• Unprecedented
    Vol 11 No 1 (2021)
  • Identity
    Vol 10 No 2 (2020)
  • Change
    Vol 10 No 1 (2019)

    With the climate crisis looming, populist leaders firmly entrenched in the former beacons of moderation, Brexit altering the geopolitical landscape of Europe, further polarisation of the political scene in the US, mounting divisions within the EU, instability in the Middle East, struggle for power of former strongmen of Sudan and Zimbabwe, protests in India and recession in Japan, Change couldn’t be a more topical theme for Leviathan. Unsurprisingly, surgical masks and umbrellas, representing outbreak of coronavirus and protests in Hong Kong respectively, come to symbolise the beginning of the third decade of 21st century. Together with our friends
    from Edinburgh Political Union (EPU), we have strived to engage all of the students in a series of passionate debates. While the EPU hosted a number of engaging events such as Justin Ho’s talk on protests in Hong Kong, we helped students enter the conversation through academic writing.

    Leviathan offers a wide array of perspectives on change, through five articles in the printed issue and more than ten available online. By doing so, we fulfil our mission of sparking accessible and meaningful conversations.
    Sonia Lilja explores the potential of Iranian cinema as a force of positive change for women, showing how innovative filmmakers are challenging traditional barriers in promising ways. In China, Jackson Paul Neagli shows how certain possibilities of knowledge productions are foreclosed through a nuanced system of conditional autonomy. Pedro Rogerio Borges de Carvalho is equally ambitious, considering avenues of regulation for autonomous weapons systems and the potential ramifications for warfare as we know it shouldn they be allowed to develop unchecked. Maria Gharesifard contextualises decades-long middle eastern fault lines from an increasingly exigent ecological perspective, bringing human need and resource depletion to bare on civil conflict. Finally, Brindley Fortuin unpacks the complex history behind last year’s parent protests in South
    Arica, showing how nuances of design and geography have entrenched apartheid’s legacies even as culture is renegotiated and changed in educational settings and beyond.

    We wouldn’t have been able to work on so many amazing articles had it not been for our team. In the past months, Leviathan has become the largest student-led peer-reviewed journal in Scotland. Not only have we expanded our team to fifty people, but also we managed to foster community and boost the skills of our team members. The production process has been expanded to include peer reviewing, more copy editing and more comprehensive writers’ training. For the first time, we accepted international writers from outside the university, dropped quotas of number of articles per section and composed insightful writers’ guides to allow people of all skills to contribute to Leviathan.

    We hope that you will enjoy reading Leviathan as much as we enjoy bringing it to you.

    Robert Jacek Włodarski, Leviathan Editor-in-Chief

    Emily Hall, Leviathan Deputy Editor-in-Chief

  • Atonement
    Vol 9 No 2
  • Scottish Independence
    Vol 4 No 3 (2014)
  • War & Peace
    Vol 4 No 2 (2014)
  • Feminism & Gender
    Vol 4 No 1 (2013)

    It is with tremendous gratitude and pride that I present to you the rst instalment of Leviathan for the 2013-14 academic year.

    is instalment represents the hard work and thoughts of twenty three students, two members of sta , and a fourteen member committee, making it the largest edition of Leviathan yet. As past readers will already have noticed, we have begun a new year with a fresh and, we hope, welcome series of changes to Leviathan.

    We have introduced a new regional format to the Journal, with articles divided into six regions, and comparative pieces included as International submissions. We hope that this makes it easier to navigate the Journal. We have also introduced a new logo which we hope will make Leviathan instantly recognisable on campus. It features the crown, sword, and sceptre, traditional symbols of sovereignty in the West, from the etching of the Leviathan that is the cover of Hobbes’ seminal work. We hope that the St. Andrews Cross that the sword and sceptre are crossed inside of will evoke the Scottish nature of this Journal and University.

    Inside, readers will nd the thoughts of students and members of sta on the topic ‘Feminism and Gender’. Feminism has a ected the political development of all nations, as well as informing the way in which we theorise about politics and international relations. How we interact in society is governed by gender expectations. Di erent societies have radically di erent norms and attitudes towards gender. Can we reconcile those norms? Should we? What role, if any, do human rights play in the debate?

    e intersection of feminism and gender with politics is contentious and relevant, and I invite readers to challenge their own norms, attitudes, and privilege as they engage with the thoughts of our contributors.

    ere are a tremendous number of people who deserve thanks, as Leviathan is truly a team e ort. e editors, production team members, events team, and fundraising team, led by Marcus Gustafsson, Adrie Smith, Tanya Turak, and Naomi Je erson, respectively, have put in many hours of e ort and thought into the Journal. e work before you is proof of their capabilities.

    ose Editors in Chief who are my predecessors, Natasha Turak and Uday Jain have also been enormously helpful throughout the cra ing of this work. eir legacy and assistance are appreciated by all who enjoy Leviathan.

    I’d like to thank Adrie Smith, especially, without whom the Journal would surely be lost. She is responsible for cra ing the redesign of the journal, production of the journal, for our new brand, and for unrelenting good advice.

    e University of Edinburgh and Politics and International Relations Society have the humble thanks of the entire Leviathan community for their generous support of our e orts.

    We hope that you nd this sampling of analysis, opinion, and academic debate from students at the University of Edinburgh thought compelling.


    Maxwell Greenberg, Editor in Chief

  • Development
    Vol 3 No 3 (2013)

    It is with pleasure that I welcome you to Leviathan’s last instalment of the 2012-13 academic year. For three years now, Leviathan has drawn on the work of students and staff alike to discuss, debate, and analyse the myriad political and cultural issues pervading current events. Leviathan strives to offer rich political material from a wide spectrum of viewpoints, presenting unique frameworks for our content as we explore a variety of themes. The theme for this issue is Development.

    The Development issue aims to address some of the most signi cant social and political challenges relevant today—our writers tackle a range of topics including gender, sustainability, healthcare, military aid, the economics of happiness, Scotland’s independence, Indonesia’s rise, China’s risks, and more.

    As a society, we pursue development in a variety of forms. Wealthy nations thrive on technological advancement, but how much of it helps those countries less fortunate? International summits and billions of dollars are committed to reversing the tide of environmental degradation and climate change, whilst powerful interests and the engines of consumerism stand as erce obstacles. Western countries that once led innovation are now mired in recessions and failing education systems. All eyes are on Asia, whose booming population and markets are shifting global power dynamics. Meanwhile, sectarian violence and terrorism threaten democracy and human rights across several continents. Governments appear more and more out of touch with their constituents. What kind of aid truly fosters empowerment? Is the road to progress paved by large organizations and governments, or by small grassroots and non-pro t movements? How can such a diverse range of entities collaborate to effectively create more prosperous communities around the world? What is our generation’s role in this process? What are the threats to development... and is it always a desirable thing?

    It is with pride and gratitude that I thank my team and all of the writers and artists who dedicated their time and work to this issue, and every issue under my editorship. As I pass the mantle on to the next Leviathan editor, Maxwell Greenberg, I wish him and his team the very best of luck. The Edinburgh University Politics and IR Society—the journal’s founder and winner of the 2013 EUSA Global Award—has been indispensable to Leviathan through its constant support and academic contributions. Finally, our success would not be possible without the generous help and guidance of the University’s Politics and IR department, who continue to lead the way in exceptional scholarship and teaching.

    As always, we encourage you to read, ponder, and critique relentlessly. Our hope is that Leviathan not only challenges you to think differently, but also inspires you to add your voice to the debate. We await your feedback and look forward to your future involvement. Stay updated by following our brand new Twitter page @LeviathanEdUni, and we welcome your questions and comments at leviathanjournal@gmail.com.

    Cheers, and enjoy.

    Natasha Turak, 

    Editor in Chief

  • Justice
    Vol 3 No 2 (2013)
  • Environment
    Vol 3 No 1 (2012)

    As Leviathan enters its third year of production, I wish to extend a warm welcome to our readers, new and old. Leviathan aims to shed light on the crucial yet sometimes overlooked issues of our political environment, stimulating thought-provoking analysis and debate. We examine today’s issues through a variety of themes in an effort to offer new perspectives. The theme of this issue is “The Environment”.

    As a generation, we face unprecedented obstacles. We face mounting debt, social unrest, and environmental decline, among a multitude of other quandaries. This issue of Leviathan features articles on topics from climate change to energy harvesting, the global food crisis to humanitarian development. On such a vast scale, it is dif cult to gauge our role as individuals—how much power do we have, both independently and collectively, to affect positive change? Is our generation to blame? Re-usable shopping bags and eco-bulbs may not change the world, but they have clearly contributed to a trend. Businesses nd increasing incentives to “go green”, but at which point do commercial interests and the environment come into con ict? Can we achieve economic prosperity without causing environmental degradation? And how do resources and environmental policies gure in the grand scheme of geopolitics and power?

    With a constant focus on the international sphere, this issue includes discussions on solar energy in Europe, pollution in China, the presidential election and energy policy in the US, water scarcity in South Asia, and more. We invite you to read, ponder, and offer critique by sending your feedback to leviathanjournal@gmail.com.

    As each issue is put together solely by Edinburgh University students, many thanks are due to the hardworking and tireless efforts of Leviathan’s writers, editors, illustrators, fundraisers, and production team members, without whom this journal would not exist. Leviathan is generously supported by the University’s Politics and International Relations Department, who have enabled us to pursue professionalism and quality, and to whom we owe boundless gratitude. The Politics Society has also been a steadfast foundation for our work, and continues to offer enlightening political discussion though its many events during the year. Finally, my personal appreciation goes out to Uday Jain and Ryan Jacobs, my predecessors, who through unwavering dedication founded and built this journal.

    Cheers, and enjoy.

    Natasha Turak Editor in Chief

  • Euro-vision
    Vol 2 No 1 (2011)

    Welcome to all students, staff and interested readers. To those reading Leviathan for the rst time, a short introduction is in order. This is a student-run journal which aims to provide reasoned debate and analysis on pressing yet sometimes overlooked issues in politics and current affairs. In order
    to address a topic as comprehensively as possible, each issue focusses on a speci c theme and the theme for this issue is “Euro-vision”.

    “Euro-vision” aims to assess the future of the European project, be it in the short, medium or long- term. Re ecting the precarious place that Europe seems to nd itself currently; our submissions have been fascinatingly diverse and in-depth. Articles include discussions on Turkey’s bid for mem- bership, critiques of the common security and defence policy, and analyses of the economic situa- tion and the inadequate efforts by policy-makers to respond to the Great Recession.

    Before concluding, we must acknowledge those who made this issue possible. The Europa Institute at the University of Edinburgh has generously sponsored this issue while the paternal support of the Department of Politics and International Relations and the Politics Society is also much appreciated.

    However, the most immediate and essential contribution has been from our writers and tremendous- ly diligent staff without whom this issue would simply not have been possible. Production for this issue was indeed an inter-continental effort, and the staff adeptly and ef ciently took on the chal- lenge of multiple time zones and other simultaneous summer commitments. I cannot thank them enough for their sterling work.

    As always, we urge you to critically analyse and respond to the articles by sending in your thoughts. Letters to the editor are welcome and should be sent to leviathanjournal@gmail.com.

    Thank you for your time and I hope you enjoy the issue.

    Uday Jain
    Leviathan Editor-in-Chief

  • Slaying the Sacred Crow
    Vol 1 No 2 (2011)

    Dear Reader,

    Welcome to the second installment of Leviathan. This release retains the broadness of our rst issue whilst exploring a new theme, the sacred cow. In the simplest terms a sacred cow is a subject seen by stakeholders as beyond criticism. Some topics covered in the following pages may not seem like sacred cows, yet, identifying a sacred cow is a subjective undertaking, in which the “sacredness” of a matter is in the eyes of the beholder. Thus, while some recognize Ronald Reagan as an ideological gure beyond reproach, his “sacredness” is questioned by others. In exploring the potentially undeserved reverence given to political institutions and individuals, we aim to generate a critical and normative approach to many politically relevant issues.

    This release could not have come about without generous support from the Politics Society and its sponsors, the Department of Politics and International Relations and the Latin American Development and Cultural Apprecia- tion Society. However, while money may make the world go round, the most important contribution comes from Leviathan’s writers, and our hardworking staff, whose efforts have been instrumental. As always we urge readers to critically analyze the articles to follow by offering your opinions, concerns and comments. Letters to the editor may be sent to leviathan@eupolsoc.org.uk .

    Thank you for your time and enjoy the read!

    Ryan Jacobs

    Leviathan Editor-in-Chief

    Leviathan’s success is in no small part a result of the hard work and dedication of the editorial team. Special thanks goes to Ryan Jacobs, Leviathan Editor-in-Chief, who did much of the initial spade work and laboured tirelessly to get the journal up and running. It seems like it was only yesterday that I was pushing for the Politics Society to launch its own journal, when I ran for Politics Society President. Since then the idea has grown and taken shape, thanks to Ryan’s hard work, and to the encouragement and help received from Professor Mark Aspinwall, head of the Department of Politics and International Relations.

    With its second release, I trust that Leviathan will continue as the Society’s publication for many years to come and that it will go from strength to strength.

    Jonathan Couto
    President, Edinburgh University Politics Society

  • Good and Evil
    Vol 1 No 1 (2010)

    As this is Leviathan’s initial foray into the public sphere, a short introduction is in order. Our journal is student-run, focusing on politics and current affair issues from the presently chilly yet beautiful Scotland, to further and perhaps sunnier corners of the world. We seek to fill the void of reasoned political debate and analysis from students such as you. Although the pieces to follow may adopt certain ideological perspectives, Leviathan does not endorse these views as right or wrong. Following in the footsteps of John Stuart Mill, the ‘collision’ of ideas and opinions is what Leviathan seeks, for only with reasoned and frank debate can certain truths be deciphered. In this spirit we humbly ask readers to reply to what you have read here. Are the authors not con- vincing, have they missed something, or why do you disagree with their opinion or analysis?

    This issue’s articles are loosely or directly tied to the theme of ‘Good and Evil’, thus entail- ing a degree of broadness in the opinions and analysis to follow. Strictly defining either term is uncalled for. However, generally we can say that groups or policies branded ‘evil’ are those which individuals and societies often would rather not associate with or implement. In contrast, policy or groups associated with normative and beneficial ‘good’, are pursued by individuals and socie- ties when given the opportunity, or so we hope. Identifying “Good and Evil’ is also context specif- ic, although certain norms may influence our definition, those norms do not have to be universal, and as individuals we make up our own definition. Consequently in the following pages some authors prescribe analysis as a way of rectifying a ‘flaw’ or ‘evil’. Others simply analyse a situation or phenomenon, leaving it up to the reader to decide what is ‘good’ and what is ‘evil’.

    Most importantly, at a time of year when exams, essays and job or further study applica- tions are high on the agenda, I am sincerely indebted to all those who have involved themselves in getting Leviathan off the ground. To our sponsors in the Politics Society and Edinburgh Univer- sity Department of Politics and International Relations, Leviathan would not have been possible without your financial and advisory support. To the writers, artists and unsung heroes in our production, editorial, publishing and advertising staff my thanks cannot be expressed in words. The success of this release is most notably yours!

    Now go forth. Debate, ponder and criticize our first instalment, but most of all enjoy! Cheers,

    Ryan Jacobs
    Leviathan Editor-in-Chief