Show Summary Details

Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD HANDBOOKS ONLINE ( © Oxford University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a title in Oxford Handbooks Online for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 25 November 2020

Abstract and Keywords

Temporal phenomena like power shifts, wars, and confounding events characterize international politics. Yet for decades academic international relations (IR) did not consider time worthy of research or reflection. Recently things have changed, especially in critical IR, where scholars developed numerous arguments about time’s political importance. However, none of that work pursued a synoptic account of time in IR theory. This chapter does so, using an ideal typology of closed and open time to understand realism, liberalism, constructivism, English School, feminism, Marxism, and critical theory. In each, tensions between open and closed time distinguish the theory from its competitors but also animate explanatory and normative debates among its proponents. The historically overlooked issue of time—our assumptions about it, visions of it, and claims about how it impacts politics—drives theoretical development across and within IR theories, which we can understand as attempts to time international political life.

Keywords: international relations theory, open time, closed time, explanation, normative theorizing, history, timing

Access to the complete content on Oxford Handbooks Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can''t find the answer there, please contact us.