Contemporary Issues in International Security
Seminar in International Politics. Fall 2008
Tuesdays, 2:10-4:00 p.m., meets in 501 IAB
1327 International Affairs Building, 854-8290;
Tuesdays and Wednesdays, 4:10 to 5.
This course examines central issues in contemporary international security policy (American
hegemony, multilateralism, terrorism, nuclear proliferation, civil war, genocide, ethnic conflict,
the promotion of democratization and human rights, the problem of Iraq, etc.) and key concepts in
the academic study of international relations (e.g., realist and liberal approaches; deterrence
One paper, about 25 pages.
A great deal of flexibility will be allowed
regarding topics and formats.
One possible format is to use case studies to test a
Historical cases are appropriate, though their relevance
to contemporary issues should be explained.
Students may do policy options papers,
though these should be informed by relevant theories.
Paper proposals will be discussed
in small groups in my office at times to be arranged during the first weeks of October.
The final version of the paper is due Dec. 13.
Required readings are on reserve in Lehman library, though some may also be
at Butler or Barnard.
Most supplementary readings are also on reserve in Lehman.
Asterisk (*) indicates a paperback ordered at the Bookculture bookstore, 536 W.112 St.
Students will find it worthwhile to purchase Karen Mingst and Jack Snyder, eds.,
Readings in World Politics
at the Labyrinth bookstore.
the other books at your discretion.
For information relevant to term papers on current topics, go
to: Columbia library web, e-resources, databases, Columbia International Affairs Online (CIAO).
Classes and Readings
Theories of International Relations in Policy Debates on
American Foreign Policy
Jack Snyder, “One World, Rival Theories,”
John J. Mearsheimer, “Anarchy and the Struggle for Power,” excerpt from
of Great Power Politics
Norton, 2001) in ER
M. Doyle, “Liberalism and World Politics,”
American Political Science Review
December 1986, in ER
A. Wendt, “Anarchy Is What States Make of It,”
1992, in ER
J. Ann Tickner,
Gender in International Relations
, in ER