Clocks and Clouds

Journal Description

Clocks and Clouds is an American University undergraduate research journal that publishes articles on the cutting edge of political science, international relations, and public policy. Through the journal, our authors contribute to the intellectual dialogue both within the American University community and in broader academia. Philosopher Karl Popper's "clocks and clouds" metaphor describes the two ends of the spectrum of predictability in social science: Clouds represent the disorderly and irregular, and clocks represent the predictable and rational. By providing a venue for top undergraduate research, Clocks and Clouds aims to find the clocks amidst the clouds.
ISSN (Print): 2572-3138. ISSN (Online): 2572-3146.

Published By

American University
4400 Massachusetts Ave NW, School of International Service Bldg, Washington, DC

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LATEST ISSUE

2016 - VOL. 7 NO. 1
The rise of modernized and efficient militaries competing for dominance against the United States' military has resulted in increased eruptions of conflict globally. A majority of decisions by the Joint Chiefs and EUCOM about long-term U.S. military policy in these areas are currently being based off personal and historical observations, along with blatant speculation. The question that should be asked before formulating these positions is if crisis management techniques, like conventional force...
The consensus in scholarly circles regarding democratic consolidation stipulates the importance of a cohesive demos, or population, that is also congruent with a representative polity, or political class. One of the main inhibitors of this goal is ethnic conflict, which can easily derail democratic transitions and consolidations. I begin this article with a discussion of the flaws of the two established notions of conflict alleviation in ethnically fragmented states:...
Foreign policymakers, academics, and regional pundits have all acknowledged the importance of the South China Sea. This region, rich in resources and trade, is the subject of intense territorial contest and is perpetually at risk for escalation and confrontation. This research analyzes the potential for conflict in the South China Sea by examining when and why China has used force in its past territorial disputes. Current theories in international relations offer multiple competing explanations...
The year 2015 saw heightened racial and ethnic tension in the United States, with particular regard to Latin American immigrants and the U.S. presidential election. Discourse theory assumes that identity (re)production serves to legitimize, institutionalize, and eventually internalize hegemonic and resistant discursive portrayals of political actors and actor groups. Some discourse analysts attempts to "reveal racism" in society and combat that racism. Yet, to the extent that "racism" represents...
According to the International Centre for Prison Studies, the number of women in prisons in Latin America has almost doubled since the 1990s. Most women in prison are incarcerated for drug related crimes, and although women are still a minority within the prison population, the number of women behind bars is growing disproportionately in comparison to men. Simultaneously, Latin American states are implementing harsh drug criminalization policies in accordance with the global War on Drugs. Scholars...
This paper investigates the influence of U.S. foreign policymakers' perceptions towards China on policy formulation during the Cold War. The influence of perceptions, especially perceptions surrounding the ideology of combatant states, is especially controversial when looking at the Cold War, a period known for extreme ideological vitriol between the United States and the Soviet Union. Drawing on the literature surrounding the relationship between these two states, I aim to expand the analysis to...
Ireland and Palestine share histories of colonialism, ethnonationalist conflict, and resistance characterized as "terrorism." While Ireland has reached an official status of "peace," the de-legitimization of its struggle for independence perpetuates cycles of conflict in the region and reveals lasting difficulties with legitimacy between Ireland and Britain. Through discourse analysis, I examine how the Sinn Féin party reaffirms the Irish struggle for independence through solidarity with...