GWB Conference


Spring 2015 courses related to George W. Bush onference.
Students may register online for these courses through the Hofstra portal.

English 190S, “ ‘Shock and Awe’: Bush and the Culture of War,” TH 6-7 p.m. (1 credit), Dr. Amrohini Sahay

This course examines the new era of endless war inaugurated by the Bush administration post-9/11 as it has been narrated in official public discourse, fiction and non-fiction, as well as through opposing theoretical frameworks in contemporary critical theory.  The course will pay particular attention to how the language and images of the so-called “war on terror” legitimate global militarism as well as how these are taken up in recent war fictions by American and non-American writers.  The course also will touch on current theoretical debates as to whether the rise of permanent war and the new “security state” are symptoms of an intensified imperialism.

English 190T, “Terrorism/Heroism & Samson Agonistes,” M 1-2:45 (1 credit), starting March 1, Dr. Shari Zimmerman

How are we to read—after 9/11 and in what some have called an “age of terror”—John Milton’s rendering, in Samson Agonistes, of a blind(ed) Hebrew Samson bringing down to the ground a Philistine Temple and, in the process, killing thousands? How might we approach some of the questions this drama raises about political violence and physical force; civil liberties and religious discourse; competing ideologies, sexual desire, and national difference? What, frankly, are we to make of this Hebrew “hero’s” relation to the Dalila; or of his culminating act when, standing between two pillars, he takes out his enemies, himself, and so many innocent bystanders? Is this final act of strength expression of vengeance; suicidal despair; political resistance; terrorism; faith issuing from prayer? Is Milton’s Samson laudable hero, condemnable murderer, man of God—or something entirely different? In our lively, respectful, at times fiercely urgent, & always high-spirited class discussion, students will be free to engage from their own perspectives an early modern tragedy (of less than 1800 lines) whose meanings and implications continue to unfold to this day.

History 20, “The War on Terrorism in Historical Perspective,” MW 4:35-5:55 p.m. (3 credits), Dr. Carolyn Eisenberg

In the aftermath of 9-11, the George W. Bush Administration responded to the attack of  Al Qaeda by declaring a "war on terrorism."  In this class we will use memoirs, journalistic accounts, historical narratives and films to explore the following questions: Who were these terrorists, what were their aims and why did they target the United States? What were the reasons for the American invasion of Afghanistan and Iraq? And what was the impact of these invasions on the civilian population of these countries and on American troops? To what extent were the Bush Administration's policies a departure from long-term U.S. activity on the world stage and in what respects were they continuous? We will pay particular attention to individual stories as we consider these important issues.

History 103, “Debating History: Operation Iraqi Freedom,” MW 12:50-2:40 p.m. (4 credits), Dr. Carolyn Eisenberg

During the George W. Bush Presidency, the Administration's decision to invade and subsequently occupy Iraq was controversial at the time and has remained so ever since. An important goal for this course is to explore methods of historical inquiry.  When there are strong competing accounts, how can we determine which point of view is the most accurate?  

History 178A, “Special Topics in American History: The George Bush Presidency,” MW 9-10:20 a.m. (3 credits), Dr. Carolyn Eisenberg

When President George W. Bush left office, his Administration was mired in controversy over the "war on terrorism," the handling of Hurricane Katrina and the spreading economic crisis.. This course will emphasize the Bush Administration's foreign policies, but will also consider domestic developments. We will read diverse accounts written by historians, journalists and the officials themselves. How do we situate the Bush Administration within the broader historical currents of the late 20th Century? Was it truly a "conservative" Administration?

Political Science 113, “Technology and Defense Policy,” MW 2:55-4:20 p.m. (3 Credits), Dr. Paul Fritz

The Bush Administration attempted to transform American defense and national security policy in the wake of 9/11.  Building on new weapons systems and other emerging technologies, the administration hoped to implement a new style of American warfare so that the U.S. could effectively address daunting national security issues such as terrorism, WMD proliferation, and rogue states while simultaneously expanding American military hegemony. This course will critically examine the application of these ideas to the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq fought as part of the Global War on Terror and consider how the Bush Administration’s approach to these and other national security issues shaped contemporary defense policy challenges and options.

Political Science 151, “Understanding the George W. Bush Presidency,” TUTH 10:05 a.m.-12 p.m. (4 credits), Dr. Meena Bose and Dr. Richard Himelfarb (two sections)

This seminar will evaluate leadership in the George W. Bush administration.  It will analyze key decisions in the Bush (43) presidency, starting with the former president’s own assessment of his accomplishments and challenges, and then complementing that primary analysis with scholarly secondary research.  Case studies will include economic and budgetary policy, military intervention (especially Iraq, Afghanistan, and the war on terror), and bipartisan cooperation with Congress.

Public Relations 180D, “Events: Marketing, Management and Messaging,” MW 4:30-5:55 p.m. (3 credits), Ms. Melissa Connolly

In every culture, events play a unique role, and can be used for education, promotion, celebration, advocacy, or to engage, enlighten or entertain audiences.  In this course, we will explore different types of events and what they mean in our society and to us individually, why they are an important communications channel, and how to manage, promote, and execute a successful event. Topics such as logistics, budget and contract, talent relations, strategic partnerships, security, audience management, promotion, sponsorship, co-branding, and measurement will be explored.  Part of the experiential portion of this class will be working on and volunteering at the George W. Bush Presidential Conference and related events. 

Cultural Center
Hofstra Cultural Center
Kalikow Center for the Study of the American President
Kalikow Center for the Study of the American Presidency
Past Presidential Conferences
Past Presidential Conferences
About Hofstra University
About Hofstra University