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Reading and Discussion

Monday, April 20 Joint Session II (Part II)



Wednesday, April 22

Expanding Justice: The United Nations

McNeill, chap. 25

Charter of the United Nations

1)     What are the principal organs of the United Nations?

2)     Considering its record, is it worth the trouble and expense to have a United Nations?

Competing Polities: A Bi-Polar World




1)     What countries engaged in the Cold War?

2)     What was at stake ideologically, diplomatically and strategically/militarily?

3)     Please list some international events that were instances of the Cold War or were integrated into it.

4)     Which ideology appeared to be winning in the 1950-70’s and what was the ultimate result of the Cold War?


Friday, April 24, 2009

India’s Path to Independence: Decolonization


1)     What methods did Ghandi use in his movement for an independent India?

2)     What were the reasons that England left India?

3)     In what ways were Gandhi's supporters successful?

4)     In what ways were Gandhi and his supporters not successful?

5)     What does the former colonial India look like now? What are some of the problems?


Monday, April 27, 2009

Expansion of Human Rights: African Independence

Nkrumah, “Continental Government for Africa” (Johnson)

1)     How does Nkrumah define “Africa?”

2)     What does he envision for post-colonial Africa? What would this accomplish?

Mandela, from The Long Walk to Freedom (Johnson)

The Freedom Charter (Johnson)

Desmond Tutu, “No Future Without Forgiveness” (Johnson)

1)     What was the South African Apartheid system? How did it function and what were its consequences?

2)     What did the “Freedom Charter” call for and how did it differ from Pan-Africanism?

3)     After being freed, what did Mandela do to preserve South Africa from spiraling into civil war?

4)     What other measures were taken to insure that South Africa to achieve the same goal?


Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Renewal of American Justice

King, “Letter from Birmingham Jail” (Johnson)

1)     What are the methods he delineates in any non-violent campaign?  Are they always effective?

2)     Which groups in American society is Rev. King “the most disappointed in?”

3)     Were there any instances in which Rev. King’s non-violent campaigns fail?


Friday, May 1, 2009

The Rise of China

Mao Tse-Tung, “Report of an Investigation into the Peasant Movement in Hunan” (Johnson)

Deng Xiaoping, “Foundations for Reform” (Johnson)

1)     What did Mao Tse-Tung envision for China?

2)     From what we know now, what were the negative consequences of Mao Zedong’s revolutionary policies, including the Cultural Revolution?

3)     What was Deng Xiaoping’s vision for Chinese government and society?

4)     What did he consider to be the principal problems to be resolved?


Monday, May 4, 2009

A New World Order?

Understanding 9/11

Peter Warren Singer, “America, Islam and the 9-11 War”

Bruce Hoffman, “From the War on Terror to Global Counterinsurgency” (Anthology)

Bin Laden, “What Al-Qa’eda wants from America” (Johnson)

Ibn Warraq, “A Muslim’s Critique of Islam” (Johnson)

1)     What does Al-Qaeda seek?  What is its ideology?  Why does it draw so much support?

2)     Are Islam and modern society incompatible, as Warraq suggests?  Is there a way out?

3)     What is terrorism?  Under what conditions is it created and fostered?

4)     Is it possible to reduce or eliminate the threat of terrorism?


Using History to Look Forward

Obama (Anthology)

Without debating his policies, how can we look at Barack Obama’s election?  Please be sure to look at this both from practical, uplifting as well as cynical points of view.