TAS 1.T World Politics in the 21st Century: Toward a Post-American World?

Teacher responsible:

Professor Patrick Vaughan

Brief course description:

This course will provide extensive knowledge on various aspects of the changing role of the United States in the 21st century world and the new challenges (such as the climate changes or the transformation of world politics from bipolar to multilateral model) it faces as it moves into an uncertain new era.


Having passed the course, students shall be familiar with the history and contexts of social and cultural interactions between the United States and the rest of the world.
They should understand and be able to identify and analyze manifestations and significance of American culture in political and social relations between the United States and other countries.


1. Introduction: America In Decline?

2.America And The Rise To Power: 1945-1990:

3.The Fall Of The Soviet Union: ‘Who Lost Russia?'

4.Iraq: 1990-2010: Twenty Years War?

5.USA And 9/11:

6.America: Religion And Politics:

7.Oil And Climate Change

8.The New Media: The Perils Of Rock Star Politics?

9.USA Vs. Europe: Still Venus And Mars?

10.The USA And The "Brics": Rise Of The Rest?

11.Modern Warfare: ‘Are We Rome? ' What Now? America and the 21st Century: A Discussion

Reading list:

‘The Meaning of Stuxnet," The Economist, September 30, 2010.

‘Universal Health Insurance is Un-American?" The Economist, August 23, 2010.

‘Vladimir Putin's Valdai Vision," The Economist, September 7, 2010.

"A Talk With Cullen Murphy, " California Literary Review, June 27, 2007.

"Cyberwar," The Economist, July 3, 2010.

"European Integration and Regional Cooperation," Baylis and Smith, chapter 26.

"That Wobbly Balance," The Economist, September 23, 2010.

"The True History of the Gulf War," The New York Review of Books, January 30, 1992.

"What America Has Lost," Newsweek, September 4, 2010.

Andy Barr, "Obama Still a Rock Star in Europe," Politico, March 30, 2009.

Anne Applebaum, "In Europe, It's No Longer East vs. West," The Washington Post, September 7, 2010.

Anne Applebaum," Anger Over Papal Visit Shows Religious Freedom is Alive and Well in Britain," The Washington Post, September 21, 2010.

Arnaud de Borchgrave,  "Conspiracy Supremacy," The Washington Times, September 27, 2010.

Arnaud de Borchgrave, "Hawks on the Warpath," The Washington Times, February 8, 2010.

Darryl Howlett, "Nuclear Proliferation," Baylis and Smith, Chapter 22.

David Brooks, ‘The Responsiblity Deficit,' The New York Times, September 23, 2010.

David Ignatius, ‘Pentagon's Cyberserurity Plans Have a Cold War Chill," The Washington Post, August 26, 2010.

David Ignatius, "On Red Alert and Perilously Uninformed" The Washington Post", September 20, 2010

David J. Kramer, "America's Silence Makes Us Complicit in Russia's Crimes," The Washington Post, September 20, 2010.

David Leonhardt, "What $1.2 Trillion Can Buy," The New York Times, January 17, 2007.

Elisabeth Bumiller, ‘The Snare of Privilege,' The New York Times, May 25, 2008.

Fareed Zakaria, ‘The Fearful Superpower," Newsweek, December 12, 2007.

Fareed Zakaria, ‘This Isn't the Return of History," Newsweek, August 30, 2008.

Fareed Zakaria, "The Rise of the Rest," Newsweek, May 3, 2008.

George F. Will, "The Earth Doesn't Care," Newsweek, September 12, 2010.

Howard Fineman, ‘Obama's Could Have Been Worse Presidency," Newsweek, September 23, 2010.

Howard Kurtz, "Rachel Maddow: MSNBC's Newest Left Hand," The Washington Post, August 27, 2008.

Howard Kurtz, "The Media's New Rock Star," The Washington Post, December 12, 2006.

James Traub, "Wallowing in Decline," Foreign Policy, September 24, 2010.

James Traub, "Whoa There, Rising Powers!" Foreign Policy, May 25, 2010.

Jay Tolson, "Lessons From the Fall," U.S. News & World Report, May 7, 2007.

Joseph Stiglitz and Linda Bilmes, ‘True Cost of the Iraq War: $3 Trillion and Beyond," The New York Times, September 5, 2010.

Joyce Wadler, ‘Green, But Still Feeling Guilty," The New York Times, September 29, 2010.

Leila Fadel and Ernesto Londono, "Risk Tolerant China Investing Heavily in Iraq as U.S. Companies Hold Back," The Washington Post, July 2, 2010.

Len Scott, "International History, 1945-1990," Baylis and Smith, Chapter 4

Lori Montgomery, ‘Cost of War: Why We Don't Feel the Financial Pain," The Washington Post, May 8, 2007.

Malcolm Gladwell, "Small Change: Why Revolution Will Not Be Tweeted," The New Yorker, October 4, 2010.

Mark Leibovich, "Being Glenn Beck," The New York Times, September 29, 2010.

Matt Miller, ‘My Iraq Mistake," The New York Times, September 2, 2010.

Michael Cox, "From the Cold War to the War on Terror," Baylis and Smith, Chapter 6

Michael Gerson, "The Internet: Enabling Pastor Terry Jones and Crazies Everywhere," The Washington Post, September 14, 2010.

Michael Wines, "China Willing to Spend Big on Afghan Commerce," The New York Times, December 30, 2009.

Owen Greene, "Environmental Issues," Baylis and Smith, Chapter 20.

Paul Berman, "The Philosopher of Islamic Terror," The New York Times, March 23, 2003

Peter W. Galbraith, "The Mess," The New York Review of Books, March 9, 2006.

Reuel Marc Gerecht, "America May Have Over-Reacted to September 11…But Americans Didn't," The New Republic, September 11, 2010.

Richard Crockkatt, "The End of the Cold War," Baylis and Smith, Chapter 5

Richard Pearson, "The Mullah Who Transformed Iran," The Washington Post, June 5, 1989.

Robert Kaplan, 'The Geography of Chinese Power", Foreign Affairs, May/June, 2010.

Robert Lichter, "Fox News: Fair and Balanced?" Forbes, November 16, 2009.

Scott Wilson, ‘On Eve of Sept. 11, Obama Struggles to Balance Messages of War, Tolerence," The Washington Post, September 10, 2010.

Sergei Kovalev, "Why Putin Wins," New York Review of Books, November 22, 2007.

Simon Murden, "Culture in World Affairs," Baylis and Smith, Chapter 24.

Steve Clemons, "Beijing's Fragile Swagger," The Diplomat, July 22, 2010.

Steven Lee Myers, ‘A Benchmark of Progress, Eletrical Grid Fails Iraqis," The New York Times, August 1, 2010.

Suzanne Daley, ‘Roma, On Move, Test Europe's ‘Open Borders,'" The New York Times, September 16, 2010.

Ted Koppel, "Nine Years After 9/11, Let's Stop Playing into Bin Laden's Hands," The Washington Post, September 12, 2010.

Theodore H. Draper, ‘The Gulf War Reconsidered," The New York Review of Books, January 16, 1992.

Thomas L. Friedman, ‘We're No. 1 (1)!' The New York Times, September 11, 2010.

Thomas L. Friedman, "Aren't We Clever?" The New York Times, September 18, 2010.

Thomas L. Friedman, "Too Many Hamburgers,?" The New York Times, September 21, 2010.

Thomas L. Friedman,'Their Moon Shot and Ours," The New York Times, September 25, 2010.

Thomas Powers, "Who Won the Cold War?" New York Review of Books, June 20, 1996.

Tony Judt, "Europe vs. America," The New York Review of Books, February 10, 2005.

Walter Isaacson, "The Empire in the Mirror," The New York Times, May 13, 2007.