Selected Topics in International Relations: An Annotated Bibliography – İsmail Erkam Sula (ed.)

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1. IR Scholarship: The State of the art in the World and Turkey
1.1. Philosophy of Social Science and International Relations Scholarship
1.2. IR Scholarship around the World and the state of the IR Discipline in Turkey
1.3. The Sociology of the IR discipline
2. History of International Relations Discipline
2.1. The Evolution of the Discipline 1: Major debates in IR Theory
2.2. The Evolution of the Discipline 2: ‘Westphalia Treaty’, ‘Great’ Debates or a Myth?
2.3. International Political Economy: A short history of the Liberal World Order
3. IR Methods and Methodology
3.1. Explaining and Understanding International Relations
3.2. Quantitative vs. Qualitative Methods in International Relations
3.3. Eclectic Methods and Triangulation
4. IR Concepts and Theoretical debates
4.1. Power, Balance of Power, Soft/smart Power
4.2. Hegemony, Hegemonic stability, and Cooperation
4.3. Security, Security Dilemma, Securitization
4.4. Democracy, Democratic Consolidation, Democratization

Contributors: Çiğdem Dilek Aflaki, Büşra Bayramoğlu, Karlygash Deligöz, Burak İnce, Mustafa Onur Yalçın

Introduction – İsmail Erkam Sula

Since the birth of the discipline, definitions of science and scientific inquiry in IR have validated certain knowledge production approaches while invalidating others. Debates among International Relations (IR) scholars on the definition of scientific inquiry and the use of knowledge-production methods lead to the formation of competing epistemic communities. It is important for an IR scholar to have a grasp of the main topics that are debated among the scholars of the field and how (or if) certain approaches are being pushed to the margins of the discipline.

The following annotated bibliography is designed as a reference source that summarizes a selection of IR readings (books, chapters, and research articles), examining how the main topics and fundamental concepts are handled by multiple scholars and theories. Most of the readings below are cited as classical works of IR and Political Science, which I believe will encourage further discussion and research on the topics they cover and serve as an advanced introduction for IR students at the graduate level. The summaries focus on fundamental issues that revolve around four major components: IR Theory and Philosophy, Research Methods, Key Concepts in IR scholarship, and the history of the IR discipline. It is a reading list prepared with a “carpet bomb strategy” that aims to be as comprehensive as possible and to reach as many IR students as possible. It is also designed for those graduate students that are deeply feeling the “agony” of getting prepared for their PhD comprehensive exam.

Below, you may find annotations from and summaries of the readings from the syllabus of a PhD-level elective course, “the Selected Topics in International Relations, offered at Ankara Yildirim Beyazit University (AYBU) Department of International Relations. You may also take a look at the syllabus of this course, which was also previously published at Panorama. The course is designed to prepare students for their PhD comprehensive exam. This annotated bibliography is a product of the “International Studies Research Group” that was established at the university, and all the studies below are reviewed by graduate students who completed their comprehensive exams and are now PhD Candidates at AYBU. They are at different stages of their PhD Dissertation research.

To sum up, the following reading list does not assume to cover ‘everything’ that is important for IR students. The selected readings are based on three main considerations: (1) that theories play a very significant role in understanding international relations, 2) that no theoretical approach is categorically more accurate, better, or more successful than the other, and (3) that it is important to have a grasp of how fundamental concepts that are frequently encountered in IR are used by different theories. I hope that our selection of readings and the annotated bibliography further encourage students, readers, and scholars of IR in their quest to understand and explain world politics.

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1. IR Scholarship: The State of the art in the World and Turkey

1.1. Philosophy of Social Science and International Relations Scholarship

Lebow, Richard Ned. 2019. “Philosophy and International Relations.” International Affairs (Royal Institute of International Affairs 87 (5): 1219–28. (Reviewed by Mustafa Onur Yalçın)

Lebow reviews the works of C. Wight, J. Joseph and P.T. Jackson on scientific realism, philosophy of science debates, and international relations. Lebow pairs these two works by highlighting the rise of philosophical debates among international relations theorists that aim to search for new ontological and epistemological foundations or to clarify their existing commitments. Lebow argues that Joseph and Wight’s studyis a good example of theorists’ search for new ontological and epistemological grounds due to its contribution to the discipline as a leading philosophy of science. According to Lebow, Jackson is concerned with relationships between the knower and the known and between knowledge and observation. Lebow concludes his review article with critics of both Jackson and Joseph & Wight’s studies. 

Wight, Colin. 2002. “Philosophy of Social Science and International Relations.” In Handbook of International Relations, edited by Walter Carlsnaes, Thomas Risse, and Beth A. Simmons, 23–51. London: SAGE Publications (Reviewed by Mustafa Onur Yalçın)

Wight makes a meta-theoretical discussion of the discipline of International Relations, discussing whether it is a science or has a philosophy of social science (or not). The main question of the study is what science is and whether IR can or should be a science. First, Wight ask does IR really needs a philosophy of social science. He builds this narrative around key debates that had begun in the early days of the discipline and continue to the present day. After discussing the scientific nature of the discipline in its different stages, he concludes the discussion with the idea that the philosophy of social science is not something the discipline can use or discard.

1.2. IR Scholarship around the World and the state of the IR Discipline in Turkey

Sula, İsmail Erkam. 2022. “‘Global’ IR and Self-Reflections in Turkey: Methodology, Data Collection, and the Social Sciences Data Repository.” All Azimuth 11, 1, 123-142. (Reviewed by Çiğdem Dilek Aflaki)

Sula mainly suggests that Turkish IR scholars focus more on the solutions of the shortcomings in the development of the discipline, rather than continuing to identify them. He shares Aydinli and Biltekin’s ideas on the importance of methodological clarity, but he disagrees with their sharp distinction between qualitative and quantitative methods. He argues that such distinction hampers one of their main suggestions to create a unitary local community of scholars for the development of the discipline. Sula emphasizes the significance of using research methods in general. He suggests that methodological clarity is not a unique characteristic of only “quantitative” approaches. Moreover, Sula also criticizes the tendency to regard all non-quantitative studies as automatically qualitative ones.  Then, he identifies the general misperception regarding the qualitative studies in the discipline, as those studies are regarded as if they have no methodology, and no scientific consideration. He argues that “qualitative research does not imply methods-free research or an ‘anything goes’ approach” and highlights that “specifying the methodological approach does not directly result in methodological clarity.” In addition to those misperceptions, Sula also clarifies that methodological clarity is not provided by just mentioning the name of the methodological approach in any study. In this context, Sula mainly suggest that new students in graduate schools should be trained through data-collection projects in order to lead them to produce new studies with methodological clarity, rather than encouraging them to continue with old ideological and exclusionary positions regarding the quantitative, qualitative or mixed methodological approaches.

Aydınlı, Ersel, and Gonca Biltekin. 2017. “Time to Quantify Turkey’s Foreign Affairs: Setting Quality Standards for a Maturing International Relations Discipline.” International Studies Perspectives 18 (3): 267–87. (Reviewed by Büşra Bayramoğlu)

Aydınlı and Biltekin focus on the lack of communication and interactive scholarly debates in the Turkish IR disciplinary community. They suggest that quantitative research could fill this gap by providing methodological clarity. By doing this, they also aim to contribute to Turkish IR’s progress. The article aims to make a significant contribution to the development of quantitative research in Turkish IR.

Köstem, Seçkin. 2015. “International Relations Theories and Turkish International Relations: Observations Based on a Book.All Azimuth 4 (1): 59–66. (Reviewed By Burak İnce)

In this review article Köstem first presents a brief outline and discusses the place of IR theory within the Turkish IR community. He enquires about the sources of the lack of theorizing up to now in Turkish IR. He has different solutions and suggestions for the problematic. In the piece, Köstem asks why – despite Turkey’s position in a dynamic part of the world – we still lack theoretical approaches based on the Turkish experience. He suggests that Turkish IR scholars – especially young academics – may work on mid-range theories and get beyond grand-theoretical boundaries. He presents his advice to IR students and asserts his belief in Turkey’s deep history of contributions to IR theory.

By employing a contextualized approach, considering conditions under which strategic policies formed, Wiener interprets the European Union’s capacity in dealing with possible terrorist threats. In this theory-driven study, she introduces distinct European capabilities, which refer to the enforcement power in transnational and trans-border issues. Finally, she concludes that the critical point of tackling terrorism is to have a common agreement on the negotiators’ interest and their understanding of the norms binding their decisions. 

1.3. The Sociology of the IR discipline

Bilgin, Pınar. 2009. “The International Political ‘Sociology of a Not so International Discipline.’ ” International Political Sociology 3 (3): 338–42. (Reviewed by Mustafa Onur Yalçın)

Bilgin uncovers ways to get beyond the present reality of multiple worlds of knowledge about the international and calls for an inquiry into their emergence and persistence. By multiple worlds, Bilgin points to the divide between the West and the rest and the knowledge about the international. She argues that moving beyond the current intellectual traditions in the discipline requires looking into international politics of the ways in which the international is studied in different parts of the world. To do so, Bilgin supports the idea of inquiring into the sociology of the discipline.

Bigo, Didier, and R. B. J. Walker. 2007. “Political Sociology and the Problem of the International.” Millennium: Journal of International Studies 35 (3): 725–39. (Reviewed by Mustafa Onur Yalçın)

Bigo and Walker bring political sociology to bear on the issue that they call the problem of international. As the definition of the international is regarded as an object to be examined, Bigo and Walker problematize the term international as it is used in the discipline as a field of practice, and issues arise from identifying a field with it. Therefore, in this study, they focus most explicitly on questions about boundaries.

Waever, Ole. 1998. “The Sociology of a Not So International Discipline: American and European Developments in International Relations.” International Organization 52 (4): 687–727. (Reviewed by Mustafa Onur Yalçın)

Waever reviews the development of the field of IR worldwide and argues that American hegemony exists in the field in terms of theory borrowing, publication, and citations but that the Europeans have become more self-assured. In contrast to the Hoffman 1971 article, Waever builds a counterargument against the idea that the discipline of IR is primarily American. Furthermore, Waever argues that American IR is more about rationalist/quantitative studies, while European IR is more about constructivist and sociological approaches. He supports his arguments with the data about the theoretical position of articles in four international journals. Waever concludes by discussing the state of European and American IR and how European IR shows signs of increasing professionalization.

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2. History of International Relations Discipline

2.1. The evolution of the discipline 1: Major debates in IR Theory

Smith, Steve. 1996. “I. Positivism and Beyond.” In Steve Smith, Ken Booth, and Marysia Zalewski (eds.) International Theory: Positivism and Beyond, 11–46. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. (Reviewed by Büşra bayramoğlu)

Smith focuses on positivist assumptions in social science in general and the IR discipline in particular. He explains that positivism in IR has a commitment to an empiricist epistemology, but there are also epistemological alternatives to empiricism. He first examines rationalism and pragmatism as historical contenders and then scientific realism, hermeneutics, Critical Theory, feminist, and post-modernist epistemology as contemporary epistemological debates. In the conclusion of the chapter, Smith points out that the international theorists have tended to use the positivist term over the last 30 years, and he argues on whether we move beyond positivism. He concludes that there is no single post-positivist approach, only post-positivist approaches, and they operate within very different epistemological positions. Smith’s work is an essential read not only for experts in philosophy of science but also for any post-graduate students of IR.

Kaplan, Morton A. 1961. “Is International Relations a Discipline?” The Journal of Politics 23 (3): 462–76. (Reviewed by Mustafa Onur Yalçın)

In his study written in ’61, Kaplan discusses International Relations’ (IR) disciplinary nature, long before the idea was widely accepted. The main question that Kaplan tries to answer is whether International Relations (IR) is a distinctive discipline or a sub-discipline of political science. Kaplan argues that while there is no convincing discussion that a specifically international relations discipline exists, it should not simply be put under political science as a sub-discipline. Therefore, Kaplan also discusses the requirements for a discipline of international politics.

Lake, David A. 2013. “Theory Is Dead, Long Live Theory: The End of the Great Debates and the Rise of Eclecticism in International Relations.European Journal of International Relations 19 (3): 567–87. (Reviewed By Karlygash Deligöz)

Lake discusses the rise of the positivists and post-positivists debate as a new stage of the great debates. The reason for his concern is the inconclusiveness of the debate, the same as in the previous Great debates. The author calls for a focus on real-world problems instead. He discusses the eclectic theory and mid-level theory as the most effective ones for the IR discipline because they are applied “to specific issues and even limited historical periods”. The author describes the eclectic (mid-level) theory as the tool for the progress of the IR discipline. According to Lake, the explanation of trade policy and the democratic peace theory brightly illustrates the progressive nature of mid-level theory.

Wilson, Peter. 1998. “The Myth of the ‘First Great Debate.” Review of International Studies 24: 1–15. (Reviewed by Büşra bayramoğlu)

Wilson claims that the first great debate never actually happened, and ‘idealism/utopianism’ was invented by Carr to discredit a wide range of things he happened to disagree with. He explains that a great set of ideas, opinions, and theories existed during the inter-war period rather than ‘idealism, utopianism. Wilson’s work leads the reader to an alternative view.

2.2. The evolution of the discipline 2: ‘Westphalia Treaty’, ‘great’ debates or a myth?

Osiander, Andreas. 2016. “Sovereignty, International Relations, and the Westphalian Myth.” International Organization 55 (2): 251–87. (Reviewed by Burak İnce)

Osiander discusses the Westphalian system along with the concept of sovereignty. He asks: Are the “pillars of the Westphalian temple decaying”? Are we moving “beyond Westphalia”? His claim is that the IR narrative about Westphalia is a myth, and he hopes to gain a better theoretical understanding of contemporary international politics by analyzing the concept. The author explains the Thirty Years’ War, the Holy Roman Empire, and the Westphalian Peace. He criticizes the twentieth-century IR scholars and regards them among the most eager continuators of the old propaganda image of the war because he thinks that the standard account of the peace reflects not its actual content but wartime anti-Habsburg propaganda. He draws our attention to Leo Gross. His argument is that many of the misleading statements about 1648 in IR literature derive directly or indirectly from a 1948 article by Leo Gross. While he narrates 1648, he goes to the year 1555. According to him, the 1648 Peace is the outcome of the breakdown of the Augsburg religious peace of 1555. He associates the most significant transition in the international system with the occurrence of the French Revolution, not with the Peace of Westphalia. Another approach of his is that sovereignty as currently understood does not go back to the seventeenth century. He brings an unconventional perspective to the subject.

Patton, Steven. 2019. “The Peace of Westphalia and It Affects on International Relations Diplomacy and Foreign Policy.” The Histories 10 (1): 91–99. (Reviewed by Burak İnce)

Patton discusses the Westphalian system and its effects. He argues that the Westphalian system remains a model for international politics around the world. It is a turning point in world history. The author highlights the before and after of the Westphalia Peace. He argues the revolutionary Westphalia treaty completely changed the relations between church and state and established a new precedent. He exemplifies that before 1648, war was the accepted means of instating policy changes when one country found fault with another. It was the “legitimate form of solving conflicts” before the Peace, but after the treaties were agreed upon, “No state was allowed to be destroyed.” He also concentrates on the outcomes of the Peace of 1648 and says possibly the most significant one is the idea of state sovereignty. He advocates that the Westphalian tradition can still be seen in modem international politics.

Rosenberg, Justin. 2016. “International Relations in the Prison of Political Science.” International Relations 30 (2): 127–53. (Reviewed by Çiğdem Dilek Aflaki)

Rosenberg mainly questions the reasons for the current claims regarding “the end of IR theory”, which stem from the failure of IR to produce “big ideas” that would have an impact on other social disciplines. The borrowed ontology of IR from the discipline of political science, which is defined as “the prison of Political Science” by the author, is illustrated as the main obstacle in front of such a production of big ideas in the article. The solution suggested by Rosenberg is re-grounding IR in its own unique problematique, which is its own original ontology as well as “the key” out of the prison of political science that is “the consequences of societal multiplicity”. Co-existence, difference, interaction, combination, and dialectical change are five consequences of the multiplicity detected by the author. He concludes his suggestion of re-grounding IR on its own ontology by offering “uneven and combined development” as one of those big ideas that are grounded on the accurate theme of IR, which is societal multiplicity. Hence it has the potential to influence all other disciplines by revealing the significance of “the international” for the other areas of social sciences. Thus, the article provides a coherent explanation and fruitful recommendation for the future development of IR theory.

Rosenberg, Justin. 2017. “The Elusive International.International Relations, 31 (1): 90–103. (Reviewed by Burak İnce)

The article focuses on the realization of the potential for the subject matter: the international dimension of the social world. Rosenberg stresses the intellectual standing of the International Relations field. He problematizes the status of IR as a sub-field of Political Science. His argument is that Political Science is the prison of IR. He also attaches special importance to multiplicity. He says the multiplicity is for IR what space is for Geography, time for History, culture for Anthropology, and power for Political Science. According to him, this premise of IR remains largely inactivated within IR itself. He questions the issue of the no production of explicit positive theorization of what the international is. For him, IR needs the idea of multiplicity as the fundamental fact about the world that is presupposed by allinternational relations. Rosenberg’s offer and wish are that “the exile of IR at the margin of the social sciences” should come to an end.

Booth, Ken, and Milja Kurki. 2017. “Rethinking International Relations-Again.” International Relations 31 (1): 68–70. (Reviewed by Çiğdem Dilek Aflaki)

Booth and Kurki, in their introduction, explain their aim to initiate a debate around Justin Rosenberg’s idea of the “societal multiplicity” as the unique theme of the discipline of IR that have the potential to reveal the significance of the discipline by offering important contributions for the other social disciplines. Therefore, “International Relations in the Prison of Political Science”, the article in which Rosenberg wrote his above-mentioned ideas, constitutes the starting point of the authors. Thus, they initiated a conversation among a small group of academicians who provided their comments on Rosenberg’s article, his claims, and suggestions. In this way, they explain in their introduction briefly the comments of the contributors regarding the issue, as well as Rosenberg’s related reply to those critiques and the four main themes that they reached as an outcome of such a conversation about Rosenberg’s influential article. Booth and Kurki’s efforts in this study to develop their colleague’s view on the future of the discipline of the IR by initiating a discussion among their peers seems to be a good example of academic responsibility for the development of the discipline.

Booth, Ken. 2019. “International Relations: The Story so Far”. International Relations 33 (2): 358–90. (Reviewed by Mustafa Onur Yalçın)

Booth’s article is the conclusion of part of the first centenary special issue that marks 100 years since the birth of the discipline of IR. He takes a panoramic perspective of the discipline since 1919. The special issues of the Journal of International Relations focus on the change and continuity of the discipline regarding themes like structure, order, norms, and process. Booth makes the closure of both his article and the special issue with a general evaluation of discussions, along with his notes on writing relations (international) and reflections on the past.

2.3. International Political Economy: A short history of the Liberal World Order

Gilpin, Robert. 2001. Global Political Economy: Understanding the International Economic Order. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press. (Reviewed by Çiğdem Dilek Aflaki)

In this book, Gilpin initially explains the fundamental changes taking place in World politics since the publication of his 1987 book titled “The Political Economy of the International Relations”. These changes include the end of the Cold War, the triumph of democratic capitalism, which brings increasing deregulation and privatization, the rise of the internet economy as well as the increasing interdependence of national economies because of significant advancements in information, telecommunication, and transportation technology and so on. The result of those developments has become the emergence of a truly global economy, according to Gilpin. Those practical transformations are accompanied by theoretical innovations also, which include “new growth theory”, “new economic geography”, and “new trade theory”, all of which, according to Gilpin, are important contributions to analyzing the international political economy. In this context, the book mainly argues that the significance of economic globalization is exaggerated while the importance of domestic politics and economics is underestimated, as Gilpin believes that the principal determinant of economic affairs is not economic globalization but the domestic economies of the states. In relation to this, Gilpin, in this book, aims to compensate for his misperception regarding the importance of the domestic economies and some other outdated claims that he revealed in his 1987 book mentioned above. In this way, the aim of the book is to provide a more comprehensive understanding of the International Political Economy. To this end, Gilpin implements a “state-centric” approach to the international economy and argues against those who claim that the international economy is shifting away from a state-dominated model to a market-dominated one, while he argues that in a truly integrated global economy, states are still the primary but not the only one actor to manage economic policies in line with their own national interests. Therefore, the interaction of the markets and nation-states together determines the functioning of the world economy as well as world politics, according to him. In this direction, the book covers both political and economic analyses to provide a comprehensive understanding of the functioning of the global economy. Therefore, this book provides important insights for understanding the globalization of world politics as well as its related impacts on the international political economy.

Ikenberry, G. John. 2015. “The Future of the Liberal World Order: Internationalism After America.” Foreign Affairs 90 (3): 56–68.(Reviewed by Çiğdem Dilek Aflaki)

Based on his influential book, “Liberal Leviathan: The Origins and Transformation of the American World” (2011), Ikenberry wrote this 2015 article to argue against those views that see the rising power and influence of non-Western powers as the sign of a fundamental transformation of the liberal World order. Contrary to those who expect the evolution of the liberal global order toward an illiberal direction, Ikenberry argues that the liberal order has reached its “ultimate ascendance” with the current developments in global economics as well as politics. In accordance with this rationale, the article emphasizes that the rising non-Western powers, such as China, India, and Brazil, owe their rise to their good adaptation of the rules and principles of and active participation in the institutions of the existing international order. Therefore, Ikenberry finds it nonsense to expect those powers to act in a way to challenge the existing liberal order, which is, according to him, not American or Western anymore, as he claims that this global liberal order has no equal competitor that would provide same opportunities for those rising powers as well as for the rest of the world. However, he accepts the declining capacity of the US to shape the global order and suggests that the US and its allies should update this liberal order that they have created to make sure that it will continue to serve to provide “prosperity and security”, as it has done since the end of the Second World War. Such an update of the liberal order would result in a greater number of states taking responsibility for the global economic and political governance while the US keeping its central role within it, not as the global hegemon but as the leader. Thus, the article seems to be written to cool down those who worry about the future of World politics after the end of the US hegemony by offering a rationale that the end of the hegemony means neither the end of the centrality for the US nor the end of the global liberal order.

Ikenberry, G. John. 2015. “The Future of the Liberal World Order: Internationalism After America.” Foreign Affairs 90 (3): 56–68. (Reviewed by Burak İnce)

Ikenberry focuses on the change of the liberal international order. According to him, the old liberal international order was designed and built in the West. In this light, he compares the states and stresses the different experiences and so the stances of states. From his point of view, the United States’ position in the global system is changing, and the liberal international order is alive and well. He articulates the need an update the liberal order for a new era. He discusses the deep interests of rising states in an open and rule-based system and says openness gives them access to other societies for trade, investment, and knowledge sharing. John is a bit pessimistic about competing for global organizing logic. He also brings suggestions for China’s peaceful rise.

Deudney, Daniel, and G. John Ikenberry. 1999. “The Nature and Sources of Liberal International Order.” Review of International Studies 25 (2): 179–96. (Reviewed by Çiğdem Dilek Aflaki)

Deudney and Ikenberry suggest that both realism and liberalism fell short to analyze the Western liberal order, whose future and durability have been questioned by scholars since the end of the Cold War. They demonstrate the weaknesses of the realist approaches, which offer either hegemony or balancing as the only sources of the liberal order, as well as the missing conceptions of the liberal approaches to grasp the whole features of this order. Instead, they offer their theory of “structural liberalism”, which illustrates five mutually reinforcing features of the Western liberal order. These five features, which are “co-binding security institutions, penetrated American hegemony, semi-sovereign great powers, economic openness and civic identity”, according to the authors, are the keys to totally understanding the robust character of the Western liberal order and recognizing its resilience and durability which are not dependent on the binary structure of the world system. Thus, they suggest “structural liberalism” as the true approach that would help both to analyze the liberal order established by the US and to strengthen this liberal order at a time when the forces that contributed to this order have started to remove with the end of the Cold War. Therefore, this article, which offers a new theoretical perspective to analyze the Western liberal order, is full of claims regarding the character of this order, its uniqueness, its durability, and its significance for maintaining peace, at least among the Western states. In this sense, it is a fruitful article that has the potential to initiate flourishing counter debates among scholars.

Haas, Richard N. 2018. “Liberal World Order, R.I.P.” Project Syndicate March 21. (Reviewed by Çiğdem Dilek Aflaki)

Haas, who is an American foreign policy expert and diplomat, shares his worries regarding the dangerous results of the US’s decision to abandon its commitment to the liberal international order, for the US itself as well as for the rest of the World. Haas assumes that the liberal global order, that was created initially by the UK and US collaboration and sustained by the US, was providing peace and security in the World and the absence of the commitment of the US for the order that it itself has created, because of the policies of Trump administration, would mean the retreat of liberalism and the returning of the great power rivalries. Therefore, the future of the World, in the absence of US support for the liberal order, according to Haas, would be “less free, less prosperous and less peaceful for the US and others”. In this context, Haas complains about the increasing challenges against the three significant components of the existing World order, which are “liberalism, universality and preservation of order,” because of the increasing populism, regionalism and decreasing support of the US for that order which has the central importance. One of the interesting points is that he initially claims that the order is not global anymore because of the increasing regionalism, but then he makes some universal claims that would have the same negative impacts globally regarding the results of the abandonment of the US support for the system. However, the most significant element of this essay is that it illustrates the retreat of liberalism as an unfortunate decision of the US itself as if it is still and will always be the might of only the US to determine the present and future of the direction of the World politics. In this sense, this essay seems to aim to make the propaganda of the unrivalled power of the US, and this is not surprising if we keep in mind that Haas himself is an American diplomat.

Woods, Ngaire. 2014. “International Political Economy in an Age of Globalization.” In John Baylis, Steve Smith and Patricia Owens (Eds.) The Globalization of World Politics: An Introduction to International Relations, 7th Edition, 244–57. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press. (Reviewed by Burak İnce)

Woods examines the events and the actors in the international economy. She especially focuses on the history of the post-war economy. The history gives clues to understanding why and how the international political economy has become so central to the study of international relations. She asks, “What is globalization? Is it diminishing the role of states in the world economy?” For her, globalization creates new challenges for all states and other actors in the world economy. She seeks the answer to the question: what role can we expect institutions to play in managing globalization? The author argues during the last phase of the Second World War, the institutions and framework of the world economy have their roots. It is stated in the article that the first decade of the twenty-first century has a shift in global economic power, and the study of IPE has become dominated by a ‘rational choice’ or neo-utilitarian approach. One of the main assumptions of the author is that the governments and their policies are important but that the policies and preferences of governments reflect the actions of specific interest groups within the economy. She draws our attention to the concept of hegemony. She says the dominant power within the system will achieve goals not just through coercion but equally by ensuring the consent of other actors within the system. She shares the case of the Asian financial crisis and claims that states are losing power in a global economic order in which state borders and governments are less influential and underlines the sufferings of weaker states by the impact of globalization more than others

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3. IR Methods and Methodology

3.1. Explaining and Understanding International Relations

Hollis, M, and S Smith. 1991. Explaining and Understanding International Relations. Oxford: Clarendon Press. (Reviewed by Mustafa Onur Yalçın)

Martin Hollis and Steve Smith focus on one of the main debates in the discipline of IR, explaining vs. understanding. Their claim is that in relation to social matters, there are always two stories to tell. One is an outsider’s story, where the endeavour is made to generalize in the manner of a natural scientist seeking to explain how nature works. The other one is an insider’s story, which is told after the fashion of the humanities to make us understand how things look to the participants. Hollis and Smith offer that one can have either an explanatory account or an understanding account; what one cannot have, is some combination of the two when grasping the essence of the social world. Explanatory assumptions that Smith claims are based on scientific principles. Understanding, on the other hand, as Hollis argues, is based on hermeneutic principles. In this view, Hollis, the philosopher, defends his concept of social action as fitting broadly within the understanding account, while Smith, the social scientist, presents an explaining account.

3.2. Quantitative vs. Qualitative Methods in International Relations

Wheelan, Charles. 2013. Naked Statistics: Stripping the Dread from the Data. New York: W. W. Norton. (Reviewed by Karlygash Deligöz)

Wheelan explains the importance of statistics with engaging examples and questions, such as “How does Netflix know what movies I like?”, “How does Target know when their customer gets pregnant?”, “How can we identify and reward good teachers and schools?”, “What are the best tools for fighting global poverty?”. The author explains all the basic concepts used in statistics, such as basic probability, descriptive statistics, inference, correlation, regression analysis, and data. Also, through easy-to-follow cases, he makes aware the reader of how statistics can be used and abused. He underlines the importance of the data and the way it was gathered and gives a list of useful software. Wheelan’s book is an excellent guide to the basics of statistics.

Martin, William E., and D. Krista Bridgmon. 2012. Quantitative and Statistical Research Methods: From Hypothesis to Results. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass. 1-38. (Reviewed by Büşra Bayramoğlu)

In this chapter, Martin and Bridgton present an overview of the book and information related to the foundations of research and statistics. They explain the quantitative research process and emphasize the importance of statistical software in the research of students. The book, in general, helps students understand quantitative research methods to construct independent research.

Marvasti, Amir. 2004. Qualitative Research in Sociology. London: SAGE Publications, Ltd. (Reviewed by Büşra Bayramoğlu)

The questions we ask about the world and how we answer them depend on our disciplinary orientation. In this book chapter, Marvasti first deals with the field of sociology and then explains positivism and constructionism and their influence on social inquiry. He also presents the two-research perspective of quantitative and qualitative methodologies. The readers gain general insight into the similarities and differences between the two research perspectives in the field of sociology in this chapter.

3.3. Eclectic Methods and Triangulation

Rosenau, James N. 1984. “A Pre-Theory Revisited: World Politics in an Era of Cascading Interdependence.” International Studies Quarterly, 28 (3): 245–305. (Reviewed by Karlygash Deligöz)

Rosenau discusses “pre-theory” considering the dynamics in the world of 1984. The author wants Pre-theory to be more adaptable and be applied as it was since its creation in the early 1960s. Three concepts were chosen by him to keep Pre-theory capable to study the tendencies of its time: role scenarios, aggregation, and adaptation. The author analyzes Roles as Analytic Units, states, governments, individuals, and observers as actors in role scenarios, the Aggregation of Collective Actors, and Adaptive Collectivities as Actors. Occurring repeatedly “self-generating and far-reaching dimensions of global life” because of the merging of new and old structures is defined by him as Cascading Interdependence. Cascading Interdependence could be developed on the mentioned three concepts: authority relationships, aggregative dynamics, and adaptive mechanisms. The author claims the Vietnam war, Watergate, and other occurrences would be the basis of a world crisis of authority, resulting decline of the US as a hegemon and a change in the world order.

Sula, Ismail Erkam. 2019. “An Eclectic Methodological Approach in Analyzing Foreign Policy: Turkey’s Foreign Policy Roles and Events Dataset (TFPRED).” All Azimuth 8 (2): 255-283. (Reviewed by Karlygash Deligoz)

Sula describes the results of his five year study of Turkish foreign policy analysis. He did research of the issue for “Rosenau’s call to develop a “theory” of foreign policy”. Sula chose and combined in his work two research methods: content and event data analysis. He categorized and compared the relevant data and combined the outcome into “Turkey’s Foreign Policy Roles and Events Dataset (TFPRED)”. He observed national role conceptions (NRC) and foreign policy events, where the NRC was determined through leaders’ speeches and public promises (“discourse”) and state foreign policy actions taken (“practice”). Thus, his research was based on “foreign policy words, deeds, and parallelism between the two”. Sula shows how to process a vast amount of information while making the research. He gives detailed examples of application of the methods used as “coded speeches, data sheets, news reports, and specific portions of the TFPRED dataset”.  The TFPRED dispose both descriptive and statistical data on foreign policy. Author also explains the limitations of this eclectic methodological approach and the better way of organization for future researches.

Katzenstein, Peter, and Rudra Sil. 2009. “Eclectic Theorizing in the Study and Practice of International Relations.” In Christian Reus-Smit and Duncan Snidal (ed.). The Oxford Handbook of International Relations, 109-130. Oxford: Oxford University Press. (Reviewed by Büşra Bayramoğlu)

Katzenstein and Sil focus on the distinctive characteristics of analytic eclecticism, which rejects competing research traditions to explore problems in original ways. They also deal with a sample of scholarships in international relations that illustrates the value of analytical eclecticism with reference to issues of international security and political economy. They also present that there are costs and risks of analytic eclecticism. The article leads the reader to an alternative view of the research traditions.

Katzenstein P., and Rudra Sil. 2009. Eclectic Theorizing in the Study and Practice of International Relations, In Christian Reus-Smit and Duncan Snidal (ed.). The Oxford Handbook of International Relations. 109-130. London: Oxford University Press. (Reviewed by Karlygash Deligöz)

Peter Katzenstein and Rudra Sil wrote a chapter of the Oxford Handbook of International Relations on eclectic theorizing through “pragmatist view”, defining analytic eclecticism and its place in IR. According to the authors, the linear view is not important from the pragmatist perspective but the effect of research on the quality of communication among scholars studying the same issue. The pragmatist perspective supports analytic eclecticism as the way of problem focusing. Furthermore, analytic eclecticism is different from “theoretical synthesis or the building of a unified theory”. Authors claim it is about creation of a “new unified system of…analytic principles” to solve wide-ranging issues. The place of eclecticism in IR is analyzed through its perspectives in national security and international political economy (IPE). Thus, they discuss “external threat, American hegemony, and the pacifying effects of nuclear weapons” through various schools’ approaches (liberal, constructivist, realist), and admit eclecticism’s contribution to the IPE.

Sil, Rudra, and Peter J. Katzenstein. 2010. “Analytic Eclecticism in the Study of World Politics: Reconfiguring Problems and Mechanisms across Research Traditions.” Perspectives on Politics 8 (2): 411-431. (Reviewed by Büşra Bayramoğlu)

The article deals with analytic eclecticism in comparative politics and international relations. It first outlines the research traditions, as articulated by Larry Laudan, that are not capable of generating a more comprehensive understanding of complex, multi-faceted problems. For this reason, scholarly analysis needs to be more open-ended. The article then presents why analytic eclecticism has emerged and focuses on its three characteristics. The authors conclude the article by expressing the limitations of analytic eclecticism.

Sil, Rudra, and Peter J. Katzenstein. 2010. Analytic Eclecticism in the Study of World Politics: Reconfiguring Problems and Mechanisms across Research Traditions, Perspectives on Politics, 8 (2): 411-431. (Reviewed by Karlygash Deligöz) Sil and Katzenstein’s analytic eclecticism in the study of world politics focused on comparative politics and international relations. Authors study research traditions in the social sciences; the competition of different schools and their metatheoretical postulates are given as the main ones. They analyze the works of the classics of IR theory. Moreover, the authors give the answer to the question of why eclecticism is preferred by them. They support analytic eclecticism with the works of Albert Hirschman, Philip Tetlock, Scott Page, Josiah Ober, Mark Blyth, and John Campbell. They identify analytic eclecticism from three perspectives and analyze each of them separately: (1) Pragmatist ethos as a basis of argumentation to cover real problems of policy and practice; (2) Wide range of issues considering the difficulties of the real-world situations; (3) Building “substantive arguments related to the problems” through the generation of complex causality. The article is concluded by discussing the challenges (“theoretical incoherence linked to the possible incommensurability of research traditions”) and payoffs (possible discovery of unknown bonds and new insights) of analytic eclecticism

***** ***** ***** *****

4. IR Concepts and Theoretical debates

4.1. Power, Balance of Power, Soft/smart Power

Barnett, Michael, and Raymond Duvall. 2005. Power in International Politics. International Organization. 59 (1):  39 – 75. (Reviewed by Karlygash Deligöz)

Barnett and Duvall’s article suggests the research of various concepts of power to extend academic knowledge about international politics. They build the “Taxonomy of power” to help scholars to identify the concepts of power in a systematic way. The Taxonomy divides two dimensions: Direct and diffuse; and specifies four different conceptual types, depending on the interaction of specific actors: Compulsory (direct) and Institutional (diffuse), and depending on the social relations of the constitution: Structural (direct) and Productive (diffuse). These types describe the ways in which power functions.  Furthermore, the authors use global governance and American empire perceptions to show the bonds and inter-influence between all the concepts. Authors call to treat different conceptual forms as not competing but complementing each other. 

Pape, Robert A. 2005. “Soft Balancing against the United States.” International Security 30 (1): 7-45. (Reviewed by Çiğdem Dilek Aflaki)

The aggressive foreign policy strategy of the Bush Administration following the 9/11 attacks, formulated under the title of the “war on terror” and implemented by the unilateral interventions of the US in the Middle East, is addressed in the article as a totally strange strategy of the US which had been known till that time as the non-aggressive superpower of the World. According to Pape, such a fundamental change in the foreign policy of the US towards unilateralism has the potential to lead the other major powers to feel insecure. Thus, the article illustrates how such a feeling of insecurity among the major powers, stemming from unilateral actions of the US, has the potential to change even the unipolarity of the system by leading them to take necessary measures to implement “soft balancing” against the US. Pape defines soft balancing as the strategy of “the second-ranked powers” in the unipolar orders, which would use non-military means, including international institutions, economic tools, and so on, to achieve coordination and balance against the sole superpower. He explains soft balancing is different from hard balancing but has the potential to turn into hard balancing in the long term. Hence, he urges the US to take necessary steps to keep its superpower status and unipolarity of the world system. Therefore, this article may be a useful source to explain the recent developments in the world in terms of the transformation of the world order, though it seems to be written as a policy recommendation for the US policymakers of the time.

Pape R. 2005. “Soft Balancing against the United States.” International Security, 30 (1): 7-45. (Reviewed by Karlygash Deligöz)

Pape discusses President Bush’s strategy and aggressive unilateralism in its foreign policy. He analyzes changing reputation of the US among major powers (Europe, Russia, China, Japan, Turkey, Brazil). Nonetheless, he stresses that there has been no direct balancing against the US since the collapse of the USSR and the start of the unipolar world. The author admits such a world is “a balance of power system, not a hegemonic one”. Thus, a unipolar leader is never immune from major powers’ collective balancing. The absence of direct balancing against the US is explained by its dominance, “a high reputation for nonaggressive intentions”, and its offshore balancing in different regions. However, US unilateralism can cause “soft balancing” measures such as using nonmilitary tools (international institutions, economic statecraft, and diplomatic arrangements) to confront indirectly its military actions. The author supports unilateral use of force in some cases when benefits prevailing costs. He is sure that direct balancing is barely possible, even soft balancing against the US already exists.

Baldwin, David A. 2013. “Power and International Relations.” In Walter Carlsnaes, Thomas Risse and Beth A. Simmons (Eds.). Handbook of International Relations, 273-297. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publicaions Ltd. (Reviewed by Karlygash Deligöz)

Baldwin contributes to the Handbook of International Relations of SAGE with a chapter on “Power and International Relations”. He discusses the role and the nature of power with references to famous scholars’ (Morgenthau, Waltz, Gilpin, Dahl, etc.) arguments (dimensions and faces). He agrees with the relative power concept and accepts power as a “relationship between two or more actors, rather than a property of any one of them”. He sees its multidimensional qualities as scope, domain, reliability, costs, and means. He analyzes different power problems (potential power, measurement and fungibility problem, problem of intentions), and the concept of power in IR theory. Furthermore, he discusses the “Current issues” in the prism of polarity and balancing, military power, structural and relational power, constructivism, and rationalism. The author shows potential paths for future research on power issues as “power relations as dependent variables, forms of power, institutions and power, domestic politics, strategic interaction and bargaining, distribution of power”.

Schweller, Randall L. 2016. “The Balance of Power in World Politics.” In William R. Thompson (Ed.) Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Politics, 177–91. London: Oxford University Press. (Reviewed by Karlygash Deligöz)

Schweller describes the history of balance of power and discusses a “core international politics theory” from various schools’ perspectives (liberalism, constructivism, realism). Thus theory’s “automatic version” of regulation belongs to structural realists, a “manual” one through diplomats and consciousness of the community – to English school. The author also agrees with the notion that balance of power is “a type of international order”. The main principle of power balance is individually and/or collectively combining the military forces against dominating power that threatens the security of the former(s). The author shares conditions that promote the smooth operation of the balance of power and reflects on the prevalence of balancing behaviour over other state responses to the growing power

Schweller, Randall L. 2016. “The Balance of Power in World Politics.” In William R. Thompson (Ed.) Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Politics, 177–91. London: Oxford University Press. (Reviewed by Burak İnce)

Schweller questions the place and role of balance of power in world politics. He initiates his inquiry by asking, what precisely does the term “balancing” mean? What is the ultimate promise of the balance of power theory? He comes to the idea that it is to preserve the integrity of the multistate system. He elaborates on the concept and touches briefly on three types of balance of power systems: the automatic version, the semi-automatic version and the manually operated version. Another important point of the paper is the offers of the author. He asserts the nine conditions which are jointly sufficient to bring about an effectively performing balance-of-power system. He also regards the balance of power as a type of international order. Moreover, according to him, there are essentially three types of international orders: A negotiated order, an imposed order, and a spontaneously generated order. He concludes that the balance of power system does not always function properly and predictably.

4.2. Hegemony, Hegemonic stability, and Cooperation

Gavris, Maria. 2021. “Revisiting the Fallacies in Hegemonic Stability Theory in Light of the 2007–2008 Crisis: The Theory’s Hollow Conceptualization of Hegemony.” Review of International Political Economy 28 (3): 739–760. (Reviewed by Büşra Bayramoğlu)

Gavris focuses on the need to reassess the literature on hegemony after the 2007-2008 crisis. She claims that there is an erroneous causal relationship between stability and hegemony by criticizing HST (Hegemonic Stability Theory), which contains an underdeveloped concept. Her work also argues how inattention to the conceptual content of HST has permitted the extension of a problematic understanding of hegemony based on the case of Germany in the European Economic and Monetary Union. The author presents a brief discussion on the emergence of the concept of hegemony and HST and its critics of it.

Webb, Michael C., and Stephen D. Krasner. 1989. “Hegemonic Stability Theory: An Empirical Assessment.” Review of International Studies 15 (2): 183–98. (Reviewed by Burak İnce)

The paper is an assessment of the empirical validity of the hegemonic stability thesis with a focus on the international political economy since 1945. The authors draw our attention to the power capabilities of the United States, and they share the international trade and finance details. The question of whether the United States should still be regarded as a hegemon might be seen as a major inquiry throughout the study. According to them, the United States has pursued relatively open trade and finance policies. Within the concentration on empirical developments in the areas of international trade and finance, the authors ask and answer; Can the theory be defended, reformulated, or resurrected? The most obvious defence is to maintain that the United States is still a hegemon, albeit a waning one. Such an argument would be consistent with empirical developments in the last four decades; growing instability, although not collapse or closure, has been associated with declining but still formidable American power.

Keohane, Robert O. 1984. After Hegemony: Cooperation and Discord in the World Political Economy. Princeton: Princeton University Press. (Reviewed by Çiğdem Dilek Aflaki)

In this book, Keohane mainly argues that once interconnection is established, it maintains. Therefore, the initial need for a hegemon for the initiation of the interconnection, which would reduce discord and enable cooperation globally, becomes invalid. In this way, Keohane aims to direct the attention of the scholars to search for ways that would strengthen worldwide cooperation, which has benign impacts on all. Thus, he challenges both neorealist assumptions regarding the impossibility of composition of true international cooperation, albeit he accepts their claims regarding the conception of the states as rational egoists, and particularly the hegemonic stability theory that offers the existence of a hegemon as the prerequisite for the formation of international cooperation. In this sense, he emphasizes the significance of “international regimes” as the main tools for generating cooperation among “egoistic actors” that are advanced capitalist countries. Therefore, the book provides a well-designed and coherent alternative point of view to the issue of cooperation and conflict in international relations.

Cox, Robert W. 1981. “Social Forces, States and World Orders: Beyond International Relations Theory.” Millennium: Journal of International Studies 10 (2): 126-155. (Reviewed by Çiğdem Dilek Aflaki)

“Theory is always for someone and for some purpose” is the key sentence of this highly influential article. After such a definition of the essence of the theory, Cox categorizes theories into two groups which are “problem-solving theories” and “critical theories”. In this context, he evaluates neo-realism within the problem-solving category that is designed to maintain the status quo, while historical materialism, as a subdivision of Marxist theory, is an example of critical theory in his categorization of the theories. Thus, the article initially compares neo-realism and historical materialism in terms of their perspectives and main purposes. Thereby, he reflects on the agent-structure problem while emphasizing the transformative potential of the structures that are defined to come into existence as the result of the interactions of three forces which are “material conditions, thought patterns and human institutions” Then, Cox explain his main argument through such a comparison by explaining the interconnection and mutual influences among social forces, forms of states and world orders. Therefore, he employs historical materialism to analyze imperial systems and concludes by suggesting three alternative future possibilities, which are “a new hegemony generated by the internationalizing of production, a non-hegemonic world structure of conflicting power centres or a counter-hegemonic order based on a Third World coalition”. In this sense, the article provides a crystal-clear picture of the role of the theory in the practice of international relations.

4.3. Security, Security Dilemma, Securitization

Baylis, John. 2008. “The Concept of Security in International Relations.” In Hans Günter Brauch, Úrsula Oswald Spring, Czeslaw Mesjasz, John Grin, Pál Dunay, Navnita Chadha Behera, Béchir Chourou, Patricia Kameri-Mbote, and P. H. Liotta (Eds.) Globalization and Environmental Challenges. Hexagon Series on Human and Environmental Security and Peace, Vol 3., 495–502. Berlin: Springer. (Reviewed by Büşra Bayramoğlu)

Baylis deals with the development of the concept of ‘security’ from its traditional origins to the newer thinking after the Cold War. He presents that there are changes in thinking about international security in parallel with the empirical events in world politics. Despite the security view of idealism and constructivism, in the conclusion part of the article, Baylis claims that realism remains once again a dominant perspective in literature. The readers gain general insight into the concept of security in Baylis’s work.

Bilgin, Pinar. 2003. “Individual and Societal Dimensions of Security.” International Studies Review 5 (2): 203–22. (Reviewed by Çiğdem Dilek Aflaki)

The article shows the historical evolution of state-based approaches to security studies towards a line including individual and societal aspects of security beginning from the Cold War era. However, Bilgin explains the end of the Cold War as the point that gave way to the flourishing of those alternative approaches to security studies. Therefore, in the first part of the article, she focuses on the Cold War era developments in security studies in terms of the evolution of individual and societal themes of the security approaches through three significant contributions of the era regarding the issue, which are “common security”, “stable peace” and “third world security approaches”. In the second part, she focuses on the post-Cold War era regarding the same issue by reflecting on the debates that have been developed around main themes such as “whose security”, “primary referents”, and “security as emancipation”. “Insecurity dilemma”. “Societal security”, “human security”, and “agents of security”.  In this context, she concludes the article by emphasizing the “risk society” conception of the current world politics and its possible implications for the main theme of the article, is “individual and societal dimensions of security”. Thus, the article helps the readers to extend their mindset regarding the concept of security to the extent that they can understand the historical developments and evolutions regarding the issue while detecting the implications of those in their daily life as well as personal expectations from the future.

Bilgin, Pinar. 2011. “The Politics of Studying Securitization? The Copenhagen School in Turkey.” Security Dialogue 42 (4–5): 399–412. (Reviewed by Mustafa Onur Yalçın)

In the article on securitization and its practices in Turkey, Bilgin argues that due to the Western European origins and focus of the theory, there is no actual reason to expect securitization theory to have an important presence outside Western Europe, Turkey, for instance. Due to the anomaly, this article explores how securitization theory has begun to acquire a presence in Turkey. First, Bilgin discusses whether securitization theory can get beyond Western Europe. Then, she focuses on the securitization theory practices in Turkey by using data about security and securitization articles published in Turkey (2002–11) and internationally (1980–2011). After questioning how securitization theory has begun to acquire a presence outside Western Europe, Bilgin focuses on the politics of studying securitization theory, especially in studying it in Turkey. To conclude, Bilgin states that the reason why scholars make a choice in favour of adopting a perspective over another one may have to do not only with its foundations but also with the historic-political context.

Bilgin, Pinar. 2012. “The Continuing Appeal of Critical Security Studies.” In Shannon Brincat, Laura Lima, João Nunes (Eds.) Critical Theory in International Relations and Security Studies: Interviews and Reflections, 159–70, London: Routledge. (Reviewed by Mustafa Onur Yalçın)

In the chapter in Critical Theory in International Relations and Security Studies, Bilgin focuses on how critical security studies (CSS) made its place in security literature and its critics from other critical perspectives. In the chapter, Bilgin unfolds two important, and entangled questions/critics pointed toward CSS in the literature, with the responses and her own notes. The first one is about the Western origins of CSS, and the other one is about the political impact of CSS. Bilgin unravels these critiques regarding the debates on two interrelated issues: the relevance of CSS for understanding insecurities in the non-West world and what it means for CSS to have a political impact. Latter parts of the chapter, Bilgin discuss the relevance of CSS for understanding insecurities in the non-West with the critics and the potential of CSS for political impact with the critics and responses. In the last part, Bilgin concludes with a general evaluation of the critics and claims critical theory of security as offered by CSS is a more promising framework for solving problems in so far as it problematizes.

Booth, K., & Wheeler, N. (2008). Rethinking the Security Dilemma. In P. D. Williams (Ed.), Security Studies: An Introduction London: Taylor & Francis, 131-150. (Reviewed by Büşra Bayramoğlu)

In this book chapter, Booth and Wheeler argue that security dilemma is a more fundamental concept for security studies than the concept of war and strategy and the rest. They claim that human society will be challenged by a combination of old and new security threats such as nuclear proliferation, terrorism, climate change, and mass migration. According to Booth and Wheeler, the most key risk areas will be the danger of a new cold war with China, the danger of new arms races, the danger of a world of many nuclear powers, and the danger of terrorism. For this reason, they suggest that the security dilemma should be at the heart of security studies. Anyone interested in security dilemmas will find this article useful.

Tang, Shiping. 2009. “The Security Dilemma: A Conceptual Analysis.” Security Studies 18 (3): 587–623. (Reviewed By Karlygash Deligöz)

Tang discusses the security dilemma concept based on the works of Herbert Butterfield, John Herz, and Robert Jervis. Thus, Tang gives a precise definition of the security dilemma and underlines its major aspects as anarchy, uncertain intentions of the states; as a result, an arms race, increasement of power, worsening of relations, less security, and more wars. He also highlights material and psychological factors that influence on the regulation of the dilemma. He argues that security dilemma mostly appears between two defensive states. He suggests available remedies for the previous wrong extensions and gives a few directions for future research.

4.4. Democracy, Democratic Consolidation, Democratization

Przeworski A. (1991). “Chapter 1. Democracy,” In Adam Przeworski,  Democracy and the Market: Political and Economic Reforms in Eastern Europe and Latin America, 10 – 50, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. (Reviewed by Karlygash Deligöz)

Przeworski elucidates democracy mainly through comparison with dictatorship. He admits two main attributes of democracy: uncertainty of outcomes and “the people” who determine the outcomes. The author also discusses the enforcement and classes of the outcomes, rationality, and compliance issues. He distinguishes “three classes of outcomes: (1) Spontaneous self-enforcing outcomes, or equilibria; (2) Bargains, or contracts; (3) Norms. Furthermore, he explains the possible outcomes of “transitions to democracy” from dictatorship. They are self-enforcing democracy, reversed authoritarian regimes, or a new dictatorship. Yet, the author finds consolidated democracy as the only potential result of the collapse of authoritarian regimes. In a conclusion, he describes the reasons why outcomes in democracy appear uncertain

Przeworski, A. 2016. Democracy: A Never-Ending Quest, Annual Review of Political Science 19 (1): 1–12. (Reviewed by Karlygash Deligöz)

Przeworski discusses some of his observations during his lifetime regarding democratization. Although the debate on the compatibility of democracy and capitalism is still relevant, he argues, democracy “turned out to be compatible with inequality, irrationality, injustice, particularistic enforcement of laws, lies and obfuscation, a technocratic policy style, and even a fair dose of arbitrary violence.” He repeats the “connection between power and money.” He observes that young people in democracies don’t believe they will have a better future. Such disillusionment about the functioning of democracy is new to the last 200 years of democracy. Meanwhile, claims of alternative views of democracy are heard from authoritarian settings such as Russia and China. For example, a Chinese argument claims that their system is superior in various dimensions to democracy. He argues, citizens are not able to control bureaucracies. All these areas are offered as potential research agendas. Moreover, Przeworski says he doesn’t understand coups, repression without a threat and China’s rise vs Russia’s failure. Finally, he suggests learning basics: mathematics, philosophy, and history.

Diamond, L. 1994. Rethinking Civil Society: Toward Democratic Consolidation, Journal of Democracy, 5 (3): 4–17. (Reviewed by Karlygash Deligöz)

Diamond discusses democratic consolidation through civil society’s definition, democratic functions, and features. He defines civil society as an “intermediary entity, standing between the private sphere and the state”, and its main democratic function as the control of the state via observing and controlling in democratic states and democratization in authoritarian states. Other functions are described too: recruiting and training new political leaders; promotion of political participation, responsibility, and obligations; creation of diverse channels for representing interests, freely associating, accessing information, etc. The author underlines that civil society’s ability of successfully perform its functions depends on its features: internal groups’ goals and methods, level of organizational institutionalization, the internally democratic character, pluralism, and access to multiple associations at different levels of society. Diamond claims civil society can and must build and consolidate democracy, but it is not the most important part of a consolidation of democracy. The political institutionalization is.

Albrecht H., O. Schlumberger. 2004. Waiting for ‘Godot’: Regime Change without Democratization in the Middle East, International Political Science Review, 25 (4): 371-392. (Reviewed by Karlygash Deligöz)

Albrecht and Schlumberger suggest asking what helps the perseverance of Arab authoritarianism instead of waiting until the moment democratic rule comes to the Middle East. There are two perceptions to explain such persistence: (1) fluctuation of “controlled political liberalizations and de-liberalizations”, and (2) five areas of change: “legitimation, elites, institution building, co-optation, and regimes’ reactions to external influences”. Authors compare developing regions where the political transition was already made with the Arab world.

Dr. İsmail Erkam Sula, Ankara Yıldırım Beyazıt University

İsmail Erkam Sula is asistant professor in the Department of International Relations at Ankara Yıldırım Beyazıt University. He received his doctorate and master’s degrees in International Relations from Bilkent University and his undergraduate degree from Dokuz Eylul University International Relations Department. He worked as a postdoctoral researcher at Harvard University Institute for Quantitative Social Science in 2019 with the support of TÜBİTAK BİDEB with his research project titled “Foreign Policy Analysis and Quantitative Research Methods”. His main research areas are scientific research methods, foreign policy analysis, international relations theories, active learning techniques. He has various academic publications, seminars and conference papers in these fields. He is currently working on data generation and computer aided research methods in social sciences.

To cite this work : İsmail Erkam Sula (ed.), “Selected Topics in International Relations: An Annotated Bibliography”, Panorama, Online, 12 August 2022, https://www.uikpanorama.com/blog/2021/09/13/a-bib

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