Teaching

On this page I present some of the courses that I’m currently teaching at Georgetown. By clicking on each course title below you can see a short description.

GOVT 572: Peacekeeping and Peace Enforcement (Spring 2019)

This seminar will explore historical and recent developments in peacekeeping and peace enforcement, focusing primarily on the UN, but also examining NATO, the African Union, and other peace operations. We will begin by studying the origins of peacekeeping, peace enforcement, and peacebuilding. We will survey contrasting cases of success and failure in multidimensional peacekeeping in civil wars in an effort to determine which factors were the most important determinants of the outcomes. We then turn to contemporary U.S. interest in peacekeeping, regional peacekeeping efforts, and the current peace enforcement operations in Mali, South Sudan, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Finally, we will examine contemporary debates over the use of force, the “protection of civilians,” the “responsibility to protect,” gender mainstreaming, and attempts to reform and improve international capacity to keep the peace. The goals of this course are to survey the current debates in peacekeeping and peace enforcement; to master the current literature; to learn how to write a reading analysis; and to perfect the craft of writing a graduate-level research paper. Note: This course has different goals and covers different material than GOVT 633 “War, Peace, and the State,” and may be taken before or after that course.

GOVT 60: Intro to International Relations (Fall 2018)

This course provides an introduction to key theories, concepts, historical events, and contemporary issues in the study of international relations (IR). The course has six learning objectives: Students will come to understand (1) the fundamental concepts unique to the field of international relations; (2) the major theories of international conflict and cooperation, particularly realist, liberal, and constructivist theories; and (3) several watershed conflicts in the last century, including World War I, World War II, and the Cold War. Students will then apply this theoretical and empirical knowledge to make sense of salient contemporary issues in (4) international security (including nuclear weapons and proliferation, ethnic conflict, civil war, and terrorism), (5) political economy (including trade, finance, and globalization), and (6) global governance (including international law, human rights, humanitarian intervention, and the environment). In short, the course is meant to provide students with the tools to analyze contemporary international affairs and debates in a rigorous and sophisticated manner.

GOVT 776: War, Peace, and the State (Fall 2018)

This seminar examines the recent major academic works about war, peace, and international intervention. The theory and substance of this course span the in Political Science subfields of International Relations and Comparative Politics, focusing on the causes of war and state collapse, and efforts to establish peace. We explore a variety of topics such as peacekeeping, the use of force, the legitimacy of the UN Security Council, U.S. foreign policy, and attempts to create state institutions after war. Our readings explore a variety of cases including Iraq, Afghanistan, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and others. Our books and articles employ a wide range of methods used in current research on war and peace, including qualitative comparative case studies, ethnographic research, historical narrative, quantitative analysis, and game theory. Our reading list is steep: we will read one book per week. Most of the books were previously dissertations, which will help us to understand the process of turning dissertations into books. The primary goals of this course are not only to survey the current scholarly literature on war and peace, but also to focus on the skill of writing a literature review. The first and very important step for any research project is the literature review. With the central goal of understanding and writing literature reviews in sight, the main writing assignments are four critical analyses of the readings, and a 20 page literature review about a topic related to the themes of the course.

GOVT 260: International Security (Fall 2017)

This course provides an overview of the most pressing issues in international security today. The course is divided into three roughly chronological parts. Part 1: the Cold War and issues of bipolarity and nuclear deterrence; part 2: the end of the Cold War, and the themes of civil wars, peacekeeping, soft power, and gender and war; and part 3: the current post-9/11 era. The focus of the course is on part three, and in it we will examine such issues as terrorism, the rise of china, security in Africa, the human security debate, the doctrine of the “responsibility to protect,” peace enforcement, problems of children in war, resources and war, psychological insecurity, cyber security, and environmental security.

GOVT 363: Peacekeeping (Fall 2017)

This seminar will explore historical and recent developments in peacekeeping, focusing primarily on UN peacekeeping, but also looking at NATO and other regional organizations. We will begin by examining the origins of peacekeeping and the issues surrounding multilateral intervention in civil wars. We will survey contrasting cases of success and failure in multidimensional peacekeeping in civil wars, in an effort to determine which factors were the most important determinants of the outcomes of the operations. We will then explore contemporary U.S. interest in peacekeeping, and regional peacekeeping efforts. Finally, we will examine current debates in peacekeeping including whether deadly force should be used, and recent attempts to reform and improve the UN's capacity to keep the peace. This course counts toward the International Relations distribution requirement.

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