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Political Economy and Social Movements: Race, Class, and Gender.
Faculty: Cynthia Adcock, Peter Bohmer, and Dan Leahy
Enrollment: 75 Prerequisites: Sophomore standing and above
Faculty Signature: No Special Expenses: No
Part-Time Options: No Internship Possibilities: Yes Travel
Component: None Political Economy and


SYLLABUS Winter 2000

Cynthia Adcock Seminar 4167  Ext. 5847
Peter Bohmer  Seminar 4105  Ext. 6431
Dan Leahy  Lab. I 2020  Ext. 6478

Dan  By appointment
Peter Mondays 3:15 to 4:45 pm and by appointment
Cynthia  Mondays 11 to 12 pm and by appointment

Vikki Ftellmacher • Pam Udovich • Carolyn Walker


Lecture           9:00 to 11:00 a.m.   L1612
Seminars         1:00 to 3:00 p.m.  Cynthia - L2103; Dan - L1600; Peter - L2205
Open Time*    3:00 to 4:30 p.m.  Lab I - 1037 and 1047

Wednesdays: Some films and panel discussions scheduled; otherwise time will be used for:
Economics Workshop   10 to 11:30 a.m.   Lab I - 1047
Open Time*                11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Lab I - 1047

Seminars                     10:00 to 11:45 a.m. Cynthia - L2221,
                                  Dan L2220, Peter - L2218

Lecture                        1:00 to 3:00 p.m.  Lecture Hall #5

Economics Seminar#    3:15 to 4:30 pm Cynthia - L2129,
                                  Dan - L1600,  Peter - L2218

* Open Time: faculty will be available in the designated rooms or in their offices. Students are free to meet (or not meet) with project teammates or with faculty but should keep the entire Wednesday classtime free each week, since the full 10 to 1 session will occasionally be used for films or panel discussions. There will also be two optional workshops on Wednesdays from 11:30 to 1:00 on writing and doing library research.

*This 2nd Thursday seminar session may occasionally also be oriented to writing workshops, social movement organizing techniques, or other requested topics such as environmental economics.


ASSIGNMENTS—To be given to your seminar leader, research sponsor or the economics tutor as indicated.

 To complete one five-page paper due to your seminar leader at 10 a.m. on Thursday Jan. 27 in Week Four. The paper should be on a topic related to the readings, and should include analysis and citations of at least two of the readings. The topic is to be selected by the individual student with the approval of his or her seminar leader.
To write a three- or four-page letter to Nancy Folbre, author of The Invisible Heart, including what you learned from the manuscript, and analyzing its strengths and weaknesses, both in content and in style. Please include in your letter any proposed changes, big and small, that you suggest be made by her—including added arguments, additions, what you would leave out, how to make it more readable, etc. To be submitted to your seminar leader by 1:00 p.m. on Tuesday Feb. 15 of Week Seven.
To submit a preliminary outline of (4) below, the paper on your research or internship project. If you are doing a research project, submit a detailed in-depth outline with an annotated bibliography. If you are doing an internship, write a brief (one- to two-page) preliminary analysis of the internship, relating it to the themes of this program. Due Thursday, February 3rd at 1:00 p.m. to the faculty person coordinating your research or intership. Groups can turn in one outline.
To complete a paper on the your research or internship project. If it is a research project, the suggested length for a student working individually is 15 pages double-spaced; for group projects, the suggested length is 10 pages for each participant. If you are doing an internship, submit a four- to five-page paper, reflecting on and analyzing what you have learned from the internship, and your unanswered questions. Include in your answer how the internship and the organization worked for you, and describe its perspective on political economy, social movements, and race, class and gender relations. Groups may turn in one combined paper. To be submitted to the faculty person coordinating your project by Thursday, March 2nd of Week Nine.

To prepare and offer a 10-minute presentation to the entire class on the student’s research or internship project, at one of the class sessions in the 10th week. Two-person groups will be given 15 minutes, 3-person groups 20 minutes, plus time for feedback. (Detailed guidelines on presentations will be forthcoming.)

(Assignments, Continued)

  • Tuesday, 3:30 to 5:30 p.m. Lab I, Room 1037 (tentative).
  • Wednesday, 1:30 to 3:30 p.m., Lab I, Room 1037


PROGRAM DESCRIPTION: Winter Quarter, 2000

Political Economy and Social Movements is a two-quarter program for students with sophomore level standing and above. We will examine the construction of the U.S. and global political economies and their interaction with social movements.

Our goal is to gain a clear understanding of how the U.S. and global economies have been organized and reorganized over time, how they have been controlled and who has
benefited from them, how social movements, particularly those based on race, class and gender, have both shaped and resisted its organization, what the current direction of the U.S. political economy is and how social movements are responding to this direction both domestically and globally.

Winter Quarter will focus on a range of issues within both the U.S. economy and the developing global order. We will explore the nature of global finance capitalism, and international economics issues. We will examine alternatives to global capitalism, including sustainable development and the economic perspectives of marginalized peoples such as women and indigenous groups worldwide.

We will consider three "domestic" issues critically affected by the global economy and new world order: the condition of young people, education, and the ways we care for one another, especially for children, elders, people with disabilities and others who need caregiving— that is, all of us at some time in our lives.

We will pay particular attention to the consequences of this new political economy and to social movements in Mexico as an industrializing nation subject to neoliberal policies. Looking at both Mexico and the United States will provide a way to compare and contrast developments in two different societies, gaining more in-depth perspectives on the relationship between North and South, developed and developing nations.

Students are expected to complete a substantial amount of reading, analytical writing, and an individual or group winter research and/or community service internship project. Students will make presentations to the class on their project in the last week of the quarter. Students should have an interest in the social sciences, social movement theory, and organizational practice.

In the Economics workshop, we study the theory of micro- and macroeconomics as well as the public policy and social implications of this theory. The focus will be on mainstream or neoclassical economics, which will be presented and critiqued and contrasted to political economic analysis. Fall quarter concentrated on microeconomics. Key concepts were introduced, including demand and supply, the functioning of markets, efficiency, externalities, economic power, and the role and determination of profits. Winter quarter focuses on macroeconomics. The Keynesian framework for the determination of national output, employment and inflation will be presented and critiqued. We will also analyze fiscal and monetary policy, the basics of international trade theory, international finance, and issues related to economic development.

Required Economics Readings:
 Dollars and Sense, Current Economic Issues: Progressive Perspectives from Dollars and Sense, fourth edition (1999, Dollars and Sense), hereafter referred to as D&S.

OECD (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development), Open Markets Matter (hereafter referred to as OECD).

Tom Riddell, Jean Shackleford, Steve Stamos, Economics: A Tool for Critically Understanding Society , fifth edition (1998, Addison Wesley), hereafter referred to as Riddell, et al.

Economics Format:
 The majority of the readings will be for Wednesday’s economics workshop. The workshop is on Wednesdays from 10:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. This session will combine lecture and workshop on the main concepts for the week. It will be held in Lab I, #1047.

Economics Seminars will be held on Thursdays from 3:15 to 4:30 p.m. They will involve seminar discussion and homework time. Their locations are: Cynthia - L2129,
Dan - L1600, and Peter - L2218.

Requirements and Assignments:


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