Polsc 675: Syllabus
675: Religion and Politics
Kenneth Wald, Religion and Politics in the United States,
Rowman & Littlefield, 4th Edition.
Mansoor Moaddel and
Kamran Talattof, editors, Modernist and Fundamentalist Debates
in Islam, Palgrave, 2002.
All other readings online or provided.
There will be two in-class
essay exams--a midterm and a final. The midterm
will cover materials through the first half of the course (domestic)
and the final will cover information from the second half of the
course (international) with a comprehensive optional question.
You will be required
to participate in the K-State Online message board discussion
about the readings, in a meaningful way, at least once per week
(suggested length of commentary, 1 paragraph). You will also be
required to post a report on a particular reading
once during the semester and be responsible for answering questions
about it in class from me and other students. This report should
be the length equivalent of 2-3 typed double spaced pages, but
should be posted directly to the message board under the thread
"Reports." Other students may reply or ask questions
either through the message board or in-class. Readings eligible
for reporting should come either from the non-group readings listed
in the syllabus or they must be approved by me. More than one
student can report on the same article, but they should not collaborate.
Reports can be done and posted at any time, but must appear by
the first day that the topic is being discussed. More on the structure
of reports appears at the end of the syllabus. Plagiarism or academic
dishonesty of any kind will result in an XF for the class and
a mandatory course on academic integrity in accordance with university
policy and the honor system.
essay exam 100 points
essay exam 150 points
board report 40 points*
board participation 60 points**
reports will have ten points deducted for every week they are
participation during the week will result in a "0" for
August 23, 25, 30
John Locke, "A Letter Concerning
Kenneth Wald, Chapter
3, "Religion and American Political Culture," in Religion
in the United States, 1997.
the Public Sphere
Video: "With God
on Our Side," PBS. Waters 244 Reserved 1-2:30 p.m. Please
go there on Sept. 1.
September 6, 8:
Wald, Chapter 5, "Religion
and American Public Policy."
Wald, Chapter 6, "The
Religious Dimension of American Political Behavior."
September 13, 15:
Wald, Chapter 7, "The
Political Mobilization of Evangelical Protestants."
Wald, Chapter 8, "Continuity
and Change Outside the Evangelical Camp."
September 20, 22:
"Conservatives, Darwin and Design: An Exchange," by Larry Arnhart,
Michael J. Behe, and William A. Dembski, First Things, Vol 107,
November 200, pp.23-31. Group.
"The Darwinian Universe: Isn't there room for God?" by John F. Haught,
Commonweal, January 25, 2002, pp. 12-18. Group.
"Expelling Darwin," Commonweal, September 10, 1999, pp. 5-6.
"The Darwinian Struggle: Catholics Pay Attention," by John F. Haught,
Commonweal, September 24, 1999, pp. 14-16.
"Has Darwin Met His
Match?" by David Berlinski, Commentary, December 2002,
Evolution True?" Journal of the Southern Baptist
Convention, February/March 2003. Group.
September 27, 29:
Stem Cell Research
"Stem Cells and False Hopes," by Maureen L. Condic, First Things,
Vol. 125, (August/Sept. 2002), pp. 21-22. Group.
"The Basics about Stem Cells," By Maureen L. Condic, First Things,
Vol. 119, January 2002, pp. 30-34. Group.
"Is the Embryo a Person? Arguing with the Catholic Traditions," by Jean Porter, Commonweal, February 8, 2002, pp. 8-13. (Group)
"The Stem Cell Sell," Commonweal, August 17, 2002, pp. 5-6.
"Why I Oppose Human
Cloning," by Jeremy Rifkin, Tikkun, July-August 2002.
"A Reply to Rifkin,"
by Raymond Barglow, Tikkun, July-August, 2002.
Overture 01-50. On
Adopting a Resolution
Enunciating Ethical Guidelines for Fetal Tissue and Stem Cell
Research-From the Presbytery of Baltimore. Presbyterian Church
On Human Embryonic And Stem Cell Research, Southern Baptist
Convention, 1999. Group.
October 4, 6:
"Same-Sex Marriage: As Hawaii Goes..." First Things, Vol. 72, April
1997, pp. 33-37.
'Legalize Same-Sex Marriage: Why Law & Morality Can Part Company," by Paul J. Griffiths, Commonweal, October 24, 2003. Group.
"Gay Marriage," Tikkun,
January-February, 2004. Group--handout.
From the ELCA Church Council to the ELCA Churchwide Assembly
on Sexuality Studies April 11, 2005. Report
and Recommendations from the Taskforce for Evangelical Lutheran
Church of America Studies on Sexuality, January 2005, pp. 5-16.
Same-Sex Marriage, Resolution of the Southern Baptist Convention,
Sexuality and the Christian Worldview, Southern Seminary,
Spring 2004. From the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.
October 11: Midterm
October 13: Video--Osama
Bin Laden: In the Name of Allah (A & E Biography)
October 18, 20:
The War Against
"World War IV:
How It Started, What it Means, and Why We Have to Win It,"
Norman Podhoretz, Commentary, September 2004. Group--Handout.
"Moral Clarity in a Time
of War," by George Weigel, First Things, Vol. 128, January 2003,
"The Western Mind of Radical Islam," by Daniel Pipes, First Things,
Vol. 58, December 1995, pp. 18-23.
"The War in Iraq: How Catholic Conservatives Got it Wrong," by Peter
Dula, Commonweal, December 3, 2004.
"The Triumph of Fear:
The U.S. War Against Iraq," by Michael Lerner, Tikkun, March-April
a Just or Moral War," Sojourners Magazine, January-February
2003 and "Dangerous
Religion: George W. Bush's theology of empire," Sojourners
Magazine, September-October 2003. (type in title and free
October 25, 27:
The Arab Israeli
Conflict and the Status of Israel
"How to Think About Zionism," by Gary Anderson, First Things, Vol.
152, pp. 30-36. Group.
"The Zionist Imperative," by Emil L. Tackenheim, First Things, Vol.
50, February 1995, pp. 18-23.
"When Israel is Wrong: Christians Shouldn't Be Afraid to Say So," by Murray Polner and Adam Simms, Commonweal, October 11, 2002.
"A Glimmer of Hope:
A State of All Its Citizens," by Yakov M. Rabkin, Tikkun, July-August
in My Name: Is it anti-Semitic to Criticize Israel?"
Soujourners Magazine, January-February 2003 (type in
and Palestine: General Assembly Action 2004, Presbyterian
Church USA. Group.
November 1: Video--"Israel
in a Time of Terror," Prager Productions.
November 3, 8:
Islam and Politics:
"War and Peace:
Popular Jihad," Moulavi Chiragh Ali, pp. 71-95 in Modernist
and Fundamentalist Debates in Islam.
Pluralism and Freedom of Opinion," Sayyid Ahmad Khan, pp.
November 10: Video:
"Muhammad," A & E Biography.
Islam and Western
November 15, 17:
and Laissez-Faire Capitalism," Anonymous, pp. 123-134, ibid.
"Islam and Civilization,"
Muhammad Farid Wajdi, 135-144, ibid.
"The Rights of
Women," Sayyid Ahmad Khan, pp 159-162, ibid.
of Women," Qasim Amin, 163-182, ibid.
November 22, 29:
Islam and Politics
"War, Peace, and
Islamic Jihad," Sayyid Quth, 223-246, ibid.
"The Pillars of
an Islamic State," Imam Ruhulla Khomeini, 247-250, ibid.
Theory of Islam," Sayyid Abul A'la Maududi, 263-272, ibid.
Islam and Western
December 1: Video:
"Al Qaeda's New Front," PBS Frontline.
December 6, 8:
toward the West and the Idea of Western Decadence," Ali Shariati,
of Western Civilization," Sayyid Abul A'la Maududi,"
Jalal Al-i Ahmad, 343-358, ibid.
"On the Islamic
Hijab," Murtaza Mutahhari, pp. 361-372, ibid.
Wednesday December 14, 2-3:50
on articles for the message board should summarize the main points
of the article, bring up any facts you found particularly interesting,
and provide your analysis of the author's argument and your own
opinion on the subject. Remember that other students are reading
your report for a summary of the article, so make sure that this
part is thorough enough to get the main argument across to all
readers. Try to write in brief paragraphs, followed by a space
between paragraphs, since the message board will not take double
space. Compose your report on a word processor to be 2-3 pages
double spaced, and then paste into the message board space.
this article about?
the author's point--i.e., what was he/she arguing? If the article
was truly objective or a statement, explain this.
and important facts were raised?
presentation good enough to convince you, or faulty in some ways?
your opinon about the issue discussed in the article?
Issues in Bioethics--these are additional articles that can be
reviewed any time before the midterm:
to Live/Right to Die
Terry Schiavo," Commentary June 2005. (I have this article--just
"Always to Care, Never
to Kill: A Declaration on Euthanasia." Multiple authors from Jewish
and Christian backgrounds, First Things, Vol. 20, February 1992.
"'Right to Die'--Good Slogan, Fuzzy Thinking," by Yale Kamisar,
First Things, Vol. 93, December 1993, pp. 6-9.
"A Lethal Evolution," by Nancy Valko, First Things Vol. 118, December
2001, pp. 21-24.
"Allowing to die," Commonweal, November 7, 2003, pp. 7-8.
"Allowing to die II," Commonweal, April 23, 2004, pp. 5-6.
Issues in Islam and Terrorism--these are additional articles that
can be reviewed any time before November 8:
Sex, and God: Religious Terrorism in the Mind of Mark Juergensmeyer,"
by Roger Friedland, Tikkun, May/June 2000 (I have--just
and Freedom," by James Q. Wilson, Commentary, December
2004 (I have).
Islamization of Europe?" by David Pryce-Jones, Commentary,
December 2004 (I have).
Left and the Islamists," Joshua Kurlantzick, Commentary,
December 2004 (I have).
Kind of War?: Four Responses," Commonweal, Sept.
Destiny: Safe for the Rest of the World?" Commonweal,
May 17, 2002.
A Sad Reminder of a Hollow Claim," Sojourners,
July 13, 2005.