Is international relations as a form of knowledge colonial?

Essay by james689ukUniversity, Bachelor'sC, December 2004

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I believe in answer to the main essay question that there are areas within international relations (will now be abbreviated as IR) as a field of political study elements of a colonial nature. That is to say IR exhibits as a form of knowledge colonialism. In this essay I shall layout my argument or arrival at the above conclusion in the following ways.

There are three main evaluative criticisms of the article that I will discus. Firstly how it is apparent in the article, a distinction between America (and the 'developed world') to the others (or 'Third World'). Secondly how history is not considered when it ought to be, especially the relationship between the role of external powers and many of the problems associated with third world countries today. And finally how the people in the third world are ignored, while America and the West seen as more important. I shall refer to the article and use other materials to demonstrate the validity of the criticisms I have made.

I will then explain how and why IR is colonial by using post-colonial theories that can address the question at hand. This will go beyond the article in question into the realm of IR study as a whole.

Finally I shall conclude, given that I already stated my main argument to the question, what I would recommend as a realistic movement in the right direction.

On page 136 second paragraph it says that "third world states are more likely to go to war, in part because public support for war is likely to be greater in the third world than elsewhere." The idea that Western governments are less likely to go to war than third world states is wrong especially given his reasons. Its level of simplicity and generalisation shows us...