• Students studying outside the library
  • Dr. David AlvisDr. J. David Alvis, Associate Professor
    B.A., M.A., University of Dallas
    Ph.D., Fordham University
    EmailPersonal Website

    Dr. David Alvis is an Associate Professor of Government at Wofford College. His areas of expertise include political theory, constitutional law, and American politics. Dr. Alvis has co-authored two books: The Contested Removal Power: 1787-2010 (University of Kansas Press 2013) and Statesmanship and Progressive Reform (Palgrave McMillan 2013). He has also written articles on Progressivism, the Presidency, the Electoral College, Michelangelo, and the films of John Ford. Currently, he is completing a book on the Election of 1912. His proudest achievement, however, was his nomination to the Pensacola Lust List in 2009 (see for yourself: http://www.inweekly.net/article.asp?artID=9482) Dr. Alvis lives in Spartanburg with his wife, Megan, and their five children: Patrick, Brigid, Brendan, Maeve, and Finbar.

    Courses Taught
    • Foundations of American Politics
    • The American Presidency 
    • Constitutional Law 
    • Healthcare Policy and Administration 
    • African-American Politics
    • Political Parties 
    • Select Humanities Courses  
    Dr. William E. DeMarsDr. William E. DeMars, Professor and Chair
    B.A., Creighton University
    M.A., Ph.D., University of Notre Dame
    EmailPersonal WebsitePersonal Website

    Dr. William E. DeMars is Professor and Chair of the Department of Government. He taught previously at the American University in Cairo, Egypt, and the University of Notre Dame. His teaching interests span African and Middle East politics, American Foreign Policy, International Conflict, International Organizations, Nuclear Weapons, and The New Space Race. He has published articles on humanitarian politics, the changing face of war in Africa, and intelligence issues. He is the author of NGOs and Transnational Networks: Wild Cards in World Politics (Pluto Press, 2005); and editor, with Dennis Dijkzeul, of The NGO Challenge for International Relations Theory (Routledge, 2015). Dr. DeMars and his wife Therese live in Spartanburg and have five children.

    PublicationsCourses Taught
    • Foundations of World Politics 
    • US Foreign Policy 
    • Politics of the United Nations
    • Middle Eastern Politics
    • African Politics 
    • The Bomb: Nuclear Weapons, Past, Present, and Future
    • International Conflict
    • NGOs in World Politics
    • Introduction to Environmental Social Science
    Dr. Robert C. JeffreyDr. Robert C. Jeffrey, Professor
    B.A., Indiana University
    M.A., Ph.D., University of Dallas
    EmailPersonal WebsitePersonal Website

    Dr. Robert C. Jeffrey, Jr. is a Professor of Government at Wofford College. Graduating with honors in English from Indiana University in 1970, he continued graduate study in Religious Studies, Philosophy, and Theology at Stanford University, St. Mary’s Seminary, and University of Innsbruck before pursuing his PhD with dissertation honors at the University of Dallas in Political Philosophy and Literature. Prior to teaching at Wofford, Dr. Jeffrey taught at Benedictine College, University of Dallas, and Emory University. From 1988-1989, Dr. Jeffrey served in President Ronald Reagan’s administration as a Presidential Appointee to the Civil Rights Commission working on Indian Law. Dr. Jeffrey’s teaching interests focus on political philosophy, statesmanship, and American political thought. He is the author of “Setting Education Aright” an article published in The Intercollegiate Review, Fall 2009 and he published “A Review Essay on The American Constitutional Order” in Perspectives on Political Science, Winter 2003. Dr. Jeffrey and his wife Christina live in Spartanburg and have one child, Marjorie, a Wofford graduate pursuing a Ph.D. in Political Philosophy and International Relations at Baylor University.

    Courses Taught
    • Foundations of American Politics
    • Foundations of World Politics
    • Classical Political Thought
    • Modern Political Thought 
    • Contemporary Political Thought 
    • American Political Thought
    • The Statesmanship of Winston Churchill 
    • The Statesmanship of Abraham Lincoln 
    • Shakespeare As a Political Thinker  
    Dr. John FarrenkopfDr. John Farrenkopf, Professor
    B.A., Trinity College
    M.A., Georgetown University 
    Ph.D., University of Virginia 
    EmailPersonal Website

    Dr. John Farrenkopf is a Professor of Government at Wofford College. He received his M.A. degree with a concentration in International Relations as a Georgetown University Fellow. He earned his Ph.D. in Foreign Affairs (distinction) after being a Fulbrighter for two years in Germany. Subsequently, Dr. Farrenkopf returned for another two years in Germany and did postdoctoral research on Oswald Spengler’s philosophy of world history and politics as a Thyssen scholar. After earning tenure at McMurry University in Abilene, Texas and teaching for three years in the International Relations program at Colgate University, he joined the faculty at Wofford. In 2012 Dr. Farrenkopf received an Excellence in Teaching Award from SCICU (South Carolina Independent Colleges and Universities). He is the author of Prophet of Decline: Spengler on World History and Politics (L.S.U. Press, 2001) and co-editor, along with Alexander Demandt, professor emeritus, of a volume of conference papers Der Fall Spengler: Eine kritische Bilanz (Böhlau, 1994). In addition, Dr. Farrenkopf has published numerous articles and essays on Spengler’s ideas. He is currently wrapping up a book manuscript on the history of America as an empire.


    Courses Taught:
    • Foundations of World Politics
    • China: Politics, Economy, and Foreign Relations
    • European Politics
    • American Foreign Policy
    • America and the Politics of the Global Economy
    • International Conflict
    • Empire
    • Spengler and the Decline of the West


    Dr. Rachel J. VanderhillDr. Rachel J. Vanderhill, Associate Professor
    B.A., Calvin College
    M.A., Ph.D., University of Virginia
    EmailPersonal Website

    Dr. Rachel Vanderhill is fascinated about the causes of democracy and authoritarianism, in other words, what explains why some countries are democratic and others are not. Her recent book, Promoting Authoritarianism Abroad, examines the role of external or international factors in the development of democracy and authoritarianism. Dr. Vanderhill’s current research is on the influence of the internet and social media on democratization, the EU’s anticorruption efforts in Romania and Bulgaria, and the ways in which authoritarian states resist democratic diffusion. Dr. Vanderhill, originally from the metro Boston area, loves the ocean, traveling, and reading good books.

    Publications Courses Taught
    • Foundations of World Politics
    • America and the World Economy
    • Revolutions and Regime Change
    • Comparing States and Societies
    • Russia and Its Neighbors