Overview

This wiki belongs to students of SIS - 705 course at American University.

“Social Theory” is a sweeping body of arguments and research that transcends the social sciences and the humanities. International Relations is a field that is increasingly inter-disciplinary in its research program and in its theoretical repertoire. The recent predominance of constructivist theories and methodologies in particular indicates that scholars of international relations are increasingly conversant and indeed, knowledgeable about the traditions of social theory that have developed largely outside the field of international relations. This course is not intended to provide a survey of international relations social theory but rather, review the larger scope of writings and debate about social theory – that ultimately informs research in international relations and will contribute to your ability to develop a research program as well as contribute to a wider community of scholarship.


Syllabus

Jan 13 – Introduction


Pre-class Readings
Plato, “Allegory of the Cave,”
http://www.historyguide.org/intellect/allegory.html
Immanuel Kant “What is Enlightenment”
http://www.english.upenn.edu/~mgamer/Etexts/kant.html
Charles Tilly “Sociological Resources for the study of International Relations” Remarks for International Studies Association Session on “The Sociological Turn of International Relations,” Portland, Oregon, Thursday 27 February 2003 (ONLINE)
Recommended on Theory and Academic Arguments
· Alford, Robert R. (1998) Page 1-4 and Chapter 3 The Construction of Arguments from The Craft of Inquiry, Theories, Methods, Evidence. New York: Oxford University Press. (ONLINE)
· Charles Tilly (2003) “Why Read the Classics” (ONLINE)
· Richard Ned Lebow “If Mozart had died at your age: Pyschologic Versus Statistical Inference” Political Psychology Volume 27 Issue 2, pp 157 – 172 (ONLINE)

Jan 20 – Let’s Begin: Initial Thoughts & Marx

Charles Lemert “Social Theory: its uses and pleasures” (Lemert, pp. 1-22)

On the Jewish Question" http://www.marxists.org/archive/marx/works/1844/jewish-question/
Contribution to the critique of Hegel’s Philosophy of Right: Introductionhttp://www.marxists.org/archive/marx/works/1843/critique-hpr/intro.htm)
Theses on Feuerbach" http://www.marxists.org/archive/marx/works/1845/theses/theses.htm
Excerpts from “Economic and Philosophical Manuscripts of 1844;” “The German Ideology: Part I;” “The Communist Manifesto;” and “The Eighteenth Brumaire of Louis Bonaparte." (Lemert, pp. 32-50)
Estranged Labour
Camera Obscura
The Manifest of Class Struggle, with Frederich Engels
The Eighteenth Brumaire of Louis Bonaparte

Excerpts from “Capital, Vol I.” (Lemert pp. 51-67)
Capital and the Values of Commodities
Capital and the Fetishism of Commodities
Labour-Power and Capital


Jan 27: Durkheim




Excerpts from “The Division of Labor in Society;” “Suicide: A Study in Sociology;” and “The Elementary Forms of Religious Life” (Lemert, pp. 73 – 89; 94-103)
Mechanical and Organic Solidarity
Anomie and the Modern Division of Labor
Sociology and Social Facts
Suicide and Modernity
The Cultural Logic of Collective Representations
Other Key Early Modern thinkers:
Sigmund Freud: “Civilization and the Individual” (Lemert)
Ferdinand de Saussure “Arbitrary Social Values and the Linguistic sign” (Lemert) version 1
Ferdinand de Saussure “Arbitrary Social Values and the Linguistic sign (2)” (Lemert) version 2


Feb 3 – Weber



The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalismtranslation by Stephen Kalberg. (Read the entire essay. Commentary essays are recommended but not required)
Objectivity in Social Science and Science Policy” in Appleby, J . et al (Eds.) Knowledge and Postmodernism in Historical Perspective (ONLINE)
The Bureaucratic Machine” (Lemert)
What is Politics?” (Lemert)
The Types of Legitimate Domination” (Lemert)
Class, Status, Party” (Lemert)


Feb 10 – Mid 20th Century Theory: Functionalist, Micro-social, and Structural Approaches


Functionalism
Talcott Parsons “The Unit Act of Action Systems” and “Action Systems and Social Systems” (Lemert)
Robert Merton “Manifest and Latent Functions” (Lemert)

Interactionist and Micro-Social Perspectives
George Herbert Mead “The Self, the I, and the Me (Lemert)
Erving Goffman “On Face-Work” (Lemert)
Peter Berger and Thomas Luckmann “Society as a Human Product” (Lemert)

Structuralism
Claude Levi-Strauss “The Structural Study of Myth” (Lemert)
Louis Althusser, “Ideology and the Ideological State Apparatuses, Doubts and Reservations” (Lemert)
Culture: Synthesis and Critique
Jeffrey Alexander “The Strong Program in Cultural Theory: Elements of a Structural Hermeneutics” (ONLINE)
Clifford Geertz (summary 1) “Thick Description: Toward an Interpretive Theory of Culture” in Appleby (ONLINE)
Clifford Geertz (summary 2) Thick Description: Toward an Interpretive Theory of Culture” in Appleby (ONLINE)
Recommended:
Institutional Culture
Paul DiMaggio and Walter Powell “The Iron Cage Revisited: Institutional Isomorphism and Collective Rationality in Organizational Fields” (ONLINE)


Feb 17 – Historical Research: Humanistic and Social Scientific


Stephen Toulmin - Cosmopolis: The Hidden Agenda of Modernity (Entire book)
Charles Tilly “Lullaby, Chorale, or Hurdy-Gurdy Tune?” from The Rational Choice Controversy in Historical Sociology, Roger Gould Ed. (2004). (ONLINE)

Charles Tilly “Historical Analysis of Political Processes” in Jonathan H. Turner, ed., Handbook of Sociological Theory (2001) New York: Kluwer/Plenum (ONLINE)

William H. Sewell (2005) “Theory, History, and Social Science” Chapter 1 from Logics of History: Social Theory and Social Transformation. (ONLINE)


Recommended
Fernand Braudel, "History and the Social Sciences: The Longue Durée American Behavioral Scientist, Vol. 3, No. 6, 3-13 (1960) (ONLINE)

Feb 24 – Neo-Marxism, Critical Theory, “Empire”


Richard Devetak (1996) "Critical Theory," in Theories of International Relations, ed. Scott Burchill and Andrew Linklater, 145-78. New York: St. Martin's. (ONLINE)
Jurgen Habermas, “The Tasks of a Critical Theory of Society” in Theory of Communicative Action (Reprinted in Contemporary Sociological Theory, Blackwell, 2002, p. 377-400) (ONLINE)
Tarak Barkawi and Mark Laffey (2002) “Retrieving the Imperial: Empire and International RelationsMillenium: Journal of International Studies 31(1) 109-127
Antonio Gramsci, “Intellectuals and Hegemony” (Lemert)

Max Horkheimer and Theodor Adorno, “The Culture Industry as Deception” (Lemert)

Walter Benjamin , “Art, War, and Fascism” (Lemert) For the full essay, see “Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction” http://www.marxists.org/reference/subject/philosophy/works/ge/benjamin.htm

Recommended
Immanuel Wallerstein “The Modern World System” (Lemert)
Wallerstein, Immanuel. 1991. “Call for a Debate about the Paradigm.” Pp. 237-256 in Unthinking Social Science. The Limits of Nineteenth-Century Paradigms. London: Polity Press.
Colin Sparks “Stuart Hall, Cultural Studies, and Marxism” in Morley and Chen (ed.) Stuart Hall: Critical Dialogues in Cultural Studies. (ONLINE)

March 3 – Foucault & Post-structuralism - First PRECIS DUE


What is Enlightenment?” http://foucault.info/documents/whatIsEnlightenment/foucault.whatIsEnlightenment.en.html


Panopticism” and This is the old one Panopticism
http://foucault.info/documents/disciplineAndPunish/foucault.disciplineAndPunish.panOpticism.html

Power as Knowledge” (Lemert) and here we go with the old one Power/Knowledge

Questions of Method" and “Governmentality" from Burchell, Graham, The Foucault Effect: Studies in Governmentality, with Two Lectures by and an Interview with Michel Foucault. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1991 (ONLINE)
Jacques Derrida “The Decentering Event in Social Thought” (Lemert)
Charles Lemert “The Uses of French Structuralisms in Sociology” in Frontiers of Social Theory (ed. George Ritzer) (ONLINE)
Recommended
Lamont, Michèle. l987. "How to Become a Dominant French Philosopher: The Case of Jacques Derrida." American Journal of Sociology. 93 (3): 584-622. (ONLINE)

SPRING BREAK: March 6-13

MIDTERM DISTRIBUTED: March 13 (Due March 18)

March 17 – Dealing with the Post-Modern Moment NO CLASS! (ISA Montreal)

à MIDTERM DUE MARCH 18
(Starred readings are key)
Charles Lemert “After Modernity” (Lemert)
Richard Rorty “Private Irony and Liberal Hope” (Lemert)
Jean-Francois Lyotard “The Postmodern Condition” (Lemert)

Skeptics
Seyla Benhabib Feminism and the question of postmodernism” from Appleby, et al (ONLINE)
Anthony Giddens “Postmodernity or radicalized Modernity?” (Lemert)
David Morley “Euram, Modernity, reason, and alterity; or, postmodernism, the highest stage of cultural imperialism” in Morley & Chen (Eds.) Stuart Hall: Critical Dialogues in Cultural Studies (1996) (ONLINE).

After Postmodernism
Charles Tilly, “Future Social Science and the Invisible Elbow” (Lemert)
Gilles Deleuze and Felix Guattari, “The Rhizome/ A Thousand Plateaus” (Lemert)
Giorgio Agamben, “Sovereign Power and Bare Life” (Lemert)
Recommended
Jeffrey Alexander “The Postpositivist Case for the classics” (Lemert)

March 24 – Bourdieu & Giddens: Agency, Structure, Practice


William H. Sewell, Jr., “A Theory of Structure: Duality, Agency, and Transformation." American Journal of Sociology 98 (1992). (http://www.jstor.org/stable/2781191
Anthony Giddens “Some New Rules of Sociological Method” and “Agency, Structure” (ONLINE)
Pierre Bourdieu and L. Wacquant “The Logic of Fields" (pg. 94-114) and “Interest, Habitus, Rationality," (pg. 115-140) from An Invitation to Reflexive Sociology (University of Chicago Press, 1992)
Pierre Bourdieu, “Political Representation: Elements for a Theory of the Political Field" (pp. 171-202) and “Delegation and Political Fetishism," from Language and Symbolic Power (Harvard University Press, 1991) (pp. 203-219).
Luc Boltanski & Eve Chiapello (2005) “The New Spirit of CapitalismInternational Journal of Politics, Culture, and Society 18(3/4) pp 161-188
Recommended:
Calhoun, Craig. 1995. “Habitus, Field, and Capital: Historical Specificity in the Theory of Practice”. Pp. 132-161 in Critical Social Theory. Oxford: Blackwell (Online)

March 31 – Critical Perspectives PART I: Race, Gender, Difference

Saskia Sassen, “Toward a Feminist Analytics of the Global Economy” (Lemert)
Gloria Anzaldúa, “The New Mestiza” (Lemert)
Henry Louis Gates “Race as the Trope of the World” (Lemert)
Judith Butler, “Imitation and Gender Insubordination” (Lemert)
Nancy Hartsock, “A Theory of Power for Women” (Lemert)
Michelle Barrett “Words and Things: Materialism and Method in Contemporary Feminist Analysis” (ONLINE)
Stuart Hall “Ethnicity: Identity and Difference” (ONLINE)

April 7 – Critical Perspectives PART II – Post-Colonial Thought

Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak, Can the Subaltern Speak? (Lemert)
Chandra Mohanty, “’Under Western Eyes’ Revisited,” ch.9 in Mohanty, Feminism Without Borders, Duke University Press, 2004 (ONLINE)
Partha Chatterjee “Whose Imagined Community?” in Ackbar Abbas & John Nguyet Erni (eds.) Internationalizing Cultural Studies pp. 406-412 (ONLINE)
Paul Gilroy, __The Black Atlantic: Modernity and Double Consciousness__ (Excerpt ONLINE)
Marwan Kraidy (2002) “Hybridity in Cultural GlobalizationCommunication Theory 12(3) 316-339

Recommended
Homi Bhabha, "Signs Taken for Wonders," ch.4 in Bill Ashcroft, Gareth Griffiths & Helen Tiffin, eds. The Post-Colonial Studies Reader, Routledge, 1995 (ONLINE)
Edward Said __Orientalism__
Bryan Turner, Orientalism, Postmodernism and Globalism, Routledge, 1994.(Part I)


April 14 Habermas, Publics, Deliberation

Craig Calhoun "Habermas and the Public Sphere” in Appleby, et al. (ONLINE)
Jurgen Habermas “Civil Society and the Political Public Sphere” from Between Facts and Norms (ONLINE)
Ernesto LaClau and Chantal Mouffe, “Radical Democracy: Alternative for a New Left,” (Lemert)
Nancy Fraser “Rethinking the Public Sphere: A Contribution to the Critique of Actually Existing Democracy.” (ONLINE)
Nina Eliasoph “Making a Fragile Public: A Talk-Centered Study of Citizenship and Power//Sociological Theory//, Vol. 14, No. 3 (Nov., 1996), pp. 262-289 (ONLINE)

Recommended
Michael Warner “Publics and CounterpublicsPublic Culture 14.1 (2002) 49-90 (ONLINE)
Jurgen Habermas“The Rationalization of the Lifeworld” from Lifeworld and System: A Critique of Functionalist Reason (ONLINE)
S. Eisenstadt & W. Schluchter, “Paths to Early Modernities – A Comparative View,” ch.1 in Eisenstadt, Schluchter and B. Wittrock, eds. Public Spheres and Collective Identities, Transaction Publishers 2001 (ONLINE)

From last semester:

- Jürgen Habermas, The Theory of Communicative Action, vol. II (Boston, Beacon, 1981), selection on “The Uncoupling of System and the Life World.” external image pdf.png Habermas Uncoupling System & Lifeworld.pdf

April 21 Rethinking Globalization, Nationalism, Citizenship

à SECOND PRECIS DUE
FINAL EXAM DISTRIBUTED – APRIL 22
James Mittelman “What is critical globalization studies?” International Studies Perspectives 5 (3) 219-230 (ONLINE)
Nestor Garcia Canclini (2001) __Consumers and Citizens: Globalization and Multicultural Conflicts__ (Excerpts ONLINE)
Tomlinson “Cultural Imperialism” (2007) from David Held, Anthony G. McGrew, and Gareth Schott (eds.) Globalization Theory: Approaches and Controversies (2007). (ONLINE)
Ulrick Beck “World Risk Society” (Lemert)
Stanley Hoffman “The Clash of Globalizations” (Lemert)
Recommended
Arjun Appadurai, “Disjuncture and Difference in the Global Cultural Economy,” (ONLINE)
Stanford Encylopedia of Philosphy entry: http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/globalization/
Roland Robertson “Social Theory, Cultural Relativity, and the Problem of Globality” in Anthony King (Ed.) Culture, Globalization, and the World System (ONLINE)


April 28 – Networks and Society


FINAL EXAM DUE
Manuel Castells (2009) __Communication Power__ – (Excerpts ONLINE )
Amelia Arsenault “Networks: Emerging Frameworks for Analysis” Handbook of Contemporary Social and Political Theory. London: Routlege. (March 2011, forthcoming)
David Grewal “Network Power: The Social Dynamics of Globalization” Lecture Carnegie Council for Ethics in International Affairs, December 3, 2008.
Bruno Latour (2006) __Assembling the Social__ (Excerpts ONLINE TBD)

Main Topics and Concepts

Response Papers



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