The book is in four parts. The first, an historical snapshot of past diplomacies in Western and non-Western contexts, establishes a comparative benchmark for understanding contemporary diplomacy.
Part Two offers students intellectual tools for critically examining diplomacy through an examination of different theoretical approaches to diplomacy and current debates about its nature.
Part Three builds on these previous discussions, analyzing in detail the particular structures, processes, and instruments of contemporary diplomacy. The debates about these issues are canvassed and the implications for future practice considered.
The final part, an examination of examples of national, regional, and international practices of diplomacy, adds further insight into today's diplomacy.