Campus Europe-Asie, Le Havre
Students will also be evaluated on their participation in class (25%) and on their input in the ﬁnal paper (50%). Students are required to follow the news related to our topics. The ﬁnal paper should be a 2,500-word paper plus bibliography and footnotes. It should reﬂect the student's capacity to grab the knowledge accumulated during the seminar as well as the methodology. A particular attention should be given to the bibliography, the selection of primary sources, the structure of the paper. It won't be about giving an opinion as much as about producing a sound analysis well documented and argued. Pedagogical method : This is a reading, discussion and collective research based course, so all the students are expected to read and think carefully about the required readings and materials for each session, as well as, to do their own personal research on which their ﬁnal paper will rely. These sessions will require your full attention and engagement, as we will have to go through a lot during those sessions. The ﬁnal paper should show how much interest, work and thinking you put into that seminar. Be ready to take part in collective discussions and to be called on in class to introduce the weekly readings. They will be assigned each week for the next week, so we may be able to adjust our focus according to what is going on in the news. Course Description : During the 2012 US presidential campaign, Barack Obama mocked his opponent Mitt Romney for claiming that Russia was “America's number one geopolitical foe". He went on saying : "After all, you don't call Russia our No. 1 enemy -- not Al-Qaida, Russia -- unless you're still stuck in a Cold War mind warp". Obama emerged from this election as the expert on foreign policy while Mitt Romney was ridiculed. During the 2014 midterm elections, amid the Ukraine crisis and the regain of tension with Russia, Mitt Romney took his revenge on president Obama : contemporary Russia was after all a threat to the United States. As he claimed, "There's no question but that the president's naiveté with regards to Russia, and his faulty judgment about Russia's intentions and objectives, has led to a number of foreign policy challenges that we face".
In reality, this new turn of events took everyone by surprise. No one expected Russia or any country today to annex a territory such as Crimea, no one expected Russia to take such a ﬁrm stand against its Western partners and no one, and certainly not Russian elites themselves, expected Russia to look toward China for support. Since the fall of the Soviet Union, the perception of Russian foreign policy has changed dramatically, switching from a nascent democracy seeking the recognition and the support of its Western partners to an authoritarian regime “going rogue”. These changes match the evolution of Russian domestic politics. As the central State regained its strength over regional elites, providing some much-needed stability while threatening individual freedom, Russian foreign policy became more assertive, aiming to project power on a global level. The Ukraine crisis, which started with the so-called “Maidan revolution” in the Fall 2013, has witnessed the return of a sharp Cold War discourse, as Russia is confronting the US and the EU over the political control of Ukraine. The military conﬂict waged in Eastern Ukraine (and still on), triggering a series of sanctions against Russian interests, has forced Russia to reevaluate its relationship with the West and to avoid isolation by tightening its links with the East and particularly China. China has not been Russia's priority No.1 for the past 20 years for cultural as well as political and economic reasons. Russia has always wanted to be recognized as a Western country with a Western culture and fears to help empowering China. However, the Ukraine crisis seemed to have changed that, but to what extent ? What consequences for World Politics ? This is the question that got our attention last year. Since then, the situation has kept on ch