FDCA 201

Global Hotspot: Pakistand

Course Description

Few countries in the world are more strategically critical yet less understood than Pakistan. This young country in an ancient land lies at the crossroads of history, religion, language, and culture. On the front-line in the war against terror, this nuclear power is in the midst of political turmoil whose outcome will have great implications for the rest of the world.

Content and Topics

Topics covered in this course about Pakistan include: the Taliban; the partition of British India; geography; history; foreign policy; Kashmir; culture; religion; nuclear weapons; language and tribalism; economics; Islamic militancy; the Afghan-Soviet war; and the 2005 earthquake. We also read and study Greg Mortenson's inspirational book "Three Cups of Tea." Except for Mortenson's book, all readings for the course, including student-written case studies, are posted on the course's 1-Learn site.

Goals and Objectives

It turns out the world is a big place, and the United States is just one piece of the pie. The purpose of this course is to show just how connected the nations of the world are.  With Pakistan as a giant case study, we hope to help you do the following things:  

    • Analyze how factors such as history, geography, economics, religion, natural resources, and language shape nations;
    • Acquire the skills to analyze current challenges facing this volatile nation with ancient roots;
    • Be able to use these same analytical skills to better understand any nation or region of the world both from the U.S.'s perspective and the country's own perspective;
    • Develop an interest in international affairs and appreciate how the nations of the world are connected and why understanding  such matters is important from a gospel perspective; and
    • Be able to identify and appreciate the strengths and weaknesses  in other cultures and nations.
Course Requirements

What you learn from this course will hinge largely on what you invest in it. Your grade will be based primarily on the following components:  

    • Class preparation (reading cases, posting comments, reading background and digging deeper-all reflected in brief answers to questions on a class preparation form);
    • A research exercise introducing you to library and other resources you will be expected to use throughout the semester (with the research going toward the creation of a case);
    • Preparing a case in a group to be studied by the class (on a designated issue or episode in history);
    • A principles project demonstrating your grasp of principles you have learned over the course of the semester;
    • A brief oral presentation digging more deeply into an assigned subject;
    • A weekly quiz on assigned reading from selected portions of "Three Cups of Tea";
    • A research paper analyzing using the analytical tools and focusing on some aspect of the Essential Ingredients to Understanding Nations;
    • A mid-term examination about the principles and information taught in the course;
    • A final examination about the principles and information taught in the course;
    • And class contribution (teacher's discretion).
Course Prerequisites
    • Completion of Writing and Reasoning (FDENG 101) with a D- or higher
    • Completion of American Foundations (FDAMF 101) with a D- or higher
    • Completion of Foundations of Humanities (FDCA 101) with a D- or higher
Semesters Taught  

Winter, Spring, Fall

Course Lead

Rex Butterfield
Rex Butterfield