- Stephanie Lawson
This introductory chapter provides an overview of global politics, starting with an account of the global political sphere as a specialized area of study—more conventionally known as the discipline of International Relations (IR)—and including an explanation of the distinction between the ‘global’ and the ‘international’. It also addresses the extent to which the world is ‘globalized’, even as some pundits herald a halt to globalization and a return to the closed politics of nationalism. The chapter then explores the history of globalization, which provides an essential backdrop to the understanding of the phenomenon in the present, and the challenges to it. This includes attention to the interweaving of globalization’s political, economic, social, and cultural dimensions and some of the implications for the current state-based world order. Finally, the chapter considers the role of theory and method, including concerns raised by the notion of a ‘post-truth’ world.