The Empire Strikes Back



INSTRUCTOR: Professor Jean Shackelford

OFFICE HOURS: W 9-12 , Others by appointment (Coleman 165)

ADDRESSES: e-mail:, phone: X- 73441


*Benjamin R. Barber, Fear’s Empire: War, Terrorism, and Democracy , W.W. Norton, 2004.
*Niall Ferguson, Colossus: The Price of America’s Empire, The Penguin Press, 2004.
*Additional reading assigments are on e-reserve and others will be handed out during the semester.
Optional Texts: (selections to be assigned)
*Amos Oz, How to Cure a Fanatic, Princeton University Press, 2006.
*Amartya Sen, Identity and Violence, W.W

SCHEDULE: | Sept. | Oct. | Nov. | Dec.

August 19 - Introduction to Foundation Seminars

August 22 - CONVOCATION - 8:00 PM , Weis Center for the Performing Arts. ("Because of Bucknell," Mary DeCredico, Provost.)

August 24 - iNtroduction to the course/journals/materials/technology, further discussion of reading and some goal setting. (ABC assignment and Introductory Materials ) - Images of Empire

August 29 - Readings: "Jihad vs. McWorld," The Atlantic Monthly, B. Barber (e-reserves). Introduction, B. Barber, Fear's Empire. Podcast assignment.

August 31 - Readings: "Watching Lebanon," Seymour M. Hersh (eres); Colossus, Ferguson, Chapter 1 "The Limits of the American Empire," Review Table p. 11; "Iraq Runneth Over: What Next?" The Washington Post, August 20, 2006, by Kenneth M. Pollack & Daniel L. Byman; "The State of Iraq- Update. Table "

Sept. 5 - Colossus, Ferguson, Chapter 2, "The Imperialism of Anti-Imperialism" Global Institutions Update/Podcast

Sept. 7 - "The American Empire, " Michael Ignatieff, New York Times Magazine, January 5, 2003; "Blowback," Chalmers Johnson The Nation, 10.15.01.

Sept. 11 - Academic Convocation – 7:00 PM Rooke Chapel. “Islam Under Siege:  From Clash of Civilizations to Dialogue of Civilizations,” Akbar Ahmed, Professor of International Relations and Islamic Studies, American University.

Sept. 12 - Fog of War

Sept. 14 - "Imperialism" J. Hobson, (Blackboard - Course Documents-Readings - Hobson 1-6); Colossus, Ferguson, Chapter 3 "The Civilization of Clashes,"; War News Radio from Swarthmore College, iPod

Sept. 19 - Readings: Dwight D. Eisenhower on the Military Industrial Complex; review of Corporate Warriors; Technology and Empire; A. Ciralsky, L. Myers & the NBC News I.Unit.  “Did the Army favor Raytheon in anti-RPB bid?; The U.S. Constitution.

Sept. 21 - Reading: The Patriot Act - Please scan. (Explore the American Library Association’s webpages on the Patriot Act - or the Special Libraries Association’s Portal; and review the Center for Democracy and Technology's review of the reauthorized Patriot Act and CCAP's PA vs. Constitution. Read Wendell Berry’s Citizen’s response to the earlier National Security Strategy; Fear's Empire, Barber Chapter 2 and 3.

Sept. 26 –Readings: Technology, Privacy and Empire, (Privacy Assignment); The State of Surveillance, BusinessWeek, August 8, 2005; PRIVACY - EU vs. US Privacy Legislation-
** Wired - US Twitchy on EU Data Privacy-
** Wired - EU Drives Privacy Global

  • Optional:  Another Podcast....from a World Technology Podcast via  PRITue, 16 May 2006 18:00:00 EST - WTP 102: NSA Update, Gary McKinnon Update, and Network-Centric Warfare in Iraq

Sept. 28 - Reading: Technologies Tools of Empire

October 3 - The Arabs. Reading: Empires: The Ottoman Empire ( 1281-1923); The Mughal Empire ( 1526-1857); Safavids ( 1501-1736); Maps.

October 5 - Thieves Reading/background

October 10 - Understanding Images - Arabs (Video Reviews)
Reading: Amartya Sen (excerpt from Slate), Identity and Violence

October 12 - Reading: Understanding Islam - Wiki entry
Vali Nasr, "When the Shiites Rise," Foreign Affairs, July/August 2006)
Islamic Alienation by David Rieff, NYT Magazine, 8.14.05

Fall Break - October 14-17

October 19 - Reading: Ferguson, e-reserves; The British Empire ( 1485-1997)
Readings: Colossus, Chapter 5 - The Case for a Liberal Empire

Listen to Podcast OpenSource 9.21.06 Niall Ferguson’s “War of the World” - Historian Niall Ferguson's lethal three E's of global conflict: ethnic hatred, economic volatility and empires in decline. Ferguson's grim reading is that the roots of world warfare in the last century are all in place in the Middle East today.


October 24 - Reading: The Choice, Global Domination or Global Leadership, Zbigniew Brzezinski, pp 1-38, (e-reserves)

October 26 - Reading: Fear's Empire, Chapter 7. Discussion: McWorld and a Liberal Empire
Robert Fisk, The Age of Terror - a landmark report, The Independent, October 6, 2006.

October 31 - Cost of Empire/War and Financing Terror
Reading: "Encore: Iraq Hemorrhage," Update of "The Economic Costs of the Iraq War," with Professor Linda Bilmes, The Milken Institute Review, Fourth Quarter, pp. 76-83.  (updated summary of January 2006 study) The Economic Costs of the War in Iraq SCOTT J. WALLSTEN and KATRINA KOSECUpdated costs  (This is updated from the AEI-Brookings Joint Center for Regulatory Studies; American Enterprise Institute (AEI) AEI-Brookings Joint Center for Regulatory Studies; World Bank - Development Research Group September 2005 - 32k)

Financing Terror
Forbes Article
Economist's Article "Looking in the Wrong Place"

Cost estimator
What should be included in the estimating the cost of war?

Nov. 1 - LECTURE: 7:00 PM, Rooke Chapel, Kevin Phillips, The Political Economy of Oil .

Nov. 2- Empire and Society - Reading London 1900 - Chapter 5 E-Reserves

Nov. 7 - Theatre and Empire (project)

Nov. 9 - Music and Empire - Prof. Jackson Hill

Nov. 14 - Reading: B. Barber, Fear's Empire, Chapters 6 and 8

Nov. 16 - Images within Empire (assignment): The Media Empire(The Big 10)/The Media and Empire - Readings: Tomorrow's Woodwards and Bernsteins; The Global Media; Chart 1;

Nov. 21 - More media/more empire: "Good Night and Good Luck "
Reading on the Media/Sights of War (e-reserves)

Thanksgiving Break November 22 - 26

Nov 28 - Readings: Colossus, Chapter 6, "Going Home or Organizing Hypocracy"; Fear's Empire, Chapter 9, Barber

Nov 30 - Reading: Colossus, Chapter 9, "The Closing Door"

Dec. 5 - Goals revisited & FINAL PROJECT PRESENTATIONS