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Regular version of the site
Bachelor 2022/2023

The Theory of International Relations

Area of studies: International Relations
When: 3 year, 3, 4 module
Mode of studies: distance learning
Online hours: 16
Open to: students of one campus
Language: English
ECTS credits: 5
Contact hours: 82

Course Syllabus


Welcome to International Relations Theory! In this course, we will examine the different ways in which international politics is understood, explained, interpreted and judged by different theoretical traditions and paradigms. We will be exploring different frameworks for thinking about why and how international politics works in the way that it does, but also for thinking about how international politics ought to be. The course will focus primarily on theoretical texts and concepts, rather than on empirical or historical knowledge, though we will try to relate the ideas discussed in to the empirical and real world examples from international politics.
Learning Objectives

Learning Objectives

  • This course will allow you to develop a broad knowledge of the tools used in studying international relations and of the debates between different theoretical perspectives. We will acquaint you with ideas, concepts and texts in international political theory (both classical and modern) in their historical context, introduce you to issues of methodology in IR, and enable you to think critically about alternative ways of explaining, understanding and judging international politics.
Expected Learning Outcomes

Expected Learning Outcomes

  • ascertain the plausibility, strengths and weaknesses of different concepts and theories encountered in the course;
  • be able to analyze texts of major thinkers who had a great influence on IR Theory;
  • be able to distinguish and assess different methodological and ontological frameworks within international political theory;
  • be able to provide an account of contemporary international political affairs with reference to concepts and methods encountered in the course;
  • be comfortable with using the specific terminology pertaining to international political theory;
  • know characteristic features of major Schools of IR Theory;
  • know origin and characteristic features of Critical international relations theory;
  • possess understanding and knowledge and of the ideas and concepts studied in the course;
Course Contents

Course Contents

  • Introduction to IR Theory
  • History of IR Theory - Foundational Thinkers
  • Major Schools of IR Theory
  • Critiques of Mainstream IR
  • Methodology
  • Theorizing International Politics in the 21st Century
  • Using IR Theory to Understand Russia
Assessment Elements

Assessment Elements

  • non-blocking Seminars activity
  • non-blocking MOCK exam
  • non-blocking MOCK exam
  • blocking Oral Exam
Interim Assessment

Interim Assessment

  • 2022/2023 4th module
    0.45 * Oral Exam + 0.35 * Seminars activity + 0.1 * MOCK exam + 0.1 * MOCK exam


Recommended Core Bibliography

  • Acharya, A., & Buzan, B. (2007). Why is there no non-Western international relations theory? An introduction. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsbas&AN=edsbas.712B98E3
  • Alex J. Bellamy, & Nicholas J. Wheeler. (2001). Humanitarian Interventions and World Politics. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsbas&AN=edsbas.C86B99F8
  • Augustine. Augustine: Political Writings, edited by E. M. Atkins, and R. J. Dodaro, Cambridge University Press, 2001. ProQuest Ebook Central,
  • Bagby, L. M. J. (1994). The use and abuse of Thucydides in international relations. International Organization, 48(1), 131. https://doi.org/10.1017/S0020818300000849
  • Brewer, A. (1990). Marxist Theories of Imperialism : A Critical Survey (Vol. 2nd ed). London: Routledge. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=74669
  • Brown, C., & Ainley, K. (2009). Understanding International Relations (Vol. Foruth edition). Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=1522816
  • Bull, H. (2012). The Anarchical Society : A Study of Order in World Politics (Vol. 4th ed). Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=1523322
  • Burchill, S., Linklater, A., & Devetak, R. (2013). Theories of International Relations (Vol. 5th ed). Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=1526050
  • Clunan, A. L. (2014). Historical aspirations and the domestic politics of Russia’s pursuit of international status. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsbas&AN=edsbas.B8E97737
  • Dan Reiter. (n.d.). Articles Exploring the Bargaining Model of War Exploring the Bargaining Model of War. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsbas&AN=edsbas.96C955BA
  • Doyle, M. W. (2005). Three Pillars of the Liberal Peace. American Political Science Review, (03), 463. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsrep&AN=edsrep.a.cup.apsrev.v99y2005i03p463.466.05
  • Fearon, J. D. (1995). Rationalist explanations for war. International Organization, (03), 379. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsrep&AN=edsrep.a.cup.intorg.v49y1995i03p379.414.03
  • Hans Morgenthau, Realism, and the Scientific Study of International Politics. (1994). Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsbas&AN=edsbas.DA7BDEC
  • Huntington, S. P. (1993). The Clash of Civilizations? Foreign Affairs, 72(3), 22. https://doi.org/10.2307/20045621
  • KRICKOVIC, A., & WEBER, Y. (2018). What Can Russia Teach Us about Change? Status-Seeking as a Catalyst for Transformation in International Politics. International Studies Review, 20(2), 292–300. https://doi.org/10.1093/isr/viy024
  • Mearsheimer, J. J. (2014). Why the Ukraine Crisis Is the West’s Fault. Foreign Affairs, 93(5), 77. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=f5h&AN=97381275
  • Pettman, J. (2015). Gender and World Politics. Australia, Australia/Oceania: Oxford University Press. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsbas&AN=edsbas.55C261F
  • Rathbun, B. (2008). A Rose by Any Other Name: Neoclassical Realism as the Logical and Necessary Extension of Structural Realism. Security Studies, 17(2), 294–321. https://doi.org/10.1080/09636410802098917
  • Stoner, K., & McFaul, M. (2015). Who Lost Russia (This Time)? Vladimir Putin. Washington Quarterly, 38(2), 167. https://doi.org/10.1080/0163660X.2015.1064716
  • Tammen, R. (2008). The Organski Legacy: A Fifty-Year Research Program. International Interactions, 34(4), 314–332. https://doi.org/10.1080/03050620802561769
  • Thomas Hobbes's Conception of Peace: Civil Society and International Order: монография / Jaede, M — Cham: Palgrave Pivot, 2018. — 114 с. — ISBN 978-3-319-76066-7. — URL: https://link.springer.com/book/10.1007/978-3-319-76066-7 (дата обращения: 30.08.2019). — Текст : электронный.
  • Walt, S. M. (1998). International relations: One world, many theories. Foreign Policy, (110), 29. https://doi.org/10.2307/1149275
  • Wendt, A. (1992). Anarchy is what states make of it: the social construction of power politics. International Organization, (02), 391. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsrep&AN=edsrep.a.cup.intorg.v46y1992i02p391.425.02
  • Wendt, A. E. (1987). The agent-structure problem in international relations theory. International Organization, (03), 335. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsrep&AN=edsrep.a.cup.intorg.v41y1987i03p335.370.02
  • Western, J., & Goldstein, J. S. (2011). Humanitarian Intervention Comes of Age. Foreign Affairs, 90(6), 48. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=f5h&AN=66803891

Recommended Additional Bibliography

  • American Primacy in Perspective. (2002). Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsbas&AN=edsbas.8888A73D
  • Bell, D. A. . (DE-588)123884578, (DE-576)17471923X. (2000). East meets West : human rights and democracy in East Asia / Daniel A. Bell. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edswao&AN=edswao.083037373
  • Brooks, S. G. (2001). Power, Globalization, and the End of the Cold War. International Security, 25(3), 5. https://doi.org/10.1162/016228800560516
  • Buzan, B. (DE-588)114489084, (DE-576)160503620. (2014). An introduction to the English School of International Relations : the societal approach / Barry Buzan. Cambridge [u.a.]: Polity Press. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edswao&AN=edswao.414579054
  • Buzan, B., & Wæver, O. (2003). Regions and Powers : The Structure of International Security. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=125090
  • Charap, S. V. (DE-588)1140057758, (DE-576)409399108, aut. (2017). Everyone loses : the Ukraine crisis and the ruinous contest for Post-Soviet Eurasia / Samuel Charap, Timothy J. Colton. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edswao&AN=edswao.48224206X
  • Copeland, D. C. (1996). Economic interdependence and war. International Security, 20(4), 5. https://doi.org/10.2307/2539041
  • Enloe, C. H. . (DE-588)172063531, (DE-576)132937670. (2014). Bananas, beaches and bases : making feminist sense of international politics / Cynthia Enloe. Berkeley, Calif. [u.a.]: Univ. of California Press. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edswao&AN=edswao.408128828
  • Erik Gartzke. (2007). The Capitalist Peace. American Journal of Political Science, (1), 166. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1540-5907.2007.00244.x
  • Frank, A. G. (1975). Development and Underdevelopment in the New World: Smith and Marx Vs. The Weberians. Theory & Society, 2(4), 431–466. https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00212747
  • Hehir, A. (2013). Humanitarian Intervention : An Introduction (Vol. Second edition). Houndmills, Basingstoke, Hampshire: Palgrave Macmillan. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=1525103
  • Jonathan M. DiCicco, & Jack S. Levy. (1999). Power Shifts and Problem Shifts. Journal of Conflict Resolution, (6), 675. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsrep&AN=edsrep.a.sae.jocore.v43y1999i6p675.704
  • Kagarlitsky, B. (2008). Empire of the Periphery : Russia and the World System. London: Pluto Press. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=329557
  • Kang, D. C. (2010). East Asia Before the West : Five Centuries of Trade and Tribute. New York: Columbia University Press. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=499519
  • Kennedy, D. W. (2008). The Mystery of Global Governance. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsbas&AN=edsbas.65985926
  • Keohane, R. O. (1992). International Theory: The Three Traditions. By Martin Wight. New York: Holmes & Meier, 1992. 286p. $39.95. American Political Science Review, (04), 1112. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsrep&AN=edsrep.a.cup.apsrev.v86y1992i04p1112.1113.09
  • Marten, K. (2015). Informal Political Networks and Putin’s Foreign Policy: The Examples of Iran and Syria. Problems of Post-Communism, 62(2), 71–87. https://doi.org/10.1080/10758216.2015.1010896
  • Marx, K., Engels, F., Moore, S., & Hiperlink (Firm). (2018). The Communist Manifesto (Vol. First edition). İstanbul: İstanbul. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=1864937
  • McKelvey, C. (2018). The Evolution and Significance of the Cuban Revolution The Light in the Darkness by Charles McKelvey. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edswao&AN=edswao.495991406
  • Menon, R. (2016). The Conceit of Humanitarian Intervention. New York, NY: Oxford University Press. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=1167894
  • Molchanov, M. A. (2015). Eurasian Regionalisms and Russian Foreign Policy. Farnham, Surrey, UK: Routledge. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=841535
  • Neumann, I. B. (2016). Russia and the Idea of Europe : A Study in Identity and International Relations (Vol. 2nd). [N.p.]: Routledge. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=1365358
  • Realism, Neoliberalism, and Cooperation: Understanding the Debate. (1999). Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsbas&AN=edsbas.CDFD624D
  • Rengger, N. J. . (DE-588)121634248, (DE-576)167219286. (2000). International relations, political theory and the problem of order : beyond international relations theory? / N. J. Rengger. London [u.a.]: Routledge. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edswao&AN=edswao.078786320
  • Renshon, J. (2016). Status Deficits and War. International Organization, (03), 513. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsrep&AN=edsrep.a.cup.intorg.v70y2016i03p513.550.00
  • Rosato, S. (2003). The Flawed Logic of Democratic Peace Theory. American Political Science Review, (04), 585. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsrep&AN=edsrep.a.cup.apsrev.v97y2003i04p585.602.00
  • Taliaferro, J. W., Ripsman, N. M., & Lobell, S. E. (2009). Neoclassical Realism, the State, and Foreign Policy. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=269173
  • Tsygankov, A. P. (2012). Russia and the West From Alexander to Putin : Honor in International Relations. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=465722
  • Van Evera, S. (DE-588)133410056, (DE-576)17898163X. (1997). Guide to methods for students of political science / Stephen Van Evera. Ithaca, NY [u.a.]: Cornell University Press. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edswao&AN=edswao.06850358X
  • Waltz, K. N. (2000). Structural Realism after the Cold War. International Security, 25(1), 5–41. https://doi.org/10.1162/016228800560372
  • Ward, S. (2013). Race, Status, and Japanese Revisionism in the Early 1930s. Security Studies, 22(4), 607–639. https://doi.org/10.1080/09636412.2013.844517
  • Weiss, T. G., & Wilkinson, R. (2014). Rethinking Global Governance? Complexity, Authority, Power, Change. International Studies Quarterly, 58(1), 207–215. https://doi.org/10.1111/isqu.12082
  • Wendt, A. (1999). Social Theory of International Politics. Cambridge, U.K.: Cambridge University Press. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=55674
  • Wheeler, N. (2001). Review article: Humanitarian intervention after Kosovo: emergent norm, moral duty or the coming anarchy? International Affairs, 77(1), 113. https://doi.org/10.1111/1468-2346.00181