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Volume 135 - Number 1 - Spring 2020

What “The Cult of the Irrelevant” Neglects (And Gets Right): A Review Essay
PAUL MUSGRAVE reviews Michael Desch’s recently published The Cult of the Irrelevant: The Waning Influence of Social Science on National Security which argues that political science’s emphasis on methodology has made it irrelevant to policymakers. Musgrave disagrees and argues that political scientists’ sophistication has made them more useful to policymakers but that the obstacles to research influencing policy lie on the demand side.


Volume 135 - Number 1 - Spring 2020

Obama, Congress, and Audience Costs: Shifting the Blame on the Red Line
SARAH BURNS and Andrew Stravers analyze President Barack Obama’s decisions regarding Libya in 2011 and Syria in 2013 and 2014. Using statistical and case study evidence they argue that Obama’s request for congressional support in 2013 was an excuse to avoid action and audience costs rather than a genuine effort to gain congressional support for military action.


Volume 135 - Number 1 - Spring 2020

Chinese Domestics Politics and the Internationalization of the Renminbi
Hyoung-Kyu Chey AND Yu Wai Vic Li discuss the domestic politics surrounding the internationalization of the Chinese renminbi. They argue that the Chinese central bank played a leading role in the process because domestic financial reforms necessitated by the internationalization of the renminbi strengthened its own core institutional interests and enhanced its monetary policy effectiveness.

Volume 135 - Number 1 - Spring 2020

Do Global Publics View Human Rights Organizations as Handmaidens of the United States?
David Crow and James Ron look at how global publics view the relationship between human rights organizations and the U.S. government. They argue that ordinary people across various world regions do not perceive human rights groups as “handmaidens” of U.S. foreign policy.


Volume 134 - Number 4 - Winter 2019–20

The Symbolic Politics of Poverty in the United States: A Review Essay
Elizabeth Rigby reviews two recently published books on the politics of poverty in the United States: Lawrence J. McAndrews’s The Presidents and the Poor: America Battles Poverty 1964-2017 and Kristina C. Miler’s Poor Representation: Congress and the Politics of Poverty in the United States. Rigby argues that the books highlight that while policymakers continue calls for action on the issue of poverty, the actual policy response has been limited and the problem of poverty remains largely unsolved.


Volume 134 - Number 4 - Winter 2019–20

How Foreign Policy Shapes American National Identity
PAUL T. McCARTNEY discusses how foreign policy has shaped American national identity. He argues that American national identity has changed since the nation’s founding and that foreign policy contributed to this evolution.


Volume 134 - Number 4 - Winter 2019–20

Process Learning in Foreign Policy: From the Bay of Pigs to the Berlin Crisis
Rebecca Friedman Lissner introduces the concept of foreign policy “process learning” and applies it to a comparative case study of the Bay of Pigs invasion and the Berlin crisis in the first year of the Kennedy administration. She argues that under certain conditions leaders can and do learn from foreign policy failures.

Volume 134 - Number 4 - Winter 2019–20

Striking a Blow for Unity? Race and Economics in the 2010 New Orleans Mayoral Election
MAREK STEEDMAN, ILIYAN ILIEV, Marcus Coleman, and Allan McBride analyze the 2010 New Orleans mayoral election. They find that racial, economic, and partisan context affected voting behavior. They argue that analytical approaches that account for the effects of social context on political behavior are important to understanding urban politics.


Volume 134 - Number 4 - Winter 2019–20

The Soviet Legacy in Russian Foreign Policy
Mark Kramer explores formal and informal aspects of the Soviet legacy in the making and nature of Russian foreign policy. He argues that the Russian government has departed from Soviet foreign policy on few matters, but most of it shows a good deal of continuity.


Volume 134 - Number 3 - Fall 2019

Political Groups, Coordination Costs, and Credible Communication in the Shadow of Power
BRANDON K. YODER, KURT TAYLOR GAUBATZ and Rachel A. Schutte argue that when political actors adopt public discourse that misrepresents their preferences, they risk hindering the effectiveness of private discussion required for them to meet their goals.

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