Recent years have seen significant interest among scholars of International Relations (IR) in ideological analysis. By treating international theories as international ideologies, this trend entails both a radical reconceptualization of IR’s disciplinary foundations as well as the emergence of important new lines of inquiry for scholars of ideology. And yet, as a research programme, ideological analysis in IR has failed to establish a significant foothold in the discipline. This article locates the source of this weakness in the fractious nature of IR as a discipline, which has contributed to the emergence of five distinct paradigms of ideological analysis: analytical, historical, philosophical, critical and reflexive. Reviewing these five distinct bodies of scholarship, this article demonstrates that ideological analysis is ‘alive and well’ in IR, but argues that greater engagement between divergent paradigms will be required in order to fully understand the complexities of international ideologies.