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PSC116 Notes

PSC116 Notes - PSC 116 Introduction to International...

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PSC 116 Introduction to International Politics 1/21/09 Overview: -How the world works -Fundamentals of international politics -Observe clear patterns in international politics -Explain and predict -Basis for social science I. What is international politics? A. Relations between different actors in the world, the characteristics of those relations and their consequences. B. Often portrayed as a distant process carried out by an elite group (presidents, leaders, companies, etc.) C. You are constantly effecting international relations. D. The stuff we typically view as international politics is only about 1%. About 30% is trade. 70% is plain everyday stuff. II. The study of International Relations A. Because it involves so much it is an interdisciplinary study i. History, economics, sociology, psycology, business B. The study of international relations covers: i. War, alliances, diplomacy, trade, international organizations, cultural exchanges. C. Activities within one of these spheres make up distinct issue areas, which entail their own issues of concern. i. Israli-Palastinian conflict ii. War in Iraq D. Principle feature of international relations is the mix of conflict and cooperation underlying all political relationships. 1/28/09 I. International security studies deals with conflict. II. International political economy deals with cooperation. III. Key actors A. State: soverignty defined borders, common government B. nation: group of people with shared identity IV. The difference between a state and a nation is the idea that a state can claim soverignty. A. Sovereignty: as a government you have the recognized right to govern your people within territorialized boundaries. B. Nation-State: states with one predominant identity (Israel, France) V. Non-state actors:
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A. terrorists, religious groups, political parties, International organizations (NATO, WTO, UN, NGO) VI. Descriptive explanation vs. Theoretical A. Theoretical leads to answers (used in this class) 2/2/09 A Brief History of the Modern International System I. All states, non-state actors and decision makers are influenced by the context of their history. A. To understand decisions we must understand the context from which they are formed. II. History provides the testing ground for interpretation and evaluation of the competing theories of international relations A. Can only evaluate predictions or explanations from historical data. III. Throughout much of history, global politics was not global at all but rather local. A. Lack of technology meant that political organization was limited. B. As technology increased, political organization changed. C. Empires emerged as the ability to cover large distances developed (Egyptian, Persian, Roman, Chinese, Mayan, Aztec, Incan) D. The political systems (city-state) of Ancient Greece was an exception during this time period. The Difference Between Anarchy and Empire
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PSC116 Notes - PSC 116 Introduction to International...

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