The New Agenda

Tim Dunne

in International Society and its Critics

Published in print August 2004 | ISBN: 9780199265206
Published online January 2005 | e-ISBN: 9780191601866 | DOI:
The New Agenda

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The final two chapters in Part One investigate the evolving research agenda of the English School of International Relations and its contribution to contemporary international relations. In this chapter, the author explores what may be described as the ‘new agenda’ in English School thinking about world politics. He begins by briefly tracing the long history of the concept of international society, noting how it has become synonymous with the English School despite the fact that other paradigms have also made use of the term. He moves on to reiterate one of the central claims of the first part of this book: that the English School and the concept of international society have been propelled to the forefront of contemporary debates about world politics by important sociological and normative developments in mainstream international relations in North America. He then identifies four core and as yet unsolved ‘puzzles’ that will frame the English School's new agenda as it continues to develop; these are the relationship between agency and structure, the boundaries between international society and world society, the moral basis of international society, and the tension between forces of society and hierarchy in contemporary world politics.

Keywords: agency and structure; boundaries between international society and world society; English School of International Relations; hierarchy; history; international relations in North America; international relations; international society; moral basis of international society; new agenda in English School thinking; North America; research agenda; society and hierarchy; world politics; world society

Chapter.  7990 words. 

Subjects: International Relations

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