Selected Courses taught, past and present.
Perspectives on Global Citizenship(s)
(Huron-CGS 3999G )
We hear the term “global citizenship” used in a variety of contexts and for a variety of purposes. But what is “global citizenship”? And what does it mean to be a “global citizen”? This course explores these questions through four different analytical modes: Knowing, Seeing, Feeling and Doing. Under "knowing", we look at different ontological theorizations of citizenship within a global context, exploring the ways in which conceptions of citizenship and globality are intrinsically connected to sources of knowledge. Here we explore relationships between citizenship and (state) sovereignty, conceptions of community, and various notions of cosmopolitics. Under "seeing", we explore the complex role that pop-culture, mass media, communication, and social media play in our ability to “see” each other and in shaping and challenging global/local identities in complex ways. Related to this, under "feeling" we explore the affective aspects of these notions of self/other, and explore how feelings about self/other (love, fear, indifference, contempt) are intrinsically related to how we understand citizenship, global or otherwise. Finally, under "doing", we explore different manifestations of global citizenship “in action” in terms of activism, global social movements, or any way that a global notion of citizenship can somehow be enacted. Here we explore, in particular, questions relating to the power relations that are revealed in enacting “global citizenships.” Who acts from a place of privilege? Who acts from a place of disadvantage? Which acts of “global citizenship” reify existing structures, and which acts are subversive?
Economies of Development
(Huron-CGS 3516G )
This course is designed to provide Global Studies students with the literacy skills and basic competencies to be able to critically assess and engage with economic and organizational literature on global development. This requires a basic understanding of the influence of different schools of economic thought on conceptions of development and related policy. This offers students a broader historical and philosophical understanding of how the economic ideas and theories that ground logics of neoliberal globalization are the same ideas and theories that tend to inform current development policies and agendas. As such, these economic orientations have constitutive and normative effects. With this in mind, this course examines and discusses some of the existing tools for assessing development such as development indicators and indices, community-based indicators, and explanations of development in macro-economic contexts.
Critical Approaches to Gender and Global Conflict
There are many ways to relate “gender” to “global conflict.” We can treat “gender” as an empirical category (“women”) or as an analytical orientation (feminist and gender approaches). Doing both allows us to ask and answer all kinds of interesting questions. This course takes as a starting point the idea that our understandings of the world are intrinsically shaped by gendered ontologies and epistemologies. As such, our ways of explaining and understanding global conflict tend to be reflective of dominant assumptions about masculinity and femininity. A deeper structural and ontological critique is required to properly unpack the relationships between gender and global conflict. With this in mind, this course will explore different critical feminist approaches to understanding conflict and insecurity; it will ask after the special price that women and girls tend to pay in war; it will ask after the myriad implications of militarized masculinities and gendered constructions of identity; and it will foreground a concern for the agency of women and girls in global conflict.
Problems of Global Development
This course takes as its starting point the idea that existing global inequalities are rooted in historical structures, institutions, and narratives. With this in mind, this course provides a comparative and theoretical examination of specific topics and issues in global development in areas like economic globalization and trade, development aid, environmental concerns, “humanitarian” intervention, migration, and “democracy-building” among others. In particular, this course problematizes normative conceptions of development rooted in logics of liberal governmentality and particularistic notions of political and economic “progress” presumed to be both universal and superior.
Globalization and National Soveriegnty.
(UWO- 4404G/ 9713B)
This course explores the complex interplay between the exercise of (national) sovereignty and the dynamics of the various forces we call “globalization.” Broadly speaking, we will examine the impact of global interactions on the ability of the state to enact sovereign power in multiple ways. As such, we will survey the global flows of capital, goods, services, technology, migration, and communications and assess their effects on the capacity of state governments to exercise traditional instruments of policy. We will also critically assess the extent to which these developments provoke a reconsideration of conventional theoretical perspectives on the state and global politics.
Critical Security Studies.
The end of the Cold War and the myriad implications of the terrorist attacks of 9/11 have served to challenge conventional International Relations literature on the study of security. A “traditional” security studies, preoccupied with military threats and state responses, steeped in the language of the Cold War, and grounded in a rigid understanding of the state has become less tenable in our current world. “Security” (and “insecurity”) can mean many different things in a time of terrorism, homeland security, state surveillance, global climate change, mass migration, economic upheaval, powerful private corporate interests, new technologies, and the prevalence of social media. With this in mind, this course is concerned with basic questions around how security is understood and approached. What IS “security,” and WHOSE security are we concerned with? In addressing these questions, this course will introduce and explore the emerging academic field of Critical Security Studies (CSS) and considers the relationship between theory and practice as well as the political and ethical implications of deploying new and innovative theoretical perspectives on security.
The War on Terror and the Politics of Fear.
(Huron Political Science- 2294G)
In an age marked by the ongoing American-led “War on Terror,” it is worth turning our attention to the ways in which fear has become an integral aspect of our political discourses, social and cultural narratives, and constructions of Self and Other. What role does fear and threat play in contemporary politics? And what do the politics of fear and threat make possible within the framework of the War on Terror? This course examines these questions through a critical assessment of issues and topics pertaining to the politics of fear, and foregrounds the importance of discourse and narratives in the constructions of the social and political “truths” that are increasingly taken for granted in a post-9/11 context.
International Human Rights.
This course provides a solid and comprehensive introduction to the concept, study and practicalities of human rights in an international context. The first half of the course provides an overview of the topic of human rights- with an emphasis on its theoretical and historical origins to its 21st century reality. The second half of the course looks more closely at specific and complex issues of interest, problems of human rights abuses, and discussions around potential solutions. Throughout the course, there is an emphasis on the complexity of human rights discourses and the importance of ideas and assumptions in our understanding and construction of “human rights” in its various manifestations.
International Law and Organization. Instructor
One of the defining dilemmas of global society is the problem of order. This course examines attempts to resolve problems of international order through the creation of international laws and organizations. Opportunities are taken to examine the significance of norm creation in the international system, as well the wide-ranging implications of the power relations that exist between states and other actors in the pursuit of order. A critical examination of the historical, political and theoretical foundations of international law as well as the dominant articulations of the problem of order allows us to critically examine international organization in a contemporary context. This course also engages with current events related to international law and order.
American Foreign Policy.
(UWO- 4401G/ 9754B)