SAGE Journal Articles

Chapter 4

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Article 1: Bunce, V. (June 1991) The Soviet Union Under Gorbachev: Ending Stalinism and Ending the Cold War. International Journal: Canada’s Journal of Global Policy Analysis 46(2). 220-241.

Questions to Consider:

  1. What are the main research questions that drive the analysis in this article?
  2. At what level of analysis is the author’s argument primarily focused? What perspective does she mostly seem to reflect? What other levels or perspectives does she include? Explain your answers.


Article 2: Isacoff, J. B. & Widmaier, W. W. (June 2003) Systematic Interpretations and National Interest: Presidential ‘Lessons of Vietnam’ and Policy Deliberation. International Relations 17(2). 175-193.

Questions to Consider:

  1. Summarize the authors’ argument. Why do they claim that neorealist and neoliberal interpretations of how foreign policy is formulated are lacking?
  2. What do they claim could be gained by a constructivist approach?
  3. Outline the ways the different presidential administrations “constructed” the lessons of the Vietnam War. What were their main differences?