Transforming World Politics: From Empire to Multiple Worlds, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Transforming World Politics

From Empire to Multiple Worlds, 1st Edition

By Anna M. Agathangelou, L.H.M. Ling


194 pages

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This book provides a critical understanding of contemporary world politics by arguing that the neoliberal approach to international relations seduces many of us into investing our lives in projects of power and alienation. These projects offer few options for emancipation; consequently, many feel they have little choice but to retaliate against violence with more violence.

The authors of this pioneering work articulate worldism as an alternative approach to world politics. It intertwines non-Western and Western traditions by drawing on Marxist, postcolonial, feminist and critical security approaches with Greek and Chinese theories of politics, broadly defined. The authors contend that contemporary world politics cannot be understood outside the legacies of these multiple worlds, including axes of power configured by gender, race, class, and nationality, which are themselves linked to earlier histories of colonizations and their contemporary formations. With fiction and poetry as exploratory methods, the authors build on their ‘multiple worlds’ approach to consider different sites of world politics, arguing that a truly emancipatory understanding of world politics requires more than just a shift in ways of thinking; above all, it requires a shift in ways of being.

Transforming World Politics will be of vital interest to students and scholars of International Relations, Political Science, Postcolonial Studies, Social Theory, Women's Studies, Asian Studies, European Union and Mediterranean Studies, and Security Studies.


This is a worldly and sophisticated antidote to so much that is sterile and narrow in today's International Relations. The authors have provided us with a literate and learned statement on how to view a complex world. It is an important early contribution to what should become the mainstream of International Relations. Stephen Chan, Professor of International Relations, School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), University of London, UK

In challenging historical erasures that have been carried through violence as desire and the desire for violence, as well as the framing of discourses and the incarceration of labour in property relations, Transforming World Politics makes us think about our diminished way of life under the neoliberal imperium. The authors make the bold claim that we need to interrogate and challenge not only the 'other' but ourselves, thus creating new possibilities of moving forward together. Shirin M. Rai, Professor of Politics and International Studies, University of Warwick, UK

Table of Contents

Part 1: Seductions of Empire 1. Politics of Erasure 2. Desire and Violence 3. The House of IR 4. Ontology of Fear and Property Part 2: In and Of Multiple Worlds 5. Worldism 6. Alternative Visions and Practices: Fiction and Poetry 7. Worldist Interventions in World Politics 8. A Play on Worlds

About the Authors

Anna M. Agathangelou is an Associate Professor in the Departments of Political Science and Women’s Studies at York University, Canada and co-director of the Global Change Institute, Nicosia, Cyprus.

L.H.M. Ling is an Associate Professor in the Graduate Program in International Affairs at The New School, New York, USA.

About the Series

New International Relations

The field of international relations has changed dramatically in recent years, with new subject matter being brought to light and new approaches from in and out of the social sciences being tried out. This series offers itself as a broad church for innovative work that aims to renew the discipline.


Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
POLITICAL SCIENCE / International Relations / General