International Politics Autobiographical Reflexivity The Self & IR Thinkers HW Required to write a think piece (500-1,250 words) about their personal perspectives on global issues, using personal narratives (does your personal “story” have an impact on how your see the world?). Students must also select an IR thinker, and through an understanding of their “story” must decide whether their life “narrative” may have influenced a specific idea/theory they developed or espoused. Students will be required at read ONE piece of academic work (at least 10 pages) written by the author.
Autobiographical Reflexivity: The Self and IR Thinkers
In critical approaches of IR, researchers have sought to contextualise their own writing, particularly when they want to illustrate their research methodology and how certain circumstances and social contexts have shaped their ideas.
The main question to guide your assignment is:do personal “stories” and narratives (social context, perspectives, childhood, personal background, education, socio-economic background, interactions with individuals, etc.) have an impact on how one views the world, why or why not?
Students are required to:
Write about their personal perspectives on global issues, using personal narratives (does your personal “story” or a specific event in your life have an impact on how your “see” the world?);
Select an IR thinker (see list below; if you have an IR thinker not listed, please see me or your TA for approval) and understand their personal “story”;
Select and read a specific piece/section of academic work (at least 10 pages) written by the selected IR thinker;
Write about the IR thinker’s personal narrative and whether it may have influenced a specific idea/theory they developed or espoused; and
Students are encouraged to write about themselves and the IR thinker in a comparative manner, where possible
Length:500-1,250 words; use references as required
Some IR Thinkers
E. H. Carr
Post-Structuralism, Critical Approaches
R. B. J. Walker
James Der Derian
Marxist, Critical Theory
Andre Gunder Frank
Jean Bethke Elshtain
J. Ann Tickner
Gurminder Bhambra Historical Sociology
You may want to consult:Martin Griffiths, Fifty Key Thinkers in International Relations(London: Routledge, 2007), E-book (Available online; York University library)
For further reading:
Stephen Gill, Power and Resistance in the New World Order (New York: Palgrave, 2008), Chapter 1: “Personal, Political and Intellectual Influences”, pp. 1-10.
Ilan Kapoor, ‘Hyper-self-reﬂexive Development? Spivak on Representing the Third World ‘Other’,’ Third World Quarterly, 25, 4, 2004.
Morgan Brigg and Roland Bleiker, “Autoethnographic International Relations: Exploring the Self as a Source of Knowledge”, Review of International Studies, 36, 3, 2010.
Naeem Inayatullah and Elizabeth Dauphinee, Narrative Global Politics: Theory, History and the Personal in International Relations, 2016
Theory Talks [http://www.theory-talks.org]