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Symbiotic Realism: A Theory of International Relations in An Instant and An Interdependent World Paperback – January 1, 2007

ISBN-13: 978-3825804770 ISBN-10: 3825804771

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 160 pages
  • Publisher: LIT Verlag (January 1, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 3825804771
  • ISBN-13: 978-3825804770
  • Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 6 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,112,311 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


This is a rich, thoroughly researched, and masterly book that pushes the theory of international relations significantly forward by integrating such important aspects as gender, climate change, access to natural resources, culture, and civilization to the existing conceptual body. It is marked by a deep humanity and cultural tolerance - as well as much common sense. In short: an important contribution to the international debate. --Ambassador Dr. Theodor Winkler, Director, Geneva Centre for the Democratic Control of Armed Forces (DCAF)

About the Author

NAYEF R.F. AL-RODHAN is Senior Member of St. Antony's College, University of Oxford, UK. He is also Senior Fellow and Director of the Center for the Geopolitics of Globalization and Transnational Security at the Geneva Center for Security Policy, Geneva, Switzerland. He is a philosopher, neuroscientist, and geostrategist. A prize-winning scholar, he has published 21 books proposing many innovative concepts and theories in global politics and security. He was educated at Yale University, the Mayo Clinic and Harvard University. He is best known for several philosophical and analytic books on global politics that include: The Role of the Arab-Islamic World in the Rise of the West; Meta-Geopolitics of Outer Space; Sustainable History and the Dignity of Man; Emotional Amoral Egoism; Neo-Statecraft and Meta-Geopolitics; The Politics of Emerging Strategic Technologies and Symbiotic Realism.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By kratzy on October 1, 2010
Format: Paperback
This book by Al-Rodhan follows in the footsteps of his other books, such as emotional amoral egoism, in which the author presents a new framework by which to analyze current world politics and how countries and individuals interact. The main aim of the author in this book is to present his theory of Symbiotic Realism as an improvement on traditional realism theory and as a means to better understand international relations with the hope that this new theory can be used to improve international relations towards a more peaceful co-existence between states.
Symbiotic realism improves and differs from traditional realism by including normative aspects and focus on several players, which when properly analyzed, can create a more complete understanding of international relations. The core summary is on page 67, in which the author lists the main actors in international relations, ranging from women and environment to natural resources. The list also includes information technology as well as the more traditional players of individuals, states, international organizations and large collective entities. The author spends significant time exploring why he includes players on this list, some explanations are obvious. States will of course affect international relations and has traditional been held so by realism. More unusual is the importance of natural resources that the author eloquently explains with examples ranging from the importance of the few remaining oil reserves as well as the increasing role of access to clean water. It may be not unexpected that future wars will deal with access to such clean water.
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Format: Paperback
This isn't the first book I've read by Dr. Al-Rodhan and this is one of my favorites because it deals with something I feel more connected to: the individual human, and in particular, women. In this book, as in some others, he discusses the environment and natural resources not only as entities that can affect national and international security, but how they are principle players in his Symbiotic Realism theory. I never thought about how the environment played such a huge role in more than just the treehugger sort of way (I am an admitted treehugger; it's why I liked this book more than the others, too!). Once I was able to grasp what his theories were proposing, the text became clearer and more interesting to me. Dr. Al-Rodhan's books can be challenging to read, particularly because his ideas are unique and thought-provoking, albeit shared in some fashion and in part by other theorists, realists, etc. I admit that I am a skeptic and don't believe that his theories will ever come to fruition in any way, be they on a small or large scale, not nationally, internationally, between states, etc. The theories make sense but based on the human ego and survival instinct over compassion, I doubt it will ever happen. However, that is just my opinion and has no reflection on the book's quality, for it is extremely well-written and obviously deeply researched. The author has passion, no doubt about it!
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By Cindy U. on November 28, 2010
Format: Paperback
Symbiotic Realism: A Theory of International Relations in an Instant and an Interdependant World by Nayef Al-Rodhan is a very detailed theory of how to reduce global conflict by utilizing symbiotic realism. Al-Rodham focuses on the depletion and resulting scarcity of our natural resources and how they will relate to global conflict. The author tells us how these conflicts can be avoided and how to do it. He has some excellent ideas. Overall, a very well written and researched book.
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More About the Author

Dr. Nayef Al-Rodhan is a Philosopher, Neuroscientist and Geostrategist.

He is a Senior Member of St. Antony's College at Oxford University, Oxford, United Kingdom and Senior Fellow and Centre Director of the Centre for the Geopolitics of Globalization and Transnational Security at the Geneva Centre for Security Policy, Geneva, Switzerland.

He holds an M.D. and a Ph.D, and trained in Neurosurgery/Neuroscience research at the Mayo Clinic, Yale University and Harvard University. He founded the Neurotechnology programme, headed Translational Research and founded the Laboratory for Cellular Neurosurgery and Neurosurgical Technology at MGH, Harvard. He was on the faculty of the Harvard Medical School, has published extensively on Neuroscience research and won several research prizes. These include: The Sir James Spence Prize; The Gibb Prize; The Farquhar-Murray Prize; The American Association of Neurological Surgeon Prize (twice); The Meninger Prize; The Annual Resident Prize of the Congress of Neurological Surgeons; The Young Investigator Prize of the American Association of Neurological Surgeons; The Annual Fellowship Prize of the Congress of Neurological Surgeons.

His Geostrategy interests include: Geopolitics of the Middle East; Sustainable National and Global Security; Geopolitics of outer Space and Strategic Technologies; and Global Strategic Cascading Risks.

His Philosophical interests include: Global Justice; Human Dignity and International order; Transcultural Synergy; Philosophy of Human Nature; Philosophy of Sustainable History; History of Ideas; Cellular and Neurochemical Foundations and Predilections of Human Nature and Their Implications for War, Peace and Moral and Political Cooperation.

He has proposed many innovative theories and concepts in Philosophy, Global security, and Geostrategy and published 21 books. He is best known for several Philosophical and analytic works on global politics that include: "Sustainable History and the Dignity of Man"; "Emotional Amoral Egoism"; "Neo-Statecraft and Meta-Geopolitics", "Symbiotic Realism "; "Critical Turning Points in the Middle East: 1915-2015"; "The Politics of Emerging Strategic Technologies"; "The Meta-Geopolitics of Outer Space"; and "The Role of the Arab-Islamic World in the Rise of the West".

For additional information on Dr Nayef Al-Rodhan's publications and ideas, please see: www.sustainable-history.com

Facebook: Nayef Al-Rodhan
Twitter: Nayef Al-Rodhan @SustainHistory