William A. Callahan

Jun 14, 2021

Sensible Politics

Visualizing International Relations

Oxford University Press 2021

purchase at bookshop.org

How can we theorize international relations by looking at how nose sizes are depicted in Asian art and literature? Why are Vietnamese immigration officials furious about the maps that appear in Chinese passports? What do Japanese gardens tell us about how nation-states are constructed and defined? And how we could re-imagine border walls as sites of creative destruction, illuminating the sublime?

Anyone who knows the work of William Callahan professor of international relations at the London School of Economics), will be familiar with his playful juxtapositions and his relentless determination to break down simplistic categories. In this animated conversation with NIAS Director Duncan McCargo, Bill explains how his latest book Sensible Politics: Visualizing International Relations (Oxford UP, 2020) expands the idea of visual politics to embrace a wider range of artifacts, while also challenging what he views as the Eurocentrism of the larger “visual turn” in IR.

Bill also discusses the making of his own films including the recent Great Walls (2020) and the extremely popular Mearsheimer vs. Nye on the Rise of China (2015)

This podcast is one of a series recorded with the keynote speakers from the Fourteen Annual Nordic NIAS Council Conference ‘China’s Rise/Asia’s Responses’ held on 10-11 June 2021 in collaboration with the Nordic Association for China Studies and the University of Helsinki.

The Nordic Asia Podcast is a collaboration sharing expertise on Asia across the Nordic region, brought to you by the Nordic Institute of Asian Studies (NIAS) based at the University of Copenhagen, along with our academic partners: the Centre for East Asian Studies at the University of Turku, Asianettverket at the University of Oslo, and the Stockholm Centre for Global Asia at Stockholm University.

We aim to produce timely, topical and well-edited discussions of new research and developments about Asia.

Transcripts of the Nordic Asia Podcasts: http://www.nias.ku.dk/nordic-asia-podcast

About NIAS: www.nias.ku.dk

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Duncan McCargo

Duncan McCargo is an eclectic, internationalist political scientist and literature buff: his day job is directing the Nordic Institute of Asian Studies at the University of Copenhagen. Learn more here, here, here, and here.

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