POL 208 Vocabulary
Systematic organization effect: An effect in which various different factors organize the
IR system‟s very complex structure.
Levels of Analysis:
different categories of approaching the analysis of IR issues or structures, through
dividing the levels into
an approach of solving question through collecting one data that leads to next evidence.
an approach of solving question through generating hypothesis by assumption and
prediction and corresponding evidences
Considering people, territory, bureaucracy and the king as a legal entity that cannot be
violated by anyone from other country. It allows monopoly over the functions of the state
in a defined territory, excluding all external intervention (monopoly over the legitimate
use of force). Only 1 ruler in the region, and the authority of the region had equal power
to other leaders.
Group of theories that shares fundamental assumptions. Realism, Liberalism, etc.
The State of Nature:
Hobbes‟ theoretical model of the world in which consists of no rules and no society. It
claims the human life to be “solitary, poor, nasty, brutish and short”. It is constructed
upon the assumption that people are rational and prioritize their own survival before
anything, as the survival is the only human rights of nature. Therefore;
Person‟s right of nature justifies violence against others
Renouncing the rights of violence is impossible because there is no enforcer/ruler Leviathan is the only existence that could enforce stability. Citizens must give up
their independence in order to gain stability
Social constructs such as morality, justice and property can only exist when the
state is strong and stable; therefore its existence solely depends on the presence of
*Application to IR*
Instead of individual, we talk about states. Nations would constantly go to war in the state
of nature. Leviathan = world government. War is in a way right of nature…we fight to
defend ourselves. It allows the realist theory to kick in. Just like billiard, states push the
others in pockets without considering the “inside” of balls.
Form of a society without leader or higher governing authority beyond the state. No
world government. It focuses on survival that derives from self-help and self-interest,
which in result creates constant potential for violence. Because each state care only about
herself, there is always the fear of defection and limited potential for cooperation.
The Security Dilemma:
The dilemma in which states face due to the fact that the increase of security in one state
is a threat for the others. Constant potential of conflicts urges states to be ready to defend
themselves anytime, however this could be done solely by increasing force or gaining
allies. This in fact produces an indirect threat to others which could change their behavior
to be more aggressive. The dilemma: How can we increase our security without
IR theory that recognizes states to be the main actor, and the international system to be an
anarchic world that struggles for power. It considers power to be the most important
element in IR, and is used in relative term; country must be stronger than the other in
order to make them do what they would not otherwise do.
It recognizes states‟ main objective to maximize their security (power) as the world
always faces potential conflict. As a result, sometimes it is inevitable for us to violate
basic rules because the international system must be separated from ethics. State‟s
survival must be considered before any other subject.
Theory developed by Kenneth Waltz to analyze the international system more
scientifically. It considered the implication of anarchy to be the need to maximize
security, and the major difference between international/domestic politics. Distribution of
power is different to each state, thus it leads to different behavior among states. This
leads us to focus on the world system level of analysis, as some states are significantly
more strong (important) than the smaller ones. Unipolarity:
World structure with one great power and numbers of others that are all not strong
enough to threaten the big power. (ex. Rome)
World structure with a “pole” created by allies formed by two big opposing powers. (ex.
Words structure with many strong countries, but none capable of being the dominant
power. (ex. WWI, old Europe)
IR theory that recognizes the actors (not limited to state only) to be rational and prefers to
avoid conflict if it harms their prosperity and well being. State is a reflection of
individuals, thus the collective will is produced rationally.
Developed by Immanuel Kant, which rejected the separation between moral imperative
and the political realm. The theory developed after 1795‟s Basel Treaty, which Kant
believed to be a treaty not for pursuing a true peace but rather a political peace that only
aimed to satisfy France and Prussia‟s convenience (they were both in a situation they
couldn't afford war with each other). Observing this, Kant believed the perpetual peace to
be the mission for all human beings, and thus everyone must unite as one establish
world federation and recommend social interactions across borders (peace = borderless).
Minimal governmental intervention in economic affairs. The market must work by itself
in order to have the best possible outcome.
Because individuals are rational, we recognize that trade generates more profit, and war
brings loss. This makes us want to trade more and fight less liberal peace.
More scientific model of liberalism that focuses on the need of institutions. Institutions
can impact the entire world, and thus influence the individual nature of behavior in larger
scale. It emphasizes the goal of institution. (Ex.??? Marxism:
IR theory that assumes actors to be class based, working in the capitalist system that are
driven to make more money. Capital leads to increased productivity, and thus Capitalists
aims to gain prosperity through investments and utilizing more capitals. This leads to
increase in unemployed workers, thus less demand for goods and enforced price
decrease/ wage decrease. Marxism argues that this phenomenon occurs in vicious cycle
to create instable society, which then leads to revolution.
Marx‟s argument is not justified because his predicted revolution never really occurred.
Lenin and Hobson argued that this cycle in closed market did not take place as
imperialism stopped state from being unstable. Imperialism was the cause of war in many
weak states as a result of exploitation by larger states.
Capitalism also reflects the realist point of view as its goal is to increase the capital of
state, which then converts to power. Marxists therefore predicts IR scene to have more
Developed by Immanuel Wallerstein, who introduced the holistic view of the world
system. He based his arguments on analysis of Capitalist production and class relation
(Marxist theory) with the focus on world system level. He saw the world structure to be
made from 2 different types of states; Core and Periphery. Powerful core dominates weak
periphery and creates hierarchy to stabilize the world. It also recognized the existence of
semi-periphery states that seeks to join the core through following the natural flow of the
system, hoping to increase its power by not causing any conflict. This then allows the
core states to exploit them without disturbing the system.
Theory developed by Alexander Wandt. It focused on the social meanings of materials
(ex. Border = road but also an emphasis of sovereignty). It is completely different from
Realism or Liberalism in a sense that it is flexible; it could have similarity to both of
them depending on the question…but its main exploration is to understand “how” and
“why” the actors learn to behave in certain way. It seeks to clarify the connection
between actors and the world, analyzing how each other influences the constantly
changing reproduction of individual ideology/world structure. Wandt stated that social
meanings are inter-subjective, in which it must be commonly understood by group of
individuals. Identities, norms and social institutions are the main unit of analysis, because
they are the ones that give specific social meaning to a physical material.
Because any meaning depends on the social situation that constantly changes,
Constructivism does not stick to one definition with constant understanding… while
liberalism/realism focuses on the consequence, constructivism focuses on the
appropriateness of the society. He claimed that objectivity is not enough to understand the social meanings because there are some important meanings that are shared only
among those whom are involved in the group.
Developed by Ann Tickner. It originally is a theory that seeks to justify and facilitate the
equal treatment of women to men. IR field was one of the last area to open up for
feminism theory, as not many women are involved in decision making process. It
critiqued how our knowledge is based mainly on scientific thoughts that implicitly
considers men to be the subject of experiment. Gender neutrality is lacked in many
aspects of IR theories and analysis.
Feminism theory is hard to apply as it has very vague levels of analysis. It mainly aims to
object the existent IR theories‟ credibility, for example its desirable behaviors being
powerful, strong, determined and self-sufficient. Many positive criteria in IR represents
masculinity. Feminism is hard to apply in specific levels of analysis, but it breaks the
levels by challenging the norms that are never questioned. The hidden power relationship
in individual to state levels are all considered to be equally problematic for Feminists. In
IR politics, women are used for the justification of war, promotion of equality and peace
sometimes symbol of war victory through rape…
Explains how women had to act like men in order to prove they are furious/aggressive
enough to be treated equally as men. Tokenism is used to explore the credibility of the
claim “women are more peaceful than men”.
Based on all available actions, the actor has a clear ordering of preferences over all
possible outcomes. Based on all available actions, the actor has a clear ordering of
preferences over all possible outcomes. Rationality is analyzed through examining one‟s
objective and priority, at the same time rejecting any moral or normative judgment.
What must be carefully examined is the fact that rationality holds problem of
aggregation. Outcomes need to be rational across all levels of analysis, yet many
phenomenon are hard to explain in different levels (ex. Lemmings suicide for
community‟s benefit). When observing the Marxist theory, we see that individual level of
analysis will consider such society to be illogical…preferences of individual doesn't
mean it could satisfy the preferences of aggregate.
Concept of states by Realists, in which they view a state to be acting unitarily because
they are all rational and do not seek to be dependent on each other. Game Theory:
Model of social interaction. Individuals make moves in social interaction regarding their
preferences, and therefore the combination of both actors‟ choice determines the
outcome. We consider all possible outcomes, and choose best response strategically. We
use backward induction for this thinking process, and the theory suggests that we can
predict certain behavior if we know the structure of the game and actor‟s preferences.
Games in which both sides share interest, but holds different preferences. Players are
forced to cooperate at least to fulfill their goals, thus they both compromise to satisfy
different yet non-conflicting preferences.
A model of game theory that explains the dilemma faced by 2 actors that lacks trust in
each other. It describes how both actors will not choose to cooperate for their mutual
benefit because they care more about their own individual benefit. This makes them to
betray each other and result in both sides harming themselves. It shows how the
aggregation of rational decisions can produce sub optimal outcomes, because individual
decision is rational but collective outcome is not.
In IR, it is used as an explanation for the difficulty to sustain cooperation under anarchy
because anarchic states fear each others and never fully trust one another.
A pair of strategies (an outcome) for which neither player gains by changing her own
strategy unilaterally. Policy change can only take place when it could be done mutually
and simultaneously, as it requires mutual trust. The best strategy is to always defect
regardless of other‟s action, because it is most rational. the other side will think the
Tit for Tat:
A method of continuous cooperation until one defects. It is a method used in iterated
game to develop cooperation. This strategy works only in infinite game, because by
knowing the game‟s limit and number of rounds, both players will use backward
induction to defect world of sub optimal.
Social interaction game in which 2 sides try to make each other sway in order to gain
benefit. It is not a dominant strategy game, and you must need to do what the other does.
Application* Cuban Missile Crisis was the perfect example of chicken game. US and
Soviet both tried to scare each other off by showing the threat of nuclear weapon, and
tried to avoid the nuclear war. Continuous negotiation resulted with mutual win, as both
US and Soviet Union agreed on compromising each other‟s missile removal. Absolute War:
War in which every single resource is devoted for fighting. This war is never fought in
reality and only exist in theory, because citizens simply will not be able to commit.
Wars that are fought with fraction of absolute war. War in reality is always limited war,
because citizens‟ needs of foods and other materials, or children‟s existence prevent the
state from utilizing 100% of resources.
War that is closest to that of Real War. It uses all possible resources (not entirely)
devoted to war. It is still limited, but it seeks to utilize as many resources as possible.
Militarized Interstate Dispute (MID):
Includes conflicts that have blockades, occupations, clashes, raids. It includes everything
that some aspect of military dimension in its event. Since 1946 to 1992, only 2.4% MIDs
were considered as war. It is very rare to have crises in MIDs developing into war.
Today, we have fewer inter-state wars with +1000 battle deaths. More wars take place
inside state (civil war), and more deadly result and numbers of casualties is seen through
Waltz’s 3 images:
A method of analyzing the cause of war by separating the main focus on 3 different
Focuses on human nature and actions stemming from individuals, what revolves around
individuals. It analyzes the cause of war through biological, social, and psychological
Explains how people act violently or aggressively due to the feeling of deprivation
relative to the wealthier ones. It emphasizes how the absolute sense of poverty is not the
main cause of individual‟s aggressiveness.
Feeling that derives from stronger relative deprivation due to more available tools of
acknowledging the outside world (ex. Internet). Rising expectation is higher today than
ever before. substantial change in people‟s status or in their consciousness of
differences in status.
It considers individual‟s emotional aspect such as greed and fear. It counts for the human
errors, individual perception/belief on certain subject, and observes how these elements create behavioral changes that allow conflicts to arise. It also analyzes the
miscommunication among individuals.
1 image certainly explains the cause of wars, yet it fails to predict which war will be
more likely to occur, as it is too limited of an analysis to lay out the specific factors and
variables that explains the reoccurrence of war. Individual‟s influence on world politics is
Focuses on domestic structure of the state, including regime type, economic interests and
interest groups. It analyzes the cause of war through domestic political and economical
2 image allows us to analyze the behavior of 2 or multiple conflicting countries through
observing what their self-interest and goal is. This is very liberal theory as it recognizes
the state to be more than just a billiard balls. For example, Capitalism or Imperialism can
be the cause of war, and the 2 image could give best explanation to understand how
such ideologies lead us to war.
However, it cannot clarify the different policies of countries that have similar domestic