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Transnational Theory, Global World: Theory Matters, Not Geography

Phoebe Gardner ()

Global Politics Review, 2015, vol. 1, issue 1, 8-17

Abstract: The tools designed to analyse a globalising world ought to be specifically designed to address problems presented by that global world, rather than settling for those engineered for the century prior. The study of International Relations (IR) is dominated by mainstream problem-solving International Relations Theory (IRT), which tends to describe rather than explain phenomena. Analysis is hindered by dependence upon rigid concepts such as the nation-state and the balance of power. However, IR has witnessed an analytical shift toward concepts that utilise culture by engaging with the discipline’s strength: its interdisciplinary nature. Unfortunately, recruiting non-Western and alternative perspectives has become equated to an exercise designed to simply tickoff a certain amount of nation-states from a quota. In this sense, IRT ought to aspire to be transnational in nature, in order to effectively engage with problems presented by the global world in which it exists. Therefore, as this article suggests, in pursuing alternative cultural perspectives, it is the integrity of the theory itself that matters, rather than the geographical origin.

Keywords: International Relations Theory; Critical Theory; Transnational Approach; Non-Western Approach; Cultural Perspectives; Power-Knowledge Relations. (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: Y8 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2015
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