Spring 2021 - IS 451 D100

Seminar on Core Texts in International Studies (4)

Class Number: 5877

Delivery Method: Remote


  • Course Times + Location:

    Th 2:30 PM – 5:20 PM

  • Prerequisites:

    90 units. International Studies major or honours students.



An interdisciplinary course which aims to bring together different disciplinary perspectives on international affairs through the study of influential texts which, between them, involve study of core themes to the program: development, governance and civil society, war and peace, human rights and questions of culture and ethnicity.


As a capstone requirement for the major in International Studies, this interdisciplinary seminar is based upon the view that close study of a small number of texts is a rewarding approach to learning. There is no accepted canon as such of “core texts” in this field. Rather, our selection of influential works ranges over vital themes in the International Studies program: development, governance & civil society, war & peace, human rights & migration. Accordingly, the readings are intended to illuminate key ideas in how we understand historical experiences that relate to nationalism, public religion, social change, ecology, and the dynamics of identity — framed in the context of modernity in its varied expressions. Students are expected to engage with core concepts through independent study as well as in-class group work. Effective writing and articulation of ideas, as well as teamwork, are critical.


  • Class Presentation & Participation 30%
  • Analytical Report 30%
  • Final Paper 40%


Students will be required to submit their written assignments to Turnitin.com in order to receive credit for the assignments and for the course.

The School for International Studies strictly enforces the University's policies regarding plagiarism and other forms of academic dishonesty. Information about these policies can be found at: http://www.sfu.ca/policies/gazette/teaching.html.



Appiah, Anthony K. The Honor Code: How Moral Revolutions Happen. Norton, 2010.
ISBN: 9780393340525

Dauvergne, Peter. Environmentalism of the Rich. MIT Press, 2016.
ISBN: 9780262535144

Hamid, Mohsin. Exit West: A Novel. Riverhead, 2017.
ISBN: 9780735212176

Harvey, David. A Brief History of Neoliberalism. Oxford, 2007.
ISBN: 9780199283279

Taylor, Charles. Modern Social Imaginaries. Duke University Press, 2004.
ISBN: 0822332930

Temelkuran, Ece. How to Lose a Country. HarperCollins-4th Estate. London, 2019.
ISBN: 9780008296353

Registrar Notes:


SFU’s Academic Integrity web site http://www.sfu.ca/students/academicintegrity.html is filled with information on what is meant by academic dishonesty, where you can find resources to help with your studies and the consequences of cheating.  Check out the site for more information and videos that help explain the issues in plain English.

Each student is responsible for his or her conduct as it affects the University community.  Academic dishonesty, in whatever form, is ultimately destructive of the values of the University. Furthermore, it is unfair and discouraging to the majority of students who pursue their studies honestly. Scholarly integrity is required of all members of the University. http://www.sfu.ca/policies/gazette/student/s10-01.html


Teaching at SFU in spring 2021 will be conducted primarily through remote methods. There will be in-person course components in a few exceptional cases where this is fundamental to the educational goals of the course. Such course components will be clearly identified at registration, as will course components that will be “live” (synchronous) vs. at your own pace (asynchronous). Enrollment acknowledges that remote study may entail different modes of learning, interaction with your instructor, and ways of getting feedback on your work than may be the case for in-person classes. To ensure you can access all course materials, we recommend you have access to a computer with a microphone and camera, and the internet. In some cases your instructor may use Zoom or other means requiring a camera and microphone to invigilate exams. If proctoring software will be used, this will be confirmed in the first week of class.

Students with hidden or visible disabilities who believe they may need class or exam accommodations, including in the current context of remote learning, are encouraged to register with the SFU Centre for Accessible Learning (caladmin@sfu.ca or 778-782-3112).