Introduction to International Relations

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Introduction to International Relations Quiz

You should have everything you need to answer the questions in your book, and the course materials. However, if you choose to use any outside sources for historical background, please cite appropriately.

Introduction to International Relations Questions

  1. Globalization is covered in your IPE chapter in large part because modern US IPE scholarship that began in the 1970’s focused on the consequences of what they viewed as increased “openness.” This openness is roughly what we consider globalization. Since that time, proponents and scholars of globalization have argued that the “state” or “state governments” are declining in importance. Others of course, including our guest speaker Alan Bersin, maintain that states are still the most important and powerful units in the international system. Now that you have surveyed the major theories (realism, liberalism, constructivism, feminist IR, poststructuralism), pick one and discuss what the theory suggests for the future of “the state.” Do you think states are increasing or declining in importance for the study and practice of IR? User Mr. Bersin’s remarks, as well as our study of globalization (in IPE or our course’s intro) to provide evidence that supports your answer.
  1. Some people might say that the COVID-19 pandemic is like a “Tragedy of the Commons” (TOTC). How is addressing a global pandemic like the TOTC? How is it NOT like the TOTC? What does the TOTC teach us about the current moment in history?
  1. Use one theoretical framework among realism, liberalism, or constructivism to argue why the Paris Climate Agreement was possible in international politics. Also use the theory to write an explanation of why the US has chosen to no longer be a party. Note that there are many potential explanations—you must provide one drawn from the theory you choose. Remember to think about the theory you choose and its ontological position:

focus on the things the theory suggests you focus on in order to explain state behavior behavior such as signing a treaty on climate change. Your grade is based your apparent grasp of the theory, and its application to the case of the Paris Climate Agreement.

  1. In 1990, Iraq invaded Kuwait. In 1991, the US led a UN-sanctioned coalition that defeated the Iraqi military and pushed their forces out of Kuwait. The cause of this war is, of course, over determined. There are many causes. Use the causes of war we studied in class and in your reading as well as any additional historical resources you choose to explain two different causes of the “First Gulf War.”
  2. Using the UN Charter and examples of both UN “success” and UN “failure” as well as one of the major theoretical frameworks to argue for the UN’s future relevance in international politics. Is it likely to make a difference to the future of international politics? Or is the UN just a façade that covers great power politics? Does the UN (or other international institutions) matter? Will it continue to matter?

Last Updated on April 15, 2020