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Program Type: 
Course Code: 
POLS 656
Course Type: 
Course Language: 
Course Objectives: 

This course will focus on research questions related to how people around the world think about and participate in democratic politics. More specifically we will study crossnational differences and similarities in public opinion, voting behavior, social movements and mass protests. Our objective in this course will be to come up with the fullest possible understanding of the forces that shape contemporary democratic mass politics.

Course Content: 

We will maintain a consistently comparative approach, incorporating research into the politics of countries in Eastern Europe, Latin America, Africa, the Middle East, and East Asia whenever possible. In the first part of the course, we will focus on the notion of democracy by looking at its definition, varieties of democratic regimes as well as the transition and consolidation process of democracy. In the second part of the course we will discuss the importance of political culture by looking at democratic values and public support for democratic regimes. In the next section we will try to explain the causes and consequences of voter turnout and other forms of political participation (e.g. protests, strikes and boycotts). The final section discusses how social cleavages, economic conditions, ideology, party identification and various other factors influence the voting behavior of people.

Teaching Methods: 
1: Lecture, 2: Discussion based lecture, 3: Case study, 4:Small group work, 5: Seminar, 6: Group work, 7: Research paper, 8: Oral presentation/exam, 9: Survey, 10: Panel, 11: Guest speaker, 12: Activities within a Student Body or Research Project.
Assessment Methods: 
A: Exam, B: Homework, C: Presentation, D: Discussion

Vertical Tabs

Course Learning Outcomes

Learning Outcomes Program

Learning Outcomes

Teaching Methods Assessment Methods
Describing the party law mechanism and organization 1,2             1          A
Reolving the relations between political party’s mechanism and democracy 1,2 1,2 A,D
Realization of political party’s shortcomings 10 1 A
Finding solutions about the relations between political party’s shortcomings and democracy 10 2 A,D
Comparing political parties in different terms 3,10 1,2 A
Discussion about the current political parties and political developments 10 1,2 A,D

Course Flow

Week Topics Study Materials
1 Introduction  
2 What is Democracy? Philippe C. Schmitter and Terry Lynn Karl, (1996) “What Democracy Is…and Is Not,” in
3 Democratic Transition • Samuel P. Huntington (1991) “Democracy’s Third Wave” Journal of Democracy 2(2).

• Christian Welzel. ‘Theories of democratization’. Ch 6 in Christian W. Haerpfer et al. Democratization. pp74-88

4 Social Movements and Revolutions • Rossi, Federico and Donatella della Porta. (2009). ‘Social movements, trade unions and advocacy networks.’ Ch 12 in Christian W. Haerpfer et al. Democratization pp.74-88

• Anderson, Lisa. (2011). Demystifying the Arab Spring: Parsing the Differences between Tunisia, Egypt, and Libya. Foreign Affairs. 90 (May/June): 2-7.

 • In Class Film and Discussion: The Arab Awakening: The Seeds of Revolution

5 Hybrid Regimes • Faared Zakari (1997) “The Rise of Illiberal Democracy” Foreign Affairs, 76(6) • Steven Levitsky and Lucian A. Way, (2002) “The Rise of Competitive Authoritarianism,” Journal of Democracy, pp. 51-65.

• In Class Film and Discussion: For God, Tsar and the Fatherland by Nino Kirtadze`

6 Democratic Consolidation • Linz, Jaun J. and Alfred Stepan. (2001). “Toward Consolidated Democracies.” in L. Diamondand M. Plattner, Ed. The Global Divergence of Democracies, pgs. 93-112

• Andreas Schedler “Concepts of Democratic Consolidation” Paper prepared for delivery at the 1997 meeting of the Latin American Studies Association (LASA), Guadalajara, Mexico,

• In Class Film and Discussion: After Democracy by Chris Kijne

7 Democratic Stability and Institutions: Parliamentary vs. Presidential Systems • Juan J. Linz, “The Perils of Presidentialism” Journal of Democracy, Volume 1, Number 1, Winter 1990 pp. 51-69

• Stepan, Alfred and Cindy Skach. 1993. ‘Constitutional frameworks and democratic consolidation: Parliamentarism and presidentialism.’ World Politics 46 (1): 1-22.

8 Midterm  
9 Democracy and Political Culture • Christian Welzel and Ronald Inglehart. (2009). ‘Political culture, mass beliefs and value change.’ Ch 9 in Christian W. Haerpfer et al. Democratization. pp.126-143.

• Fails, Matthew D. and Heather N. Pierce. 2010. ‘Changing Mass Attitudes and Democratic Deepening.’ Political Research Quarterly 63(1): 174-187. In Class Film and Discussion: Please Vote for Me—an Experiment in Democracy by Chinese 8- Year- Olds by Wiejun Chen

10 Political Culture in Non-Western Countries • Tessler, Mark (2002)“Islam and Democracy in the Middle East: The Impact of Religious Orientations on Attitudes towards Democracy in Four Arab Countries”, Comparative Politics

• Ciftci, Sabri.(2010).”Modernization, Islam, or Social Capital: What Explains Attitudes Toward Democracy in the Muslim World?”Comparative Political Studies 43(11): 1442-70.

• In Class Film and Discussion: Please Vote for Me—an Experiment in Democracy by Chinese 8- Year- Olds by Wiejun Chen

11 Political Participation & Protests • Dalton, Russell (2000) “Citizen Attitudes and Political Behavior” Comparative Political Studies, 33; 912-934.

• Lois Becket, “Globalizing Occupy Wall Street: From Chile to Israel, Protests Erupt,” ProPublica.com, October 25, 2011 (online)

• In Class Film and Discussion: Street Politics 101

12 Voter Turnout • Blais, André (2006). What Affects Voter Turnout? Annual Review of Political Science, 9, 111-125.

 • Dubner, Stephen J. and Steven D. Levitt. (2005). “Why Vote?” the New York Times November 6. (online)

13 Voting Behavior: Sociological, Economic and Strategic Voting • Rui Antunes (2010) “Theoretical models of voting behavior” Exedra Journal, No.4

• Çarkoğlu, Ali (2008). “Ideology or Economic Pragmatism?: Profiling Turkish Voters in 2007” Turkish Studies. Vol.9 Issue. 2.

14 Final Review  

Recommended Sources

Textbook -Landman, T. (2008) Issues and Methods in Comparative Politics: An Introduction, London and Oxford: Routledge.
Additional Resources - Agüero, F. (1997) “Toward Civilian Supremacy in South America,” in Larry Diamond et, al (eds.), Consolidating the Third Wave Democracies Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins University Press.


-Almond, G. (1980) “The Intellectual History of the Civic Culture Concept,” in Gabriel Almond and Sidney Verba (eds.) The Civic Culture Revisited  (Princeton: Princeton University Press.


- Anderson, C. J. (2000) "Economic Voting and Political Context: A Comparative Perspective."Electoral Studies 19 (2/3).


-Asad, M.(1961), The Principles of State and Government in Islam, University of California Press.

-Cammack, P. (2004) “’Signs of the times’: Capitalism, Competitiveness, and the New Face of Empire in Latin America”, Socialist Register 2005.

-Castorina, E. (2007) “’Democratic Neoliberalism in Argentina”, Socialist Register 2008.

-   -Chhibber, P. and Torcal, M. (1997) “Elite Strategy, Social Cleavages, and Party Systems in a New Democracy: Spain.” Comparative Political Studies 30:1 (February).


Cizre, Ü. (2004) “The Military and Politics: a Turkish Dilemma‟ in B. Rubin and Thomas A Keaney , eds. Armed Forces in the Middle East. London:Frank Cass.


-Collier, D. (1979) “Overview of the Bureaucratic-Authoritarian Model” in The New Authoritarianism in Latin America, Collier (ed.), Princeton University Press.


-Collier, D. and Levitsky, S. (1997) “Democracy with Adjectives: Conceptual Innovation in Comparative Research,” World Politics .


-Cox, G. (1990) “Centripetal and Centrifugal Incentives in Electoral Systems.” American Journal of Political Science 34:4.

-Foweraker J. and Landman T.(1999) ‘Individual Rights and Social Movements: A Comparative and Statistical Inquiry’, British Journal of Political Science, 29 (1999).

-Frank, A.G. (1970) “Development of Underdevelopment” in Latin America: Under-development or Revolution, MR Press.

-Gülalp, H. (1998) “The Eurocentrism of Dependenct Theory and the Question of Authenticity”, Third World Quarterly 19 (5).

-Haggard, S. and Kaufman, R. (1997) “The Political Economy of Democratic Transitions”, Comparative Politics 29 (3).

-Hall, S. (1980) “Popular Democratic vs. Authoritarian Populism: Two Ways of Taking Democracy Seriously”, in Marxism and Democracy, A. Hunt (ed.)

-Heper, M. (2005) ”The European Union, the Turkish Military and Democracy”, South European Society and Politics. 10(1).

-Huntington, S.P. (1996) ”Democracy’s Third Wave,” in Larry Diamond and Marc Plattner (eds.), The Global Resurgence of Democracy (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press.


- Huntington, S. P. (1991) “How? Processes of Democratization”, The Third Wave: Democratization in the Late Twentieth Century. (Norman:the University of Oklahoma Press.


- Jackman, R. (1987)  “Political Institutions and Voter Turnout in the Industrial Democracies.”American Political Science Review Vol. 81.

-Landman T. (2002) ‘Comparative Politics and Human Rights’, Human Rights Quarterly, 24.

- Lane, R. (1992) “Political Culture: Residual Category or General Theory,” Comparative Political Studies.


-Lijphart, A. (1999) Patterns of Democracy, New Haven: Yale University Press.


- Linz, J.J. (1996) “The Perils of  Presidentialism,” in Larry Diamond and Marc Plattner.(eds.), The Global Resurgence of Democracy Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press.


-Linz J. and Stepan, A.(1997)“Toward Consolidated Democracies,” in Larry Diamond et, al (eds.), Consolidating the Third Wave Democracies Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins University Press.


-Levitsky, S. and Way, L.A. (2005) “International Linkage and Democratization”, Journal of Democracy, 16(3).


- Lipset S.M. and Rokkan, S. (1990) “Cleavage Structures, Party Systems, and Voter Alignments,” in Peter Mair (ed.), The West European Party Systems (Oxford: Oxford University Press.


- - Lipset S.M. and Rokkan. S.(1967) “Cleavage Structures, Party Systems, and Voter Alignments: An Introduction.” In Seymour Martin Lipset and Stein Rokkan, eds. Party Systems and Voter Alignments: Cross-National Perspectives. New York: The Free Press.


-   -Macridis, R.C. and Hulliung, M.L. (1996) Contemporary Political Ideologies: Movements and Regimes, Boston, Toronto, Little Brown and Co.


-Mainwaring, S. (1998) “Party Systems in the Third Wave,” Journal of Democracy .


-McFaul M. (2005) “Transitions from Post-Communism”, Journal of Democracy, 16 (3).


-Moore, B. (1996) Social Origins of Dictatorship and Democracy, Boston, Beacon Press.


-O’Donnell, G.”Illusions About Consolidation,” in Diamond et.al (eds.), Consolidating the Third World Democracies.


-Özbudun, E. (1996) “Turkey: How Far From Consolidation?” Journal of Democracy, 7 (3).


-Özbudun, E. and Genckaya, Ö.F. (2009) “CH 4: Harmonization Packages and Other Legislative Reforms”. Democratization and the Politics of Constitution-Making in Turkey.


-Özbudun, E. and Genckaya, Ö.F. (2009) “CH 5: EU Conditionality and Democratization Process in Turkey”. Democratization and the Politics of Constitution-Making in Turkey.


- Potter, D. (1997)“Explaining Democratization” in Democratization, D. Potter et al. (eds.), Polity.


- Powell, G. B. Jr. (2004) Political Representation in Comparative Politics. Annual Review of Political Science. 7.


- Powell, G.B. (2000) Elections as Instruments of Democracy, New Haven: Yale University Press.


- Pridham, G. (2005) “EU Accession and Democratization In Central and Eastern Europe: Lessons from the Enlargement of 2004‟ in Quirico, Roberto Di ed. Europeanization and Democratization: Institutional Adaptation, Conditionality and Democratization in European Union’ s Neighbour Countries. Florence, European Press Academic Publishing.


- Putnam, R. (1993) Making Democracy Work: Civic Traditions in Modern Italy (Princeton: Princeton University Press.


-Roskin, M. (2004) Countries and Concepts: Politics, Geography, Culture, New Jersey, Prentice Hall.


-Rustow, D.A. (1970) “Transitions to Democracy: A Dynamic Model,” Comparative Politics.


-Sartori, G. (1990) “A Typology of Party Systems,” in Mair (ed.), The West European Party Systems, Oxford University Press.


- Schmitter P.C. and Karl, T.L.(1996) “What Democracy Is…and Is Not,” in Larry Diamond and Marc Plattner (eds.), The Global Resurgence of Democracy, Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins University Press,


-Shugart, M. (1995) “Parliaments Over Presidents?” Journal of Democracy 6:2 (April).


  • -Schumpeter, J.(2008) Capitalism, Socialism and Democracy, Harper Perennial Modern Classics.

- SobergShugart M. And Carey, J.M. (1992) Presidents and Assemblies: Constitutional Designs and Electoral Dynamics New York: CambridgeUniversity Press.


- Stepan, A. and Linz, J. (1996) “Democracy and Its Arenas” in Problems of Democratic Transition and Consolidation: Southern Europe, South America and Post-Communist Europe Baltimore: the John Hopkins University Press.


-Topal A. (2010) “Transition to Neoliberalism and Decentralization Policies in Mexico” in Economic Transitions to Neoliberalism in Middle-Income Countries: Policy Dilemmas, Economic Crises, Forms of Resistance, A. Saad-Filho and G.L. Yalman (eds.) Routledge.


-Yalman, G. (1985) “Popülizm, Bürokratik-Otoriter Devlet ve Türkiye”, Onbirinci Tez, 1.

Material Sharing

Exams Midterm and final essays taken in the classroom


Mid-terms 1 30
Response Paper 1 15
Film Reflections 1 15
Final examination 1 40
Total   100
Total   100

Course’s Contribution to Program

No Program Learning Outcomes Contribution
1 2 3 4 5  
1 Having a comprehensive knowledge of the basic concepts and theories of Political Science and International Relations.       X    
2 Comprehension and interpretation of the structure, institutions and operation of national, international and supranational entities via utilization of the concepts and theories of Political Science.         X  
3 Having a comparative approach vis-à-vis human societies and political systems.         X  
4 Possessing skills in taking personal responsibility as well as in participating group work that are developed by activities such as research projects and internships. X          
5 Having advanced level skills in reading, writing and speaking of the English language.         X  
6 Proficiency in quantitative and qualitative data collection methods. Paying utmost respect and attention to the norms of academic honesty.   X        
7 Acquiring skills in written and oral communication combined with an analytical and critical approach that can be utilized either in a professional or an academic setting.       X    
8 Having the social skills and experience required by public or private institutions or in the academia.       X    
9 Having developed empathy towards societies other than one’s own so that adaptation to team work in local and global settings is easily achieved.          X  
10 Acquiring advanced knowledge and proficiency in the interpretation of domestic and international developments via communication with international scholars and students.       X    


Activities Quantity Duration
Course Duration (Including the exam week: 16x Total course hours) 16 3 48
Hours for off-the-classroom study (Pre-study, practice)     16     15 240
Mid-terms 1 30 30
Response Paper&Film Reflections 2 15 30
Final examination 1 40 40
Total Work Load     378
Total Work Load / 25 (h)        15.12
ECTS Credit of the Course          15