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Russian External Relations


RoomGarystr. 55 302b Seminarraum

Do. 10-12

This course will address one of the most enigmatic, but also problematic issues of European and global politics: How can Russia’s external behavior be explained?

While after the end of the East-West Conflict a more erratic attitude in inter- and transnational relations can be observed in general, Russia apparently excels itself by providing particularly ample proof for this.


One can make the point that international politics is not of much relevance for Russia, basically consumed by domestic considerations. One also can try to build periods of more or less cooperation since 1991. Other cleavages to identify and follow may be religious ones; economic conditions of sectors (ex- or import driven); regional specifics (non/availability of resources); ideological differences (Eurasian vs. Western orientations); posttraumatic obsessions (annexation of Crimea); and the like.


This cluster of questions will be organized in a few sessions looking back at Soviet external behavior; a few sessions for building hypotheses based on the dominant IR theories; some sessions for identifying relevant groups of actors and defining their general interests; and many sessions screening concrete situations and issues and attempting to explain the latter.


Good English language capabilities are necessary as the seminar is supposed to be held in English. In regard to the presentation exceptions can be negotiated. Regular and active participation is required.


This lecture uses the E-learning platform Blackboard. Please register under: http://lms.fu-berlin.de. The password will be given during the first lecture.


Additionally, please also register under http://www.oei.fu-berlin.de/politik/anmeldungsformular/index.html