International Relations: Perspectives, Controversies and Readings, 4th Edition

  • Keith L. Shimko Purdue University
  • ISBN-10: 1111833133  |  ISBN-13: 9781111833138
  • 384 Pages
  • Previous Editions: 2010, 2008, 2005
  • © 2013 | Published
  • List Price = $ 153.95
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  • Newer Edition Available



INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS: PERSPECTIVES, CONTROVERSIES, AND READINGS, 4th Edition teaches readers to think critically about international politics. Taking an innovative approach, the text delivers brief, topical coverage with a debate ("point of view") framework; each topic has primary source readings. Increasingly relevant in our global community, and completely up to date, each chapter covers an important debate in the field. By looking at differing perspectives, the book encourages students to be able to use their conceptual and analytical tools to understand today's global issues, as well as be prepared to understand tomorrow's.

Features and Benefits

  • Thoroughly revised, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS: PERSPECTIVES, CONTROVERSIES, AND READINGS, 4TH Edition reflects the latest developments and emerging issues from the field of international relations.
  • Chapters 3-13 are framed around a basic question that embodies an important issue or controversy in International Relations, such as "How should we respond to terrorism?" The questions and “debate” format provide focus, prompting students to follow coherent and contrasting arguments.
  • Two primary source readings end each chapter in the "Point of View" section, often providing both sides of a debate related to the content of the corresponding chapter.
  • The marginal glossary allows students to easily access key terms without interrupting their reading.

Table of Contents

1. Change and Continuity in International History.
2. Contending Perspectives on International Politics.
3. Power Politics.
4. War and Democracy.
5. War and "Human Nature".
6. Free Trade.
7. The IMF, Global Inequality, and Development.
8. Globalization and Sovereignty.
9. International Law.
10. The United Nations and Humanitarian Intervention.
11. Nuclear Proliferation.
12. International Terrorism.
13. The Global Commons.

What's New

  • New topical coverage includes: information on China's rise to power, the impact of the politics of the Arab world, the movement for free trade, the debate about Iran's nuclear weapons program, and updated information on climate change.
  • Many new Points of View readings have been changed in this edition.

Learning Resource Bundles

Choose the textbook packaged with the resources that best meet your course and student needs. Contact your Learning Consultant for more information.

Bundle: Text + CourseReader 0-30: International Relations Printed Access Card

ISBN-10: 1133397123  | ISBN-13: 9781133397120

List Price = $166.95  | CengageBrain Price = $166.95

Bundle: International Relations: Perspectives, Controversies and Readings, 4th + Global Issues in Context Web Site Printed Access Card

ISBN-10:  1133397107 | ISBN-13:  9781133397106

List Price = $153.95  | CengageBrain Price = $153.95

Efficacy and Outcomes


"It is well-written, comprehensive and clear. It strikes a good balance between theory and substantive issues of international relations and does not leave out non-mainstream approaches to IR, such as feminism."

— Mariya Omelicheva, University of Kansas

"Shimko's book is well written in all the major issues covered. Based on feedbacks from my students over the years, it is not too abstract for them to understand."

— Emmanuel Obuah, Alabama A&M University


All supplements have been updated in coordination with the main title. Select the main title's "About" tab, then select "What's New" for updates specific to title's edition.

For more information about these supplements, or to obtain them, contact your Learning Consultant.

Instructor Supplements

Instructor's Resource Manual with Test Bank  (ISBN-10: 1111769729 | ISBN-13: 9781111769727)

The comprehensive online instructor's resource manual features lecture outlines as well as an extensive array of well-crafted multiple-choice, true/false, fill-in-the-blank, and essay questions, along with answers and page references.

Meet the Author

Author Bio

Keith L. Shimko

Keith L. Shimko, Ph.D., is associate professor of political science at Purdue University. He has taught Introduction to International Relations since 1990 and has won several school and university-wide teaching awards. Dr. Shimko is the author of IMAGES AND ARMS CONTROL: PERCEPTIONS OF THE SOVIET UNION IN THE REAGAN ADMINISTRATION (Michigan, 1991), which was named a CHOICE outstanding academic book and received the Lynne-Reinner/Quincy Wright Award, as well as THE IRAQ WARS AND AMERICA'S MILITARY REVOUTION (Cambridge, 2010). He received his B.A. from Franklin and Marshall College and his Ph.D. from Indiana University.