DPI-205: Responsibility and Representation: Meeting The Demands of Political Life

Semester: Spring

Credit: 1.0

Syllabus: Click here for syllabus


Day Time Location
First Day 1/25
Meet Day M/W 8:45 AM - 10:00 AM L230


This is a course for students considering a career in politics and seeking to prepare themselves for the demands of public life: staying truthful versus saying what it takes to win; balancing partisanship with civility; doing what your constituents want versus what you think is right; managing the pressures of money and influence; being loyal to party versus being loyal to yourself and your people; maintaining the distinction between enemies and adversaries; knowing the difference between an honorable compromise and a rotten one; knowing when to fight and when to make a deal; when to shoulder responsibility and when to force it on to others. The readings will balance the classics -- Edmund Burke, James Madison, Niccolo Machiavelli, Max Weber -- with contemporary case studies designed to test student responses to practical ethical dilemmas for those seeking and holding public office in the United States and in democratic societies in the rest of the world.








John F. Kennedy School of Government 79 John F. Kennedy Street
Cambridge, MA 02138
617-495-1100 Get Directions Visit Contact Page