chapter  32
9 Pages

Multidisciplinarity

WithRoland Bleiker

This chapter offers a defence of a multidisciplinary approach to the of international relations, drawing on a range of sources from international political sociology. Multidisciplinarity is in academic fashion in the study of international politics. International political sociology offers an ideal background to pursue interdisciplinary approaches. This is the case because it comprises a broad set of approaches that investigate the socio-political dimensions of the international. An approach inspired by international political sociology can offer new ways of understanding the profound but more indirect impact of images. A multidisciplinary approach that abandons one central standard of evidence inevitably raises objections. The spectre of relativism looms large in the minds of those who hold, as outlined earlier, that social science proper requires an internally coherent framework that can establish “facts about the real world”. The benefits of drawing on a range of approaches, even incompatible ones, go far beyond the opportunity to bring out nuances and new perspectives.