Topic_12

Topic 12: Revisiting Theories, Sources, Methods, Analysis

Coordinators

See Moodle

Introduction

Throughout the examination of cases, events, and issues in international relations, we have drawn on our initial foray into international relations theories.

Learning objectives

  • Identify international relations as one of the major fields of political science, within broader disciplines of social science, with associated analytical tools
  • Describe major issues in the study of international relations
  • Analyze the impact of events on our understanding of relations between states
  • Evaluate the connection between events and theory development
  • Judge theories of international relations in light of historical and contemporary events Reading

Cases

Student coordinators will select three of the following cases to explore this week:

  • Constructivism as a general approach, or a specific theory
  • Applying so-called realism and socializing realists
  • Applying liberal institutionalism and socializing idealists
  • Systems perspectives on international relations
  • Gender perspectives on violence

Activities before class

  • Review current events
  • Read the case summary or links
  • Check Moodle for case notes from the presenters
  • Apply your own aide memoire on theory: which ones seem most useful? What do they omit? What can be gained from other perspectives?
  • Are there alternative narratives for the cases under consideration?
  • What terminology or concepts are relevant in the discussion of this case?

Activities during class

  • Discuss current events
  • Relate current events to the issues and events up for discussion
  • Present the cases
  • Discuss the cases from empirical and normative perspectives
  • Call-in speaker (if any) Q&A managed by coordinators
  • International perspectives from allied military academies (if available)
  • Frame an essay question addressing the issues raised in discussion
  • Offer suggestions for completion of the analytical papers following the presentation
  • List relevant terminology and concepts

Activities after class

  • Post comments on Moodle
  • Confirm understanding of terminology and concepts
  • Review notes and readings for essay question

Additional resources

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