This course provides a comprehensive introduction to international relations, focusing in particular on its origins and historical evolution, its key concepts, major theoretical frameworks, main actors and institutions, the global architecture of power, and its dynamic nature in the process of globalization. More specifically, the course introduces concepts of power, statecraft, diplomacy, foreign policy, political economy and international security, and examines the evolution of international relations in the 20th and 21st centuries. An introduction to contemporary analysis of international relations.
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Students will learn major theories of international relations and apply them to understand international situations and issues in the modern world. Emphases are on clearly comprehending the relationship between international conflicts and cooperation and on recognizing the shift from “internationalization” to “globalization”. Extensive use of internet information, articles from professional journals and newspapers will enable students to update information about imminent international issues today and to think about them critically. The course combines the study of concepts and theories with a range of enduring questions, including: Why bother with theory? How did a fragmented world become a global system of states? What factors most influence the foreign policy of states?
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Why is war a persistent feature of international relations? Can the state overcome the challenges to its authority from non-state actors? How do politics shape the global economy? Is free trade the solution to global poverty? How does the natural environment influence international relations? Will the international system undergo a fundamental change in the future? What are the main global threats of the 21st century?
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By the end of this course, students will be able to:
1. Demonstrate comprehension of theories of international relations including realism, idealism, liberalism, neorealism, integrationist, interdependence, dependency, world system and regime;
2. Tell exact locations of major countries on a world map and explain what problems those countries are facing;
3. Demonstrate understanding of the causes and processes of modern international issues;
4. Differentiate the concept of internationalization from that of globalization;
5. Skillfully use extensive sources of information including internet, government publications, professional journals, and newspaper;
6. Demonstrate critical thinking skills through research paper writing and discussion.
Course topics will include the following:
1. What are international relations?
2. Theories of international relations
3. Brief history of modern international relations
4. National perspectives of different nations
6. Balance of power
7. International security
8. Principal causes of war
9. International political economy
10. International trade & monetary system
11. International law
12. International organization
13. International integration and transnational participation
14. Future world order
Method of Instruction:
3. Group work
Types of Assignments:
1. Short essays
2. Group research paper
3. Oral report
4. International news clip-outs