International relations in the Realm of world politics-I


Ajaz Baba

There has been a great confusion in defining international phenomenon which came to be described variously by various, as international relations, international affairs, world affairs, world politics and international politics.This was due to the fact that there was no systematic study on the subject International relations.  IR today refers to both an academic discipline and the field of activity that deals as much with relations between and among states as with transnational global actors, their problems and issues. As an activity, diplomacy is as old as recorded  in the history, but as an academic field of enquiry, IR’s lineages can be traced to 1919 when university of wales created department of international relations. International relations are all set to change dramatically to COVID 19 Pandemic. New World order, new alliances, new block formations,  are probably in offing. World may witness new hegemony on political and economic fronts. But, it is premature to make commentary with authentication.

As an activity, IR refers to the sum total of relations (cooperative and conflictual) among states based on the principles of foreign polices of nations. As an academic discipline, IR initially focused on the study of political and diplomatic, much later commercial, relations among sovereign states. As an academic field, IR—an offspring of political science and history, was denied the status of an independent discipline till almostthe advent of the Second  World War. During the interwar period, studies in IR were largely devoted to the ‘normative’ and the ‘Utopian’ pursuit of preserving order and the rule of law in what was considered a largely anarchical and self-regulated international system of sovereign states. The core of IR lies in the study of politics between and among nations. It is the study of the continuous processes by which states adjust their national interests to accommodate those of other states. Power is the means through which nations promote their national interest; therefore,  international politics is a struggle for power. IR covers wider ground, inclusive of varied relationships between sovereign states. The study of international politics is narrower in scope, dealing with conflict and cooperation among nations, essentially at the political level… In international relations, conflict is an essential elemen of relations. We should not however, confuse conflict with disputes.  Conflict is that state of the relationship among units participating in the process of politics which arise and continues to exist, from the fact that the wishes and desires of those units are unlimited and from the further fact that they are regarded one another’s rivals. Disputes on the other hand arise from specific issues .Thus, conflict is an abstract and dispute is concrete manifestation of conflict.The conflicts also arises from incompatibility of interest of nations.