POLS 161:  Global Political Economy—Race, Labor, Power

An introduction to the study of the global political economy with a focus on racial and class inequalities. The course examines how the global economy is governed and how power asymmetries contribute to racialized forms of labor exploitation and social dislocation. Attention will be paid to how larger economic forces influence local politics and shape individual experiences.  Key themes include: racial capitalism, international trade and finance, globalization, global inequality, neoliberalism, multinational corporations, sweatshops, global cities.

Syllabi: Spring 2022  Spring 2023


POLS 161: The Politics of Globalization (discontinued)

An introduction to the major academic and policy debates over globalization and global governance. Key themes will include: sovereignty, free/fair trade; immigration; anti-globalization and violence; democratic governance and international economic institutions; and the global justice movement.

Syllabi: Fall 2015  Fall 2017  Spring 2019  Spring 2021


POLS 261: Global Civil Society and Transnational Activism

An introduction to the theories and debates behind the concept of a global civil society, and the role of transnational civil society actors in shaping global governance. Case studies of specific transnational networks, movements, and coalitions will be examined.

Syllabus: Fall 2015  Spring 2016  Spring 2019  Spring 2021



POLS262:  Grassroots Economies: Creating Livelihoods in an Age of Urban Inequality

Examines how grassroots economic initiatives rooted in mutual aid often fill the gaps generated by urban inequality. Particular attention will be paid to racial and class fault lines within contemporary urban geographies. Case studies range from guerrilla gardens to artist collectives, with a focus on Philadelphia. The course also includes outreach and visual studies components.

Syllabus: Fall 2020  Fall 2022


POLS 265:  Capitalism and the History of Political Economic Thought

Theoretical approach to the role of politics and markets in modern capitalism. Draws from the history of political economic thought (including Adam Smith, Marx, Karl Polanyi, Schumpeter and Hayek) and from contemporary political economists to address the meanings of “capitalism” and the effects of global markets on domestic politics.

Syllabus: Fall 2014  Fall 2016  Fall 2019  Fall 2021


POLS 266:  Sovereignty

An examination of the concept sovereignty as it figures within international politics and democratic theory. Explores the theoretical and historical origins of the concept as well as contemporary adaptations, challenges and critiques. Topics include the state system and international intervention, democratic authority and globalization, indigenous and food sovereignty, and proposals for post-sovereign forms of polity.

Syllabus: Spring 2014


POLS 288:  Governing the Global Economy in Times of Crisis

An examination of how the global economy is governed and how governance bodies have responded to and/or been complicit in crises and their aftermaths. Critical attention will be paid to power asymmetries in the international system and their consequences. Particular focus will be paid to the history and politics of global financial crises.

Syllabus: Spring 2016  Spring 2018  Spring 2020  Spring 2022


POLS 362:  Global Justice

An examination of issues of justice that cross national borders, including world poverty and global distributive justice, corporate accountability, humanitarian intervention, and global environmental justice. Readings chosen from recent works in political philosophy and globalization studies.

Syllabus: Spring 2013


POLS 365:  Post-Capitalist Politics and Solidarity Economies

An intensive research seminar critically examining the politics, theory and social networks behind solidarity economy movements that seek to create solidarity-based alternatives to capitalism. Includes study of cooperatives, community gardens, eco-villages, and alternative currencies among other initiatives.

Syllabus: Spring 2016  Spring 2018