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International Relations in The Archive: Uses of sources and historiography

Mulich, J. ORCID: 0000-0002-7919-1836 (2021). International Relations in The Archive: Uses of sources and historiography. In: de Carvalho, B., Costa Lopez, J. & Leira, H. (Eds.), Routledge Handbook of Historical International Relations. (pp. 489-502). Abingdon, UK: Routledge. doi: 10.4324/9781351168960


This chapter considers the ways in which the growing field of historical IR scholarship has been approaching historical source material, primary as well as secondary, and suggests some useful lessons from the methodological debates in disciplinary history. The chapter begins with a brief overview of the ways in which recent IR scholarship has approached the use of history in general and the use of historical sources more specifically. It then delves into a deeper discussion of the two main types of historical sources – secondary sources, or historiography, and primary sources, especially archival ones – showing the limitations, challenges, and benefits associated with the use of these materials. This section is followed by a conclusion that outlines some of the possible trends in the field and potential challenges associated with conducting this type of historical research in IR.

Publication Type: Book Section
Additional Information: This is an Accepted Manuscript of a book chapter published by Routledge in Routledge Handbook of Historical International Relations on 28 June 2021, available online:
Publisher Keywords: Political Science
Subjects: D History General and Old World > D History (General)
J Political Science > JZ International relations
Departments: School of Policy & Global Affairs > International Politics
[thumbnail of IR in the Archive accepted.pdf] Text - Accepted Version
This document is not freely accessible until 9 July 2025 due to copyright restrictions.


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