Political Development: A Comparative Perspective

Government is the institutional “infrastructure” of a country. Politics shapes the rules and norms of economic and social life. This course will focus on three themes in comparative development: 1) State capacity and its forms; 2) How changes in mass media affect communications between government and citizens; and 3) how political culture-- the norms and values of citizens – shape and are shaped by government and politics. This year’s readings will explore these themes with respect to taxation systems, public security, urban-rural divides, immigration and inequality.

FacultySamuel Popkin


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