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2019 News



Mary McGrath & Sara Saltzer ' 19 | Opinion: Are Americans ready for a female president? Yes. In fact, they might prefer one

November 25, 2019 – from Los Angeles Times
"As political scientists, we were intrigued by the question of whether voters hold a bias against female candidates — so we conducted some experiments. Rather than simply polling voters to ask whether they would vote for a female candidate, we recruited registered partisans, both Democrats and Republicans, to participate in a simulated election in which they would “vote” for a hypothetical candidate."


Wendy Pearlman | Host State Engagement, Socioeconomic Class, and Syrian Refugees in Turkey and Germany

October 4, 2019 – from Journal of Comparative Politics
“Refugees’ preflight class interacts with host state policies to shape refugees’ post-displacement class trajectories. This interaction affects whether refugees of different backgrounds experience mobility over time and… disperse over space.… [H]osts that leave refugees to self-settle accentuate stratification insofar as… poor refugees lack protection from further impoverishment… ‘Interventionist engagement’ hosts lessen the gap between rich and poor both by attracting middle-class refugees and by imposing integration programs that further compress all refugees toward the middle. Demonstrating these arguments, analysis of Syrian refugees in Turkey and Germany illustrates a diaspora’s class-remaking in ways not attributable to displacement alone.”


Elizabeth Shakman Hurd | The Religion Trap

August 7, 2019 – from The Immanent Frame
"There is a trap in the study of religion and politics. All traditions are equally susceptible to it, but as Tamir Moustafa suggests in his new book, Constituting Religion, the temptation may be especially strong when it comes to contemporary state politics surrounding Islam and Islamic law. The trap is to conflate Islam as a fluid and diverse set of traditions with specific forms of state Islam and projects of Islamization."


Alvin Tillery | What Kind of Movement is Black Lives Matter? The View from Twitter

July 30, 2019 – from American Political Science Association
"This paper examines the ways that social movement organizations affiliated with the Black Lives Matter movement use Twitter through three content analysis studies.… These findings suggest that the BLM movement is intelligible through both the resource mobilization and new social movement paradigms within social movement studies."

Daniel Galvin | Let’s not conflate APD with political history, and other reflections on “Causal Inference and American Political Development”

July 26, 2019 – from Public Choice
"American political development… is a problem-driven inquiry into the dynamics of American politics, a substantive and theoretical exploration of how American politics has changed over time.… [I]ts orientation toward causality, causes, and theory tends to differ from much of the work in the causal inference tradition.… [E]xperimental research and APD research might be brought into more fruitful intellectual exchange."

Laurel Harbridge-Yong | The Effects of Blaming Others for Legislative Inaction on Individual and Collective Evaluations

July 19, 2019 – from Legislative Studies Quarterly
"Legislators commonly blame others for gridlock. We posit that legislators may engage in this type of rhetoric to minimize the individual reputational risks associated with legislative inaction or to boost the relative standing of their party. In a series of six survey experiments, we find that blaming others for inaction undermines voters’ evaluations of individual legislators who engage in this rhetorical strategy.… However, blaming rhetoric can also enhance the standing of the blamer’s party relative to the opposing party across all groups (including out-partisans), in large part by undermining the reputations of these other actors."

James Druckman | Can Citizens Learn What They Need to Know? Reflections on The Democratic Dilemma

July 17, 2019 – from Politics Symposium
"The Democratic Dilemma was published in 1998 by Arthur Lupia and Mathew McCubbins. The book addresses a long-standing question: Does a lack of information short-circuit democratic functioning? This is a question of relevance for multiple pathways of democratic representation: from voters to elected officials, elected officials to bureaucrats, legislators to committees, citizens to jurors, inter alia."

Alvin B. Tillery, Jr. | Tweeting Racial Representation: How the Congressional Black Caucus used Twitter in the 113th Congress

July 1, 2019 – from Politics, Groups, and Identities
The social media and microblogging site Twitter has emerged as both a vehicle for political expression and a powerful tool for political organizing within the African American community. This paper examines the extent to which members of the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) utilize Twitter to communicate with their constituents about racial issues. An analysis of CBC members’ tweets during the 113th Congress (2013–2014) shows that the organization’s members do talk about race and occasionally use racially distinct hashtags. Moreover, statistical analyses show that the best predictors of a CBC members’ engagement with racial issues on Twitter are being a woman legislator, the size of their margin of victory in the 2012 elections, and the percentage of whites living within the boundaries of their district.


Alvin B. Tillery, Jr. | What Could Reparations for Black Americans Look Like?

June 25, 2019 – from WTTW
"Not only are Democratic presidential candidates calling for reparations. There’s a growing amount of scholarship around the subject that’s leading to new historical discoveries about slavery and its impact on modern-day society...We are uncovering more and more and the evidence is so overwhelming, I think it’s just hard to dismiss it, said Tillery, who also serves as director of Northwestern’s Center for the Study of Diversity and Democracy."

Karen J. Alter | Redundancy, Regime Complexity and Universality in International Law

June 12, 2019 – from Amsterdam Center for International Law
Following Professor Alter's guest lecture on 'The Future of International Law in an Age of Nationalist Populism,' Karen J. Alter speaks to us about redundancy, regime complexity and universality in international law. She also explains how she uses heuristics and shares with us analytical tricks that help her to develop her thinking.

Thomas Ogorzalek | New Directions in Race, Place, and Space

June 10, 2019 – from The Journal of Politics
"For more than a half century, social scientists have been trying to unravel the complicated relationships between social context, political outcomes, and public policy, and all the while those same factors have been changing America and one another faster than we can keep up. Questions asked and lessons learned in this area are more important than ever, as globalization, continued urbanization, and social friction accelerate in the United States and around the world."

James Druckman & Matthew Levendusky | What Do We Measure When We Measure Affective Polarization?

June 7, 2019 – from Public Opinion Quarterly
Affective polarization—the tendency of Democrats and Republicans to dislike and distrust one another—has become an important phenomenon in American politics. Yet, despite scholarly attention to this topic, two measurement lacunae remain. First, how do the different measures of this concept relate to one another—are they interchangeable? Second, these items all ask respondents about the parties. When individuals answer them, do they think of voters, elites, or both? We demonstrate differences across items, and scholars should carefully think about which items best match their particular research question. Second, we show that when answering questions about the other party, individuals think about elites more than voters. More generally, individuals dislike voters from the other party, but they harbor even more animus toward the other party’s elites.


Kimberly Marion Suiseeya | Making Influence Visible: Innovating Ethnography at the Paris Climate Summit

May 29, 2019 – from Global Environmental Politics
Although Indigenous Peoples make significant contributions to global environmental governance and were prominent actors at the 2015 Paris Climate Summit, COP21, they remain largely invisible in conventional, mainstream, and academic accounts of COP21. In this article, we adopt feminist collaborative event ethnography to draw attention to often marginalized and unrecognized actors and help make visible processes that are often invisible in the study of power and influence at sites of global environmental governance.


Elizabeth Shakman Hurd | The dialectic of secularism and religionism

April 25, 2019 – from Tehran Times
Read the interview with Asre-Andisheh Magazine. Hurd is the author of The Politics of Secularism in International Relations (2008) and Beyond Religious Freedom: The New Global Politics of Religion (2015), both published by Princeton, and co-editor of Politics of Religious Freedom and Comparative Secularisms in a Global Age. She is co-PI, with Winnifred Sullivan, on a Luce-supported collaborative research project “Politics of Religion at Home and Abroad” (2016-2019) and co-organized the “Politics of Religious Freedom” project (2011-2014).

Tom Ogorzalek | Yes, Lori Lightfoot’s election as Chicago mayor was historic. But how will she govern?

April 17, 2019 – from Washington Post, Monkey Cage blog
Lightfoot, much like Harold Washington, campaigned as a political outsider and reformer. She promised to take on the persistent corruption in Chicago and Illinois politics, and these positions became particularly persuasive after corruption scandals that ripped through the city’s machine organization late last year. Last week’s election was an historic first — but it was also a historic margin of victory, big enough to impress any ward boss. And Lightfoot won in every part of an often-divided city.

Wendy Pearlman | Video: Young Progressives Are Increasingly Critical Of Israel. Here's Why

April 11, 2019 – from Newsy
"We should have an honest conversation about the U.S. role in enabling Israeli policies such as the settlement expansion, such as denial of Palestinian rights. It's not impossible to have an open conversation that is sensitive, but sensitive not only to the sensitivities of American Jews, but to American Muslims, to American Arabs, to people of all different faiths and backgrounds."


Wendy Pearlman | 5 ways the Syrian revolution continues

March 18, 2019 – from The Conversation
"Past and continuing atrocities in Syria will haunt history for generations to come. That Syrians retain any hope in a better future is not only a testament to their sheer will. It is also a sign, I believe, that the revolution they began eight years ago continues today."


Wendy Pearlman | Research in Violent Post-Conflict Political Settings

February 19, 2019 – from American Political Science Association Organized Section for Qualitative and Multi-Method Research, Qualitative Transparency Deliberations, Working Group Final Reports
Affiliate Pearlman’s report, co-authored with Ana Arjona (Northwestern) and Zachariah Mampilly (Vassar), examines the benefits, costs, and risks of adopting various forms of openness and transparency in political violence research and identifies the appropriateness and constraints of different approaches.