Politics in Practice

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How do politicians get what they want? How can this knowledge help students achieve goals and protect them from manipulation? In this TIP course, students explore and debate these practical and ethical questions as they relate to political decision making; verbal and non-verbal communication; manipulation, persuasion, and group mobilization; techniques in conflict and conflict resolution; and classical political philosophy. Activities include team building and leadership development exercises; simulating historical foreign policy crises; engaging in hypothetical elections; and playing games of diplomacy and power politics. By studying competing theories of politics, this class challenges students’ worldviews and encourages them to construct their own theories about how politics works.

Mark Harvey wrote and developed this course in response to his 1999 International Relations students wanting to take a second class with him. In , the course was called "The Science and Art of Politics". The name was changed to "Politics in Practice" in 2001.

Mark has taught this course at the University of Kansas or at Duke East since 2000. Geoff Peterson, Mark's TA in 1999 and 2000, taught it at the University of Kansas in 2001.