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Lecture 1

POLI 244 Lecture 1: POLI 244 9-12-2016

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Political Science
POLI 244
Fernando Nunez- Mietz

POLI 244-World Politics-9/12/2016 Theory Modern Statehood -Territorially defined and combined with sovereignty -In the past, states did not necessarily have borders or territorial frontiers -Peace of Westphalia changed this -No authority exists above states, so each was seen as having an absolute right -In modernity however, outsiders sometimes get more of a say in ideas of human rights, etc Dimensions of Statehood -Internally -Ruler with some power and de facto control -Ruler needs to have some sort of legitimacy and social contract -Externally -Peer recognition must exist, and be seen as legitimate -Deserving statehood is an important deal -If it’s convenient to othersNobody gives a shit about South Sudan but Kosovo is a bit awkward and same with Palestine Why Focus on the State -Principal unit of analysisState centric theory where the state’s actions, interests, and interactions are key -Simplifies models of reality by focusing on a main factor, instead of the many other actors -Clearly, world politics is more complex, but we need some way to analyze it conveniently -But trades off with explanatory power; parsimonyexplaining as much as possible using as little as possible -Each school of thought carries with it a different focus -Need to be parsimonious because the state is convenient -Convenient because: -Unitary actor (in its national interest), thinking of each state as a person -Authoritative actor th
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