American Foreign Policy: Theory and Method

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American Foreign Policy: Theory and Method

Course Details

Cost

FREE

Upcoming Schedule

  • On demand

Course Provider

MIT online courses
MIT OpenCourseWare makes the materials used in the teaching of almost all of MIT's subjects available on the Web, free of charge. With more than 2,200 courses available, OCW is delivering on the promise of open sharing of knowledge.
MIT OpenCourseWare makes the materials used in the teaching of almost all of MIT's subjects available on the Web, free of charge. With more than 2,200 courses available, OCW is delivering on the promise of open sharing of knowledge.
Provider Subject Specialization
Humanities
Sciences & Technology
4 reviews

Course Description

This course examines the causes and consequences of American foreign policy since 1898. Course readings cover both substantive and methods topics. Four substantive topics are covered:

  1. major theories of American foreign policy;
  2. major episodes in the history of American foreign policy and historical/interpretive controversies about them;
  3. the evaluation of major past American foreign policies--were their results good or bad? and
  4. current policy controversies, including means of evaluating proposed policies.

Three methods topics are covered:

  1. basic social scientific inference--what are theories? what are good theories? how should theories be framed and tested?
  2. historical investigative methodology, including archival research, and, most importantly,
  3. case study methodology.

Historical episodes covered in the course are used as raw material for case studies, asking "if these episodes were the subject of case studies, how should those stu...

This course examines the causes and consequences of American foreign policy since 1898. Course readings cover both substantive and methods topics. Four substantive topics are covered:

  1. major theories of American foreign policy;
  2. major episodes in the history of American foreign policy and historical/interpretive controversies about them;
  3. the evaluation of major past American foreign policies--were their results good or bad? and
  4. current policy controversies, including means of evaluating proposed policies.

Three methods topics are covered:

  1. basic social scientific inference--what are theories? what are good theories? how should theories be framed and tested?
  2. historical investigative methodology, including archival research, and, most importantly,
  3. case study methodology.

Historical episodes covered in the course are used as raw material for case studies, asking "if these episodes were the subject of case studies, how should those studies be performed, and what could be learned from them?"

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