ABSTRACT

That the study of International Relations (IR) – the main theories, the dominant centres of teaching and research, the leading publications – neglects or marginalizes the world beyond the West is no longer a novel argument that requires proving or elaboration.2 What is more challenging is to find some agreement on how to redress this problem and move forward. Some of the ideas and avenues suggested towards a genuinely international field of IR have themselves been criticized and provoked controversy. This includes questions about what to study, how to study, where to study IR. Resolving all these controversies and finding common ground may not be possible, or even desirable, but having a dialogue about them seems timely and essential to the original cause that everyone agrees on: that the current parochialism and ethnocentrism of “International Relations” as a field of study, especially its dominant theoretical approaches, are unacceptable and perhaps untenable. As a further contribution to the ongoing debate and reflection on this question, my goals in this chapter are two-fold. First, I highlight some of these issues that have aroused controversy and should be subjected to further dialogue. Then I offer some thoughts on how to move forward in this effort, while keeping the debate and dialogue alive and well, in the voyage of discovery of approaches that may contribute towards a genuinely global discipline of international relations.