Analyzing the history of academic production on international relations since the end of the Cold War, the article identifies and synthesizes three main trends in the literature: a debate concerning the role of international institutions; a revival of the cultural dimension; and renewed legitimization of normative studies. It is concluded that the theoretical debate on international relations has been reinvigorated and now encompasses a broader range of disciplines. On the other hand, the realist tradition still maintains its hegemony, despite critiques of positivist epistemology and of the greater emphasis on cooperative processes. Lastly, the article argues that issues related to the formation of identities and normative perspectives must be made part of the discussion on the international situation.
international institutions; international relations theory; post-Cold War