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  • Author: Yongjin Zhang
  • Publication Date: 07-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: All Azimuth: A Journal of Foreign Policy and Peace
  • Institution: Center for Foreign Policy and Peace Research
  • Abstract: Chinese studies of International Relations constitute today an integral part of the claim of IR as a global discipline. This paper starts by providing a critical evaluation of the contribution made by the so-called ‘Chinese School of IR’ to the global production of knowledge. Against this background, it teases out a curious case of ‘schools of IR’ as commonly labelled in the global IR theoretical conversation and looks at how such labels have been used by the ‘core’ to create a parallel but explicitly inferior universe of knowledge production to localize theoretical noises from the ‘peripheries’. Situating the Chinese School of IR in such global context, it considers how ‘school’ label has been proactively appropriated by Chinese scholars to engage in a purposely contentious politics in the disciplinary IR, which questions the claim of the American ‘core’ as the creator, depositor, and distributor of universal knowledge, and seeks to unveil the geo-historical linkage between the political and the epistemic. School labelling therefore matters, it is argued, because it has become a site of contestation of geopolitics of knowledge and reflects the perils and promises in our collective pursuit of constructing a truly global IR.
  • Topic: International Relations, Politics, Academia, Knowledge Production
  • Political Geography: China, Asia
  • Author: Nathan Andrews
  • Publication Date: 07-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: All Azimuth: A Journal of Foreign Policy and Peace
  • Institution: Center for Foreign Policy and Peace Research
  • Abstract: The field of International Relations (IR) has experienced different waves of ‘great debates’ that have often maintained certain theoretical and methodological frameworks and perspectives as core to the field whereas others are seen as peripheral and merely a critique of the former. As a result of this segregation of knowledge, IR has not become as open to dialogue and diversity as we are made to believe. To be sure, aspects of the extant literature speak of IR as being ‘not so international’, a ‘hegemonic discipline’, a ‘colonial household’, and an ‘American social science’, among other derogatory names. Informed by such characterizations that depict a field of study that is not sufficiently diverse, the paper investigates the relationship between pedagogical factors and dialogue in IR. In doing so, it provides preliminary results from a pilot study in February-April 2019 that sought to examine different graduate-level IR syllabi from leading universities in the global North and South (Africa in particular). In particular, the objective was to decipher what course design, including required readings and other pedagogical activities in the classroom, tells us about dialogue and the sort of diversity needed to push IR beyond its conventional canons.
  • Topic: International Relations, Diversity, Academia, Intercultural Dialogue
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: Melisa Deciancio, Cintia Quiliconi
  • Publication Date: 07-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: All Azimuth: A Journal of Foreign Policy and Peace
  • Institution: Center for Foreign Policy and Peace Research
  • Abstract: The field of IPE has traditionally being conceptualized as an Anglo Saxon construct, in this paper we argue that it is critically important to reflect on the way IPE has developed outside the mainstream, in the periphery, focusing on the case studies of Africa – in particular South Africa; Asia – in particular China; and South America, in order to start a conversation that engages with the contributions of peripheral IPE. By bringing to light the way IPE has been approached in these regions of the world we identify problems, ideas, and concerns different from those in the North and which also call attention to the necessity of a conscious reading of these works and to opening a dialogue and comparison among them. The paper explores the contributions made by IPE in Africa, Asia and South America in order to discuss the possibility of widening IPE’s ‘global conversation’ including peripheral approaches.
  • Topic: International Relations, Political Economy, Academia, Dialogue
  • Political Geography: Global South
  • Author: Deniz Kuru
  • Publication Date: 07-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: All Azimuth: A Journal of Foreign Policy and Peace
  • Institution: Center for Foreign Policy and Peace Research
  • Abstract: This study aims to provide an exploratory analysis of Global IR, by pointing to its novelty as a tool for expanding our disciplinary frameworks, and furthermore, by connecting it to the quite simultaneously emerging field of Global Intellectual History. Such an approach enables a more comprehensive understanding of the dynamics that have led to an overall focus on the “global.” The first part elaborates how the idea of Global IR has emerged as a novel disciplinary tool, and pinpoints the various meanings it has gained. Second, the focus shifts to the novel scholarship of Global Intellectual History. Elaborating this field’s most significant contributions will make it possible to emphasize the useful role it can play in furthering the idea of Global IR in a more historically (self-)conscious manner. The importance of this approach will also be underlined by referring to the increased relevance of disciplinary critique in the specific context of IR-history (dis)connections. The third part turns its attention to various cases (as vignettes) that aim to visualize how connecting these two new “Globals” (i.e. Global IR and Global Intellectual History) could provide the discipline of IR with a better means to deal with the past and present of global politics. Therefore, by explaining the conceptual, ideational, and geo-epistemological divergences and commonalities whose roots can be more concretely studied through a broader engagement with Global Intellectual History, the article clarifies the advantages of this “inter-Global” connection. It concludes by discussing the value of Global IR in terms of its potential role for broadening the discipline not just in ways that are more (IR-)introspective but also in its bridge-building capacity to other fields with similar concerns, extending to Global Intellectual History and beyond, and provides a brief list of initial suggestions.
  • Topic: International Relations, History , Intellectual History, Academia
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: Homeira Moshirzadeh
  • Publication Date: 07-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: All Azimuth: A Journal of Foreign Policy and Peace
  • Institution: Center for Foreign Policy and Peace Research
  • Abstract: The idea of dialogue of civilizations, as was envisaged in the late 1990s and early 2000s, includes multi-layer, multi-actor dialogues. Civilization, when defined as “correspondence between material conditions of existence and intersubjective meanings,”[1] has epistemological and ontological elements that constitute the parameters of knowledge. One may easily claim that the existing knowledge of international relations has its roots in Western civilization and, if it is to become a truly global body of knowledge, it has to be nourished by contributions from various civilizations, mostly belonging to the “periphery”. Yet, even this is not enough if we just reach an archipelago consisting of various islands of knowledge without a connection to each other. What may help bridging these islands is dialogue. Dialogues among IR scholars from different civilizational backgrounds may lead to more mutual understanding and even may lead to some common grounds found in-between. Dialogues can be conducted both at inter-civilizational and intra-civilizational levels as civilizations cannot be taken as monolithic wholes. This article seeks to clarify the meaning and implications of dialogue of civilizations in IR. Furthermore, the way in which dialogue of civilizations in the discipline can be conducted and the expectations thereof are discussed.
  • Topic: International Relations, Civilization, Dialogue
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: Helen Louise Turton
  • Publication Date: 07-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: All Azimuth: A Journal of Foreign Policy and Peace
  • Institution: Center for Foreign Policy and Peace Research
  • Abstract: Disciplinary depictions using the core-periphery distinction are often premised on a ‘blurred’ and/or monolithic understanding of the core. For instance, the ‘core’ is often conceptualized broadly to include Western Europe and North America, or narrowly to refer to just the United States. Simultaneously the corresponding disciplinary self-images often refer to the core and the periphery as fixed and homogenous entities, which overlook the often diverse tendencies and hierarchies within the predefined space. This article therefore seeks to highlight the changing geographies of the core/periphery distinction in order to reveal the presence of different cores because there are different core properties. What this means is that the ‘core’ can appear in surprising spaces and occupy geographies that are normally associated with the periphery. In order to specifically illustrate certain workings and reach of the ‘core’ within spaces typically conceptualized as ‘peripheral’ this article will draw on existing data and research. The resultant empirical sketch will show how the ‘core’ is able to extend its reach and produce further epistemic hierarchies within peripheral spaces. In locating IR’s different cores and their hidden geographies this article aims to destabilize the core-periphery distinction in order to move beyond this disciplinary and disciplining archetype.
  • Topic: International Relations, Academia, Periphery
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: Deepshikha Shahi
  • Publication Date: 07-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: All Azimuth: A Journal of Foreign Policy and Peace
  • Institution: Center for Foreign Policy and Peace Research
  • Abstract: The ever more global character of today’s International Relations (IR) is no longer satisfied with one-sided stories about how things have gone with either the West or the non-West. Rather, the ongoing discussions on Global IR persuade both the West and the non-West to squarely unfold their own narratives. As the theories and practices of contemporary international relations have remarkably acquired a ‘Global’ impetus, a lot of premium is being put on a ‘dialogic approach’ – that is, an approach to Global IR that insists upon a deeper two-way communicative-action between the West and the non-West. Although the dialogic approach to Global IR seeks to resolve a wide range of cognitive differences between the West and the non-West, it more often than not remains thwarted by a few unsettled contestations: (i) History vs. Philosophy, (ii) Chronology vs. Covariance, (iii) Language vs. Concept, (iv) Culture vs. Economy, and (v) Single vs. Plural. This paper sets out to shed light on these unsettled contestations in an endeavour to intellectually improve the prospects of a dialogic approach to Global IR.
  • Topic: International Relations, Academia, Eurocentrism, Dialogue
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: Erik Ringmar
  • Publication Date: 07-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: All Azimuth: A Journal of Foreign Policy and Peace
  • Institution: Center for Foreign Policy and Peace Research
  • Abstract: The idea of the sovereign state is at the core of the Western understanding of international politics. If we are serious about coming up with non-Western theories of international politics, it is the state that must be questioned. This article suggests some ways in which this can be done. Only once we have unthought the state can we reconstruct international politics as a more equitable, and peaceful, world order.
  • Topic: International Relations, Politics, Sovereignty, State, Ottoman Empire, Pan-Africanism
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: Hayriye Asena Demirer
  • Publication Date: 12-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: All Azimuth: A Journal of Foreign Policy and Peace
  • Institution: Center for Foreign Policy and Peace Research
  • Abstract: My main argument in this article is that there have been at least three important barriers to the development of non-Western international relations theory (NWIRT): intellectual barriers (traumatizing effects of the imposition of the “standard of civilization”); ideational barriers (dominance of Western concepts and contexts); and scientific barriers (imposition of the standard of science). I argue that the silence of NWIRT is substantially a side effect of the strategy of mimicking the West, which was developed as an intellectual defense mechanism or as a camouflage strategy for the (re)establishment and the survival of non-Western states after their traumatic encounter with the Western states. Therefore, the surfacing of NWIRT discussions in the last decades can be attributed primarily to the maturation of an internal condition that is the revival of self-confidence in the residuals of former empires due to their regaining of rising power status and, thus, can be seen as a new phase of the ‘revolt against the West.’ On the other hand, I argue that the rise of NWIRT discussions are also related to the ripening of an external condition: some European schools of IR have been attempting to intellectually balance against the hegemony of American mainstream IRT, therefore, publication of edited books and special issues on NWIRT can also be read as searching for intellectual alliance with NWIRT.
  • Topic: International Relations, Trauma, Civilization, Ottoman Empire
  • Political Geography: China, Turkey, Middle East, Asia
  • Author: Mustafa Serdar Palabıyık
  • Publication Date: 07-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: All Azimuth: A Journal of Foreign Policy and Peace
  • Institution: Center for Foreign Policy and Peace Research
  • Abstract: This article intends to analyze the use of comparative historical analysis (CHA) in the discipline of International Relations (IR). After describing the historical evolution and fundamental premises of CHA, the article continues with the classification of CHA. Then the strengths and weaknesses of the method as well as its utilization by various theories of IR are discussed. The second part of the article deals with the employment of CHA by the author of this article in his own research design, in order to give an idea that how CHA might contribute to a better understanding of the “international”. In doing that, the advantages and disadvantages of the method are revisited in a way to show the contributions provided as well as the difficulties encountered in practice. The article concludes that CHA might contribute to the study of IR by enhancing interdisciplinary approaches and by adding a socio-historical depth to the ‘international’, which helps to overcome historicism and presentism at the same time.
  • Topic: International Relations, History, Academia, Political Analysis
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: Senem Aydın-Düzgit
  • Publication Date: 07-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: All Azimuth: A Journal of Foreign Policy and Peace
  • Institution: Center for Foreign Policy and Peace Research
  • Abstract: Discourse analysis is a much-favoured textual analysis method among constructivist and critically minded International Relations scholars interested in the impact of identity, meaning, and discourse on world politics. The aim of this article is to guide students of Turkish IR in their choice and use of this method. Written by two Turkish IR scholars who have employed discourse analysis in their past and present research, this article also includes a personal reflection on its strengths and shortcomings. The first section of the article presents an overview of the conceptual and epistemological underpinnings of discourse analysis, while charting the evolution of discourse analysis in IR since the late 1980s in three phases. The second section offers insight into the personal history of the researchers in employing discourse analysis in their previous and ongoing research, while the third section provides a how-to manual by performing discourse analysis of an actual text. The concluding section focuses on the challenges faced in the conduct of discourse analysis and the potential ways to overcome them, also drawing from the researchers’ own experiences in the field.
  • Topic: International Relations, Inequality, Constructivism, Methods, Discourse, Political Analysis
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Global Focus
  • Author: Mesut Özcan
  • Publication Date: 07-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: All Azimuth: A Journal of Foreign Policy and Peace
  • Institution: Center for Foreign Policy and Peace Research
  • Abstract: This article provides an introduction to the theoretical underpinnings of expected utility and game theory approaches in IR studies. It goes on to explore their application to a specific research subject, international bargaining on Iran’s nuclear program. In this application, the article presents forecasts about Iran’s nuclear program using a game theoretic, bounded rationality model called the expected utility model (Bueno de Mesquita 2002). Three analyses were made in December 2005, September 2006 and March 2007. All three forecasts appear to be in line with real-life developments regarding the issue. The results show that Iran has been losing international support since the analyses started, and the last forecast suggests a pro-US position supported by all major international actors. Also, all three analyses suggest that Russian and Chinese support is vital to curb the Iranian nuclear program.
  • Topic: International Relations, Nuclear Power, Game Theory
  • Political Geography: Iran, Global Focus
  • Author: Belgin San-Akca
  • Publication Date: 07-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: All Azimuth: A Journal of Foreign Policy and Peace
  • Institution: Center for Foreign Policy and Peace Research
  • Abstract: In this paper, I examine the generation and use of large-N datasets and issues related to operationalization and measurement in the quantitative study of inter-state and intra-state conflict. Specifically, I critically evaluate the work on transnational dimensions of internal conflict and talk about my own journey related to my research on interactions between states and nonstate armed groups. I address the gaps in existing research, the use of proxy measures in large-N data analysis, and talk in detail about observational data collection and coding. I argue that future research should bridge the gap between studies of conflict across the fields of Comparative Politics and International Relations. I make suggestions laying the standards of academic scholarship in collecting data and increasing transparency in research.
  • Topic: International Relations, Civil War, War, Research, Conflict, Data
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: Ersel Aydınlı
  • Publication Date: 07-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: All Azimuth: A Journal of Foreign Policy and Peace
  • Institution: Center for Foreign Policy and Peace Research
  • Abstract: This article begins with the premise that the International Relations (IR) disciplinary community in Turkey has a problem: namely, it has failed to appreciate the importance of methodology. Rather, efforts to develop the local discipline and, subsequently, training within IR departments, have both emphasized ‘theory’, arguing that it constitutes the best route of elevating local disciplinary scholarship and enabling true dialogue with the core discipline. This article argues that, unfortunately, this focus has at best succeeded in encouraging the importation and assimilation of outside theories, and at worst, has helped to create a shell of a local discipline—ever increasing in size, but not in substance. It goes on to argue that only through development of students’ and scholars’ methodological competence can Turkish IR gain greater value in the global IR scholarly community, because methodology, its tools and approaches and the expertise needed to apply them in a competent and skilled manner, constitutes the universal common language of an academic discipline, and thus allows for genuine discussions and debates within a disciplinary community.
  • Topic: International Relations, Research, Academia, Methods, Periphery
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: Alper Kaliber
  • Publication Date: 07-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: All Azimuth: A Journal of Foreign Policy and Peace
  • Institution: Center for Foreign Policy and Peace Research
  • Abstract: This study aims to reflect on qualitative interviewing with a particular emphasis on semi-structured interviewing (SSI), with the purpose of guiding students and young scholars of International Relations and Political Science who will use this method in their research. This study begs to differ from both radical postpositivist’s deep scepticism which makes any scientific inquiry almost impossible as well as from positivism’s unreflective, unproblematized, instrumental approach to interviewing. It proposes a reflectivist approach to qualitative interviewing that emphasizes the political nature of the interviewing process with various political, ethical and even social consequences. The reflectivist approach requires researchers to be self-critical at all times, in particular concerning their role and influence on the interview setting and the interviewee. This article proceeds as follows: It first addresses my own research on the nexus between civil society and the Kurdish question in Turkey, where SSI has been operationalized as the main research method. It then addresses the positivist and post-positivist debates on qualitative interviewing as well as the reflectivist approach that this study promotes. The article then engages in SSI in three distinct stages: pre-interview, interview and post-interview phases. Finally, the concluding part introduces some works utilising interviewing in Turkish IR and wraps up the theoretical/methodological arguments disseminated throughout the study at hand.
  • Topic: International Relations, Political Science, Interview, Qualitative Research
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: Tuğba Bayar
  • Publication Date: 01-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: All Azimuth: A Journal of Foreign Policy and Peace
  • Institution: Center for Foreign Policy and Peace Research
  • Abstract: As one of the most significant actors of the region, Iran’s interactions with great powers (as well as regional powers and non-state actors) have come under scrutiny. This article adopts an historical account and suggests a framework to study Iran’s foreign policy. The framework is contextually built with a multi-level approach to specify the independent and intervening variables of Iran’s foreign policy through the light of neoclassical realist theory. In this context, it is argued that the independent variables of Iran’s foreign policy are geopolitics, threat perceptions and balance of power politics. These systemic variables are filtered through nationalism, theological and revolutionary ideology and policy making mechanisms.
  • Topic: International Relations, Foreign Policy, Geopolitics, Regional Integration
  • Political Geography: Iran, Middle East
  • Author: Ersel Aydinli, Mustafa Aydin, Andrey Makarychev, Karen Smith, Ramazan Gözen, Pinar Ipek, Deniz Kuru, Haluk Özdemir, Chih-yu Shih, Siddharth Mallavarapu, Ching-Chang Chen, Seçkin Köstem, Eyüp Ersoy, Knud Erik Jörgensen, Berk Esen
  • Publication Date: 07-2018
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: All Azimuth: A Journal of Foreign Policy and Peace
  • Institution: Center for Foreign Policy and Peace Research
  • Abstract: 2nd All Azimuth Workshop on Widening the World of IR Theorizing 23-24 September 2016, Ankara
  • Topic: International Relations, Political Theory, Conference
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Global Focus
  • Author: Karen Smith
  • Publication Date: 07-2018
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: All Azimuth: A Journal of Foreign Policy and Peace
  • Institution: Center for Foreign Policy and Peace Research
  • Abstract: This article is based on the assumption that theoretical contributions from the global South – and in this case, from Africa, do not need to be radically different from existing theories to constitute an advancement in terms of engendering a better understanding of international relations. Reinterpretations or modifications of existing frameworks and the introduction of new concepts for understanding are equally important. This is an accepted practice in mainstream IR, where existing theories are constantly amended and revisited. One need only consider the various incarnations of realist thought.While adaptations and conceptual innovations by western scholars are recognised as legitimate and adopted into the canon of theory, this is not always the case with similar contributions emerging from outside of the West. This article will examine three examples of such contributions by African scholars. The first group of scholars reinterpreted the concept of “middle power,” arguing that there are specific characteristics that set emerging middle powers like South Africa apart from traditional middle powers. The second, Deon Geldenhuys, developed the concept “isolated states” and generated a novel analytical framework to categorise states based on indicators of isolation. Finally, Thomas Tieku draws on the African worldview of ubuntu in calling for the state to be reconceptualised in a collectivist, societal way. It is hoped that these examples will illustrate that there are theoretical innovations emerging from the Global South that can assist us in not only better understanding international relations in a particular part of the world, but can in fact provide greater insights into the field as a whole.
  • Topic: International Relations, Political Theory, Emerging States, Power
  • Political Geography: Africa, South Africa
  • Author: Eyüp Ersoy
  • Publication Date: 07-2018
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: All Azimuth: A Journal of Foreign Policy and Peace
  • Institution: Center for Foreign Policy and Peace Research
  • Abstract: The absence of theoretical perspectives in International Relations originating in the worldviews and experiences of human geographies outside the West has elicited persistent calls in the discipline for homegrown theoretical frameworks based on indigenous practices and intellectual sensibilities. Responding to the veritable marginalization of non-Western viewpoints in the discipline belying the plurality of global experiences, a diverse range of studies on homegrown theorizing has ensued. Inasmuch as the initial step in any social theorizing is pertinent to concepts, studies of homegrown theorizing have necessarily engaged conceptual cultivation by drawing on local conceptual resources. Most of these studies, nonetheless, have evinced an analytical proclivity to forge an exclusive and immutable semantic affiliation between concepts and what they signify. Transmuting conceptual indigeneity into conceptional idiosyncrasy, this insular practice of homegrown theorizing can incur manifold degenerative shortcomings. On the other hand, in the lexicon of international relations, influence is a ubiquitous word which is yet to be rigorously conceptualized. By virtue of imparting indigenous properties, a systematic conceptual cultivation of influence is propounded in this study, which arguably transcends the prohibitive semantic inflexibility and associated shortcomings of conceptual exclusivity in homegrown theorizing.
  • Topic: International Relations, International Relations Theory, Academia, Power
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: Kosuke Shimizu
  • Publication Date: 01-2018
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: All Azimuth: A Journal of Foreign Policy and Peace
  • Institution: Center for Foreign Policy and Peace Research
  • Abstract: This paper aims to introduce a neglected methodology from Japanese international relations (IR) – the culturalist methodology – to Anglophone specialists in IR. This methodology is neglected not only by an Anglophone audience but also by Japanese IR scholars. I argue here that despite this negligence, the culturalist methodology has great potential to contribute to contemporary post-Western international relations theory (IRT) literature by posing radical questions about the ontology of IR, as it questions not only the ontology of Western IR, but also the IR discourses developed in the rest of the world. Consequently, in understanding and imagining the contemporary world, I clarify the importance of perceptions based on what, in Japan, are commonly called ‘international cultural relations’ (kokusai bunka) and ‘regional history’ (chiikishi). I also indicate how our perceptions of the world are limited by the Westphalian principles of state sovereignty and non-intervention among ‘equal’ nations on the basis of state borders. While historical understanding is widely recognised as an important approach to contemporary IR, its scope is limited by its universalised principles.
  • Topic: International Relations, Diplomacy, History , Academia
  • Political Geography: Japan, Asia
  • Author: Ilter Turan
  • Publication Date: 01-2018
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: All Azimuth: A Journal of Foreign Policy and Peace
  • Institution: Center for Foreign Policy and Peace Research
  • Abstract: There are certainly grounds for optimism when it comes to progress in Turkish international relations (IR). Turkish academia has come a long way since the 1960s. The rapid expansion of IR study in Turkish academia can be attributed to the expansion in the Turkish educational system, especially after 1980, and the rising importance of international relations through globalization. Turkish society has very large potential for future work in IR, with many highly qualified scholars. Compared to a few decades ago, more IR articles are being authored by Turkish scholars, both abroad and in Turkey. The question now is how Turkish scholars can become an even stronger voice in the international academic community. In this paper, I suggest better collaboration with government and universities to develop better PhD programs, participate in PhD consortiums and establish stronger links with the international community.
  • Topic: International Relations, Science and Technology, Academia
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East
  • Author: Homeira Moshirzadeh
  • Publication Date: 01-2018
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: All Azimuth: A Journal of Foreign Policy and Peace
  • Institution: Center for Foreign Policy and Peace Research
  • Abstract: Since the emergence of the Islamic Republic in Iran, social scientists, including international relations (IR) scholars, have been called to develop endogenous/ indigenous theories to reflect Iranian/Islamic points of view. This theorizing has led some Iranian scholars to develop ideas about international life on the basis of Islamic texts and teachings. Furthermore, due to an increasing awareness of the Eurocentric nature of IR theories over the last few years, the international community of IR scholars has become open to non-Western IR theories. This opening has made homegrown theorizing more attractive to Iranian IR scholars, and debates about it have become more vivid. This article seeks to examine the attempts by the Iranian IR community to conceptualize and theorize IR from Iranian/Islamic points of view and to show how contextual factors have limited such attempts. The first part of the article reviews the IR scholarship in Iran to give a portrait of Iranians’ achievements in this regard. The second part examines contextual factors that may have affected homegrown theorizing in Iran, including international agency, sources of inspiration, the dynamism of the IR community, the relationship between academia and government, and intellectual autonomy. An evaluation of this structural context suggests that even if theorizing IR from an Iranian point of view is both possible and preferable, this cannot be done unless certain structural constraints are overcome.
  • Topic: International Relations, International Relations Theory, Academia, Social Science
  • Political Geography: Iran, Middle East
  • Author: Emilian Kavalski
  • Publication Date: 01-2018
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: All Azimuth: A Journal of Foreign Policy and Peace
  • Institution: Center for Foreign Policy and Peace Research
  • Abstract: The rise of China troubles the taken-for-granted epistemological and ontological constitution of International Relations (IR) theory. The Greek term ‘theoria’ implied travelling to foreign locales with the aim of gaining illumination that can then simultaneously inform and transform the ‘home’ of the traveler. Yet, instead of travelling, IR theory engages in silencing. This paper undertakes an interpretative journey of China’s IR concepts. In particular, it looks at the notion of guanxi – one of the two terms that goes into the Chinese phrase for International Relations (guoji guanxi). The contention is that ‘relationality’ renders a more accurate translation of guanxi in English. In the process, the paper uncovers the practices of ‘international relationality’ as an opportunity to redefine the ‘international’ as a co-dependent space where two or more actors (despite their divergences) can interface into a dialogical community.
  • Topic: International Relations, Politics, Academia
  • Political Geography: China, Asia