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Student & Faculty Accomplishments

Books by Our Faculty

Dr. David Ryden, Is the Good Book Good Enough? Evangelical Perspectives on Public Policy (Lexington Books, 2010)
Is The Good Book Good Enough? remedies the neglect of the evangelical Christians, which makes up as much as a third of the American public. It offers a carefully nuanced and comprehensive portrait of evangelical attitudes on a wide range of policies and their theological underpinnings. Each essay applies an evangelical lens to a contemporary issue - environmentalism, immigration, family and same-sex marriage, race relations, global human rights, foreign policy and national security, social welfare and poverty, and economic policy. The result thoroughly enriches our understanding of evangelicalism as a prism through which many view a wide range of policy debates.

Dr. Virginia Beard, Democratic Political Orientations in Emerging African Democracies (VDM Verlag Publishers, 2008)
Are Islam and Christianity driving forces in democratic orientations among Africans? Does gender affect the democratic positions of Africans? In order to add to the growing conversation on the compatibility (or not) of religion with stable democracy, this study asks if adherence to Christianity and Islam, within the context of other factors, helps to explain African democratic values, attitudes and behaviors.

Dr. David Ryden and Dr. Jeffrey Polet, Sanctioning Religion? Politics, Law, and Faith-Based Public Services (Lynne Rienner Publishers, 2005)
Does federal funding of a church's welfare-to-work program constitute government endorsement of a particular religion? Do religious organizations that accept public funds lose the legal autonomy needed to preserve their religious identity and mission? Wading into the constitutional battle over whether government can and should enlist the help of religious organizations in delivering social services, Sanctioning Religion? investigates the potential - as well as the perils - of mixing religion and politics in the United States.

Dr. Annie Dandavati, Engendering Democracy in Chile (Peter Lang Publications, 2004)
This book documents the rise of a women's movement in Chile in response to the establishment of a military regime. It focuses on the growth of the women's movement and its institutionalization under the new democratic government and concludes with its achievements while highlighting the challenges faced by women as they work for political and economic change in Chile.


Dr. David Ryden, Of Little Faith: The Politics of George W. Bush's Faith-Based Initiatives (Georgetown University Press, 2004)
Drawing on dozens of interviews with key figures in Washington, the authors tell a compelling story, revealing the evolution of the Bush faith-based strategy from his campaign for the presidency through congressional votes to the present. They show how political rhetoric, infighting, and poor communication shipwrecked Bush's efforts to fundamentally alter the way government might conduct social services. The authors demonstrate the lessons learned, and propose a more fruitful, effective way to go about such initiatives in the future.

Dr. David Ryden The U.S. Supreme Court and the Electoral Process (Georgetown University Press, 2002)
The U.S. Supreme Court, far from being above the political fray, has consistently made decisions that affect the electorate in profound ways—Bush v. Gore being but one example. This book makes it abundantly clear however that before, during, and after the judicial decision that made George W. Bush the President of the United States, everything was, is, and will likely be politics—including the decisions handed down by the highest court in the land. This revised and updated edition takes into account not only the recent judicial decision on the Presidency, but a myriad of others as well in which the U.S. Supreme Court has considered the constitutionality of a wide range of issues involving voting and elections, representation, and political participation.

Dr. Jack Holmes, Dr. David Ryden and Dr. James Zoetewey, American Government: Essentials and Perspectives (McGraw-Hill Publishers, 1997)
AMERICAN GOVERNMENT delivers a unique "perspectives" format within a traditional topic sequence. This short American Government paperback examines all the traditional topics in a non-traditional way, summarizing each topic with four differing viewpoints: liberal, conservative, populist, and libertarian. The result is a text that effectively explains inter-party differences and political complexities, avoiding the artificial liberal-conservative dichotomy presented in other texts.


Dr. Annie Dandavati, The Women's Movement and the Transition to Democracy in Chile (Peter Lang Publications, 1996)
This book seeks to understand the causes for the rise of an independent women's movement in authoritarian Chile. It describes the mobilization of women against the Pinochet government and highlights women's interaction with traditional actors such as political parties during the democratic transition. It analyzes the success of the movement in carving a space for itself in the state, political parties and civil society.

Dr. David Ryden, Representation in Crisis: The Constitution, Interest Groups, and Political Parties (SUNY Press, 1996)
Confronting a fundamentally important but often neglected reality in American politics, this book shows the powerful influence of the courts in determining the shape and operation of our politics. The author exhaustively details how the Supreme Court has impoverished the constitutional standing of political parties in areas of redistricting, campaign finance, ballot access, patronage, and party primaries, opting instead for superficially appealing notions of group-based representation. This compelling indictment of the Supreme Court's constitutional theory of representation offers a much-need prescription for how the Court might better perform its role as ultimate guardian of representative government.