Geopolitical Framing Analysis: National Images, World Views and Global Dividing Lines [Summer School]

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Period: 6 – 10 August 2018; Fee: €600; ECTS credits: 2; Program: available in May 2018; Language: English; Application process: Maastricht University; Application deadline: 16 July 2018; Accomodation: Maastricht Housing; Funding: Not available

Geopolitical Conflict Analysis 1: Fragmented Identities, Rising Powers and International Security Threats [Summer School]Description
The declaration of independence by Catalonia, BREXIT and phrases such as “Clash of Civilizations”, “Borderless World” and “the End of History” underline the relevance of geopolitical frames. This course teaches you the skills to study geopolitical framing, which concerns the construction of similarities, differences and connections between states.

What is the role of national identities in media, business and politics? How can concepts such as national image, world view and geopolitical code contribute to a better understanding of the dividing lines between (groups of) states? And how can texts and images contribute to the popularity of particular geopolitical frames? To answer these questions, you do three assignments in which you compare how two news media, political parties or think tanks construct geopolitical frames in their news coverage, political speeches or policy briefs. You present all your findings in class. Interactive lectures and roundtable discussions help you prepare for your assignments. Related Summer School courses from Leonhardt are Textual Media Analysis: Critical Discourse Analysis, News Framing and Qualitative Research Design and Visual Media Analysis: News Photos, Text-Image Relations and Multimodal Discourses/Frames.
Goals
▪ Understanding how words and photos reflect and affect the way people think about states, groups of states and the world as a whole;
▪ Recognizing the implicit assumptions that underlie the national images and world views that journalists, marketing experts and politicians (re)produce;
▪ Designing an analytical framework to study the construction of geopolitical frames and their role in the foreign policy debate;
▪ Developing your critical thinking skills by productively combining knowledge, assumptions and questions;
▪ Boosting your employability by acquiring valuable skills required for positions in business, government and academia.
Course Leader
Leonhardt van Efferink first worked as country risk analyst for 12 years. From 2010 until 2017, he did a PhD that straddles the boundary between geopolitics and media studies (PhD defence in December 2017, final version of thesis due in 2018). Students of his 2017 Summer Schools gave him an average of 9.5/10 for his teaching skills. Former Summer School student Juan Pablo from Argentina recommends Leonhardt because “one of his most remarkable skills as university lecturer is his perceptive understanding of different views as well as the formulation of challenging questions. Leonhardt handles group dynamics perfectly and knows how to integrate diverse experiences and perspectives in order to get fruitful learning outcomes.”
Prerequisites
▪ Strong motivation and good command of English are essential to get a pass for the course;
▪ Basic knowledge of (geo)political ideas and/or trends is recommended;
▪ Aimed at Bachelor/ Master/ PhD students in Political Sciences/ International Relations/ Geography/ History/ Economics/ Business/ Media Studies/ Journalism/ Cultural Studies/ Linguistics. Professionals with various backgrounds benefitted as well from taking previous editions of the course. If in doubt, please contact Leonhardt for personal course selection advice.
Recommended literature
Geopolitical Conflict Analysis 1: Fragmented Identities, Rising Powers and International Security Threats▪ Brubaker, R. and Cooper, F. (2000) Beyond “Identity”. Theory and Society, Vol. 29, No. 1, pp. 1-47;
▪ Entman, R.M. (2004) Projections of Power. Framing News, Public Opinion, and U.S. Foreign Policy. The University of Chicago Press;
▪ Flint, C. (2017) Introduction to Geopolitics. 3nd Edn. Routledge;
▪ Fry, G. and O’Hagan, J. (eds., 2000) Contending Images of World Politics. Palgrave.
▪ Guibernau, M. (2007) The Identity of Nations. Polity Books;
▪ Hammond, P. (2007) Framing Post-Cold War Conflicts. The media and international intervention. Manchester University Press;
▪ May, T. (2011) Perspectives on Social Scientific Research. In: Social Research. Issues, Methods and Process. 3rd Edn. Open University Press, chapter 1, pp. 7-27;
▪ Neumann, I.B. (1996) Self and Other in International Relations. European Journal of International Relations, Vol 2, No. 2, pp. 139-174;
▪ Ormston, R., Spencer, L., Barnard, M. and Snape, D. (2014) The Foundations of Qualitative Research. In: Ritchie, J., Lewis, J., McNaughton Nicholls, C. and Ormston, R. Qualitative Research Practice. A Guide For Social Science Students And Researchers. SAGE, chapter 1, pp. 1-25;
▪ Sharp, J.P. (2009) Geographies of Postcolonialism. SAGE;
▪ Storey, D. (2011) Territory. The Claiming of Space. Routledge;
You are further recommended to read some of these posts on Leonhardt’s website: http://www.geomeans.com/category/geopolitics/getting-started-with-geopolitical-analysis/ Please note that it is not required to do some reading before the course. If you like to read something, select a book that is closest to your research interests or ask Leonhardt for personal reading advice. For more suggested reading materials, check the following reading lists: http://www.geomeans.com/category/geopolitics/reading-lists-geopolitics/
Teaching methods
▪ Lectures ▪ Presentations ▪ Work in subgroups
Assessment methods
▪ Attendance ▪ Participation ▪ Presentation
Keywords
▪ Analytical Skills ▪ Employability ▪ Nation-States ▪ National Identity ▪ National Images ▪ World Views ▪ International Relations ▪ Constructivism ▪ Geopolitics ▪ Media Framing ▪ Political Speeches ▪ Think Tank Reports

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