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Politics Forum


The TCNJ Department of Political Science’s Politics Forum presents analytical and/or empirical research concerning political power, institutions and choices.  Students and faculty from diverse departments join to learn and comment on the presenter’s current research projects, which may be in completed or just in beginning phases.  Projects that cross disciplinary boundaries are particularly welcome.  Contact Nicholas Toloudis ( with questions or if you are interested in presenting your work.

Due to covid-19, Politics Forum will be held virtually until further notice.  Zoom links are posted below. 

Click here to see past presentations.


Spring 2021 Presentation


Politics Forum hosts Dr. Mona El-Ghobashy, Clinical Assistant Professor at NYU, as she discusses her new book Bread and Freedom: Egypt’s Revolutionary Situation on March 12, 2021 at 12:30 pm on Zoom.

Bread and Freedom offers a new account of Egypt’s 2011 revolutionary mobilization, based on a documentary record hidden in plain sight—party manifestos, military communiqués, open letters, constitutional contentions, protest slogans, parliamentary debates, and court decisions. Now a decade after the 2011 Arab uprisings, Mona El-Ghobashy rethinks how we study revolutions, looking past causes and consequences to train our sights on the collisions of revolutionary politics. She moves beyond the simple judgments that once celebrated Egypt’s revolution as an awe-inspiring irruption of people power or now label it a tragic failure.

Mona El-Ghobashy is a clinical assistant professor at New York University. She is a scholar of Egyptian politics whose research focuses on law and politics, varieties of protest, and limited elections in contemporary Egypt. Her work brings out the dynamics of political contestation before and after the 2011 uprising. Her teaching extends beyond Egypt to compare politics across authoritarian and democratic regimes, the politics of protest and social movements, and the interplay between political history and theory.

Join on Zoom:

Fall 2020 Presentations

Two Steps Forward, One Step Back? The Incremental Advancement of and Persistent Threats to Voting Rights in The United States with Dr. Tao Dumas, (Assistant Professor of Political Science, TCNJ)

Celebrate Constitution Day with the first Politics Forum of the Fall 2020 semester. Dr. Tao Dumas will present “Two Steps Forward, One Step Back? The Incremental Advancement of and Persistent Threats to Voting Rights in The United States” on September 17, 2020 for the TCNJ Politics Forum.


If you missed the presentation, watch here:

Voting Links mentioned in the presentation and Q&A session:
TCNJ Votes:
Register to vote in NJ:
How to vote in NJ:
Volunteer as a poll worker:
Spread the Vote:
Latin American Legal Defense and Education Fund:

“Takeover: Race, Education, and American Democracy” with Dr. Domingo Morel (Assistant Professor of Political Science at Rutgers University, Newark)

Co-sponsored by the African American Studies Department 

Dr. Morel  will discuss his new book, Takeover: Race, Education, and American Democracy (Oxford University Press), which examines the factors that contribute to state takeovers as well as the effects and political implications of takeovers on racialized communities, the communities most often affected by them.

Dr. Morel is Assistant Professor of Political Science at Rutgers University, Newark. He is also an affiliate member of Global Urban Studies and the Center on Law, Inequality, and Metropolitan Equity at Rutgers Newark. His research program and teaching portfolio focus on racial and ethnic politics, urban politics, education politics and public policy. Specifically, his research explores the ways state policies help expand or diminish political inequality among historically marginalized populations.

If you missed the presentation, watch here:

October 30 at 12:30 pm: Can Strategic Silence Inoculate Black Communities from Race-Based Disinformation? with Mutale Nkonde (CEO AI for the People) 

Mutale Nkonde is the founder and CEO of AI For the People, a nonprofit communications firm who mission is to use art and culture to challenge tech neutrality narratives. Nkonde holds fellowships at the Digital Civil Society Lab at Stanford University and the Institute of Advanced Study at Notre Dame. She is a member of the TikTok Content Advisory Council, a key constituent 3C UN Roundtable for AI, and an affiliate at the Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society at Harvard University.


November 10 at 12:30 pm: “Making Sense of the 2020 Presidential Election” with Dr. Daniel Bowen (Associate Professor of Political Science at TCNJ)



November 17 at 12:30 pm: Education, Democracy, and Racial Justice During the COVID-19 Period with Dr. Jonathan Collins (Assistant Professor of Education, Brown University)


COVID-19 has brought about unique challenges for the politics of education. With the sudden emergence of the pandemic, American institutions have had to make major decisions around the opening and operation of schools and how to properly engage parents and stakeholders along the way. The pandemic also emerges during a time of immense racial tension. Dr. Collins will explore the extent to which democratic innovation helps us better understand the politics of education during such a unique moment. Using a series of original survey experiments, he finds evidence that exposing members of the public to school board decision-making processes that feature democratic innovation in the form of stakeholder participation and public deliberation increases trust in school boards as well as intentions of future participation. However, Dr. Collins also finds evidence that factors related to national politics and racial politics play an important role in how Americans are responding to key questions about education politics and policy during the COVID-19 period. The results, as a whole, speak to the importance of expanding democratic innovation, while schools around the US navigate such a difficult and uncertain time.