Undergraduate Course: Party Politics and Welfare States in Democratic Capitalism (SCPL10041)
|School||School of Social and Political Science
||College||College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
|Credit level (Normal year taken)||SCQF Level 10 (Year 3 Undergraduate)
||Availability||Available to all students
|Summary||The course aims to analyse the relationship between party politics and welfare states in democratic capitalism: How does party politics shape the welfare state and capitalist development? And how does the welfare state and capitalist development shape party politics? In addressing these overarching questions, the course takes a comparative-historical approach, with a particular focus on the more recent 'populist wave' underpinning party system transformation in the advanced capitalist countries.
The course is organised in three parts: In the first part, we draw on Polanyi seminal book "Great Transformation" to discuss the origins and implications of capitalist market expansion, before examining the role of political parties in forming and consolidating European welfare states. The second part reviews different perspectives on the changing relationship between party politics and democratic capitalism after the golden age of the welfare state. The third part engages with the causes and consequences of the more recent populist wave in Eastern Europe, Western Europe, and the USA. We conclude with a discussion about the role of populist parties in affecting the relationship between capitalism and democracy today.
Information for Visiting Students
|High Demand Course?
Course Delivery Information
|Academic year 2021/22, Available to all students (SV1)
|Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info)
Lecture Hours 10,
Seminar/Tutorial Hours 10,
Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4,
Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours
|Assessment (Further Info)
|Additional Information (Assessment)
||Essay, 1500 words, worth 30%
Research project, 3000 words, worth 70%
||The feedback from assignment 1 will enable students to utilize previously discussed concepts and apply them in assignment 2
|No Exam Information
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
- Understand the origins of free-market capitalism and political reactions to it
- Understand the role of political parties in shaping post-war welfare states
- Assess the causes of why populist parties have been on the rise in the past roughly three decades
- Identify and explain the diverse impacts of populist parties on welfare states and national models of capitalism
|Polanyi, K. ( 2001). The Great Transformation. The Political and Economic Origins of Our Time, 2nd ed., Boston: Beacon Press.|
Streeck, W. (2011). The Crises of Democratic Capitalism. New Left Review 71 (Sept.-Oct.).
Mair, P. (2013) Ruling the Void. The Hollowing of Western Democracy. London: Verso Books.
Beramendi, P., Häusermann, S., Kitschelt, H., and Kriesi, H. (2015). The Politics of Advanced Capitalism. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Gidron, N. and Hall, P. A. (2020): Populism as a Problem of Social Integration. Comparative Political Studies 53(7), 1027-1059.
Rathgeb, P. & Busemeyer, M. (2022). How to study the populist radical right and the welfare state? West European Politics 45(1), 1-23.
|Graduate Attributes and Skills
||Both pieces of assessment will foster generic cognitive skills (e.g. critical analysis). The research project will also specifically develop attributes around accountability and working with others.
|Course organiser||Dr Philip Rathgeb
|Course secretary||Miss Veronica Silvestre
Tel: (0131 6)51 337