Anno accademico
2022/2023 Programmi anni precedenti
Titolo corso in inglese
Codice insegnamento
LM3140 (AF:388046 AR:203442)
In presenza
Crediti formativi universitari
Cognomi M-Z
Livello laurea
Laurea magistrale (DM270)
Settore scientifico disciplinare
I Semestre
Anno corso
Spazio Moodle
Link allo spazio del corso
The course is a "characterizing" course of the MA program in Comparative International Relations (RIC) for the curricula in Global Studies and European Union Studies (last names M-Z). It provides students with advanced knowledge in 20th- and 21st-century History of International Relations, with an emphasis on the epistemology and methods of inquiry of the discipline, as applied to the study of the rise of the United States to a position of international power in the mid-20th century, as well as its persistency and change up to the 2008 global financial crisis. To the extent that the program conveys a set of notions, it will aim at consolidating and expanding the students’ critical knowledge of some of the main turning points in the international history of the 20th and early 21st century. By putting an emphasis on the historical method of inquiry, the course provides students with the capacity to analyze events and processes in the international realm, and to develop original and well-founded interpretations about them, beyond the specific object of the course itself. With its attention to the definition of the concepts under consideration, the course provides students with the possibility to become confident with their communication skills in reference to the history of international relations.
The expected learning outcomes from this course are:
a) a consolidated and expanded critical knowledge of some of the main turning points in the international history of the 20th and early 21st centuries;
b) a confident knowledge of the literature on the US’s post-1945 rise to international power, as well as on its persistency and change up to the 2008 global financial crisis;
c) the development of a capacity to formulate original and well-founded interpretations of specific moments in the history of US power relations vis-à-vis other actors in the international system;
d) the development of the ability to create, read and interpret critically a bibliography in international history, and to express critical judgments on international affairs based on sound historical knowledge, beyond the specific object of the course itself;
e) the development of the ability to communicate knowledge with coherence, clarity and precision, and to take part in informed debates about international affairs.
f) the development of the ability to further one’s knowledge in the field of international history in an autonomous and self-organized manner.
This course requires a basis in history and political science as from RIC's admission requirements, and a basic knowledge of modern and contemporary history as from High School programs. A good level of knowledge of the English language (at least B2) is also required. A deep interest for the subject and a serious approach to the lessons and the reading materials are not formal requirements, but usually help.
This year’s course is dedicated to an historical analysis of the theme of “US international power and its discontents from 1945 to 2008”. It is divided into four interconnected parts: in the first we will quickly review what are usually considered to be the basic coordinates of the international history of the 20th and early 21st century, to provide the necessary context for our main inquiry. In the second part, students will become familiar with some of the major works which have provided alternative plausible interpretations of the material and intellectual drivers of the US's rise to international primacy around the mid-20th century, as well as of the US's capacity to keep and even expand its influence on the international system in the following decades (up at least to the 2008 global financial crisis, which we use as the end-date for our analysis). In the third, we will zoom in into a study case (NATO’s enlargement “to the East” during the 1990s), both to take a closer look at the complexities of power in action and to acquire the methodological tools for carrying out original historical analysis in international affairs. In the final part of the course, which will be based on the presentation of the students' own research works, we will deal with how, according to current historiography, various international actors have dealt with the ostensible triumph of US power during the 1990s. A detailed program of the classes, with indication of the pertinent readings for each, will be made available in the course’s Moodle materials upon the start of the semester.

The students who attend the classes on a regular basis will prepare the tests in itinere and/or the final exam (see below) by relying on their notes from the classes, on any document uploaded by the professor on Moodle, on the sources needed for their research projects, and on a set of articles and book chapters (as specified in the detailed class schedule available on Moodle).
The students who do not attend the classes on a regular basis will substitute the class notes with additional readings (as specified in the detailed class schedule available on Moodle. I assume they may follow at least some classes, so it still makes sense to indicate what reading is useful for what class).
Important: In all parts of the course, the lectures by the teacher in class provide guidance to the reading materials and emphasize their methodological and epistemological foundations, in order to provide students with a clearer perspective on how they themselves can build an interpretation of international affairs based on sound historical knowledge. Students who do not attend the class will have to do more readings, including a textbook on historical methodology, for the simple fact they will need to make up for missed information. In any case, both the students who attend and those who do not attend the classes have to take the assigned readings seriously: neither the class notes alone, nor the summaries of the class lectures or of the readings, which may circulate online or elsewhere, can be considered sufficient to prepare this exam in a satisfactory way (to be sure, such material may be simply detrimental to your learning).
Provisional list of references (definitive and complete list available on Moodle):
Lens Scott, "International History of the Twentieth Century", in John Baylis, Steve Smith and Patricia Owens (eds.), The Globalization of World Politics, 2016
Michael Cox, “From the end of the cold war to a new global era?”, in John Baylis, Steve Smith and Patricia Owens (eds.), The Globalization of World Politics, 2016
Andrew Hurrell, "Rising powers and the emerging global order", in John Baylis, Steve Smith and Patricia Owens (eds.), The Globalization of World Politics, 2016
Daniel Sargent, “Pax Americana: Sketches for an Undiplomatic History”, Diplomatic History, Vol. 42, no. 3, 2018
Charles Maier, Among Empires. American Ascendancy and Its Predecessors, 2007
Giovanni Arrighi, “Hegemony unravelling, pt. 2”, New Left Review, n. 55, 2005
Giovanni Arrighi, “The world economy and the Cold War, 1970-90”, in M. Leffler and O.A. Westad (eds.), The Cambridge History of the Cold War, Volume 3, 2010
Philip Golub, Power, Profit and Prestige. A History of American Imperial Expansion, 2010
Naoko Shibusawa, “U.S. Empire and Racial Capitalist Modernity”, Diplomatic History, vol. 45, no. 5, 2021
Oscar Sanchez-Sibony, “Capitalism's Fellow Traveler: The Soviet Union, Bretton Woods, and the Cold War, 1944–1958”, Comparative Studies in Society and History, Vol. 56, no. 2, 2014
Stephen Kotkin, “The Kiss of Debt. The East Bloc Goes Borrowing”, in N. Ferguson et al., The Shock of the Global, 2008
Marc Trachtenberg, The Craft of International History, 2006
Sergey Radchenko, “‘Nothing but humiliation for Russia’: Moscow and NATO’s eastern enlargement, 1993-1995”, Journal of Strategic Studies, Vol. 43, Nos. 6–7, 2020
M.E. Sarotte, “Perpetuating U. S. Preeminence: The 1990 Deals to ‘Bribe the Soviets Out’ and Move NATO In”, International Security, Vol. 35, No. 1, 2010
Joshua Shifrinson, “Deal or No Deal? The End of the Cold War and the U.S. Offer to Limit NATO Expansion”, International Security, Vol. 40, No. 4, 2016
For the attending students, the evaluation of the learning outcomes can take two forms (at the students' discretion): in itinere or via a final exam. For students who do not attend the class regularly, only the final exam is available. The specifics of each mode are spelled out in the detailed presentation of the course which will be made available on Moodle at the begining of the semester.
The course includes some frontal lectures by the professor and many interactive classes where students will be called to discuss the assigned readings or to present their own research. Attendance is not mandatory but highly advisable and requires in-depth individual study of recommended readings before each class (see class schedule on Moodle). Both the classes and Moodle will be used to provide students with feedback on their assignments (see class schedule on Moodle).
A detailed file containing the class schedule, the pertaining readings and other important information will be made available via the Moodle space of the class at the beginning of the semester.
Mr. Alessandro Barlese is the tutor for this course. He can be contacted at 872203@stud.unive.it.
Students with disabilities can contact the Disability and Accessibility Office (disabilita@unive.it) to take advantage of the services available (e.g. alternative examination methods, readers, etc.).
The teacher is easily available for questions concerning the course at his office hours and by email at duccio.basosi@unive.it. Emails have to be written in a formal style (not "Hi prof." or "Salve prof.", but "Good morning", "Buongiorno", and the likes). Please use my e-mail address parsimoniously and do not think of it as an instant messaging app, nor as a customer care service: it is neither. Emails should not ask questions whose answer can be found in the information contained in this syllabus (e.g.: "what are the readings for this course?", etc.).
Students interested in carrying out a master's degree thesis in History of international relations can ask the teacher, after passing the exam, for the guidelines for the thesis (by writing directly to duccio.basosi@unive.it).


Questo insegnamento tratta argomenti connessi alla macroarea "Cooperazione internazionale" e concorre alla realizzazione dei relativi obiettivi ONU dell'Agenda 2030 per lo Sviluppo Sostenibile

Il programma è ancora provvisorio e potrà subire modifiche.
Data ultima modifica programma: 12/09/2022