International Relations Theory: A Critical Introduction

International Relations Theory: A Critical Introduction

International Relations Theory: A Critical Introduction

International Relations Theory: A Critical Introduction

Synopsis

The new edition of this innovative textbook introduces students to the main theories in international relations. It explains and analyzes each theory, allowing students to understand and critically engage with the myths and assumptions behind them. Each theory is illustrated using the example of a popular film. Key features of this textbook include: * discussion of all the main theories: realism and neo-realism, idealism and neo-idealism, liberalism, constructivism, postmodernism, gender and globalization * two new chapters on the 'clash of civilizations' and Hardt and Negri's Empire * innovative use of narratives from films that students will be familiar with: Lord of the Flies, Independence Day, Wag the Dog, Fatal Attraction, The Truman Show, East is East and Memento * an accessible and exciting writing style which is well-illustrated with film stills, boxed key concepts and guides to further reading. This breakthrough textbook has been designed to unravel the complexities of international relations theory in a way that gives students a clearer idea of how the theories work, and of the myths associated with them.

Excerpt

Since the first edition of this textbook went to press in 2000, the worlds of international relations theory and international politics have faced considerable challenges. In 2000, Michael Hardt and Antonio Negri published a book called Empire that spoke to the precise moment of international life we were all then living - how to make sense of resistance (especially anti-globalization movements) in an era of globalization. They offered us a new myth for a new millennium - “Empire is the new world order.” And, in so doing, they temporarily revived the tradition of (neo)Marxism, a tradition that in the views of many observers of international politics had lost its ideological relevance in the post-Cold War world.

Hardt and Negri's myth captured the imagination of many until September 11, 2001, the day of the terrorist attacks in New York City, Washington, DC, and Pennsylvania. Almost immediately, a new mythmaker and a new myth grabbed international attention. Back in 1993, Samuel Huntington had argued that the new world order would be defined by clashes not primarily among sovereign nation-states but among what he called civilizations. As President George W. Bush declared war on terror, it was Huntington's myth “There is a clash of civilizations” that framed international debate, for it seemed to have predicted the so-called clash between the civilizations of “Western Christianity” and “Eastern Islam.” One of the interesting features of Huntington's myth is that its intellectual roots are not primarily in traditional security studies but in the often forgotten debates of modernization and development theory. It is only by returning to Huntington's contributions to these debates that the fullness of his clash of civilizations myth and its implications for international politics can be appreciated.

What we've seen in this new millennium so far, then, is the emergence of two powerful new myths based on two theoretical traditions that had pretty much been written off by the majority of IR theorists - (neo)Marxism and modernization and development theory. This is a noteworthy development, especially when considered in light of Francis Fukuyama's claims that with the perfection of the ideals of

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.