Spotlighting an Author – Andrew Thomas – Iran and the West: A Non-Western Approach to Foreign Policy

On March 1, 2024 at 3 PM ET, the Iran 1400 Project’s Spotlighting an Author event will showcase Dr. Andrew Thomas’ book Iran and the West: A Non-Western Approach to Foreign Policy. Register here to join the conversation.

“Throughout its existence IR has drawn primarily on Western thought and experience, leaving other perspectives on the periphery of discourse. As the field becomes more about contexts beyond the West, this has become a challenge for creating a truly ‘global’ field of study. Concepts like ‘national interest,’ ‘rationality’ and ‘pragmatism’ are often applied to Iran without considering what these concepts mean in the context of Iranian political identity. The aim of this book is to highlight the contemporary relevance of native Iranian and non-Western perspectives to IR analysis, returning complexity and critique to Iranian studies. To do this, the author examines four of Iran’s political encounters with the West, including its resistance to sanctions policy and negotiations surrounding its nuclear program. Ultimately, the book argues that ignoring Iranian motivations of identity has routinely resulted in missed opportunities, growing tensions and failed coercive policy.”



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