My answer: hell no. Why? Because when it comes to pop culture and IR, this tends to be my attitude:
I do it because it is fun for me to do it, and I do it because I think it can make accessible concepts in IR that may not be so accessible otherwise. I am not trying to prove anything or establish anything other than that I think I can be clever. And I fail at that much of the time.
As I discussed on twitter, my choice of name for this blog is not entirely accidently and not entirely driven by my thirst for alliteration. The stuff here is Spew--me thinking out loud. It is Semi in that it is not fully thought out. For some relevant examples,
- My take on the new Captain America movie's view of oversight by international organizations;
- My old take on how Avengers and SHIELD would be able to work with the US military
- Game of Thrones and IR Theory
When I use pop culture in my teaching, it is aimed at providing examples or illustrations of dynamics quickly and engagingly
- old Star Trek episode that exemplifies the ancient hatred argument (people hate each other, not much outsiders can do).
- old Babylon 5 episode with opposite understanding of ethnicity
- Footloose's exemplar example of Chicken.
And, oh, by the way, if the various players in IR use pop culture to explain/justify what they are doing, maybe we do need to pay attention to it a bit.