Wednesday, April 27, 2011

When Theory Becomes Too Generalized

FLG laughed at this post over at Duck of Minerva.

we have a President in office who is not an idiot. Assuming that he had the mental agility and inclination, what would we have him read OF THE STUFF THAT ACADEMICS HAVE WRITTEN? This is my challenge to you. The problem is not only the sophistication of the audience; it is that practically every approach and research tradition I think of goes out of its way to minimize any role for agency in foreign affairs. We are telling them: you're not important. My biggest complaint with the field is that there is so little politics in international relations.

That's not actually what FLG laughed at though. It was the combination of the IR theory summaries that followed the passage above and that your humble blogger previously linked to a paper by two Georgetown grad students, entitled "Statesmanship and the Problem of Theoretical Generalization."

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