An Introduction to International Relations





Pasco-Hernando Community College




International Relations since WWII: understanding the world system


Russia: our enemy, our ally


Cold War begins


'simple' bi-polar world


early 1990s, uni-polar world and the 'end of history' paradigm


not the first time a 'universal' ideal from the West emerged:


-4th Century BC: Aristotle defines the West vs. the Rest (occident vs. orient)

  and Alexander brings Greek order to Asia (cosmos vs. chaos)

-4th Century: Christianity made universal state religion of Rome

-18th Century: Enlightenment project: 'civilized vs. uncivilized'


the 'moment': russia falls, europe unites, america 'wins'


later 1990s, multi-polar world and the 'clash of civilizations'


religion important in 'the clash'


new 'fault lines' open up:


West/Orthodox, West/Islam, West/Sinic, Orthodox/Sinic, Orthodox/Islam,

Islam/Hindu, Islam/Sinic, Islam/African, Sinic-Japanese.