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Kochi, India

Kerala, India: The Diversity of Democracy

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Winter 2017-2018

I) Summary

Location: Kochi, Kerala, India

Dates: January 7 - January 27, 2018

Credits Offered: POLSC 304.80 - 3 CREDITS (CUNY tuition is not included in the program fee)

Application Deadline: October 19, 2017 Deadline extended! We will accept new applications (pending space availability) until November 6, 2017.

Financial Aid: PELL, student loans

Scholarships:Gilman, Chancellor's Global Scholarship

Program Fee: $450 (estimate) includes housing with breakfast, excursions and international health and travel insurance. TUITION and AIRFARE are NOT included in the program fee. All students are responsible for arriving at their study abroad location by the first day of the program; this may mean flying the day before.

Payment Schedule: $350 application fee and deposit is due with the application. $100 (program fee balance; estimate) is due November 28, 2017. Payments must be made with certified check or money order. NO CASH, PERSONAL CHECKS OR CREDIT CARDS.

Students are responsible for meeting the payment deadline regardless of funding source, i.e. Macaulay Opportunities Fund, loans, or any other type of financial aid. Late fees will be applied to all delayed payments (see Education Abroad Application Instructions and Policies).

II) Program Description

Centered in Kochi, Kerala, this program explores a variety of connections and disconnections between Indian culture and politics and the effects of its colonization by Great Britain and (later) the forces of globalization.  The program addresses these interconnections with readings in political thought from England, India, and scholars interested in postcolonial phenomena.  Students learn about the tensions and accommodations between cultures and political conventions.  Most interesting may be the similarities and differences between Indian- and American-style democracy.  These phenomena are shaped by Kerala's unique position among Indian states.  It has: the highest literacy rate; the most egalitarian gender relations, the lowest population growth, and the longest history of local, Marxist government in India.  In addition, both India and the United States are currently undergoing strains from rulers exploiting ethnic and religious differences as well as from economies being jolted by the technological innovations of their capitalisms.

The course will be complemented by everyday discoveries of the Hindu temples, centuries old Jewish neighborhoods and Kerala's rich performing arts, such as Kathakali theater. We also will take excursions to Munnar - north of Kochi and gateway to wildlife sanctuaries - and Trivandrum - south of Kochi, capital of Kerala, and neighbor to backwaters and beaches. 

All students interested in political thought, the historical and current intersections of India and the West, and the diverse incarnations of 21st century democracy will benefit greatly from this enlightening program at a crossroads of the world's cultures and politics.


III) Prerequisites & Credits


  • Sophomore standing (30 college credits) at the time of the application;
  • One previously taken course in political theory, philosophy, sociological theory, religion; Indian studies; human rights, or permission of the instructor.

Credits & Grades:

Students in this program will receive both credits and letter grades. Grades will count toward their Hunter GPA.

IV) Estimated Costs of Attendance

Tuition (3 credits, calculated at the undergraduate, in state rate)
Program Fee $450
Not included in Program Fee
Airfare $1,000
Meals $300
Local travel $60
Cultural events $25
Books $25
Visa $70
Medical expenses $150
TOTAL US (estimate)

V) Further Inquiries

Academic Inquiries
Faculty: Prof. John Wallach 
Department of Political Science 
Office: HW 1701
Phone: (212) 772-5671       

Administrative Inquiries
Education Abroad Office, Room E1447
Office Hours: 9:30am - 5:30pm Mon-Fri
Phone: (212) 772-4983
Fax: (212) 772-5005

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