the Cases"--Place students into triads, have each person read one of the 3 cases and summarize its facts for the small group.
15 min: "Mini-Lecture on 3 psychological concepts related to the 3 cases"--1) narcissism 2) selective perception; 3) paranoia.
5-min. Writing: Pick one of the 3 cases (9.1; 9.3; 9.5) and explain how one of the 3 concepts introduced above can be applied to help account for the dynamics of that case."
10 min: "Plenary Q & A on this topic as a vehicle for synthesizing the 3 cases with the 3 concepts addressed here."
5 min: "Preparation for the psychology of enemy-making, treated in Sam Keen’s documentary film, Faces of the Enemy."
[distribute handout summarizing Sam Keen film on enemy-making]
This 55-minute documentary film, Faces of the Enemy, uses the case study of David Lee Rice, perpetrator of a bizarre 1985 murder in Seattle, to get at the larger issue of how societies go about preparing themselves to do what they do in wars (kill people). Before nations fire any shots, they all seem to engage in the same mental process: de-humanizing (demonizing) adversaries into enemies so that killing seems not like killing people, but rather vermin, monsters, or evil beings. The propagandistic art work of societies is used to provide graphic, visual evidence of how de-humanization operates. Keen says that it looks like "their artists all went to the same art school, because the visual images used for de-humanization all look so similar."
Ethics in Action
5-min. Writing: "Ethical Motivation;" Identify one individual you know personally, and one famous person you do not know, who share this in common: they both seem to have been motivated by ethical considerations to do something that was difficult. Use a nickname, if appropriate, to protect the anonymity of the person you know.
5 min: "Dyad Discussions; Share views with one other student as to why it is often difficult to do the right thing, and why you think the two people you identified chose to do so?"
(The idea of doing the right thing, as expressed by people like Gandhi, may seem like a simple one, but it is often very hard to actually put in practice).
10 min: "Mini-Lecture (from text)--Countries sometimes clearly do not do the right thing." For example, when the U.S. under F.D.R. turned a blind eye from 1933-45 to the plight of European Jews (p. 211, from Troper book), and the disastrous consequences.
Fortunately, sometimes governments choose to do the right thing. Why? Three good reasons are spelled out on p. 196: review these--1) the nature of democracies; 2) global public opinion; 3) core values of key leaders. Examples in text: Sweden’s Raoul Wallenberg and Jews; J.F.K and the Cuban missile crisis.
20 min: "Sometimes the right thing is very hard to know": The Hiroshima case study (in text). The spirited 1995 Smithsonian retrospective demonstrated that even after 50 years, President Harry Truman’s decision to drop the atomic bomb on Hiroshima remains controversial. (Give background so case can be discussed in the next class). Assign reading about case (pgs. 196-99), and Reaction Paper #2 (see Syllabus page 5 for instructions), due in one week.
Human Rights: 50 Years of Progress
15 min: "Brief discussion Re: Truman’s decision–students agree or disagree."
5 min Intro: "Defining Human Rights": Show how human rights provide somewhat more legal protection than does ethics; cite some examples of human rights as listed on p. 210.
25 min: "Lecture: HRs--50 Years of Progress"
- WW II Holocaust challenges sovereignty
- precedent of Nuremberg Trials
- Int’l Bill of Rights (sim. To US Bill of Rights): a) UDHR; b) Econ & Soc Covenant; c) Civil & Pol Covenant
- Role of NGOs (e.g., HRs Watch, AI, Int’l Comm Jurists): a) 70s Monitoring; b) 80s Single-issue Movements
- Role of Like-Minded Nations (Canada & Scandinavians)
5-min. Writing: "Why does the traditional concept of sovereignty present a problem for putting teeth into the protection of human rights?"
Taking Sides on Controversial Issues: Case Studies
[format based on exercise from 1st class]
VOTING WITH YOUR FEET (either/or choices at end of class)
30 min: "Background Mini-Lectures on Cases"
10.1-- Ethics of Gene Hunting:
Cite basic facts; Students write down: Agree with Kenneth Kidd, or, George Annas?
10.2-- Vietnam War Draftees:
Cite basic facts; Write down what you would have done: Gone to Nam; Resisted the draft.
10.3-- Salman Rushdie:
Cite basic facts; Write down: If you were Clinton, would you have invited Rushdie to visit?
10.5-- Sino-American Trade and Human Rights:
Cite basic facts; Write down: Would you grant China MFN status?
10.6-- Women in the Middle East:
Cite basic facts; Write down: If your sister had a chance to study for a year in Egypt, would you encourage, or discourage, her to go?
10 min: Voting With Your Feet: Clear away the center of the room, have students move to one side or the other according to their choices on these controversial issues. Draw any conclusions suggested by patterns in the choices made by students in this exercise.
Unit V: Emerging: An Economic Global Seamless Web
Objectives: to describe and evaluate the condition of the U.S.’s national economy using basic indicators; then, to comprehend the new realities of global economic interdependence. (Two weeks)
Readings: Text chapters 11, 12
Documentary film: What in the World is a Dollar Worth?
LESSON PLANS (LP): Chaps. 11-12
Basic Concepts Crucial to Understand the Functioning of Economics (at any Level)
20 min: "Background Mini-Lecture": Essential Definitions–
Economics as production, distribution, and consumption of goods and services
Four factors of production (2 human; 2 non-human)
The concept of a market
Supply and demand equal pricing
Bartering and money
Monopolies and cartels (kill competition)
Primary, Secondary, Tertiary economics
30 min: Film, What in the World is a Dollar Worth? (Fixed vs. elastic exchange rates; gold standard; 1945 Bretton Woods Conference; 1973 floating exchange system)
Evolution of Western Economies, Economic Dysfunctions, and America Meets the Global Market
[this topic is dense with content, thus requires lecture]
A. Evolution of Western Economies:
Socialism and Communism
5-min. Writing: "Which of the above stages of economic development do you understand least?"
B. Economic Dysfunctions:
Business Cycles and Recessions
The Great Depression
C. The U.S. and the Global Market:
Fordism and Economies of Scale
Protectionism Vs. Free Trade
5-min. Writing: "Do you see any manifestation of the global economy among people that you know personally?"
Discussing Case Studies in Triads
[students write responses to 5 Case Study questions]
11.1: De Beers (cartel) background
Monopolies and cartels
US anti-trust laws
De Beers legal strategy
Link to recent Microsoft case
Q: "Does this case study affect the way you feel about diamonds as symbols of love?"
11.2: GM’s Roger Smith background (downsizing)
R. Smith and robotics
M. Moore’s documentary film, Roger and Me
Labor backlash and resentment
Q: "Do you agree, or disagree, with Michael Moore’s point of view?"
11.3: Harley Davidson background (protectionist tariff)
Late 70s Japanese success
80s changes at Harley and ‘83 tariff
Impressive 90s results at Harley
Q: "What does this case tell you about protectionism?"
11.4: The US and Acceptance of WTO background
3 recent presidents all back WTO
GATT talks preceding WTO formation
US opposition groups to WTO in 1994
Proponents of WTO in 1994
Q: "Would you have voted for, or against, the WTO in 1994?
[have students discuss their written answers in triads]
International Economics: Historical Background and the Modern Reality of Interdependence
A. Historical Background (Chronology, p. 257):
Britain as 19th Cen. Hegemon
Britain changes from Mercantilism to Free Trade (repeal of Corn Laws)
WW I’s unfinished economic business
England and France each owe US $10B
Reparations for Germany
Dawes Plan (1924-28) as a brief solution
Germany’s hyperinflation in 1920s
1930 Smoot-Hawley tariff
The Great Depression
WW II and Bretton Woods Conference (US as new Hegemon)
GATT’s role in pushing Free Trade (imp. of Theory of Comparative Advantage)
1973 - US abandons gold tied to dollar and starts "free-floating" exchange rates
1980s: Japan advances while US Hegemony slips (later regained in 1990s)
B. North/South Chasm:
new power of MNCs in international economics
G-77 represents poor South and pushes NIEO
terms-of-trade problem working against poor countries
C. Two Competing Theories concerning Poverty of South:
Conventional Theory (causes internal, solutions external)
Radical Theory (causes external, solutions internal)
D. Three Developmental Strategies:
Import-Substitution (Ghana, Mexico, Brazil, India) did not work
Export-Led Industrialization (Japan, South Korea, Taiwan) worked far better
Collective Bargaining (similar to labor history in US) show some potential
5-min. Writing: "What does the section on South Korea and Ghana (p. 284) tell you about strategies for southern hemisphere countries escaping from poverty?"
Exploring International Economics via Case Studies
15 min: "Mini-Lecture Reviewing Facts of 3 Cases (12.2, 12.4, 12.5)."
12.2: Nick Leeson; 12.4: Mario Brito Dumas; 12.5: Aaron Feurstein
5-min. Writing: "The International Economy has helped to make 1 of these people a hero, 1 a villain, and 1 a victim--describe who fits each description, and why?"
30 min: "Group Activity using textbook to analyze 3 additional Case Studies."
Put students in triads, have each student look up the answer to one question in the book, and then report back to the small group. Cases and questions:
12.1: VERs and Japanese Autos: "What are VERs, how are they deceptive, and in this case, how did they affect US consumers?"
12.3: Containerization: "What does containerization mean in this context, how does it illustrate the influence of technological change, and how did it tip the balance of East/West trade?"
12.7: OPEC: "OPEC is an example of what kind of an organization, what is its main economic objective; what decade was OPEC’s golden era, and why?"
[concluding plenary discussion to process remaining questions]
Assn: Prepare 5 short-answer questions taken from the chapter for the next class.
Reviewing International Economics
15 min: "Students look through chapter 12 to finish preparing 5 short-answer questions and turn in to instructor."
25 min: "Read questions out loud, asking students to answer the ones they can, and then answering for them the ones they do not know."
Unit VI : Physical Realities in the Human Drama
Objectives: to describe the increased relevance of geographic factors to human activity; to detail the nature of current global ecological problems; and, to evaluate some of the proposed solutions to such dilemmas. (Two weeks)
Readings: Text chapters 13, 14, 15
Documentary film : Land of Plenty, Land of Want
Internet Inquiry Exercise: The Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) has a new website that provides easily accessible information about chemical pollution in the U.S. Go to: www.scorecard.org. Then punch in your home zip code, print the relevant data, and write a paragraph on the relative chemical condition of your home county. What tools does the EDF include that enable you express yourself about chemical pollution?
LESSON PLANS (LP): Chaps. 13-15
Spatial Analysis and Geography’s Comeback as a Social Science
[1 LP only for chapter, thus lecture-intensive]
A. Poor Human Management:
Humans present for only 1% of Earth’s history, but outsized influence
Examples: Nauru, Irish potato famine, Indonesian fires, Bufo Marinus
B. Spatial Analysis and Mapping:
What is spatial analysis?
What does geography study, and how is spatial analysis useful?
How does the Mercator Projection map distort reality
Why is it that maps must distort reality?
How were maps helpful to the city of London a century ago?
C. Geographical Influences on History:
Case of US vs. Russia--Have students volunteer to write on the board some of the geographic advantages inherited by Americans and some of the geog. disadvantages inherited by Russians.
D. The Abuse of Theory: Social Darwinism, Geopolitics, and Pseudo-science:
The Darwinian revolution in physical sciences
Why 19th Century Social Darwinism (define) was ripe for abuse
Overly ambitious theories based on geopolitics (guilty of reductionism)
Dangers of pseudo-science (Nazis as worst-case scenario)
E. Why Geography’s Balloon Once Again Rides High on the Social Science Horizon Connections--Seeing the "big picture"
Study of human dependence on the environment (ecology)
Ecosystems--Interconnected all the way up to the global level
Carrying capacity of ecosystems
Insight that great global issues are all linked together
F. Cumulative Effect of the Above Influences:
*geography provides a new paradigm for our shrinking world
Three Vital Concepts in the Shift to a Global Paradigm (define paradigm)
[distribute handout outlining recent ecological history]
[write key terms on board]
Elements in the Global Paradigm Shift
A. Finiteness (60s and 70s):
Club of Rome’s study: Limits to Growth (1966)
Garrett Hardin’s Tragedy of the Common (metaphor)
Dennis Meadows’ Lily Pond Metaphor (shortened doubling times)
B. Interdependence (1980s):
The ecological global issues are all linked together (environment, population, food, energy)
Rainforests as most potent image of ecological interdependence
Ecological interdependence just as important as economic interdependence
New global actors (NGOs, IGOs, MNCs, IFIs) compete with N/S for humanity’s hearts and minds
C. Sustainable Development (1990s):
Ditching Cold-War model of zero-sum-game thinking (win-lose)
New model of positive-sum-game thinking (win-win)
1992 Rio Earth Summit legitimizes sustainable development as goal
S.D. requires changing the belief that environmentalism and development are inimical forces
Creative example of win-win scenarios: Debt-for-Nature Swaps (describe key elements)
5-min. Writing: Discuss in Dyads--"Do you consider yourself an OPTIMIST or a PESSIMIST concerning our ecological future, and why do you feel that way?"
Remaining Ecological Concepts, Shocking Factoids, and Relevant Case Studies
15 min: "Mini-Lecture on 3 additional concepts":
Deep Ecology; Inter-generational Equity; Environmental Space (N/S differences)
15 min: "Ecological Factoids Activity": Have students read over 4 sets of Factoids on 4 ecological issues (pgs. 314, 325, 330, 334); then, write a sentence on, "which one factoid (per set) shocked you the most, and why?"
15 min: "Reviewing 5 Case Studies": Summarize for the class the facts and meaning of cases:
14.1: Titanic; 14.2: Bufo Marinus; 14.3: Exxon Valdez; 14.4: India and ZPG; 14.5: Chernobyl
ASSN: EDF Website (Chemical Scorecard): www.scorecard.org
Use your home zip code to access data on your home county, then write a paragraph on: How does your county compare to the rest of the state and the country?" Be ready to discuss next period.
Assessing Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) Data and Viewing Film: "Land of Plenty, Land of Want"
10 min: "Small Group Discussion: Comparing Your County with Those of Others." Place students in groups of 4-5 to compare notes on EDF chemical scorecard for their home counties. End by asking in plenary session how many pleased with local data, versus how many concerned about local data?
30 min: Film: Journey to Planet Earth (part 3), Land of Plenty, Land of Want (30 min.): Use case studies on U.S. and China only to illustrate the tensions inherent in feeding the world’s growing population through high-tech agribusiness and how creative low-tech methods are equally productive, but far less detrimental to the environment.
5 min: "Segue to Next Chapter on Solving Ecological Problems."
Solving Ecological Problems: Institution-Building and Sound Policy Principles
[Intro: difficulties of solving global ecological problems]
15 min: "Mini-Lecture on Development of International Institution-Building"
[role of "global town meetings" and organizations]
Stockholm 1972 and creation of UNEP
Rio 1992 and creation of GEF
Cairo 1994 and "Program of Action"
Rome 1974 and creation of WFC
IEA in 1981
CONCLUSION: Institutions alone are not enough
15 min: "Explanation of Positive Policy Principles to Guide All Actors (MNCs, NGOs, MDCs, LDCs, IFIs)":
- Grass roots initiatives
- Female empowerment
- Ecological policy dialogue between scientists and politicians
- North to South assistance
- Democratization and devolution to local levels
- NICs as models of success
- Aggressive environmental regulation
- Environmental accounting
- Green consumerism
- Green justice
5-min. Writing: "Which of the above policy principles can make the biggest difference, and why?"
15 min: "Assessing Debt-for Nature Swaps."
Mechanics of debt-for-nature tradeoffs
The Mainstream Environmental Movement’s (MEM) Strategy
Criticism of MEM by John Vandermeer and Ivette Perfecto
Question: "Do you agree, or disagree, with their criticism of debt-for-nature swaps?"
Chap. 15–LP: B
Illustrating Creative Approaches to Sustainability--Chico Mendes and Extractive Reserves
50 min.: "View selected key clips from feature film, The Burning Season (1996)."
This true story is about the amazing life of rubber-tapper and advocate for sustainable agriculture, Chico Mendes (played by Raul Julia). The movie dramatizes the struggle between cattle ranchers who practice a slash-and-burn approach to the rainforest, and indigenous rubber-tappers (led by Chico Mendes) who favor responsibly limited consumption of the Amazon rainforest and its treasures. Chico tries to unionize his fellow rubber-tappers in quest of a livable wage, but the wealthy cattle ranchers oppose him, threaten him, beat him, and eventually kill him. But Chico’s saga reaches the outside world via a European documentary film-maker who makes a hero (and later a martyr) out of Chico. One small individual can make a huge difference, this inspirational film tells us. Out of Chico’s travails, a new and creative approach to sustainable agriculture gets introduced for the first time in Brazil: the extractive reserve.
Trends in Our World: What Social Scientists Can Tell Us
Objectives: to use Benjamin Barber’s model to compare and contrast micro and macro changes occurring in the post-Cold War era, and pointing out how these conditions are fundamentally different from what existed during the Cold War period. (Optional)
Readings: Text chapter 16
Documentary film: The Ebola Virus
Term papers due at Final Exam Time