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alliance system

political economic or military alignment of nations; promotes the common interests of members

balance of power

nations aligning themselves to maintain peace and security; no one nation able to impose a major threat on others

bipolar world

world co-domination of 2 superpowers with opposing ideologies


supportive action or joining together for common interests

cultural imperialism

the spread and domination of a particular nation's culture, values and beliefs throughout the world by way of trade, electronic communication, businesses and the media

domestic policy

a government's plan to deal with internal issues of the country

foreign policy

a government's plan to deal with international issues that impact it


the growing economic and cultural interdependence of nations


the most powerful political, economic and military nation-state in the world (ex: USA)

international relations

multilateral interaction between nation-states

international system

maintaining a beneficial and peaceful pattern of interaction among major global players

major players/actors

countries, organizations and institutions that have a great influence on world affairs (ex: France, Red Cross, Sony)

multinational corporations

private companies that have operations and or divisions in many countries

multipopular world

when several major nations compete for power and influence

national interest

a country determining its involvement in world affairs based on the outcome or benefits it receives

national sovereignty

a nation's right to establish its own form of government and laws without external influence


a group of people who share a common identity; language, history, culture, etc..but lack a defined country (ex: Palestinians, Kurds, Kashmiris)


most powerful political unit in the world; having definite boundaries and organized institutions

nongovernmental organizations

nonprofit international agencies having a particular common cause (ex: Greenpeace; Doctors Without Borders, etc..)

regional blocs

specific areas of the world cooperating together for political, economic and social reasons (ex: European Union; NAFTA, ASEAN)

transnational agencies

organizations trying to promote global unity for peace and security (ex: United Nations)

transnational pressures

global problems that undermine the power and status of many nation-states (ex: pollution, terrorism, AIDS, natural disasters, etc...)


the existence of a particularly powerful state that is both able and willing to manage the international system (ex: USA, 19th Century Great Britain)

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