PS 1581 (Fall 2018)

PS 1581: Origins and Consequences of Nuclear Proliferation Capstone
William Spaniel
Spring 2018
Lecture: Thursdays, 11:00-1:30, Posvar 4625
Office Hours: Thursdays, 9:00-11:00, Posvar 4446

For more than 70 years, nuclear weapons have had a central role in international relations, beginning with Cold War diplomacy between the United States and Soviet Union to ongoing negotiations with Iran and North Korea today. This class investigates why states develop nuclear weapons and how nuclear weapons affect international politics following proliferation. We will use a seminar method, with students presenting existing research papers and others commenting and criticizing the work. The class culminates in students developing their own papers.


September 20: Nuclear Skepticism
Slides: Sechser and Fuhrmann/Sagan, Bell and Miller/Mueller

September 13: Nuclear Coercion
Slides: Beardsley and Asal/Kroenig, Gartzke and Jo, Sagan

September 6: Introduction
Reading: Atomic Audit, Chapter 1

We will divide the semester’s readings in class as well.

August 30: No Class
We will not be meeting on August 30 due to the American Political Science Association’s annual conference. Our first class will be on September 6, when I will discuss some of the basics of nuclear weapons, go over class expectations, and assign reading presentations. You should spend the first week looking through the syllabus and deciding which weeks you would most want to present.