The new edition of International Relations Theory: A critical introduction introduces students to the main theories in international relations. It explains and analyzes each theory, allowing students to understand and critically engage with the myths and assumptions behind each theory. Key features of this textbook include: • discussion of all of the main theories: realism and (neo)realism, idealism and (neo)idealism, liberalism, constructivism, postmodernism, gender, and globalization two new chapters on the “clash of civilizations” and Hardt and Negri’s Empire innovative use of narratives from ﬁlms that students will be familiar with: Lord of the Flies, Independence Day, Wag the Dog, Fatal Attraction, The Truman Show, East is East, and Memento an accessible and exciting writing style which is well-illustrated with boxed key concepts and guides to further reading.
This breakthrough textbook has been designed to unravel the complexities of international relations theory in a way that allows students a clearer idea of how the theories work and the myths that are associated with them. Cynthia Weber is Professor of International Studies at the University of Lancaster. She is the author of several books and numerous articles in the ﬁeld of international relations.
International Relations Theory
A critical introduction Second edition
First published 2001 by Routledge Second edition published 2005 by Routledge 2 Park Square, Milton Park, Abingdon, Oxon OX14 4RN Simultaneously published in the USA and Canada by Routledge 270 Madison Ave, New York, NY 10016 Routledge is an imprint of the Taylor & Francis Group
This edition published in the Taylor and Francis e-Library, 2005. “To purchase your own copy of this or any of Taylor & Francis or Routledge’s collection of thousands of eBooks please go to www.eBookstore.tandf.co.uk.” © 2001, 2005 Cynthia Weber All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reprinted or reproduced or utilised in any form or by any electronic, mechanical, or other means, now known or hereafter invented, including photocopying and recording, or in any information storage or retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publishers. British Library Cataloguing in Publication Data A catalogue record for this book is available from the British Library Library of Congress Cataloging in Publication Data A catalog record for this book has been requested
ISBN 0-203-48146-1 Master e-book ISBN
ISBN 0-203-67999-7 (Adobe eReader Format) ISBN 0–415–34207–4 (hbk) ISBN 0–415–34208–2 (pbk)
For Lyn and Charles Weber and for Bob DiClerico
Learning depends upon freeing the message from the constraints of the situation at hand. Roland Barthes
LIST OF PLATES LIST OF FIGURES LIST OF TABLES LIST OF BOXES PREFACE TO THE SECOND EDITION PREFACE TO THE FIRST EDITION
x xi xii xiv xv xvii
1 Introduction: culture, ideology, and the myth function in IR theory Culture Ideology The myth function in IR theory Why myths? Plan of the book Suggestions for further thinking Topic 1 Mythology as methodology Topic 2 Culture, form, and IR theory 2 Realism: is international anarchy the permissive cause of war? (Lord of the Flies) What does the myth say? Lord of the Flies
3 4 6 7 8 10 10 11
The function of fear in Waltz’s anarchy myth Suggestions for further thinking Topic 1 (Neo)realism Topic 2 The uses of fear in IR theory Note on the US ﬁlm of Lord of the Flies 3 Idealism: is there an international society? (Independence Day) What does the myth say? Independence Day Fear and leadership in Independence Day Suggestions for further thinking Topic 1 Cooperation under anarchy Topic 2 Morality and ethics in IR Media note Classroom activity 4 Constructivism: is anarchy what states make of it? (Wag the Dog) What does the myth say? Wag the Dog Practice, seduction, and dead authorship...