Teaching‎ > ‎

2011-2 POL3826-01


Prof. Jong Kun Choi, Department of Political Science & International Studies

YHH 113-1 / 2123-5946   E-mail : Jongchoi@yonsei.ac.kr,  Twitter ID: @jongchoiysu


[Course Description & Goals]

The course will introduce and discuss basic building blocs of IR theories and major analytical frameworks. We will discuss ways to explain and interpret international political events. The unique aspect of this course is to blend theories with international security issues in depth. Students are expected to reflect on real-life examples in international politics. This is a graduate reading seminar that requires students’ active participation in verbal and written forms. Students are expected to have read the required readings before the class. Intensive discussions will be the main crux of the seminar. The instructor will continuously raise questions, analytical and substantial, to students, who are expected to respond simultaneously. The objectives of this course are (a) to understand mainstream theories of International Relations; (b) to examine the explanatory power of these theories; (c) discuss how to apply them to the study of international politics; and (c) to demonstrate how these theories can be used to analyze issues in international security.


[Grading Policy]

Mid-Term: 30%, Final 40%, Contemporary Security Issue Briefing: 20%, Attendance : 10%


[Texts & References]

Allan Collins, Contemporary Security Studies (Oxford : Oxford University Press, 2010).


[Weekly Topic & Contents]


Week 1. 09.05 Introduction & Orientation / 09.07. Defining the Concept of Security 

No Reading. / Allan Collins. "Ch.1 What is Security Studies?" 


Week 2. 09.12 No Class. / 09.14 Defining the Concept of Security - Security vs. Liberty 

Allan Collins. "Ch.1 What is Security Studies?"


Week 3. 09.19 No. Class. / 09.21 IR theory and International Security


Week 4. Approaches to Security: Realism 

Charles L` Glaser "Ch.2 Realism," Michael Sheehan, "Ch.11 Military Security"


Week 5. Oct.3 No Class / Approaches to Security: Liberalism 

Patrick Morgan,"Ch.3 Liberalism", Christopher M Dent, "Ch 15. Economic Security"


Week 6. Approaches to Security: Constructivism 

Chrstine Agius "Ch 4. Social Constructivism", Paul Roe,"13. Societal Security" 


Week 7. Regime Security 

Richard Jackson,"Ch12 Regime Security" 


Week 8. Mid-Term 


Week 9. Contemporary Security Issue 1: Environmental Security 

Jon Barnett, "Ch 14 Environmental Security,"; Alan Dupont, “the Strategic Implications of Climate Change,” Survival (June/July 2008),pp. 29-47; 


Week 10. Contemporary Security Issue 2: WMD & IS

James J Writz, "Ch. 19 Weapons of Mass Destruction"; Scott D. Sagan, “Why Do States Build Nuclear Weapons? Three Models in Search of a Bomb,” International Security 21, no.3 (Winter 1996/97), pp. 54-86; John Muller, “The Essential Irrelevance of Nuclear Weapons: Stability in the Postwar World,” International Security 13, no.2 (Fall 1988), pp.55-79.


Week 11. Contemporary Security Issue 3: Power Transition by A Rising China & IS

Zhu Feng, “China’s Rise Will be Peaceful: How Unipolarity Matters” in Robert Ross and Zhu Feng, eds. China’s Ascent : Power, Security, and the Future of International Politics (Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 2008), pp. 34-54; G. John Ikenberry, “The Rise of China and the Future of the West,” Foreign Affairs (January/February 2008), pp.23-37; Aaron Friedberg, “The Future of U.S.-China Relations: Is Conflict Inevitable?,” International Security, Vol. 30, No.2 (Fall 2005), pp. 7–45.


Week 12. Contemporary Security Issue 4: American Hegemony or not & IS

Robert Jervis, “Unipolarity: A Structural Perspective,” World Politics, Vol. 61, No.1 (January, 2009), pp. 188-213; Fareed Zakaria, “The Future of American Power: How America Can Survive the Rise of the Rest,” Foreign Affairs (May/June 2008).


Week 13. Contemporary Security Issue 5 : Northeast Asian Security

David C Kang, “International Relations Theory and the Second Korean War,” International Studies Quarterly, Vol. 47, No.3 (September 2003), pp. 301-324; Jong Kun Choi, "Predictions of Tragedy vs. Tragedy of Predictions in Northeast Asian Security," the Korean Journal of Defense Analysis, Vol.28, No.1. (Spring, 2006), pp. 7-33;Jong Kun Choi and Chung In Moon, "Understanding Northeast Asian Dynamics: Inventory Checking and New Disoucrse on Power, interst, and identity", International Realtions of the Asia Pacific, Vol. 10, No. 2 (April, 2010), pp. 343-372

Week 14. Contemporary Security Issue Wrap-Up 


Week 15. Contemporary Security Issue Wrap-Up 


Week 16. Final Exam