Video Exercises

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The Power of the Image

FORA.tv
“Barack Obama and the American Global Image—Shashi Tharoor”

Synopsis:
Shashi Tharoor makes the case for why the image of America is a key component of its power. He argues that the election of Barack Obama will have a major impact on America’s ability to exercise its power.

Critical Thinking Questions:

1.
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How does the “image” of America reflect the role of public diplomacy and soft power in the exercise of state power according to Shashi Tharoor?
2.
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To what degree does Shashi Tharoor’s description of America’s image demonstrate that perception is a key part of global power? In the exercise of soft power, is perception the same thing as reality?
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The Practice of Foreign Policy

Council on Foreign Relations
“A Conversation with Condoleezza Rice”

Synopsis:
Condoleezza Rice speaks about American foreign policy and the process of learning that accompanies policy making. This is an edited form of the long version.

Critical Thinking Questions:

3.
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To what degree do the areas that came as surprises to Secretary Rice (failed states, etc.) reflect the challenges to the nation-state discussed in the chapter? How do these changes relate to the historical changes discussed in previous chapters?
4.
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There is an implicit assumption that democracy is a good thing in Secretary Rice’s argument about democracy. Given the models of foreign policy discussed in the text, is democracy likely to have the beneficial effect that the secretary implied?

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About these videos

These video clips and associated critical thinking questions provide real-world insights into international relations.