Spring 2016


Listed in: Political Science, as POSC-405


Kristin Bumiller (Section 01)


[SC] This course will explore the role of work in the context of American politics and society. We will study how work has been understood in political and social theory by considering the scholarship of John Locke, Karl Marx, Max Weber, Judith Shklar, Pierre Bourdieu, Zygmunt Bauman, Luc Boltanski, and others. We will also consider ethnographic studies that explore how workers experience their lives inside organizations and how workplaces transform in response to changing legal regulations. These theoretical and empirical explorations will provide a foundation for reflections about how work structures opportunities in democratic societies and how re-imagining work might unleash human potential. The course will ground these questions about the role of work in the context of American politics and society. At the broadest level we will ask: Do citizens in a liberal society have a right to engage in meaningful work and earn a living wage? What is the changing nature of work in a neoliberal society? What are the goals of the state in regards to the production of a future workforce? What are the impacts of employment discrimination, occupational segregation, and wage disparity based on race or gender? Students will engage in collaborative research projects with the professor. The research projects will reformulate the questions encountered in the course in the context of our local communities and employment at the college or other local businesses or government agencies. For example, projects might investigate unionization at private colleges, the expansion of professionalized grievance procedures, or specialized employment for persons with disabilities. This course satisfies the advanced seminar requirement for the Department of Political Science.

Requisite: An Introductory course in political science or its equivalent. Limited to 15 students. Spring semester. Professor Bumiller.

If Overenrolled: Priority given to political science majors

Cost: 46.00 ?


Attention to Research, Attention to Writing, Community Based Learning


2022-23: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Spring 2016, Spring 2017, Spring 2018, Spring 2020, Fall 2020, Fall 2021