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An Australian Outlook on International Affairs? The Evolution of International Relations Theory in Australia

Published on Sep 1, 2009in Australian Journal of Politics and History0.405
· DOI :10.1111/j.1467-8497.2009.1521a.x
Richard Devetak10
Estimated H-index: 10
(UQ: University of Queensland)
Abstract
Disciplinary histories of Australian International Relations (IR) theory have tended to focus on the 1960s — when a number of Australian scholars returned from the UK to take up posts at the Australian National University’s Department of International Relations — as the beginning of a discipline that has subsequently flourished through various disciplinary debates and global events. This article offers a preliminary attempt at narrating a more complete history of Australian IR by beginning to recover much-neglected contributions made in the early interwar years. From these earliest years through to the current “era of critical diversity”, it is argued, Australian scholars have made considerable contributions not just to the intellectual formation of an Australian outlook on international affairs, but to an understanding of international relations itself.
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