Is Marxism too ‘eurocentric’? A critique of postcolonial IR theory


Why Marx theory implies a internacionalist perspective?

Jode Bloggs

This is an essay originally written to discuss the charge or ‘western-centrism’ in international relations (IR) theory as a whole, though I have adapted it to address the charge against marxism in particular. I initially wrote this around October 2013.

Postcolonialism is a post-positivist theory, or critique, meaning that it rejects the idea that knowledge is static and material, and instead claims that knowledge is shaped by human consciousness and bias. It offers an assessment of world politics focused on race and the experiences of those parts of the world that have suffered colonisation and imperialism, which have been obscured in the international system and mainstream international relations (IR) theory. In this regard, postcolonialists charge IR theories with being ‘eurocentric’ or ‘western-centric’, and Marxist theory is included under this label.

Origins of ‘Western’ IR Theory

It is indeed evident that IR theory has its origins in ‘the West’. Although the ideas used in many key IR theories can be traced…

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