Political Economy of Fascist Politics: Consequences and Resistance

Winter Open
Class Standing

This program investigates the characteristics of both fascist politics and anti-fascism. Among questions students will explore in their collaborative learning community are: How does historical fascism compare to far-right extremism, conservatism, and liberalism? What are the goals of 21st century fascist politics, and how do they compare to historical governing systems of fascism? How might we differentiate among conservative, far-right, and fascist politics? How have liberal democracies generally responded to fascist politics? How do fascist politics intersect with race, ethnicity, class, gender, and sexuality? What is the U.S. legal system and foreign policy response to fascist politics? What are forms anti-fascist responses to fascist politics?

To address these questions, students in this one-quarter program are introduced to the intersection of politics and economics in their historical and contemporary contexts as applied to the ideologies of historical fascism, contemporary far-right extremism, conservatism, liberalism, and anti-fascism.  

Students can anticipate studying the historical roots of 20th and 21st century anti-fascism along with key characteristics of anarchism which inform the ideal practices of anti-fascists.  As a counter-movement resistant to fascist politics, anti-fascism’s rationale, internal structuring, and strategies are analyzed. This aspect of the program considers various political economy orientations in relation historical fascism, far-right extremism, and anti-fascism.

To better understand how various elements of fascist politics manifest, the program provides an introduction to the “Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide” (1948), the first human rights treaty adopted by the United Nations. The program compares discrete categories of that document to histories of racism, nativism, land and property confiscation, and the relationship among policing, imperialism, and militarism.

Students should plan for regular background readings and short writing assignments in preparation for text-based seminars and workshops as well as collaborating in small learning groups.  As a cumulative project with faculty guidance, students will develop and present an academic research paper on a topic of their choosing related to the themes of this program.

Note: First-year students interested in this program should contact the faculty via email.


Course Reference Numbers
Sr (16): 20211
So - Jr (16): 20212

Academic Details

political economy, political science, history, law and public policy, education, and public service



$20 to cover a required reading booklet


In Person (W)

See definition of Hybrid, Remote, and In-Person instruction

Schedule Details
Purce Hall 2 - Lecture