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Lecture

POL208Y1 Lecture Notes - Cuban Missile Crisis, Lewis Carroll, Rob Ford


Department
Political Science
Course Code
POL208Y1
Professor
Lilach Gilady

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International Theory
Theory
Description
Explanation
Prediction
Scientific method alone especially when applied to political can sometimes be nonsense
Need to employ common sense
The need for analytical tools
―We now use the country itself, as its own map, and I assure you it does nearly as well‖ –
Lewis Carroll, Sylvie and Bruno, 1889
In search of an Analytical Life
Looking for something that can help us understand reality
The simpler theory, the better
Every model by definition omits certain dimensions of reality
Often leaves a lot of stuff out, few variables go in
Every model therefor includes implicit fundamental assumptions on what matters most
What‘s to keep in our model and what to keep out?
Make assumptions about what is the essence of the phenomena we are explaining
There is always more than one way to cut the cake
More than one understanding
When you truly understand IR theory, understand no one can hold compete truth
Explaining an Event
Involve causality
We tell stories
Lots of ways to explain outcome of an event
Theorize
An explanation
Tend to focus on the proximate causes that lead to an outcome
There are proximate and systemic reasons
Ex. of proximate Dog pulled my ankle broke my ankle
Ex of systemic Rob Ford and Parc Recreation

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Levels of Analysis
Systematic organization of facts
Provides us with pre set boxes to which we can put potential outcomes
We need to be careful in differentiation between causal reasons that lie in domestic level
and those that lye in the international level. Difference between macro and micro.
Russet, Starr & Kinsella
Individual
Decision makers
Government structure
Society
International Relations
World system
How can we judge which level matters most?
Counterfactual‘s; conduct experimental thought experiment
What could‘ve prevented a certain situation? What if?
Hiroshima Example
Levels of Analysis
Harry Truman, individual
US Government, focus on dynamics of group, power relations, decision makers
The US democracy, government structure and society
Japan was opposite of democracy; government structure and society
Interaction between Japan and US; international relations
Not to convince Japan to surrender, to signal Soviet Union, World system
Driven by bi polar structure of the world system
Korea History in a Glance
1910 Japanese occupation of Korea
1945 Yalta; temporary division along the 38th parallel
Carving wall between Soviet and US
Beginning of bi polarity
1948 ROK/Syngman Rhee/Seoul DPRK/Kim Il-Song/Pyongyang
Temporary became permanent
Jan 1950 Dean Acheson‘s Speech
Lists the important points of the world about US interests
June 1950 North Korea invades South Korea
June 1950 UNSC vote, intervene in case of Korea, demand N Korea goes back to 38
MacArthur
Big supporter of passing the 38th parallel
China didn‘t support this, China would intervene if they crossed the 38th parallel
US didn‘t believe them and China intervened
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