Transnational Theory, Global World: Theory Matters, Not Geography

Phoebe Gardner

Global Politics Review
Vol. 1, No. 1 (October 2015): 8-17.
DOI: 10.5281/zenodo.1238574
GPR ID: 2464-9929_v01_i01_p8
Published: 30 October 2015

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.

Copyright by the Author.  This is an Open Access article licensed by Global Politics Review under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 License Creative Commons License// Disclaimer: the copyright and license of this article changed on October 30, 2017, when GPR became Open Access. The PDF file has not been updated for archival purposes. //


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