Introduction: The Global Political Economy of Communication and IPE

  • Edward A. Comor
Part of the International Political Economy Series book series (IPES)


The tendency of social scientists to work within their own specialised fields and the negative consequences of this tendency are much discussed but rarely redressed. As a result of the production of mountains of books and articles and the self-perpetuation of specialised academic languages, the time and effort required to resist specialisation has increased despite the widespread introduction of computerised research resources. As Robert Cox points out, specialisation provides ‘a necessary and practical way of gaining understanding’.2 Nevertheless, to deal with questions involving social change through space and time, ‘a structured and dynamic view of larger wholes’ remains an essential undertaking.3


International Relation Critical Theory World Order Intellectual Capacity International Political Economy 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 2.
    Robert W. Cox, ‘Social Forces, States and World Orders: Beyond International Relations Theory’, in Millennium: Journal of International Studies, Vol.10, No.2 (Summer 1981) p. 126.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. 4.
    Statistics from Howard H. Frederick, Global Communication and International Relations (Belmont, CA.: Wadsworth, 1993) pp.58–9.Google Scholar
  3. 7.
    This phrase was popularised through the widely read book by Peter L. Berger and Thomas Luckmann, The Social Construction of Reality, A Treatise in the Sociology of Knowledge (Garden City, NY: Anchor Books, 1967).Google Scholar
  4. 8.
    For example, see David Morley, ‘Where the Global Meets the Local: Notes from the Sitting Room’ in Screen, Vol.32, No.1 (Spring 1991) pp. 1–15.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 9.
    See, for example, writings by Robert Babe, Nicholas Garnham, William Melody, Ian Parker, Vincent Mosco, Herbert Schiller, and many others. An excellent exegesis on the thought of Gramsci and its applicability to the general concerns outlined here is in Enrico Augelli and Craig Murphy, America’s Quest for Supremacy and the Third World, A Gramscian Analysis (London: Pinter Publishers, 1988).Google Scholar
  6. 10.
    The overviews of the realist and the liberal complex interdependence perspectives discussed below are based on those provided in Stephen Gill, American Hegemony and the Trilateral Commission (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1990) pp.11–25.Google Scholar
  7. 11.
    Cox, quoted in Stephen Gill, ‘Epistemology, Ontology and the “Italian School”’ in Stephen Gill (ed.), Gramsci, Historical Materialism and International Relations (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1993) p.42.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 12.
  9. 13.
    See Robert G. Gilpin, ‘The Richness of the Tradition of Political Realism’ in International Organisation, Vol.38, No.2 (Spring 1984) pp.287–304.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. 14.
    See Robert O. Keohane and Joseph S. Nye, Power and Interdependence (Boston: Little Brown, 1977).Google Scholar
  11. 15.
    See John G. Ruggie, ‘International Regimes, Transactions and Change — Embedded Liberalism in the Post-War Economic Order’ in International Organisation, Vol.36 (1982) pp.379–415.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. 17.
    Gramsci quoted in Robert Cox, ‘Social Forces, States and World Orders’ (revised version) in R.O. Keohane (ed.), Neorealism and its Critics (New York: Columbia University Press, 1986) p.161.Google Scholar
  13. 20.
    Robert W. Cox, Production, Power, and World Order. Social Forces in the Making of History (New York: Columbia University Press, 1987) p.7.Google Scholar
  14. 26.
    Of course Cox does discuss factors impeding the organisational capacities of workers. See for instance, ‘Social Forces, States and World Orders: Beyond International Relations Theory’ in Millennium: Journal of International Studies, Vol. 10 (1981) pp. 148–9.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. 32.
    In ‘Gramsci, Hegemony and International Relations: An Essay in Method’ in Millennium: Journal of International Relations, Vol.12, No.2 (Summer 1983) (at p. 173), Cox points to how the notion of ‘self-reliance’ was effectively transformed into meaning something complementary to the world hegemonic order. For example, when asked about US economic aid to less developed countries, Ronald Reagan’s frequently repeated fisherman analogy (‘if you give a man a fish today he’ll go hungry tomorrow; but if you teach a man how to fish [ie. how to function under a ‘free’ market regime], he’ll never go hungry again …’) was employed in the process of transforming Third World demands for endogenously-determined development into something altogether different.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. 34.
    On this general argument, see Herbert I. Schiller, Culture, Inc., The Corporate Takeover of Public Expression (New York: Oxford University Press, 1989).Google Scholar
  17. 36.
    R.B.J. Walker, Inside/Outside: International Relations as Political Theory (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1993) pp.ix–x.Google Scholar
  18. 37.
    Harold A. Innis, Empire and Communications (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1972) p.5.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Edward A. Comor 1994

Authors and Affiliations

  • Edward A. Comor

There are no affiliations available

Personalised recommendations