Since the formal inception of International Relations (IR) as an academic discipline after World War I, only a handful of significant scholars have addressed the place of the sea in international relations. 1 Schematically, these have fallen into either the geopolitical Realism of Haushofer ( 1938 ), Schmitt ( 1997 ), Spykman ( 1944 ) and – in a different register – Mearsheimer
promises. The ‘communicative turn’ in international relations The influence of critical theory in IR emerged in the early 1980s, notably with the work of Robert Cox, Richard Ashley and Andrew Linklater. 9 Broadly speaking, critical theory can be split into four main strands: Frankfurt School critical theory, neo
This book traces discussions about international relations from the middle ages up to the present times. It presents central concepts in historical context and shows how ancient ideas still affect the way we perceive world politics. It discusses medieval theologians like Augustine and Aquinas whose rules of war are still in use. It presents Renaissance humanists like Machiavelli and Bodin who developed our understanding of state sovereignty. It argues that Enlightenment philosophers like Hobbes, Locke and Rousseau laid the basis for the modern analyses of International Relations (IR). Later thinkers followed up with balance-of-power models, perpetual-peace projects and theories of exploitation as well as peaceful interdependence. Classic IR theories have then been steadily refined by later thinkers – from Marx, Mackinder and Morgenthau to Waltz, Wallerstein and Wendt.
The book shows that core ideas of IR have been shaped by major events in the past and that they have often reflected the concerns of the great powers. It also shows that the most basic ideas in the field have remained remarkably constant over the centuries.
UN peacekeeping is a core pillar of the multilateral peace and security architecture and a multi-billion-dollar undertaking reshaping lives around the world. In spite of this, the engagement between the literatures on UN peacekeeping and International Relations theory has been a slow development. This has changed in recent years, and there is now a growing interest tin examining UN peacekeeping from various theoretical perspectives to yield insights about how international relations are changing and developing. The volume is the first comprehensive overview of multiple theoretical perspectives on UN peacekeeping. There are two main uses of this volume. First, this volume provides the reader with insights into different theoretical lenses and how they can be applied practically to understanding UN peacekeeping better. Second, through case studies in each chapter, the volume provides practical examples of how International Relations theories – such as realism, liberal institutionalism, rational choice institutionalism, sociological institutionalism, feminist institutionalism, constructivism, critical security studies, practice theory, and complexity theory – can be applied to a specific policy issue. Applying these theories enhances our understanding of why UN peacekeeping, as an international institution, has evolved in a particular direction and functions the way that it does. The insights generated in the volume can also help shed light on other international institutions as well as the broader issue of international co-operation.
Where should we look for the origins of an International Relations theory tradition? 1 On the one hand are authors who claim that we should begin with World War I. This is too late. Long before World War I, a large body of literature existed which discussed issues of war, wealth, peace and power in international relations – as this book seeks to show. On the other hand are authors who argue that we should begin with the dawn of recorded history. But this is too early. No sustained connection exists between the famous discussions of Xenophon
International Relations (IR) theories may seem abstract and arcane. With this book, we want to dispel this stereotype. The contributors to this volume demonstrate how IR theories can be applied to a very practical problem: UN peace operations, 1 one of the main instruments of international conflict management. Besides peace operations, the chapters shed light on many other aspects of international affairs, such as multilateral co-operation, the role of international bureaucracies, and evolution
The sea and International Relations is a path-breaking collection which opens up the conversation about the sea in International Relations (IR), and probes the value of analysing the sea in IR terms. While the world’s oceans cover more than 70 percent of its surface, the sea has largely vanished as an object of enquiry in IR, being treated either as a corollary of land or as time. Yet, the sea is the quintessential international space, and its importance to global politics has become all the more obvious in recent years. Drawing on interdisciplinary insights from IR, historical sociology, blue humanities and critical ocean studies, The sea and International Relations breaks with this trend of oceanic amnesia, and kickstarts a theoretical, conceptual and empirical discussion about the sea and IR, offering novel takes on the spatiality of world politics by highlighting theoretical puzzles, analysing broad historical perspectives and addressing contemporary challenges. In bringing the sea back into IR, The sea and International Relations reconceptualises the canvas of IR to include the oceans not only as travel time, but as a social, political, economic and military space which affects the workings of world politics. As such, The sea and International Relations is as ambitious as it is timely. Together, the contributions to the volume emphasise the pressing need to think of the world with the sea rather than ignoring it in order to address not only the ecological fate of the globe, but changing forms of international order.
Critical theory remains one of the most important and exciting areas within the study of international relations. Its purpose is not only to describe the way in which the world operates but to help us imagine how the world might be different and how we might achieve a more equitable and sustainable way of life. As well as presenting key concepts and thinkers the book also provides an evaluation of the field and suggests how critical thinking can contribute to confronting the challenges of the twenty-first century. The book evaluates the foundations on which critical theory has been built and illustrates how ideas which developed outside of International Relations theory have been adopted and adapted within the discipline. The book is focused on essential questions to the critical project: what can we know; how does power operate; and how should we live? In addition to discussing the foundations of critical thinking in International Relations, the book draws on recent developments in philosophy and posthumanism as an area of study to critique western thought. To overcome recent critiques of critical theory in International Relations, the book argues that it is necessary to engage with thinking outside of the western tradition. As the human species confronts the COVID-19 epidemic and the ongoing climate crisis, the book argues for a new direction for critical theory in International Relations.
The study of European integration has in the past been plagued by the so-called sui generis problem: ‘the EU is considered somehow beyond international relations, somehow a quasi-state or an inverted federation, or some other locution’ (Long 1997 : 187). At the empirical level of analysis, few would deny that the EU does indeed display unique characteristics, be it in its scope, institutional
The peace process in Northern Ireland is associated with the signing of the Good Friday or Belfast Agreement, the arduous and lengthy implementation of this Agreement, and the continuing sectarianism in Northern Ireland. Despite the numerous and various studies about this case, no collection of scholarly analysis to date has attempted to assess a wide variety of theories prominent in International Relations (IR) that relate directly to the conflict in Northern Ireland, the peace process, and the challenges to consolidating peace after an agreement. IR scholars have recently written about and debated issues related to paradigms, border settlement and peace, the need to provide security and disarm combatants, the role of agents and ideas, gender and security, transnational movements and actors, the role of religions and religious institutions, the role of regional international organizations, private sector promotion of peace processes, economic aid and peacebuilding, the emergence of complex cooperation even in the world of egoists, and the need for reconciliation in conflict torn societies. How do the theories associated with these issues apply in the context of Northern Ireland’s peace process? Theories of International Relations and Northern Ireland explores primarily middle-range theories of International Relations and examines these theories in the context of the important case of Northern Ireland.