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Extreme Politics: Radicals, Revolutionaries, and Terrorists

Ended May 13, 2022

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Full course description

If it is a truism of politics that the center is always stable, then why do certain individuals and movements constantly gravitate toward the extreme left and right? Using contemporary case studies and focusing on politics while also drawing on insights from fields such as psychology, biology, and sociology, this course will investigate the sources and causes of political extremism and radicalism, as well as potential solutions.


Format: online, asynchronous


Dates Available: March 7th - May 13th (10 weeks)


Optional Synchronous Sessions (through Zoom): 

Session 1 details: Friday, March 11th 10:00-11:00 am

Session 2 details: Tuesday, May 10th 1:00-2:00 pm


Course Expectations: 

This course includes eight 90-minute videos that students can engage with in their own time. The synchronous sessions to meet the instructor and engage with other alumni are optional and there will not be any mandatory reading material or assignments.



Recommended Materials: 

Access to a computer with internet connectivity


Instructor Bio:

Darren Zook teaches in Political Science and International and Area Studies at UC Berkeley, where he has been a faculty member for over 19 years. His research interests include human rights, comparative Asian politics, international law, and the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction. 

This course is provided by the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at UC Berkeley, which offers courses and events that showcase the best, most relevant scholarship flourishing on campus and in the community — ideas and insights tailored for learners with decades of lived experiences.