Not available in 2020/21
IR462      Half Unit
International Political Theory

This information is for the 2020/21 session.

Teacher responsible

Dr Henry Radice


This course is available on the MSc in China in Comparative Perspective, MSc in Global Politics, MSc in International Relations, MSc in International Relations (LSE and Sciences Po), MSc in International Relations (Research), MSc in International Relations Theory, MSc in Political Theory and MSc in Theory and History of International Relations. This course is not available as an outside option.

All students are required to obtain permission from the Teacher Responsible by completing the Student Statement box on the online application form linked to course selection on LSE for You. Admission is not guaranteed.

Course content

Introduction to International Political Theory; the ethics of statehood; the politics of humanity; human rights and their critiques; humanitarianism; the ethics of war and violence; global justice; borders, migration, and refugees; climate ethics.


18 hours of seminars in the MT.

Students on this course will have a reading week in Week 6, in line with departmental policy.

Formative coursework

Students will be expected to produce 1 x 2,000 word essay and a 2-page outline of the summative essay.

Indicative reading

Appiah, K.A. Cosmopolitanism: Ethics in a World of Strangers (Allen Lane, 2006); Benhabib, S. Another Cosmopolitanism (Oxford, 2006); Brown C. and Eckersley R. The Oxford Handbook of International Political Theory (Oxford, 2018); Brown C. International Society, Global Polity (Sage, 2015); Crawford, N. Argument and Change in World Politics (Cambridge, 2002); Erskine, T. Embedded Cosmopolitanism (Oxford, 2008); Griffin, J. On Human Rights (Oxford, 2009); Hutchings, K. Global Ethics: An Introduction (Polity, 2010); Walzer M. Just and Unjust Wars (Basic Books, 2006).


Essay (100%, 4000 words) in the LT.


Important information in response to COVID-19

Please note that during 2020/21 academic year some variation to teaching and learning activities may be required to respond to changes in public health advice and/or to account for the situation of students in attendance on campus and those studying online during the early part of the academic year. For assessment, this may involve changes to mode of delivery and/or the format or weighting of assessments. Changes will only be made if required and students will be notified about any changes to teaching or assessment plans at the earliest opportunity.

Key facts

Department: International Relations

Total students 2019/20: 14

Average class size 2019/20: 14

Controlled access 2019/20: Yes

Value: Half Unit

Guidelines for interpreting course guide information

Personal development skills

  • Self-management
  • Team working
  • Application of information skills
  • Communication
  • Specialist skills