After studying general dynamics in world politics and reading Mounk’s book about

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After studying general dynamics in world politics and reading Mounk’s book about the future of world politics and liberal democracy, it’s time for you to work out your view of one of the reform questions we have worked on in the last section of our course.
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Generally, your essays should focus on concrete policy questions which require a decision about a complex topic. You may choose another topic, but the burden will be on you to establish the importance of your topic and thesis. Here are illustrative questions:
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Are apostasy laws a legitimate cultural variation from human rights or democratic rights?
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Are China’s restrictions on religious freedom legitimate cultural variations from a human right of religious freedom?
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Should the US sign and ratify the International Criminal Court treaty?
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Would the Uighur crisis qualify as genocide?
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Has Russia committed war crimes, crimes against humanity, or genocide in Ukraine?
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Should we support open borders?
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In whatever order makes best sense for your essay, you should do the following:
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1. Provide good background to the issue. Explain why your topic is important by connecting it to deeper dynamics in world politics. In a necessarily economical section, give sufficient background to your issue that a generally well-informed reader will grasp the key relevant issues.
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2. Choose an audience. You may write to the President, a Presidential candidate, a Senator, a government official, a newspaper editor for publication, etc. You must persuade that person or audience. [Your essay will be evaluated in part on how you develop your rhetorical strategy appropriate to your audience.]
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3. Describe two opposing views of what should be done. Your thesis must be open to criticism from at least one of the two opposing views you chose.
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4. Identify the strongest opposing argument to your thesis and respond to it.
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In addition to all materials assigned in class, you should provide an annotated bibliography of at least 10 articles from The Economist and/or the New York Times or similar major media sources and at least two significant scholarly articles from Curry Library’s Discovery database. An annotated bibliography gives a short summary of the conclusion of each entry or why you found it important; one or two sentences should be sufficient.
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Your essay may be no more than 2200 words (excluding footnotes, charts/graphs/maps, bibliography, etc). Your essay must be free of all spelling, typing, grammatical, and editing errors. The “3 Error Rule” will apply to these papers. (Consult the class Writing Guide.) As explained in the Writing Guide, you should be very conservative about citing material. When you cite, use footnotes. The annotated bibliography will reflect all sources that you have read or consulted for your paper, even if you did not quote nor refer to them in the text.

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