This course will immerse students in the history, politics, culture and character of the nation’s capital. You will learn about Washington’s transformation from a remote federal city into the world’s most powerful capital. We will explore how Washington has been depicted throughout history, how it is represented – and misrepresented -- in modern culture, and why it is ridiculed by politicians who want to work there. We will examine the glorification and vilification of Washington in literature and film and assess the truth behind some popular Washington myths. We will probe Washington policy debates and rituals and examine the research tools used to separate fact from fiction. You will have an opportunity to study and visit monuments and museums, as well as iconic institutions such as the Supreme Court, National Press Club, the National Gallery, and perhaps Ben’s Chili Bowl. Writing assignments will connect both your internship and Washington experiences to the broader policy world. Each student will also make a pair of short in-class presentations.
UCI/UCR/UCD students have been preapproved for this seminar; all other students need special permission from their campus UCDC program to receive academic credit for this seminar.