Pre-College Programs
Summer@Brown Courses

« Return to Course Catalog

Diplomacy

One Section Available to Choose From:

Course DatesWeeksMeeting TimesStatusInstructor(s)CRN
June 22, 2015 - June 26, 20151M-F 12:15-3:05POpenStephen Chambers10036

Course Description

The art of negotiation has never been more important than it is today. From the classroom to the boardroom, inter-personal skills and a clear conception of the give-and-take of personalities and tactical planning are vital elements of success in today’s world. This course is designed to encourage students to think critically about the history of theories of diplomacy and its relationship to diplomacy-in-practice. To encourage a collaborative learning style, the course will be divided into three parts:

I. Reading. By reading and discussing foundational materials in the history of political science and diplomatic studies, students will attain familiarity with classic theories of negotiation and strategy. Readings will include Aristotle’s Politics, Machiavelli’s The Prince, and Sun Tzu’s The Art of War.

II. Gameplay, with the board game, “Diplomacy.” In 1973, Henry Kissinger was quoted as saying that the board game, “Diplomacy” (originally invented in 1954) was his favorite game, and it was reportedly popular with both President John F. Kennedy and Walter Cronkite. Set in pre-World War I Europe and wholly dependent on inter-personal dynamics, the game will require students to strategize in collaborative and adversarial contexts.

III. Reflection and Presentation Discussions. Students will regularly reflect in writing on the relationship between the theoretical course readings and the classroom game. By presenting their reflections in class, students will improve their speaking abilities, as well as their abilities to critically evaluate the work of their peers. Students will incorporate what they have learned from diplomacy-in-theory and diplomacy-in-practice into their reflections.