Kees van der Pijl has produced yet another brilliant treatise on the 'foreign encounter'. Magisterial in scope, this book reshapes our conception of historical temporalities, civilizational flows and international relations. (Mustapha Kamal Pasha, Sixth Century Chair in International Relations, University of Aberdeen)
Kees van der Pijl challenges us to understand the world in its full complexity and contradictory actuality. Taking up the topic of The Foreign Encounter in Myth and Religion, van der Pijl emulates the best of Lévi-Strauss in attempting to identify truths common to all human societies as well as the historical specificity of each articulation of these truths. (Peter Bratsis)
An exploration of the mythical, religious, cultural and ideological themes through which the historically and geographically distinct communities’ modes of foreign relations have been understood, organised and narrated. It will surely function as a grand cathartic exercise, tracing the elements of the inchoate amalgam of notions and prejudices about the ‘other’ and the foreign which today so mis-governs our world order to their origins, and potentially liberating us from them. (Radhika Desai)
The Foreign Encounter In Myth And Religion is the second volume of Modes of Foreign Relations and Political Economy, a three-volume project which is changing the way we think about international relations.
In the first, Deutscher prize-winning volume, Kees van der Pijl introduced the ground-breaking argument that our current international system of nation states is merely a historically specific form of foreign relations, rather than a permanent fixture. Now he traces the key characteristics of 'foreign encounters' over time, showing that myth, religion and ethical philosophies have always informed the way that societies have interacted with outsiders. This points us towards the future state of international relations.
A truly masterful work, The Foreign Encounter In Myth And Religion, is a must for upper-undergraduates and academics at the cutting edge of international relations theory.
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