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Full-Text Articles in Political Science

The New Covenant: Welfare Reform And American Exceptionalism, Villemaire Choo May 2019

The New Covenant: Welfare Reform And American Exceptionalism, Villemaire Choo

Undergraduate Honors Theses

The project connects the rhetoric in Bill Clinton’s 1992 campaign to the social contract tradition in American political thought in order to understand the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act (1996). Using Charles Mills’ The Racial Contract, my analysis demonstrates that instead of a social contract, it is a racial contract that structures the relationship between the American people and government. I then examine how Clinton refers to a mythologized social contract to call for a modern-day revolution to create a “New Covenant.” However, by equating personhood with “responsibility” and “hard work,” the New Covenant creates a new ...


The Art Of Repression: Digital Dissent And Power Consolidation In El-Sisi’S Egypt, Wesley Garner May 2019

The Art Of Repression: Digital Dissent And Power Consolidation In El-Sisi’S Egypt, Wesley Garner

Undergraduate Honors Theses

Imprecise measurement tools impede the study of protest mobilization. Mobilization proxies, such as counting protesters and protest events, result in significant outliers and variance while ignoring sociocultural, cybernetic, economic, legal, and other features that relevant academic literature considers essential to understanding mobilization dynamics. Without accurate empirical models, researchers’ and policymakers’ investigations of autocratic repression have little explanatory power. This thesis proposes a methodological addition to the mobilization literature: Two three-level scales distinguish an event’s potential to attract an audience from the protest’s actual output relative to similar episodes. I employ the Armed Conflict Location and Event Data (ACLED ...


Everyone Is Pro-Life: The Historical And Cultural Influences On Elite Discourse Of Abortion In Argentina, Emily Earls May 2019

Everyone Is Pro-Life: The Historical And Cultural Influences On Elite Discourse Of Abortion In Argentina, Emily Earls

Undergraduate Honors Theses

Due to its influential roots in Latin America, the Catholic Church is often an explanation for understanding abortion policy discourse and outcomes. Considering the case of Argentina and its debates to legalize abortion in Congress June/August 2018, there may be reason to suspect the Catholic Church as a wholistic or even dominant explanation of the values that were expressed. In this paper, I trace relevant topics such as human rights, the law, science, and health in the debates, ultimately culminating in the conclusion that at the core of all concerns, regardless of the side that is arguing, is life ...


Who Does The Dying?: 'Martial Races' And War Time Unit Deployment In The Indian Army, Ammon Frederick Harteis May 2019

Who Does The Dying?: 'Martial Races' And War Time Unit Deployment In The Indian Army, Ammon Frederick Harteis

Undergraduate Honors Theses

During the Second World War, the Indian Army held back units and soldiers that were not from the so-called “martial races” from frontline combat service. The British “martial races” theory held that only a small number of communities in India were fit for military service and people from all “non-martial” communities should be excluded from the Army. Has the Indian Army, after gaining independence from British leadership, contended the Second World War practice of deploying “martial” units in combat while assigning “non-martial” units to non-combat roles? It has been conclusively demonstrated that “martial race” groups have contended to be overrepresented ...


"Full Of Internal Contradictions": A Neutral Case For The Invalidation Of The Death Penalty, Carson A. Whitehurst Apr 2019

"Full Of Internal Contradictions": A Neutral Case For The Invalidation Of The Death Penalty, Carson A. Whitehurst

Undergraduate Honors Theses

A neutral evaluation of the modern death penalty, a fundamentally flawed institution, necessitates its invalidation. I analyze 428 death sentences and their appellate outcomes from Virginia, Texas, California, Pennsylvania, Colorado, and Wyoming, states which represent the gamut of capital punishment regimes in the United States. Employing a legal framework derived from the work of Justice Antonin Scalia—a lifelong and staunch supporter of the death penalty—I argue that the harmonious-reading canon and irreconcilability canons offer a neutral means for ending the American death penalty, and one which would be appropriate given the politicization of what is an irreversible punishment.


Comparing The Behavior Of Indigenous Tribes, States, And Foreign Sovereigns As Submitters Of Amicus Curiae Within The Supreme Court, Grace Murray Apr 2019

Comparing The Behavior Of Indigenous Tribes, States, And Foreign Sovereigns As Submitters Of Amicus Curiae Within The Supreme Court, Grace Murray

Undergraduate Honors Theses

Indigenous tribes, states, and foreign sovereigns possess different degrees of sovereignty outside the federal government yet frequently interact within the United States’ judicial system. In their presence in the Supreme Court, do indigenous tribes behave more like foreign sovereigns or more like states? I explore how each actor behaves as a submitter of amicus curiae briefs in order to compare the macro-level behavior of tribes, sovereigns, and states. I analyze the amicus brief submissions of these actors to all merits cases throughout the Roberts Court. My dataset is unique in the attention paid to the network of signees and entities ...


Sometimes Enemies, Sometimes Friends, Christopher David Gundermann Apr 2019

Sometimes Enemies, Sometimes Friends, Christopher David Gundermann

Undergraduate Honors Theses

Political polarization and the growing power of the presidency have created new incentives for political actors in the realm of foreign policy that have not existed prior in American his- tory. I argue that these new incentives in formulating foreign policy has created repeating and predictable trends in how America relates to various regime types (here meaning all ruling governments, regardless of political system) due to shared ideological concerns. The foreign policy pushed by the Democratic Party places emphasis on democratization and human rights in the post-September 11th period, which leads to improved relations between America and like- minded liberal ...


Impact Of China's One Belt One Road Initiative At Different Geographical Scales, Yuxiang Hou Apr 2019

Impact Of China's One Belt One Road Initiative At Different Geographical Scales, Yuxiang Hou

Undergraduate Honors Theses

China’s One Belt One Road (OBOR), proposed in 2013, is an ambitious initiative that aims at enhancing connectivity and integrating economies across countries. This thesis, by tracing its mechanism at three different geographical scales---global, national, and local, analyzes its multidimensional impact at each scale. It shows that at a global scale, OBOR is in the form of competing narratives over its global impact and nature; at a national scale, OBOR is represented as economic corridors, aiming at improving infrastructures, increasing multilateral trade, integrating financial systems, and strengthening cultural ties; and at a local scale, OBOR exerts an impact on ...


A Comparative Analysis Of Media And Legislative Rhetoric On Gun Control, Samyuktha Mahadevan Apr 2019

A Comparative Analysis Of Media And Legislative Rhetoric On Gun Control, Samyuktha Mahadevan

Undergraduate Honors Theses

In this paper, I analyze the use of language in the debates on gun laws in three different countries: the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom. Through systematic analysis of both legislative debates and media coverage of gun violence and gun control, I identify the major frames utilized by these political elites and news networks when discussing the issue.My findings show that there are indeed measurable differences between the rhetoric used by both legislators and the media. Each country has both shared and unique frames that are used by both types of actors. The rhetoric in the United ...


Proliferation & Instability: How Nuclear Weapons Acquisition Alters Inter-State Relations, Tyler Sagerstrom Apr 2019

Proliferation & Instability: How Nuclear Weapons Acquisition Alters Inter-State Relations, Tyler Sagerstrom

Undergraduate Honors Theses

I theorize that in a dyad of a status quo nuclear state and a new nuclear state, the stage of nuclear development of the new nuclear state affects the level of tensions that the status quo nuclear state directs at the new nuclear state. Threat perception is the variable that causes the status quo nuclear state to respond to the new nuclear state’s stages of nuclear development. I hypothesize that as the new nuclear state develops its nuclear arsenal, tensions will rise until the new nuclear state’s first nuclear test and then fall. This thesis tests this theory ...


Popular Motherist Activism In Argentina: Why Do Mothers Radicalize?, Emily B. Jackson May 2018

Popular Motherist Activism In Argentina: Why Do Mothers Radicalize?, Emily B. Jackson

Undergraduate Honors Theses

In 1977, the second year of Argentina’s last dictatorship, the Madres de Plaza de Mayo donned white headscarves (pañuelos) and began weekly marches around the Plaza de Mayo in Buenos Aires to bring attention to the disappearance of their children. By taking up a public defense of motherhood, they transferred a private role into a public, political act, established themselves as motherist activists, and effectively criticized the dictatorship. Today the women continue to organize, but their agenda has shifted from "apolitical" motherism to a radical anti-neoliberal, anti-imperialist critique. What caused this shift in the Madres' message? Although the literature ...


J.S. Mill The Democrat: Connecting Mill, Athens, And Election Reform, Devon Wolfe May 2018

J.S. Mill The Democrat: Connecting Mill, Athens, And Election Reform, Devon Wolfe

Undergraduate Honors Theses

In this paper, I examine John Stuart Mill's views on representative government in an effort to show his support for democracy. In order to accomplish this, I examine his relationship to the Ancient Athenian direct democracy. I argue that Mill’s appreciation for the guiding principles of the participatory democracy in Athens implies that his own beliefs regarding the principles of democracy are positive and supportive.


Accessing The Right To Choose: Factors Predicting The Enactment Of State-Level Abortion Clinic Access Laws, Hannah Gourdie May 2018

Accessing The Right To Choose: Factors Predicting The Enactment Of State-Level Abortion Clinic Access Laws, Hannah Gourdie

Undergraduate Honors Theses

During the 1980s and 1990s, anti-abortion violence and harassment targeted at reproductive health clinics spiked in response to religious and political mobilization around the national decriminalization of abortion. To combat violence, harassment, and mass protests at clinics, 16 states and DC enacted abortion clinic access laws. These laws typically prohibit certain activities, such as obstruction and vandalism, and some create no-protest buffer zones that restrict clinic protests. Most research on clinic access laws concentrates on how these laws affect levels of anti-abortion violence and disruption targeted at clinics. Other literature focuses on the tensions between pro-life speech and privacy/abortion ...


Islamic Rhetoric In Pakistan: A Comparison At The National And Sub-National Levels, Ava Chafin May 2018

Islamic Rhetoric In Pakistan: A Comparison At The National And Sub-National Levels, Ava Chafin

Undergraduate Honors Theses

This research examines the role that Islamic ideology plays in Pakistani politics at the national and sub-national levels. It seeks to understand how Islamic parties appeal to Islam to garner support. I pull from and contribute largely to the theoretical literature on nationalism and apply it specifically to my research question. I argue that political leaders rely on Islamic rhetoric more heavily at the national level to create a national identity. However, my research will also show that this phenomena is less prominent in sub-national politics. At the provincial level, political parties and party leaders are more likely to engage ...


Setting And Success In Resistance Campaigns, Eric Gelles May 2018

Setting And Success In Resistance Campaigns, Eric Gelles

Undergraduate Honors Theses

Recent literature has argued that nonviolent political resistance campaigns are more effective at achieving their political goals than violent resistance campaigns. This paper examines the structural relationship between campaign goals, campaign setting (urban or rural), campaign type (violent or nonviolent), and campaign success. I argue that because nonviolent and violent campaigns often have different goals, nonviolent movements tend to form in urban areas critical to the regime, while violent movements tend to arise in non-threatening rural hinterlands. I support this theory with quantitative evidence by linking observations from two event-level datasets on conflict to a dataset on maximalist resistance campaigns ...


Firearms Trafficking In Virginia: Federal Firearms Licensees' Policy Perspectives, Emma Merrill Apr 2018

Firearms Trafficking In Virginia: Federal Firearms Licensees' Policy Perspectives, Emma Merrill

Undergraduate Honors Theses

Gun policy is a complicated, polarizing issue in the United States. My study focuses on Federal Firearms Licensees’ opinions towards policies designed to address illegal firearms trafficking. I chose Virginia because its high rate of private firearms ownership, large number of Federal Firearms Licensees, or FFLs, and the state’s relatively lax gun regulations render firearms trafficking a relevant issue in the state. Virginia’s lack of regulation on private gun sales both prompts gun trafficking and economically impacts the state’s FFLs. Thus, Virginian FFLs’ opinions regarding potential gun laws are important because of their niche in the market ...


Maritime Governance: How State Capacity Impacts Piracy And Sea Lane Security, Yuito Ishikawa Apr 2018

Maritime Governance: How State Capacity Impacts Piracy And Sea Lane Security, Yuito Ishikawa

Undergraduate Honors Theses

Maritime piracy varies from place to place and from age to age. This thesis aims to explain the variation of piracy across time and space by exploring the capability of establishing maritime governance against piracy. The spatial variation in the number of piratical attacks is explained by calculating the state capacity for governing the surrounding seas called Sea Power Index. The thesis argues that pirates particularly target waters near a state with “medium” levels of sea power because such states are not capable of enforcing strict regulations on piracy but can provide enough infrastructure and economy for pirates to have ...


The Role Of The Air Force In The Conduct Of The Coup D’Etat, Graeme Cranston-Cuebas Apr 2018

The Role Of The Air Force In The Conduct Of The Coup D’Etat, Graeme Cranston-Cuebas

Undergraduate Honors Theses

The literature on civil-military relations universally asserts that air forces play little to no role in the prevention or conduct of the coup d’etat. This thesis contests this claim. Air forces have an extensive history of involvement in planned and attempted coup d’etats. In addition, air forces throughout the developing world are heavily coup-proofed at extreme cost in both military effectiveness and financial resources. The second section of this work establishes a theoretical framework that suggests a plausible explanation for this oversight in the theoretical literature. This gap in the literature is due to the field’s heavy ...


Raising The Charter School Cap In Massachusetts: The Consequence Of An Uncapped Neoliberal Rationality, Nicole L. Semas-Schneeweis Mar 2018

Raising The Charter School Cap In Massachusetts: The Consequence Of An Uncapped Neoliberal Rationality, Nicole L. Semas-Schneeweis

The William & Mary Educational Review

In September 2015, Governor Charlie Baker announced his support for raising the charter school cap in Massachusetts. This announcement has sparked a heated debate about funding for public education that problematically ignores neoliberal ideology. The Massachusetts Education Reform Act of 1993 began a reign of neoliberalism impacting education policies. An Act Relative to the Achievement Gap in 2010 saw an intensification of this privatization and free market ideology with its explicit support of charter alternatives. Achievement has become based on standardized assessments that presume a static, ethnocentric view of knowledge. Neoliberal ideology reinforces white Eurocentrism and a meritocratic rationale, disregarding ...


Analyzing Political Bias Through A User-Friendly Interface, Colin Lightfoot Dec 2017

Analyzing Political Bias Through A User-Friendly Interface, Colin Lightfoot

Undergraduate Honors Theses

Many news outlets report stories shown with biased undertones that mislead readers to believe one story over another about the same event. To help people delineate between liberallyand conservatively-biased news articles, we created a website which uses a recurrent neural network with long short-term memory nodes trained to identify bias found in news articles. The network achieved an F1 Score of 0.76, and is used to provide one liberally-biased article and one conservatively-biased article side-by-side for a user to read when the user searches for a specific news story


The Role Of Eu And Nato Conditionality On Developing Democracies: A Georgian Case Study, Carolyn A. De Roster May 2017

The Role Of Eu And Nato Conditionality On Developing Democracies: A Georgian Case Study, Carolyn A. De Roster

Undergraduate Honors Theses

This thesis evaluates the effect of EU and NATO conditionality on institutional change in the Republic of Georgia. It hypothesizes that as developing democracies undergo prolonged accession processes with the EU and/or NATO, citizens are more likely to become disillusioned with the accession process. Disillusionment among citizens allows for the election anti-Western, non-democratic candidates and political parties to power, who, once elected, are able to institute non-democratic reforms that reverse institutional democratization. This thesis tests this theory using a mixed qualitative and qualitative analysis of Georgia, and draws parallels with the theory-building case of Turkey. Overall, the thesis finds ...


From Invisible Children To Legal Citizens: An Analysis Of Low National Birth Registration Rates And Global Efforts To Increase Registration, Mary K. Adgie May 2017

From Invisible Children To Legal Citizens: An Analysis Of Low National Birth Registration Rates And Global Efforts To Increase Registration, Mary K. Adgie

Undergraduate Honors Theses

The global lack of birth registration has denied 230 million children their right to a legal identity, hindered government provision of services, and distorted measurements of development indicators. Low national birth registration rates are caused by centralized civil registration systems, costly and distant birth registration processes, a lack of public awareness, and little political commitment from governments to fix the issue. I used a large-N fixed effects panel regression analysis to determine why some countries have higher birth registration rates than others and why national rates improve. The significant variables of the quantitative analysis were the urban population rate and ...


Where The Sidewalk Ends: Reimagining Urban Place And Governance In Semarang, Indonesia, Emmaleah K. Jones May 2017

Where The Sidewalk Ends: Reimagining Urban Place And Governance In Semarang, Indonesia, Emmaleah K. Jones

Undergraduate Honors Theses

Purpose: This project analyzes the uses of space and geography up the scales of political organization – from the village to the municipal – attempting to find the intersections where physical space meets governance using Semarang, Indonesia as my strategic case. This research employs a biocultural lens, addressing the existing gaps in literature by advancing a framework to function across disciplines and ultimately reconnecting to its practical application in urban planning and design. Such a framework is important in providing a blueprint for building a coherent and supportive structure on which to assess the human impact of design and contribute new “human-centered ...


Yet Another French Exception: The Legal, Cultural, And Political Dimensions Of France’S Support For The Digital Right To Be Forgotten, Zarine Kharazian May 2017

Yet Another French Exception: The Legal, Cultural, And Political Dimensions Of France’S Support For The Digital Right To Be Forgotten, Zarine Kharazian

Undergraduate Honors Theses

In 2015, the European Court of Justice established an online “right to be forgotten” in Europe. Under this right to be forgotten, individuals may request that search engines delist links that reference their personal information from search results. Search engines need not grant these requests, but they are now obligated to review them.

While the Court's decision to establish the right to be forgotten certainly ignited a debate among Western privacy scholars and policymakers hailing from both sides of the Atlantic, no country has participated in the debate with as much fervor as has France. This thesis addresses the ...


Things Fall Apart: The Role Of Small Arms Acquisition In Insurgent Fragmentation, Matthew K. Ribar Apr 2017

Things Fall Apart: The Role Of Small Arms Acquisition In Insurgent Fragmentation, Matthew K. Ribar

Undergraduate Honors Theses

Insurgent is a label applied to a large variety of armed political actors, but all these actors have one need in common: the need to arm their fighters. This paper examines how the manner in which insurgent groups acquire arms affects the likelihood that the group will fragment or cohere over time. Specifically, if an insurgent group has a highly centralized process of arms acquisition, such as direct transfers to insurgent commanders by a third party, the cost of defection for insurgent field commanders will be high. If the cost of defection is high, then a splinter group is less ...


A Woman’S Place In The State House: Exploring Backlash Effects Of Women’S Increased Descriptive Representation, Emily S. Wasek Apr 2017

A Woman’S Place In The State House: Exploring Backlash Effects Of Women’S Increased Descriptive Representation, Emily S. Wasek

Undergraduate Honors Theses

Historically, marginalized groups such as racial minorities, members of the LGBTQ+ community, and women have sought to obtain policy gains by increasing their descriptive representation through the election of officials with similar demographic qualities. Yet, this increased representation may also threaten dominant groups and result in negative responses such as a legislative backlash, wherein opposition legislators introduce proposals counterproductive to the marginalized group’s progress. While this ”offensive” legislative backlash oftentimes occurs in response to the increased presence of Black and queer legislators, scholarship suggests such a backlash towards female legislators may adopt a more “defensive” form, wherein opponents block ...


The Christian Right And Israel: A Love Story?, Joseph Malanson Apr 2017

The Christian Right And Israel: A Love Story?, Joseph Malanson

Undergraduate Honors Theses

This thesis investigates whether or not, and how, the Christian Right in America has impacted American political discussion of and policy towards Israel. This project informs and is informed by the literature both on how interest groups affect American foreign policy and how religion affects American foreign policy. I hypothesize that the Christian Right will have successfully created a closer alliance between America and Israel, and that evangelical or Christian Right-allied decision-makers will be particularly likely to be supportive of Israel. The investigation has three sections. The first uses content analysis and examination of media coverage to examine how language ...


Hooligans Or Saboteurs? Democratic Backtracking In Eastern Europe, Courtney A. Blackington Apr 2017

Hooligans Or Saboteurs? Democratic Backtracking In Eastern Europe, Courtney A. Blackington

Undergraduate Honors Theses

During the European Union accession negotiations, all post-communist Eastern European countries that became EU members established democratic institutions. Even though some new member states formed more strongly consolidated democratic institutions than others, all established institutions were sufficiently democratic to gain EU membership. Since acceding to the EU, some countries have continued to deepen their democracies, while others’ democracies have stagnated or backtracked. In countries that backslid, some politicians only harmed the quality of democracy in the short-term, while others spurred democratic backsliding lasting beyond just one electoral cycle. This thesis examines the interaction between institutional engineering, political culture, and elite ...


Responding To International Health Emergencies: Comparing The World Health Organization Response To Ebola And Zika, Halia M. Czosnek Apr 2017

Responding To International Health Emergencies: Comparing The World Health Organization Response To Ebola And Zika, Halia M. Czosnek

Undergraduate Honors Theses

This thesis explores explanations for why the WHO and its Member States responded differently in each of the two cases. The epidemiology, securitization, and organizational theory literatures suggest three primary answers to these questions. I have used these literatures to formulate three explanations through which to examine each case. I assess the Ebola and Zika cases along two dependent variables: time from the start of the outbreak to the WHO and Member States’ response, and the amount of financial and human resources allocated to the response. The epidemiological explanation focuses on the lethality and transmissibility of each virus. In this ...


Continuity And Change: Consociational Democracy In The Benelux Countries, John Hunter Porter Williams Jan 2017

Continuity And Change: Consociational Democracy In The Benelux Countries, John Hunter Porter Williams

Dissertations, Theses, and Masters Projects

No abstract provided.