Russell Leng

James Jermain Professor Emeritus of Political Economy and International Law

 Davis Family Library 355

Russell Leng taught full-time at Middlebury for 40 years, before retiring in 2007. He continues to teach an advanced seminar each spring term at Middlebury, and during the January term at the Monterey Institute of International Studies.Professor Leng completed his Ph.D. at American University, and his B.A. at Middlebury. He did post-graduate work at the University of Michigan, where he became involved in career-long research associated with the Correlates of War project.

Leng’s research on the Behavioral Correlates of War includes two books, Bargaining and Learning in Recurring Crises: The Soviet-American, Egyptian-Israeli, and Indo-Pakistani Rivalries, U. of Michigan Press, 2000, and Interstate Crisis Behavior, 1816-1980: Realism vs. Reciprocity, Cambridge University Press, 1993 as well as many articles in professional journals. He continues to do research on international conflict behavior, with a current focus on the use of negotiation in militarized disputes.




Course List: 

Courses offered in the past four years.
indicates offered in the current term
indicates offered in the upcoming term[s]

IGST0434 / PSCI0434 - War and Consequences      

War: Causes, Conduct, Consequences
Why do human beings organize themselves in armed groups to attack and kill other human beings? What is it like to experience war, both as a combatant and a non-combatant caught in its vortex? How has warfare evolved over time? Which legal or moral considerations affect how wars are fought? What are the mechanisms of war propaganda? What are the immediate and long-term consequences of war? What is the future of war? These are some of the questions we will try to answer. Readings include works by psychologists, political scientists, historians, philosophers, poets, fiction writers, dramatists, film-makers, and participants. This course is equivalent to PSCI 0434. EUR SOC

Spring 2014

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PSCI0405 - Causes of War      

War remains humankind’s most virulent and deadly social disease. In this seminar we will examine what we know about war's causes, and what might be done about its prevention. We will view the problem of war from several perspectives, including the perceptions and beliefs of national leaders, the attributes of states, the relationships and interactions of rival states, the international political environment, and terrorist networks. We will examine the writings of participants and theorists, as well as contemporary social science research. Each student will complete a case study of the origins of a specific international or civil war, or prepare the research design for an empirical study. (PSCI 0311 or by waiver; open to INTL and PSCI majors, others by approval) 3 hrs. sem. (International Relations and Foreign Policy)/

Spring 2012

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PSCI0412 - Diplomacy      

The practice of diplomacy and the techniques of bargaining, negotiation, and mediation are studied through theoretical works, diplomatic handbooks, memoirs, and studies of historical and contemporary cases. The seminar begins with an examination of a case of classical diplomacy at the Congress of Vienna. It then moves to consider more contemporary examples of negotiation and mediation in interstate crises, peace settlements, and cooperative efforts at problem solving. Each student will complete a case study of a diplomatic event of his or her choice. (PSCI 0109 or 0201 or PSCI 0311 or waiver) 3 hrs. sem. (International Relations and Foreign Policy)/

Spring 2013

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PSCI0500 - Independent Project      

Independent Projects
A program of independent work designed to meet the individual needs of advanced students. (Approval required)

Spring 2012, Fall 2012, Winter 2013, Spring 2013, Winter 2014, Winter 2015, Winter 2016

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PSCI0700 - Honors Thesis      

Honors Thesis
(Approval required)

Spring 2012, Fall 2012, Winter 2013, Spring 2013, Winter 2014, Winter 2015, Winter 2016

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PSCI1040 - Diplomacy, War, Social Change      

From One World War to Another: Diplomacy, War, and Social Change, 1918-1948
Traumatic events create great changes. No event in the 20th century was more traumatic than World War II. In this course we will consider the diplomacy that led to the war, determined the conduct of the war, and shaped post-war politics. We will examine what it was like to be engaged in the war on the battlefield and on the home front. Then we will consider the war's effects on future wars, on international law, and on society, including gender and racial relations. We will employ a variety of sources: readings in history and politics, memoirs, poetry, feature films, and documentary videos. This course counts as a Political Science elective. (International Relations and Foreign Policy)/ HIS WTR

Winter 2015

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PSCI1043 - America, Vietnam, Sixties      

America, Vietnam, and the Sixties: Diplomacy, War, and Social Upheaval
In this course we will study American diplomacy, the Vietnam War, and social changes that occurred in the U.S. between 1954 and 1975. The diplomacy section will focus on US-USSR and US-China relations, as well US-North Vietnamese negotiations. We will examine the conduct of the war from both a strategic perspective and the experiences of fighting men. The section on social change will examine the civil rights, anti-war, and women's liberation movements. We will employ a variety of tools to examine these topics, including works by historians and social scientists, memoirs, fiction, poetry, documentary and feature films, and music. (International Relations and Foreign Policy)/ NOR SOC WTR

Winter 2016

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Recent Publications

Bargaining and Learning in Recurring Crises: The Soviet-American, Egyptian-Israeli, and Indo-Pakistani Rivalries, Ann Arbor, MI: University of Michigan Press 2000.

"Cumulation in Q.I.P.: 25 Years After Ojai," Conflict Management and Peace Science, 17 (Fall, 1999): 133-147

"Reducing Intergang Violence: Norms from the Interstate System," Peace and Change, 24 (October, 1999): 476-504l

Research Interests

International Politics
Interstate Crisis Behavior
Causes of War

Program in International Politics & Economics

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