notes 10-03-07 - Notes Overview 1 Why waste time with...

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Notes 10-03-07 Overview 1. Why waste time with theories? 2. What is a level of analysis? 3. Three levels of analysis 4. Third level of analysis 5. Waltz's view of structure 6. Course logistics 1. Why waste time with theories? In order to figure out the case of a single event, you must be armed with theories which explain why these types of events happen in general. You need to understand in a patterned way the outcomes of things in general. Three theories of war: Diversionary theory – Leader takes country into a war to get public to forget what is going on at home. Personality theory - Leader is a war hawk. Youth Bulge theory – When there are too many people in a young age bracket, war might occur. Too many young men, too few jobs, etc. Political theories are harder to test than scientific theories. More than one theory can be right – known as the fact of over determination and also the idea that theories are not necessarily exclusive. Social outcomes, like war, are caused by many things. The reason that theories are helpful is that they identify possible causes of events. (Hints and guidelines that tell you what kind of questions to ask. 2. What is a level of analysis? Very complex We need a taxonomy of cases to simplify the process of looking for explanations in IR.
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