IRLS360 Global Politics of Islam (3 semester hours)
The purpose of this course is to provide a comprehensive survey of the politics of Islam in the global context (both within and across states). While a portion of the class will be dedicated to the Middle East, we will also focus on parts of the globe where Muslims form a significant minority, e.g., the U.S., Western Europe, Russia, and China. This is an interdisciplinary class, meaning that we will discuss religion, history, culture, and identity in addition to politics. We will explore the implications of past and present U.S. foreign policy in the Muslim world and historical and current relations between Islam and the “West.” Additionally, we will address conflicts within Islam, transnational Islamist movements such as Hizb-ut Tahrir and Al Qaeda, and the role of pan-Arab media such as Al Jazeera. This is a reading-intensive course. Students will be expected to think critically, interpret texts, and formulate their own ideas in verbal and written form.