Loyola University Chicago

Department of Political Science

Comparative Politics

PLSC 300C: Politics of Islam and Islamic Movements
MWF 2:45pm / LSC


PLSC 324: Civil-Military Relations
Professor Williams
TTh 8:30am / LSC

Civil-Military Relations explores the complex interactions between militaries and the societies they serve. Topics include civilian control of the military, the military as a political institution, and various personnel issues such as who serves, motivation for recruitment and retention, professional military education and training, and gender, sexual orientation, and the military. The course will attempt to move beyond the headlines on these issues to give students a broader understanding of the role of the military in a free society. Students will be evaluated on class participation, two essay examinations, and a research paper.

PLSC 337: Terrorism
Professor O'Leary
MWF 10:25am / LSC

This course will use the infamous 9/11 attacks to examine current religiously-justified international terrorism, the fourth wave of modern terrorism.  While we will concentrate on terrorist activity associated with Islam since it dominates today’s headlines, it is appropriate to remember that Christian and Jewish groups have engaged in religiously- affiliated terrorism since the late 1940’s.  We will discuss the pros and cons of different definitions of terrorism-  there is no general agreement.  In examining terrorism, we will look at terrorist organizational structures, weapons, operations and operational planning, ideology, motivation, and financing.  We will examine efforts to combat terrorists, including exploitable weakness.  We will also look at the effects of terrorism on our daily lives and at our willingness to compromise our American principles and constitutional rights in combating terrorists.

PLSC 341: Comparative Politics
Professor Mahler
TTh 2:30pm / LSC

This course focuses on several of the central issues in comparative politics, with reference to countries representing various ideologies, forms of government and levels of development. The first part of the course consists of a discussion of general themes in the comparative analysis of political systems, while the second applies these general concepts to the analysis of particular countries. The course has two basic purposes. The first is to increase students' familiarity with politics in a number of countries that are important in their own right and about which informed persons should have some knowledge. The second is to make students aware of broader similarities and differences of political expression in today's world, enhancing their understanding of politics in general and enriching their knowledge of their own political system.

PLSC 342: African Politics
Professor O'Leary
MWF 12:35pm / LSC


PLSC 355C: Women & Politics: Cross National Perspective
Professor Matland
Th 4:15pm / LSC

In many countries women hold 30-40% of the major political positions and female heads of state are increasingly common; on the other hand there are countries (such as the United States) where there has never been a female head of state and representation is far lower. Why are women so poorly represented in some countries? Does political representation matter? We spend time on both of these questions looking at explanations for the considerable variation in women's access to positions of formal political power across countries The course will also look at the impact women have when they are in office. That is, does it really matter what level of representation women have and in what manner does policy output change when women are present. The course considers these questions not just in the developed countries, but also in the developing world.


PLSC 347: The European Union
Professor Avdeyeva
TTh 10:00am / LSC

The course offers a comprehensive introductory overview of the European Union (EU) politics, institutions, and policies. It begins by introducing a historical context and the emergence of the European Community (EC), the establishment and development of EC institutions and legal norms, promulgated in multiple treaties of the European Union. It then analyzes the institutional structures of the European Union, paying specific attention to the goals and functions of EU institutions. In the second part of the course, we will concentrate on policy specific issues and debates, including the single market, monetary and economic union, social policies, justice and homeland security, the common agricultural policy and environmental policy. The course will address recent challenges faced by the European Union and discuss the future of the European economic and monetary union.