Paper #1 - Elections in Ecuador, Haiti, The Netherlands, or Serbia

Due by midnight at the end of February 9, emailed to me at Late papers will be marked down. Students turning in papers containing plagiarism will fail the course.

Topic: Describe the election this month in one of the following countries: Ecuador, Haiti, The Netherlands, or Serbia. Does the electoral system in that country contribute to the legitimacy of the state, and if so how? To address this, your paper will need to consider the following:
  • What are the rules of the election?
  • Will people and politicians follow these rules?
  • How does the state and government sustain legitimacy?
Length: Double-spaced, 12-point font, standard margins. At least 2 pages long (not counting reference list).

Sources: Your paper should refer to at least one assigned course reading, plus two or three articles from mainstream newspapers or magazines published after January 1, 2017 (New York Times, Financial Times, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, The Economist, Al Jazeera, Newsweek, etc.; sources in languages other than English are okay as well). There is no need to research more extensive background material from other journals, books, government documents, etc. Use any standard citation format you wish, as long as you apply it consistently. If in doubt, use the Chicago Manual citation format.

Cite any article you quote directly, and cite any article that provided you with information or ideas that you incorporate into the paper. Write the paper yourself. Students caught turning in plagiarized work will fail the course and will be reported to the Academic Integrity process.

This assignment asks you to apply concepts from the course to a particular, real-world situation in a country in which there are challenges to the state-society relationship. To answer the question, you need to focus on the general logic of governance and consent, and then apply that logic to this particular case. Grades will be based on:
  • Writing. The paper must have a clear thesis, stated early. The rest of the paper should contain facts and logic that support the thesis.
  • Analysis of the sources of consent, and what legitimacy means.
  • Application of these ideas to the country you choose.
There is, of course, no one right answer to any of these questions; you will be graded on the thoughtfulness of your analysis.

You must meet with me, in person, outside of class, to discuss the paper before the due date. The assignment for the meeting is here: Paper outline. Make an appointment with me by choosing one of the open slots on this calendar. (You must be logged in to gmail or Marymount email. Scroll to the right to see future weeks.)