This course takes an anthropological approach to look at the ways in which America has projected its power internationally since 2001. This ranges from its military invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq, its more passive policies on Syria and Libya and its more subtle use of development funds and soft power to shape the world beyond its borders. These attempts, however, also shape the way American citizens understand concepts such as security, intervention and America’s place in the world. The course takes a ground-up approach, looking at the lived experience of American intervention internationally, rather than the more typical international relations approach. Cases draw from Afghanistan, Syria, Nepal, America’s expanding network of international bases, and various cases of humanitarian intervention.
Evaluation will be based upon participation in class discussion, a series of shorter analysis papers and a final project and presentation.