Presentation on theme: "Lecture Two: Major Figures and Today’s Debates April 1, 2008 Professor Timothy C. Lim Cal State Los Angeles POLS/ECON."— Presentation transcript:
Lecture Two: Major Figures and Today’s Debates April 1, 2008 Professor Timothy C. Lim Cal State Los Angeles firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com POLS/ECON 426 International Political Economy
Three Major Figures in Contemporary Debates The chapter discusses three scholars … Susan Strange, “Unorthodox Realist” Robert Keohane, “Liberal Institutionalist” Robert Cox, “Historical Materialist” Major Figures and Debates in international political economy 1. 2. 3. Why talk about these three figures?
Three Major Figures in Contemporary Debates: Susan Strange Key Points A bit of an economic nationalist: understood states as central actors and took (state) power seriously A bit unorthodox: state important, but not alone; power key, but not necessarily concentrated in states A bit of rationalist: told us that political economic analysis should always begin with the question … _________________ ? Major Figures and Debates in international political economy What is a state?state What is a state?state Who benefits
Three Major Figures in Contemporary Debates: Susan Strange A little more on “power” To Strange, power has both relational and structural dimensions; it was Strange’s focus on structural power that led her to argue that state power is never unchallenged To Strange, structural power was an absolutely central aspect of the global political economy; as with power itself, structural power has several dimensions: security, production, finance and knowledge Major Figures and Debates in international political economy We will talk much more about power later Structural power is the ability to shape the rules of game in a particular area
Major Figures and Debates in international political economy click for more detailed discussion Three Major Figures in Contemporary Debates: Robert Keohane Key Point Focuses on “institutions”; believes that institutions are key components of the international political economy What is an institution? “Sets of rules and norms” that shape the behavior and actions of states (and other actors) Institutions include formal international organizations (e.g., the UN, the WTO), international regimes or conventions (on human rights, for example), and customs or common practices
Major Figures and Debates in international political economy Liberal refers to the emphasis on particular types of institutions, those that are based on liberal concepts of cooperation, interdependence, democracy, and peaceful and humane governance Three Major Figures in Contemporary Debates: Robert Keohane What’s a “liberal” institutionalist? What’s a “liberal” institution?
Three Major Figures in Contemporary Debates: A Few More Points Keohane argues that, in a world of increasing interdependence, states have more reason to cooperate because cooperation is often necessary to achieve national goals The creation of international institutions is almost always based on self-interest, but once created, international institutions and regimes may continue to operate even when national interests change Regimes, once created, can lead to even strong cooperative behavior among states Major Figures and Debates in international political economy
Three Major Figures in Contemporary Debates: Robert Cox Key Point Adopts “historical materialism” as his primary framework of analysis What is Historical Materialism? To understand the term, begin by breaking it down to its two core elements, “historical” and “materialism”: What do these two terms suggest? Major Figures and Debates in international political economy
Three Major Figures in Contemporary Debates: Robert Cox Historical Materialism The historical part recognizes that there are distinct historical eras, each of which operates according to a particular set of principles, rules, sensibilities, and understandings The materialist part recognizes that the world we live in is fundamentally shaped by the ways in which production is organized; the organization of production, in other words, determines what type of social relations exist, what type of state exists, what type of educational system we have, and so on Major Figures and Debates in international political economy More on historical materialism later
Three Major Figures in Contemporary Debates: A Few More Points While Cox labels himself an historical materialist, he also believes that ideas/ideology play a key role in shaping the world; this sets him apart from mainstream Marxists Cox argued that all theories are, in an important sense, ideologies; encapsulated in his famous statement: “Theory is always for someone and for some purpose” Cox also began to recognize that gender and environmental issues require separate analytical attention Cox interested in using theory to achieve a better social order; theory must embrace and espouse emancipatory strategies Major Figures and Debates in international political economy
Three Major Figures in Contemporary Debates: Summing Up This brief discussion gives us a taste of the different approaches that are used in IPE or GPE The field continues to evolve and develop There are no easy answers and there is no consensus; still, “certain kinds of explanation are more powerful than other forms” (36) and the three scholars profiled in the chapter provide powerful insights and ways of better understanding the global political economy Both students and scholars (as well as others) must be aware of the major debates and modes of analysis; an open mind is critical Major Figures and Debates in international political economy
One Last Point The authors correctly tell us that any understanding of IPE/GPE requires is guided by a set of theoretical and methodological assumptions; yet, no one framework is generally accepted as the best and no framework can be completely “objective” With this in mind, they adopt a particular framework of analysis for their book based on six key elements Major Figures and Debates in international political economy 1. Historical Change2. Structure-Agency Dynamics 3. Integration of Political- Economic Processes 4. Cognitive Structures 5. Institutionalism 6. Salience of Domestic Structures It is important to understand each of these elements!
What is a State? A “Wiki” Definition A state is a political association with effective sovereignty over a geographic areaarea. These may be nation states or sub-national statesstates. A state usually includes the set of institutions that claim the authority to make the rules that govern the exercise of coercive violence for the people of the society in that territory, though its status as a state often depends in part on being recognized by a number of other states as having internal and external sovereignty over it. In sociologysociology, the state is normally identified with these institutions: in Max WeberWeber's influential definition, it is that organization that has a "monopoly monopoly on the legitimate use of physical force within a given territory," which may include the armed forcesforces, civil service or state bureaucracybureaucracy, courtscourts, and policepolice. Major Figures and Debates in international political economy Click here for source