Writing Assignment 1: Political Extremism in Europe

Due: February 4


In Chapter 3 of your text, Almond, Dalton, and Powell write: "Many theorists suggest that the continued performance of democracy is threatened by extremist parties--major groups espousing dramatically different policy packages (ideologies) or challenging the basic ground rules of the society" (p. 63). 

With this in mind, you are to write an essay comparing the strength of extremist parties in the two European countries you selected the first week of the semester. Using the vast informational resources of the internet. . . and, if you choose, those of Pullen Library. . .you should investigate the nature, fortunes, and policies of those parties that you identify as extremist. In approximately 5 double-spaced, type-written pages (plus bibliography), you should begin with the question: Is democratic performance in countries a and b threatened by the existence of extremist parties? In answering this question, you'll need to: 

Note: A good starting point on the Web is http://www.agora.stm.it/politic/europe.htm


Guidelines for All Papers

Proper form makes a difference in how others read your work and how seriously they take it; a messy paper distracts readers from the point you are trying to make. Consistency of form will help the reader focus on what you have written. Always keep in mind that failure to acknowledge sources will be viewed as plagiarism and results in a failing grade.

 Type your manuscript on 8.5 x 11-inch white paper and avoid a typeface that is unusual or hard to read. Begin your paper with a title page that includes the title of your paper, your name, the course number and name, the instructor's name, and the date. Type, double-spacing, on one side of the paper only. Use margins of at least one inch on all sides of the page. Indent the first line of each paragraph five spaces (one-half inch) from the left margin. Direct quotations longer than four lines should be indented also and typed single-spaced. Use headings and subheadings, but use them sparingly. Number all pages consecutively, except the title page but including the "References" page.  

Use in-text citations that refer readers to a list of references rather than footnotes or endnotes. In-text citations must include at least the author's last name and the date of publication (Curtis et al., 1996). If the author is unknown, use the first two or three words of the book title (underlined) or the article title (in quotation marks) in the parenthetical citation (World Politics, 1997; "The Third Wave", 1994). For direct quotations give also a page number (Gallagher, Laver, & Mair, 1995, p. 101). 

Begin your list of references on a new page, titled "References." Alphabetize the list by the last name of the authors or, when the author is unknown, by the first word of the title. Underline or italicize the titles and subtitles of books. Each entry should include the last name of the author, the first name(s), the year of publication, the title, the edition (if other than first), the place of publication, and the publisher. List sources retrieved through the Internet by citing the author or title and the location or www-address, e.g. "The French Constitution of 1958 (http://www.france.diplomatie/constit.html)." 

Staple your paper in the upper left-hand corner; do not use paper clips or those clear plastic binders; paper clips can become attached to other student papers and binders can cause an avalanche of student papers on my desk. When writing your paper on a word processor, be sure to save your work frequently on the hard drive or disk. Make a photocopy of your paper before handing it in.