International Relations (IR) theorists speak with conviction, and often passion, to the global condition of human society. The result is an important, dynamic and often deeply divided field. This long-awaited new edition of International Relations Theory Today offers undergraduate and postgraduate students an essential guide to the complex terrain of IR theory and the key questions on its agenda.
With chapters by 25 prominent and provocative IR theorists, the book reveals the intellectual excitement - and turmoil - of theorizing world politics. It reflects the conflicts and tensions around the profound challenges facing the contemporary world, such as climate change, globalization, nuclear proliferation, and economic and political injustice and conflict, while also expressing hope that we can better understand, and respond to, these challenges.
Above all, this book demonstrates the significance of thinking theoretically about international relations and developing the tools not merely to describe but also to explain, analyse, prescribe and possibly re-imagine the global political landscape. As the world comes face-to-face with historic challenges over the coming decades, International Relations Theory Today will help its readers to participate more effectively in debates about the most important global political dilemmas of our time.
List of Figures
INTRODUCTION: THE ARGUMENTATIVE DISCIPLINE
Ken Booth and Toni Erskine
PART I: CONTESTATIONS
1. FIVE GENERATIONS OF IR THEORY
2. THEORY AND PRACTICE IN INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS
3. IR THEORY AS IDENTITY DISCOURSES Richard Ned Lebow
4. IR THEORY AND THE QUESTION OF SCIENCE
5. IR THEORY AS AN ETHICAL PURSUIT
6. DO IR SCHOLARS ENGAGE WITH THE SAME WORLD?
7. ‘IT’S THE ECONOMY, STUPID...’
PART II: THEORIES AND ISSUES
8. THE FUTURE OF WAR AS THE ULTIMA RATIO
9. THE NUCLEAR REVOLUTION AS THEORY
10. CARMEN MIRANDA RETURNS
11. GLOBAL CAPITALISM, INEQUALITY, AND POVERTY
David Blaney and Naeem Inayatullah
12. ‘CIVILISED’ RESTRAINT AND INTERNATIONAL SOCIETY
13. DEMOCRACY IN A GLOBALISED WORLD
14. PROTEST AND INTERNATIONAL POLITICS IN THE INFORMATION AGE
15. GLOBAL GOVERNANCE BEYOND IR?
Thomas Weiss and Rorden Wilkinson
16. INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS IN THE ANTHROPOCENE
PART III: THEORIZING IR TOMORROW
17. THE FUTURE FROM INSIDE THE LIBERAL WORLD ORDER
18. MUST IR REMAIN ABSTRACT IN THE FUTURE?
19. STUDYING WORLD POLITICS AS A COMPLEX ADAPTIVE SYSTEM
Neta C. Crawford
20. A NEO-HOBBESIAN FUTURE?
Michael C. Williams
21. THE INTERNATIONAL STUDIES ASSOCIATION PRESIDENTIAL ADDRESS 2157 (TWO EXCERPTS)
Patrick Thaddeus Jackson
CONCLUSION: RESPONSIBILITY AND THE ARGUMENTATIVE DISCIPLINE
Ken Booth and Toni Erskine
Anthony Lang, University of St Andrews
A delightfully fresh, engaging and accessible introduction to IR theory for the new millennium. The contributions by the editors and their first-rate cast of authors will leave readers in no doubt as to the power, necessity and critical virtues of theory!
Robyn Eckersley, University of Melbourne
This collection of essays is a must-read for students and scholars of international relations. The authors contributing to the volume represent both problem-solving and critical perspectives, and their essays respect the past and reveal the future of IR theory – once again reminding us of the importance of pluralism in our scholarship and teaching in a discipline where controversy rules.
Steven Lamy, University of Southern California