University of Otago

Course Description

  • Course Name


  • Host University

    University of Otago

  • Location

    Dunedin, New Zealand

  • Area of Study

    Political Science

  • Language Level

    Taught In English

  • Prerequisites

    One 100-level POLS paper or PHIL 103 or 72 points.

  • Course Level Recommendations


    ISA offers course level recommendations in an effort to facilitate the determination of course levels by credential evaluators.We advice each institution to have their own credentials evaluator make the final decision regrading course levels.

    Hours & Credits

  • Credit Points

  • Recommended U.S. Semester Credits
    3 - 4
  • Recommended U.S. Quarter Units
    4 - 6
  • Overview

    An introduction to the history and major theoretical interpretations of democracy in Europe, United States and New Zealand.

    Develop a critical understanding of how the Global South has been constructed in world politics and the discipline of International Relations. The paper begins with the original Athenian model of democracy. We identify its main features and discuss its strengths and weaknesses. Athenian democracy is the necessary starting point because all major contemporary traditions of democratic thought and practice rest on positive or negative evaluations of central features of this original model of democracy. We consider the Roman Republic briefly because, as a model of government, it exerted much more influence than Athenian democracy over political leaders within the revolutions that created liberal representative democracy in England, France and the United States.

    Learning Outcomes
    -Above all, this paper aims to help you develop an understanding of the history of democracy; liberal, socialist and feminist interpretations of democracy; and contemporary debates concerning the future of democracy
    -This paper encourages you to engage in an open-minded yet critical manner with this historical material and these perspectives in order to provide you with the opportunity of developing and strengthening your own understanding of democracy

    Course Structure
    Term test
    Short-answer questions
    End of term exam

    Brian S. Roper, The History of Democracy ? A Marxist Interpretation, Pluto Press, London, 2013.
    Course reader.

Course Disclaimer

Courses and course hours of instruction are subject to change.

Eligibility for courses may be subject to a placement exam and/or pre-requisites.

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Credits earned vary according to the policies of the students' home institutions. According to ISA policy and possible visa requirements, students must maintain full-time enrollment status, as determined by their home institutions, for the duration of the program.

Please reference fall and spring course lists as not all courses are taught during both semesters.

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Please note that some courses with locals have recommended prerequisite courses. It is the student's responsibility to consult any recommended prerequisites prior to enrolling in their course.