IR 302. The Rise and Decline of Empires (4)
Instructor: Professor Menon

current or most recent syllabus


Catalogue description : IR 302.The Rise and Decline of Empires  (4)

An overview of the expansion, over-extension, and collapse of empires. Focus on alternative theories of empire as well as historical cases. (SS)

When offered : IR 302 is usually offered in the fall semester.

Intended for : IR majors and minors. The course meets the requirement as one of two required upper-level courses for majors and qualifies as an elective for minors. IR 302 is not intended for first year students and is in fact best taken in the third or fourth year.

Prerequisites : IR 10, although the instructor may waive these requirements on a case-by-case basis.

Instructional Methods :   Lectures combined with discussion. Theories on the sources of empire, the processes and problems related to management of maintenance of empire, and the sources of imperial decay and collapse are illuminated through case studies of major empires, including Athens, Rome, the Ottoman, Napoleonic empires, as well as the European empires of the 19th century. International relations theory and comparative history provide the framework for analysis. The enrollment ranges from 15-20 students.

Grading Methods : Typically there are two in-class exams and a "take-home" final. Class participation is taken into account in assigning final grades.

Department of International Relations
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