INSTRUCTOR: DR. WILLIAM ANTHONY RIVERA
This course seeks to promote understanding of the various ways in which scholars have addressed the origins of conflict and war. We will attempt a basic understanding of what war and conflict are and how they differ from other forms of political violence (particularly those carried out by non-state actors). We will examine historical trends, and discuss fundamental theories in the security studies field while studying a number of historical cases. The course also explores the tension between social science explanations for conflict and war based on theory and general principles, and the more particularist focus of historians on a weekly basis.
The aim of this core course is to study in depth some of the central questions in the international history of the twentieth century and to discuss them in relation to the major theoretical issues that they raise. The overall aim is to equip students with a sound knowledge of the empirical and theoretical aspects of the discipline of international relations and of the relationship between history and theory.