Welcome to the Winter 2011 issue of the Yale Review of International Studies. Started by a group of undergraduates in the fall of 2010, we are excited for our second year of publication and grateful for your interest in our magazine, which is really an interest in what we have tried to present of the best and most wide-ranging thinking by Yale students on contemporary international questions.
One of the central developments of international politics is the massive expansion in the number of people interested in those questions—daring to ask them, talking about them with others, and having the courage to make new answers real. After a year where protests and political change rolled through the world, Ramon Gonzalez tries to grapple with the potential and limits of the technological and political culture of these new, social international movements. But traditional national relationships still matter tremendously, and Abhimanyu Chandra comments on the US-India relationship and suggests how it might be deepened.
Part of the challenge nations face is not only dealing with other nations but with their own populations that have old and new international ties and commitments. Anne van Bruggen examines the rise of Dutch Neo-Nationalism in response to perceived threats to Dutch national identity from immigration, and Gulay Tukmen looks at and criticizes Lebanon’s principle of confessionalism to accommodate different religious communities. Sometimes nations react to internal threats in violent ways, and Paulo Filho questions Brazil’s avoidance of a truth commissions for abuses under its military dictatorship, and he looks at how neighboring countries have confronted their own tortured pasts. In the economic realm John Ettinger revisits how Japan concluded its monetary policy interventions for guidance as to how Western countries should exit their own. Sarah Krinsky traces the multi-national and multi-religious history of Jerusalem. In Mexico, Jesse Hassinger picks up how borders can affect violence by investigating the drug-fueled violence in the interior and border regions of Mexico. Nations, too, can fight, and Daniel Pitcairn argues for a new way of evaluating the coherence of democratic peace theory which contends that democratic nations largely don’t.
I hope you enjoy reading the pieces and find them interesting, and YRIS now has a revamped website yris.yira.org where you can view all the content, post comments, and read our blog for regular international commentary. Enjoy!
Ramon Javier Gonzalez, Editor in Chief