United Nations Politics takes a unique approach that focuses on the politics that is, the persistent and mostly singular emphasis that all member states place on the pursuit of national political, economic, cultural and ideological interests of UN affairs. The project began as an effort to research and write a ten-year-later sequel to The Challenge of Relevance written by Puchala and Coate in 1989. This earlier volume was an assessment of the United Nations and its operations in the late eighties. United Nations Politics builds from a series of some 200 interviews conducted at the UN and in various member-state missions between 2000 and 2005. Among other things , these interviews revealed that the existing English-language literature on the UN fails to take into appropriate account the dynamics and the impacts of the internal and external political contexts within which the UN operates. This book directly addresses this shortcoming in the academic literature.
Table of Contents
1. The United Nations at the Turn of the Twenty-First Century 2. The Evolution of an Institutional Form 3. The UN Charter and Beyond 4. The United Nations: The Last Bastion of Sovereignty? 5. In Search of Leadership 6. The Politics of Culture 7. Peacekeeping 8. Development and its Discontents 9. Reconsidering the United Nations
Donald J. Puchala is James F. and Maude B. Byrnes Professor of International Studies in the department of political science, University of South Carolina. He is also associate director of The Richard L. Walker Institute of International Studies.