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The World Affairs Council of Charleston (WACC) WACC presents programs which feature distinguished presenters from governments, academic organizations and the business community. The speakers present timely lectures on international events affecting our lives. A lively question and answer period follows the presentations. For more information, please go to www.waccharleston.org
 
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The transatlantic relationship, arguably the bedrock of the world’s post-World War II international security architecture, came under significant threat during Donald Trump’s tenure in office, as Trump complained about European untrustworthiness and talked about pulling the United States out of NATO. Yet in the aftermath of the Russian invasion of …
 
Sanctions have become the go-to foreign policy tool for the United States. Coercive economic measures such as trade tariffs, financial penalties, and export controls affect large numbers of companies and states across the globe. Some of these penalties target nonstate actors, such as Colombian drug cartels and Islamist terror groups; others apply t…
 
Michael Bess is the Chancellor's Professor of History at Vanderbilt University. His fifth and most recent book is Planet in Peril: Humanity’s Four Greatest Challenges and How We Can Overcome Them, published by Cambridge University Press in 2022. This study focuses on the existential risks posed by climate change, nuclear weapons, pandemics (natural…
 
Just over half a century since Neil Armstrong first stepped foot on the lunar surface, a new space race to the Moon is well underway and rapidly gaining momentum. Laying out a vision for the next fifty years, Back to the Moon: The Next Giant Leap for Humankind (Princeton UP, 2022) is astrophysicist Joseph Silk's persuasive and impassioned case for …
 
Donald Bloxham and Dirk Moses have offered us a unique opportunity--a chance to see authors and editors in conversation with each other and themselves about the state and nature of Genocide Studies. Genocide: Key Themes (Oxford University Press, 2022) emerged out of an effort to update and slim down their earlier, larger volume The Oxford Handbook …
 
On August 6, 2020, the Trump Administration issued a ban on TikTok in the United States, requiring that the owner, Beijing-based Bytedance, sell the company to American investors or shut it down. Legions of TikTokers were devastated at the possible loss of their beloved platform, and for what: a political grudge with China? American suitors like Wa…
 
How has human development evolved during the last 150 years of globalization and economic growth? How has human development been distributed across countries? How do developing countries compare to developed countries? Do social systems matter for well-being? Are there differences in the performance of developing regions over time? Employing a capa…
 
While the world's oceans cover more than seventy percent of its surface, the sea has largely vanished as an object of enquiry in International Relations (IR), being treated either as a corollary of land or as time. Yet, the sea is the quintessential international space, and its importance to global politics has become all the more obvious in recent…
 
As globalisation continues languages are disappearing faster than ever, leaving our planet's linguistic diversity leaping towards extinction. The science of how languages are acquired is becoming more advanced and the internet is bringing us new ways of teaching the next generation, however it is increasingly challenging for minority languages to s…
 
How do authoritarian political leaders use the built environment to shape understandings of national identity and history? How do major urban development projects affect the political fortunes of authoritarian governments? Why do so many people routinely experience social control and the threat of violence in nominally democratic regimes? These are…
 
Sesame Street has taught generations of Americans their letters and numbers, and also how to better understand and get along with people of different races, faiths, ethnicities, and temperaments. But the show has a global reach as well, with more than thirty co-productions of Sesame Street that are viewed in over 150 countries. In recent years, the…
 
Entanglements: Envisioning World Literature from the Global South (Ibidem Press, 2022) scrutinizes current debates to bring historical and contemporary South-South entanglements to the fore and to develop a new understanding of world literature in a multipolar world of globalized modernity. The volume challenges established ideas of world literatur…
 
In March 2022 the U.S. government announced its determination that genocide was committed by the Myanmar military against Rohingya communities in Myanmar’s Rakhine State in 2017. What will this mean for the roughly one million Rohingya refugees living in neighboring countries, for Rohingya IDPs in Rakhine, and for post-coup Myanmar? In this episode…
 
What are the implications of climate change for twenty-first-century conflict and security? Rising temperatures, it is often said, will bring increased drought, more famine, heightened social vulnerability, and large-scale political and violent conflict; indeed, many claim that this future is already with us. Divided Environments: An International …
 
Since the 1980s the study of genocide has exploded, both historically and geographically, to encompass earlier epochs, other continents, and new cases. The concept of genocide has proved its worth, but that expansion has also compounded the tensions between a rigid legal concept and the manifold realities researchers have discovered. The legal and …
 
In On a Knife Edge: How Germany Lost the First World War (Cambridge UP, 2022), Holger Afflerbach argues that the outcome of the war was actually in the balance until relatively late in the war. Using new evidence from diaries, letters and memoirs, he fundamentally revises our understanding of German strategy from the decision to go to war and the f…
 
Richard Overy sets out in Blood and Ruins: The Last Imperial War, 1931-1945 (Viking, 2022) to recast the way in which we view the Second World War and its origins and aftermath. As one of Britain's most decorated and respected World War II historians, he argues that this was the "last imperial war," with almost a century-long lead-up of global impe…
 
The Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965 officially ended the explicit prejudice in American immigration policy that began with the 1790 restriction on naturalization to free White persons of “good character.” By the 1980s, the rest of the Anglo-European world had followed suit, purging discriminatory language from their immigration laws and ach…
 
Aufhebunga Bunga is the global politics podcast at the End of the End of History. In this episode, Alex Hochuli, George Hoare, and Philip Cunliffe talk about their work as academics and political commentators. Their podcast, also known as Bunga Cast, is a funny and fascinating examination of populist and illiberal developments around the world. Ale…
 
There are currently a record-setting number of forcibly displaced persons in the world. This number continues to rise as solutions to alleviate humanitarian catastrophes of large-scale violence and displacement continue to fail. The likelihood of the displaced returning to their homes is becoming increasingly unlikely. In many cases, their homes ha…
 
What are the problems with Samuel Huntington’s views about civil-military relations? Why do military coups persist in countries such as Pakistan, and what might be done to reduce their likelihood? In a study drawing upon extensive interview research in Pakistan, Cornelia Baciu argues that international organisations can help create a framework of s…
 
Delegating Responsibility: International Cooperation on Migration in the European Union (U Michigan Press, 2022) explores the politics of migration in the European Union and explains how the EU responded to the 2015–17 refugee crisis. Based on 86 interviews and fieldwork in Greece and Italy, Nicholas R. Micinski proposes a new theory of internation…
 
In this episode, we discuss a book that will be appealing to a general audience and which helps to bridge the gap of the story of communication in the broad history of computer technology. In Cellular: An Economic and Business History of the International Mobile-Phone Industry (MIT Press, 2022), Daniel D. Garcia-Swartz and Martin Campbell-Kelly mak…
 
The last two decades have witnessed an unprecedented amount of protests for far-reaching social change around the world – from the Arab Spring and Occupy Wall Street to the protests against police violence following the murder of George Floyd in 2020. Yet, for the most part, these uprisings have failed to produce revolutionary social and political …
 
President Vladmir Putin – the son of a foreman at a railway carriage works – is today one of the most powerful individuals on earth. What drives him? What does he want his legacy to be? Was he once a liberal? What is he now? After 22 years in power what do we know about him. The Western press often portrays him as an irrational monster – how does h…
 
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