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University of Naples Federico II

Contemporary Issues in World Politics

University of Naples Federico II via Federica


With the collapse of the World Order established following the Second World War, World Politics has entered a period of turmoil. After a short euphoria during which Eastern Europe was incorporated into NATO and the European Union, and a slightly longer-lived American preponderance in the international system, developments of both a regional and global nature have emerged to challenge world peace and order. The course will start with a review of the driving forces of International Politics, followed by a description of the post-World War II international order, then move to its breakdown and will continue with the analysis of the events coming after the end of the Cold War culminating in the transformation of Central and Eastern Europe, the breakup of the Soviet Union and a short-lived uni-polar American domination of the international system. Attention will then be turned to various challenges and problem areas in contemporary World Politics including disorders in the Balkans resulting from the collapse of Yugoslavia, the rise of China and the return of Russia as a major actor in the world stage, the humanitarian disasters in Bosnia and Kosovo where the West intervened; and Rwanda etc. where it did not. Continuing with an analysis of the Arab Spring where democratic aspirations mainly failed and the resulting dislocations fanned the expansion of radical Islam and the associated wave of global terrorism. Next the course will examine frozen conflicts such as the Arab-Israeli conflict and conclude by looking at the problems of the global commons such as climate change, pollution, pandemics and the growing problem of refugees. After having completed the course, the students would be expected to develop factual and historical knowledge of World Politics, identify the main issues and trends that affect World politics, and reflect critically on the salient World political issues of the day.

Taught by

İlter Turan & Mehmet Ali Tuğtan


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