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POL SCI 41A Study Guide - Comprehensive Final Exam Guide - Yeonpyeongdo, World War I, World Trade Organization


Department
Political Science
Course Code
POL SCI 41A
Professor
Bob Uriu
Study Guide
Final

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POL SCI 41A

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International Studies 14
University of California, Irvine
Fall 2017
MWF 11:00-11:50, SSH 100
Dr. Robert M. Uriu
SSPB 2275
Office hours: Friday, 1-2pm, and by appointment
9/29/17
-basic theories of International Relations
-IR = understand behavior of nation states; explaining state behavior and studying why certain
states behave in certain ways; how the state is affected from the outside and the inside
-focus first on theory; theories problematic because never give whole answer
-theories not all abstract
-constructivism: approach that criticizes approach of realists; say that it is so difficult to develop
theory of intl relations because any theory has to assume that states behave rationally; forces
us to take into account many things, ideology, norms, etc.
-realism, liberalism, constructivism, are three theories of IR
-final tbd, but will still be on Fri. Dec 15. Will be asked to explain or critique a real world situation
10/2/17
Why Theory? What is it good for?
- Can help simplify the incredibly complex realities of international politics; help to simplify the
complexity of growth in IR
- Depending on purpose, theory used to criticize, justify policy
- Useful abstraction: can help to organize complex patterns of behavior
- Understanding (historical nuances) versus explanation (generalizable patterns of behavior)
- Can be useful as a policy prescription
- DOES guide practitioners worldwide
Some Critical Views or Cautionary Views
- The importance of clarifying the assumptions behind theories; beware of "objective" accounts,
based on "concrete facts"
- Too often accepted without adequate skepticism, questioning; may be wrong, focus on things not
really important, or may not take full consideration of everything; often not critical of the status
quo ("the way things are"); danger of replication
- Scholars often have motive in mind, and want to "prove" or find evidence for their preconceived
notions
- Often lacks an ethical dimension, or the possibility of change
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- Can determine what research questions get asked; narrowing of the research agenda; within the
field of academics, what is considered to be important, is often determined by the consensus of
academics
So, remain skeptical! And a basic question: Is a science of IR possible? If so, what sort of science?
*think about the different perspectives, theories; learn basics, understand assumptions behind theories,
give them a chance, understand shortcomings and contributions of each theory
10/4/17
IR Theory: A quick historiography
-some early foundations of IR (pre-first debate)
-IR theory reflects the world and has an impact on how world leaders think
- has shifted over time and some changes are cataclysmic
-Pre-Westphalian system
-the Age of Empires, Kingdoms, City-States, etc.
-i.e. Many political entities existed prior to the nation state
Treaty of Westphalia (1648)
-with events like Brexit, the Westphalian era seems to be falling back into popularity; era of
nation-states (nations wanting to be sovereign from big groups/organizations)
-Treaty of Westphalia ended thirty years war (religious conflict)
-recognition of independence and autonomy of recognized actors (states)
-legitimacy, control over state's recognized territory
-small countries have the same sovereign rights as a large country (most of the time these rights
are not adhered to; some nations today still see sovereignty as their defining thing; nation states defend
their sovereignty to their last moment
-sovereignty something very jealously guarded by countries
-after WWII no country has lost its sovereignty by invasion of an outside actor (only one country,
Livadia, invaded by South Korea)
*after 1648 the religious wars in Europe did subside; now it's more about control over territory
The Industrial Revolution and Colonialism/Imperialism
-up until the beginning of the industrial revolution; ⅔ of the world's GDP was from Asia
-leads to enormous conflict b/w world powers; competitive colonialism
1. The First Debate
-realists and idealists": what motivates states: power, or morality?
-impact of WWI; the Great War, the War to End all Wars
-idealism: the study of diplomacy, law, institutions, as way to prevent war
-the League of Nations; precursor to United Nations; hope was institution where people talked
and learned; proposed by Woodrow Wilson; to establish that war was immoral, horrible, and
-the Kellogg-Briand Pact, 1928: made it illegal to engage in war
-belief in progress, humans as moral beings, capable of reason, learning, etc.
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