SEGL ONLINE: Integrity 101 Unit Three


By the end of Unit Three, you should be able to understand and discuss major theories of international relations, and to apply those theories to contemporary case studies like the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict.




  1. Read the prompt.
  2. Complete the readings.
  3. Respond in your journal and post on the discussion page.
  4. Listen to the lectures.
  5. Participate in the online session.

PROMPT: How ought countries interact with one another?  By what ethical standards, if any, should we judge their actions?

To answer this question, we begin with the classic tale called the Melian Dialogue, written by Thucydides, the ancient Greek historian who documented the Peloponnesian War between Athens and Sparta.  The themes in this tale echo down to the present day.

Then, we will investigate some modern theories, before applying what we have learned to some contemporary case studies.

READINGS: Thucydides, “The Melian Dialogue,” from The Peloponnesian War (trans. Rex Warner) via Harvard Kennedy School website

LECTURES: Introduction to Political Philosophy Introduction to International Relations

ONLINE SESSION: Discussion: Intro to International Relations

EXTRAS: “The Melian Dialogue,” from The War that Never Ends (directed by Jack Gold) (a cheesy reenactment of the dialogue that may help you understand it better)




  1. Read the prompt.
  2. Complete the lecture.
  3. Respond in your journal and post on the discussion page.
  4. Participate in the online session.

PROMPT: The Israeli-Palestinian Crisis is one of the most intractable conflicts in history.  Each side passionately contests nearly every piece of it–historical events, current issues, and future possibilities.  Thousands have died because of it, and trillions of dollars have been spent.

In this case study, we will focus less on who is “right” and more on the future of these two groups.  What–if any–is the best way for the United States to help resolve this conflict? What theory of international relations should we use to approach it?  What about the Israelis? Palestinians?  We will also study the most recent sources of controversy in the dispute, and discover how they connect to the larger picture.

In our guest speaker session, we will meet two leading voices, one on each side of the conflict.  As you listen and ask questions, we suggest that you focus on understanding each view, rather than arguing with the speaker(s).  There will be plenty of time for healthy discussion afterwards!

LECTURE: The Israeli-Palestinian Conflict


  1. Council on Foreign Relations.  Crisis Guide: The Israeli-Palestinian Conflict (multimedia guide)
  2. Current event Reading #1
  3. Current event Reading #2

ONLINE SESSION: Guest Speaker: Ghaith al-Omari Guest Speaker: Robert Satloff



popular protest


  1. Read the prompt.
  2. Watch the lesson on the “Arab Spring” and the Occupy Movement.
  3. View the articles and infographics.
  4. Participate in the online seminar.
  5. Complete your portion of the social media Wiki.

Prompt: What responsibilities do governments have towards those who are protesting its rule or power? What role does popular protest have in international relations? Is popular protest “effective”?

Constructivism, one of the international relations theories you learned last week, has at its core a belief that ideas, not violence or material wealth, shape political realities. Popular protest is one of the oldest forms of changing the way governments operate. We will be looking at the role that popular protest has had in global politics and international relations this week. Additionally, we will explore the ethical responsibilities that governments have to protesters, and that protesters have to their community.

This week, you will view an overview of the Arab Spring, the string of popular protests happening across Northern Africa and the Middle East, and the Occupy Movement, the stateside movement that was inspired by the Arab Spring. You will also participate in an online seminar with Michelle Crentsil and Alyssa Aguiliera, two organizers for SEIU-NY about the Occupy Movement and popular protest as a way to spread ideas. After reading the articles, viewing the infographic, and the seminar, you will post your response to the prompt on the discussion board, and reply to two other responses in your group.

As popular protest is often about spreading ideas, your goal this week is to construct a wiki of social media related to the popular protests happening around the world. You will contribute three pieces of “media”, which can include, for example, a pivotal “tweet”, a groundbreaking picture, a poster, a viral video, or a famous manifesto that was originally posted on a blog. With your media, you will complete a short analysis of the piece, including: public responses to it, both positive and negative, your opinion on the ethical analysis that the piece of media communicates, be it intentional or not, and your opinion on its effectiveness as a media representation of the ideals, as you have learned about them, of the protest that they represent.


Blight, Garry, Pulham, Sheila, and Torpey, Paul. Interactive Infographic on the Arab Spring, The Guardian, January 2012. Parvaz, D. “The Arab Spring, Chronicled Tweet by Tweet”, AlJazeera, November 2011. Occupy Wall Street’s “The 99% Declaration” Applebaum, Anne. “Is the Occupy Wall Street Movement Anti-Democratic?”, Slate Magazine, October 2011. Markay, Lachlan. “The Conservative’s Guide to Occupy Wall Street”, The Heritage Network’s “The Foundry” Blog, October 2011.


The odyssey

“We shall not cease from exploration,

And the end of all our exploring,

Will be to arrive where we started,

And know the place for the first time.”

– T.S. Eliot, “Four Quartets”


  1. Read the prompt and complete the readings.
  2. Upload your own reading onto the discussion board, and read and comment on two others.
  3. Plan, using the provided documents, and complete your Odyssey.
  4. Upload your travel log and comment on two others.

Prompt: What central story is at the core of you, and how do you share it with the world? What is your leadership style? What leadership styles present challenges to you?

The Odyssey, a SEGL tradition and a cornerstone of our Ethics and Leadership program, is your time to take control of your education. During the Odyssey, you will go a place that you have never gone before, and to a place that you feel most at home to exploring your own personal story, and reflect on your passions, creating a strong base for your three SEGL Capstone Projects.

As you are undertaking your Odyssey in your own hometown, and with a cohort that inhabits all corners of the nation, you have a unique ability to explore both your own experience, seeing it in a different light, and to share in the experiences of your classmates. At the end of your Odyssey, you will have interviewed two people who relate directly to the issue that you are passionate about – one that complements your beliefs about that issue, and one that challenges your beliefs – and document that experience for both your own benefit and that of your classmates.

Your schedule is as follows:

First Day: Read the prompt and complete the readings. Do the personal inventory worksheet, reflecting on your leadership style and deciding on an issue that you are passionate about and will concentrate on for this portion of your Ethics and Leadership experience. Upload a document – a reading, a photograph, a clip from a movie, a song snippet, et c. – that has informed your leadership style.

Second Day: Plan your Odyssey. Use the Odyssey Planning worksheet, answering the questions and arriving on two different locations that are important to you, and two leaders in your community that you will interview during your Odyssey that you feel will enhance your ability to understand your own leadership style as it relates to your issue – its strengths, its shortcomings – and will broaden your understanding of your issue. Plan out the questions that you will ask those leaders.

Third through Sixth Day: Go on your Odyssey. Go to the places that are important to you, and reflect. Document this reflection in your travel log by journaling, photography, video, et c., for uploading to the class’s homepage. Show us that place in all its glory, be it as simple as a tree in your front yard, or as elaborate as a concert by your favorite local artist or choir.

Interview those leaders, both documenting the meeting (make sure to ask for permission to put the interview on the record first, especially if that leader is an elected politician) and a short reflection about your meeting afterwards.

Seventh Day: Read the Odyssey travel logs of your classmates, commenting on at least two, with what you have learned from their Odyssey.

Documents: The Odyssey Overview from Yale Article Noah’s Leadership Style Activity Explanation Personal Inventory Worksheet Odyssey Planning Worksheet Travel Log Format Worksheet


Click here to go to Unit Four.