Political Science 564
Fall 2010
Tue & Thu 2-3:15
Swift 719
Professor Laura Dudley Jenkins
Office 1115 Crosley Tower
Email [email protected]
Phone/voicemail 556-3308
Office Hours Tu and Thu
11:00-12:00 or by appt
Politics of South Asia
Course Description
Students in this course will analyze the many forms of government and politics in South
Asia, which includes India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Afghanistan, Sri Lanka, Nepal and
Burma, with a particular emphasis on India, the world’s largest and most culturally
diverse democracy. Majors themes include (1) democratization and state building (1) the
impact of globalization, and (3) religion and politics. We will explore both conflict and
peace, riots and rights. This course is appropriate for both majors and non-majors with
an interest in this region and will allow students to develop the background and
conceptual tools necessary to analyze politics in an area of the world that is increasingly
in the news.
Learning Objectives
Students will interpret South Asian politics using basic comparative political
science concepts, including democratization, globalization, and civil society, by
comparing and contrasting different perspectives and policies.
Students will debate major questions political scientists are asking about South
Asia (such as: Why does democracy succeed in some South Asian countries and not in
others? How do religious traditions influence policies regarding women? ) and evaluate
the different methods and approaches researchers use to answer these questions.
Students will analyze political issues arising out of individual or cultural
differences such as those based on language, religion and/or caste.
1. Readings
Course readings will be available on Blackboard. http://blackboard.uc.edu
Students are expected to read the assigned readings before class and come prepared with
questions and comments. Students are also expected to regularly read a newspaper,
newsmagazine, or website with substantial international news coverage, such as the New
York Times, Financial Times, Washington Post, or Economist, or the following news
sources, which have more coverage of South Asia than most US-based sources:
One can access a range of international newspapers through the Langsam Library
periodicals section or through Lexis Nexis, available through the Langsam webpage.
Students could also listen to “Morning Edition” or “All Things Considered” on public
radio, or watch the PBS News Hour (also available online).
2. Response Papers
Students will write 1-2 page, typed, double-spaced papers responding to the assigned
readings. Half of the class will write papers on the readings assigned on Tuesdays. These
papers are to be posted to Blackboard by the day before class (Monday) at noon. The
other half of the class will write papers on each Thursday’s readings. These papers are to
be posted to blackboard by the day before class (Wednesday) at noon. No late papers. No
papers for readings on 11/2, 11/4, 11/30, 12/2. Undergrads write 7 total out of the 8
opportunities to write response papers (marked on the schedule of readings). In other
words, undergrads can pick one response paper to skip with no penalty. For the weeks
with Thursday holidays (Veteran’s Day and Thanksgiving), all students write responses
to Tues readings. Grads write 10 papers.
3. Individual research project (graduate students only). See me (soon).
8-10 pages, 10 sources, including some academic journal articles
4. Exam
Exam on readings, lectures and class discussions will be essay exam.
Advice on taking an essay exam:
Final Exam: Thu Dec 9, 4-6 pm
Grades will be determined on the following basis
Undergraduate students
1/2 response papers (7), class discussion
1/2 final exam
Graduate students
1/3 response papers (10), discussion
1/3 research paper
1/3 final exam
Be aware of the withdrawal deadlines. There will be no makeup exams. If there are
extraordinary (medical) circumstances and arrangements are made with the professor
prior to the exam, an alternative test may be given to compensate for that portion of the
grade. This syllabus is subject to modification.
Some of the topics covered are controversial and can evoke strong opinions. In this class
all points of view will be listened to and respectfully considered.
The University Rules, including the Student Code of Conduct, and other documented
policies of the department, college, and university related to academic integrity will be
enforced. Any violation of these regulations, including acts of plagiarism or cheating,
will be dealt with on an individual basis according to the severity of the misconduct. It is
each student's responsibility to know and comply with the Student Code of Conduct,
which defines behavior expected of all University of Cincinnati students and behavior
considered misconduct. Sanctions and penalties are outlined. The Code of Conduct is
available in the college office and online at
http://www.uc.edu/studentlife/conduct/conduct.html Definitions of cheating, plagiarism,
and penalties are in the Code of Conduct. The definition of plagiarism includes, but is
not limited to: copying another student's work, copying materials without proper citation,
paraphrasing without proper citation and failing to cite all sources used and/or consulted.
Examples and guidance can be reviewed at the following site:
If you have any special needs related to your participation in this course, including
identified visual impairment, hearing impairment, physical impairment, communication
disorder, and/or specific learning disability that may influence your performance in this
course, you should meet with the instructor to arrange for reasonable provisions to ensure
an equitable opportunity to meet all requirements of this course. At the discretion of the
instructor, some accommodations may require prior approval by Disability Services.
The State and Democracy in South Asia
Thu 9/23
TuRP=Tuesday response paper
ThRP=Thursday response paper
Tue 9/28
Failed State? Afghanistan TuRP#1
Pankaj Mishra. “Afghanistan: Communists, Mullahs, and Warlords” in his Temptations
of the West. New York: Farrar, Straus, and Giroux, 2006.
Thu 9/30
Postcolonial states and Partition: Pakistan and India ThRP#1
Guest lecture on Kashmir and Indian and Pakistani nationalism: Harita Patel
Stephen Philip Cohen. “The State of Pakistan” in his Idea of Pakistan. Delhi: Oxford,
Selections from “Approaching Pakistan,” American Abroad Media (in class)
Tue 10/5 Democracy in India, Sri Lanka and Pakistan TuRP#2
Katherine Adeney and Andrew Wyatt “Democracy in South Asia: Getting beyond the
structure-agency dichotomy.” Political Studies 52 (1) p.1-18 (March 2004).
Thu 10/7
Democratizing State: Nepal ThRP#2
Pratima Upadhyay. “The Struggle for LGBTI Rights in Nepal: A Case Study of the Blue
Diamond society,” MA project, WGSS Department, UC, 2010.
Tue 10/12
Authoritarian rule in Burma/Myanmar TuRP#3
“Mandalay” from Finding George Orwell in Burma.
Pricilla Clapp. “Burma’s long road to democracy.” United States Institute of Peace, 2007.
Globalization in South Asia
Thu 10/14
Globalization and trade ThRP#3
Amartya Sen. “How to judge Globalism.” In Mark Kesselman, ed. The Politics of
Globalization. Houghton Mifflin, 2007.
Sandhya Hewamanne. Stitching Identities in a free trade zone: gender and politics in Sri
Lanka. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2008.
Tue 10/19
Globalization and labor rights TuRP#4
Farzad R. Khan et al. “A Dark side of institutional entrepreneurship: Soccer balls, child
labour and postcolonial impoverishment. Organization Studies 28 (2007). Pp. 1055-1077.
Thu 10/21
Globalization and outsourcing ThRP#4
Jagdish Bhagwati “In defense of globalization.” In Mark Kesselman, ed. The Politics of
Globalization. Houghton Mifflin, 2007.
Amrita Pande “’At least I am not sleeping with anyone’: Resisting the Stigma of
Commercial Surrogacy in India.” Feminist Studies 36, 2 (summer 2010).
Tue 10/26
Globalization and ecofeminism TuRP#5
Vandana Shiva. “Stolen Harvest” In Mark Kesselman, ed. The Politics of Globalization.
Houghton Mifflin, 2007.
Suketu Mehta. “A big stretch.” New York Times, May 7, 2007.
Thu 10/28
Globalization of human rights ThRP#5
“The right to be human: Dilemmas of rights-based programming at CARE-Bangladesh”
Tue 11/2
Globalization of human rights, cont. NoRP
“The Right to be human: Dilemmas of rights-based programming in CARE-Bangladesh”
Thu 11/4
NO MIDTERM and NO CLASS and NoRP (Grad students: draft your
research papers, and give me your drafts next week for feedback.)
Religion and Politics in South Asia
Tue 11/9
Hindu-Muslim conflict Tu&ThuRP #6
Meera Seghal. “Manufacturing a feminized siege mentality: Hindu nationalist
paramilitary camps for women in India.” Journal of Contemporary Ethnography 36(2)
April 2007, p. 165-183..
Thu 11/11
Veteran’s Day – UC closed
Tue 11/16
Ethno-religious nationalism abroad TuRP#7
“The Sri Lankan Tamil Diaspora after the LTTE,” International Crisis Group, 2010.
Thu 11/18
India’s “lost tribes” of Judaism ThuRP#7
James Scott. The Art of Not Being Governed. Yale University Press, 2009.
Tue 11/23
Caste, Buddhism and empowerment Tu&ThRP#8
Narendra Jhadav. Untouchable.
Thu 11/25
Thanksgiving – UC closed
Tue 11/30
Law and Islam NoRP
Shah Bano: Muslim women’s rights http://oz.uc.edu/thro
Thu 12/2
Debate and review NoRP
Thu 12/9
Final Exam 4-6 pm

Political Science 564 - University of Cincinnati