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Chapter 1&2

POLD89H3 Chapter Notes - Chapter 1&2: European Atomic Energy Community, Paul-Henri Spaak, Westphalian Sovereignty

Political Science
Course Code
Waldemar Skrobacki

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Global Issues: Challenges of Globalization [Chapter 1]
International Relations is the relations among the world’s state governments and other actors
o Modern state emerged in Western Europe in 1648, following the Peace of Westphalia,
the treaty that concluded the Thirty Years’ War in 1648.
International relations, international policies and world politics focus on states as the main
State is a legal and political unit that must be internationally recognized, be politically organized,
and be a populated geographic area that has sovereignty
o Sovereign the ability of a state to be independent and free from the control of another
The United States is composed of diverse populations and is based on primarily an ideology a
system of values, beliefs and ideas.
A nation is generally defined as a group of people who identify as a political community based
on common territory, culture, and other similar bonds
International relations focuses on three main questions:
o What are the contexts in which states operate, and how do these contexts shape or
influence the decisions governments make?
o What are the major objectives and interests of states in international politics, and what
strategies do they employ to achieve them?
o How are the choices made by states explained?
Power is defined as the ability to get others to do things they would not ordinarily do or to
behave in ways they would prefer to avoid
o Interactions among countries are characterized by a struggle for power
State-centric model the view that world politics is dominated almost
exclusively by state actors
All fields of study are concerned with theory, which predicts how humans behave or how things
work in the real world under specific circumstances
o All theories provide conceptual frameworks and simplify complex realities
Pluralism and interdependence mark the transition from traditional international relations to
global issues
o Takes nonstate actors organizations that are not formally associated with
governments and play a crucial role in setting the international agenda into
o Main concern is with how human activities are intertwined and interconnected across
national boundaries
o State failure and the inability of governments to effectively address a wide range of
global issues reinforce this transformation of international relations
The violence and the threat of violence that accompanied the emergence of modern stated led
to the pervasive emphasis on military power as the highest priority of states

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o In addition to terrorism, economic competition, the global financial crisis, population
growth and migration, organized crime, drug trafficking, environmental problems,
poverty, inequality, the globalization of diseases, piracy, and ethnic conflicts are among
the threats to security
Human security is a concept of security that deals with the everyday challenges humans face
that don’t involve military issues which focuses on seven categories of threats:
o Economic security
o Food security
o Health security
o Environmental security
o Personal security
o Community security
o Political security
The transition to post international politics is characterized by greater attention on
interdependence and globalization, and a stronger emphasis on global politics and global issues
o Global politics political issues and activities that have implications for most of the
o Global issues encompass traditional international relations and worldwide politics
The concept of global politics inadequately portrays how economic, cultural, environmental, and
demographic factors, are creating a society with global norms (i.e. a basic set of values that are
increasingly common to human societies)
o Stressing global issues indicates a recognition of how globalization intertwines many
aspects of human activities and how essential it is to adopt a interdisciplinary approach
in order to understand our world and its impact on our daily lives
Power played a pivotal role in the emergence of the state
The spread of humanism strengthened individualism and critical thinking
o Humanism is a system of thought that centers on human beings and their values,
capacities, and worth
Humanism was accompanied by the Renaissance the humanistic revival in Europe of classical
art, architecture, literature, and learning which evolved in Italy in the 14th century and marked
the transition of the Middle Ages to modern times
o The Renaissance centered on the individual, self-consciousness, creativity, exploration,
and science.
The combination of ideas, technological developments, ambition, the quest for freedom, and
the constant struggle for power radically altered accepted practices, institutions, and patterns of
The Catholic Church became the target of advocated change following the decline of the Roman
Empire. As the Church’s influence eroded, queens, princes, and kings in Europe attempted to
enhance their own power by promoting national consciousness and territorial independence
o Assisted by the Protestant Reformation
o European monarchs formed alliances with merchants to weaken the Catholic Church
and Roman Empire

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o Small political units made it difficult to engage in profitable trade and other economic
transactions beyond their limited boundaries. Larger political systems were beneficial to
businesses because of uniform regulations and fewer taxing jurisdictions
Towns of Europe were dominated by castles which symbolized not only military strength but
also the political and economic independence of local barons
Religious, cultural, political, economic, and technological developments ultimately led to the
outbreak of the Thirty Years’ War in 1618
The interaction of the power of ideas and change is demonstrated by Jean Bodin and his major
contribution to the modern idea of sovereignty
o He was a French social and political philosopher and lawyer
o Conflicts between Roman Catholic and Huguenots (French Protestants who were
followers of John Calvin) caused severe disorder in France during the last half of the 16th
o Bodin believed order could be restored through a combination of greater religious
tolerance and the establishment of a fully sovereign monarch and stressed in his book
that the state, represented by the king, was sovereign
Universal Catholic laws were replaced by international law which was a system of rules created
to govern the interaction of states and to establish order
o Articulated by Hugo Grotius, who was a strong advocate of natural law and the father of
international law. He stressed that sovereign states were governed by natural law
because they were composed of human beings who were ruled by nature and because it
was in the interest of sovereign states to support an international legal system
o Second component of international system was diplomacy where diplomats, their
possessions, and their embassies were extensions of the sovereign states and accorded
extraordinary legal protections
o Third component of the system for maintaining international order was the balance of
power, which attempted to prevent a state or group of states from becoming strong
enough to dominate Europe
o The new international system would rely on common cultural values and family
connections to avoid disorder
There are four types of sovereignty:
o International legal sovereignty, which focuses on the recognition of a state’s
independence by other states and respect for its territorial boundaries
o Westphalian sovereignty, which focuses on the exclusion of other states from the
affairs of the government that exists within a given territory
o Internal or domestic sovereignty, which refers to the rights of the government or
formal organization of political authority within a state to exercise a monopoly of power
over social, economic, political, and other activities within its borders
o Interdependence sovereignty, which reflects the realities of globalization. It is
concerned with the ability of governments to control or regulate the flow of people,
money, trade, environmental hazards, information, and ideas across national
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