International Relations Theory (IR 201)

2020 Fall
Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
International Relations(IR)
6.00 / 6.00 ECTS (for students admitted in the 2013-14 Academic Year or following years)
Oya Yeğen,
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SPS102 SPS101
Formal lecture
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Surveys basic concepts and processes in international relations. The course presents competing theoretical perspectives; realism, liberalism, and radical approaches with a special emphasis on post-cold war debates. Partial theories such as foreign policy analysis, conflict analysis and resolution, and security studies are also examined.


The aim of the course is to introduce students to the main paradigms and theories in international relations. The course intends to equip students with basic skills and tools of international relations theory. In subsequent years of study students can use these theories to interpret historical and currents world events. Therefore, the course is foundational for further study in international relations.


Upon completion of this course, students will be able to:
* List the main actors of international relations
* Distinguish between different issue areas of international relations, such as international conflict and political economy
* Outline the basic assumptions of international relations theories, such as (neo) realism and (neo) liberalism
* Identify the main differences between theories of international relations
* Apply theories to case studies
* Assess the explanatory power of each theory


1. Understand the world, their country, their society, as well as themselves and have awareness of ethical problems, social rights, values and responsibility to the self and to others. 5

2. Understand different disciplines from natural and social sciences to mathematics and art, and develop interdisciplinary approaches in thinking and practice. 5

3. Think critically, follow innovations and developments in science and technology, demonstrate personal and organizational entrepreneurship and engage in life-long learning in various subjects. 3

4. Communicate effectively in Turkish and English by oral, written, graphical and technological means. 5

5. Take individual and team responsibility, function effectively and respectively as an individual and a member or a leader of a team; and have the skills to work effectively in multi-disciplinary teams. 3

1. Develop knowledge of theories, concepts, and research methods in humanities and social sciences. 5

2. Assess how global, national and regional developments affect society. 5

3. Know how to access and evaluate data from various sources of information. 5

1. Analyze global affairs from international relations and economics perspectives. 5

2. Demonstrate theoretical and practical knowledge of the international affairs. 5

3. Compete for increasing opportunities in careers within the newly emerging global institutions. 5

4. Evaluate the international political events and present their views and positions on international affairs with advanced oral and written skills. 5

1. Understand and follow changes in patterns of political behavior, ideas and structures. 3

2. Develop the ability to make logical inferences about social and political issues on the basis of comparative and historical knowledge. 2


  Percentage (%)
Final 40
Midterm 50
Participation 10



Paul Viotti and Mark Kauppi, International Relations Theory, Pearson, 2012.

Optional Readings

Recommended Readings in International Relations

? James Dougherty and Robert Pfaltgraff, Contending Theories of International Relations, NY, Longman, 2001.
? Hans Morgenthau, Politics among Nations: The Struggle for Power and Peace, Macgraw Hill, 1948.
? E.H.Carr, The Twenty Years? crisis, New York: Harper, 1964.
? Steve Smith, ?The USA and Discipline of International Relations: Hegemonic Country, Hegemonic discipline?, International Studies Review, vol.4, no.2, Summer 2002, pp. 67-87. (Blackwell online)
? Kenneth Waltz, ?International Politics is not Foreign Policy?, Security Studies, 1996, vol.6, pp.54-57.
? Inis Claude, Power and International Relations, New York: Random house, 1962.
? Kenneth Waltz, Theory of International Politics, New York: McGraw Hill, 1979.
? Francis Beer and Robert Harriman, Post-Realism: The rhetorical turn in International Relations, Michigan state, 1996.
? David Baldwin, Neorealism and neoliberalism: The Contemporary debate, Columbia University press, 1993.
? Barry Buzan et al, Logic of Anarchy: Neorealism to Structural Realism, NY: Columbia University press, 1993.
? Robert Keohane, Power and Governance in a Partially globalized world, London, Routledge, 2002.
? Stephen Krasner, Sovereignty: Organized Hypocrisy, New Jersey: Princeton University press, 1999.
? Robert Keohane, Power and Governance in a Partially globalized world, London, Routledge, 2002.
? Stephen Krasner, Sovereignty: Organized Hypocrisy, New Jersey: Princeton University press, 1999.
? Alexander Wendt, Social Theory of International Relations, Cambridge, 1999.
? John Mearsheimer, The Tragedy of Great Power Politics, Norton and Company, 2001.
? Peter Katzenstein (ed.), The Culture of National Security, New York: Columbia University Press, 1996.
? Bull, Hedley, 1977, The Anarchical Society: A Study of Order in World Politics, New York: Columbia University Press.