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School of Politics and International Relations

POL257 The International Politics of the Developing World

(POL258B - Spring)

Level: 5

Semester: B

Credit Value: 15

Module Convenor: Felipe Antunes de Oliveira 

Overlap: None

Pre-requisite: None

Compulsory for: Semi-compulsory L250, L25Y

Associate Availability: Full Year and Spring only


The ‘developing world’ is a slippery concept. In this module, we will analyse it from an international political perspective. This means that we will uncover the international power relations that constitute the ‘developing world’ as such.  

We will start questioning the very idea of development and what it entails. In the first few weeks, we will read influential writers in international development, such as W.W. Rostow, Gunder Frank, Amartya Sen, and Arturo Escobar. Then we will look in closer detail at key topics in international development, such as gender, race, neoliberalism, and the return of developmental states, using the work of critical contemporary scholars and activists such as Naila Kabeer and Veronica Gago. Finally, we will discuss strategies of resisting imperial domination disguised under the name of ‘development’ and think of alternative ways to represent the global periphery. 

Assessment: 1 x 2000 word report (40%) and 2 hour Exam (60%)