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Dr. J. Scott Johnson

Professor of Political Science with The College of Saint Benedict/Saint John's University since 1992.
B.A., Carleton College, 1983;
M.A., The University of Chicago, 1985;
Ph.D., Stanford University, 1992.


Robert L. Spaeth Teacher of Distinction, 2011

Faculty Advisor Award, 1995, 2002.


Director, CSB/SJU South Africa Program, Spring 2016

Director, CSB/SJU London Fine Arts Program, Fall 2008

Director, CSB/SJU Tokyo Program, Fall 2004

Director, CSB/SJU Greco-Roman Program, Fall 1999



Policy Fellow, Humphrey Institute Policy Forum. 2001-2002

Fulbright Senior Scholar, University of West Bohemia, Plzen, Czech Republic. 2000

Senior Associate Member, American School of Classical Studies at Athens. 1999

Stanford Humanities Center, Pre-dissertation Fellow. 1988-89

RAND Corporation, Summer Intern. 1988


SJU Office: Simons 168
(320) 363-2530
[email protected]


Fall 2016 Courses


12:45 pm - 2:05 pm      POLS 221 - Intro to Political Theory

Wednesday night 

6:15 pm - 9:15 pm         POLS 320 - Law & Literature

In this course we will read a series of books and discuss them as a group. This is not a lecture course. Some of the texts are novels, some are plays, some are monographs, some are short stories, some are collections of theoretical essays. There is something here for every taste. Each of the books illustrates some aspect of the law that is worth understanding, whether that aspect concerns interpretation or a particular problem such as vengeance. We will also read a selected set of essays related to the book of the week from various law journals and these are available on-line via Lexis/Nexis. The point of this course is to give each student an understanding of the law as something beyond the cases and institutions studied in POLS 111, 224, 323 and 324. This is not a course in the nitty gritty practicalities of the law. Here I want you to begin to see some of the theoretical complexity as well as the majesty and diversity of law. For the future lawyers among you, this is an undergraduate version of a seminar you might see during your second or third year in law school. For those of you who have no intention of ever setting foot in a court room, let alone a law school, this should be a challenging course that will improve your reading, writing, and critical thinking skills.


Spring 2017 Courses


11:10 am - 12:30 pm    FYS - First Year Seminar

12:45 pm - 2:05 pm      POLS 221 - Intro to Political Theory

Wednesday nights

ETHS 390 - Sex, Death & Ethics