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Constructivism (International Relations class) – Rush …

The new debate between international (neo)realists and (neo)liberalsis no longer concerned with the questions of morality and human nature,but with the extent to which state behavior is influenced by the anarchicstructure of the international system rather than by institutions, learning and other factors that are conductive to cooperation. In his 1989 book InternationalInstitutions and State Power, Robert Keohane accepts Waltz’semphasis on system-level theory and his general assumption that statesare self-interested actors that rationally pursue their goals. However,by employing game theory he shows that states can widen the perceptionof their self-interest through economic cooperation and involvement ininternational institutions. Patterns of interdependence can thus affectworld politics. Keohane calls for systemic theories that would be ableto deal better with factors affecting state interaction, and withchange.

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Perhaps the greatest problem with realism in internationalrelations is that it has a tendency to slip into its extreme version,which accepts any policy that can benefit the state at the expense ofother states, no matter how morally problematic the policy is. Even ifthey do not explicitly raise ethical questions, in the works of Waltzand of many other of today’s neorealists, a double ethics ispresupposed, and words such realpolitik no longer have thenegative connotations that they had for classical realists, such asHans Morgenthau.

Constructivism (International Relations class) ..

Theories of international relations essays

In spite of its ambiguities and weaknesses, Morgenthau’sPolitics among Nations became a standard textbook andinfluenced thinking about international politics for a generation orso. At the same time, there was an attempt to develop a more methodologically rigorous approach to theorizing about international affairs. In the 1950s and 1960s a large influx of scientists from different fields entered the discipline of International Relations and attempted to replace the “wisdom literature” of classical realists with scientific concepts and reasoning (Brown 35). This in turn provoked a counterattack by Morgenthau and scholars associated with the so-called English School, especially Hedley Bull, who defended a traditional approach (Bull 1966).

Although Carr and Morgenthau concentrate primarily on internationalrelations, their realism can also be applied to domestic politics. Tobe a classical realist is in general to perceive politics as a conflict ofinterests and a struggle for power, and to seek peace by recognizing common interests and trying to satisfy them, rather than by moralizing. Bernard Williams and Raymond Geuss, influential representatives of the new political realism, a movement in contemporary political theory, criticize what they describe as “political moralism” and stress the autonomy of politics against ethics. However, political theory realism and international relations realism seem like two separate research programs. As noted by several scholars (William Scheuerman, Alison McQueen, Terry Nardin. Duncan Bell), those who contribute to realism in political theory give little attention to those who work on realism in international politics.

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Another avenue for the development of a realist theory of international relations is offered by Robert Gilpin’s seminal work War and Change in World Politics. If this work were to gain greater prominence in IR scholarship, instead of engaging in fruitless theoretical debates, we would be better prepared today “for rapid power shifts and geopolitical change ”(Wohlforth, 2011 505). We would be able to explain the causes of great wars and long periods of peace, and the creation and waning of international orders. Still another avenue is provided by the application of the new scientific discoveries to social sciences. The evidence for this is, for example, the recent work of Alexander Wendt, Quantum Mind and Social Science. A new realist approach to international politics could be based on the organic and holistic world view emerging from quantum theory, the idea of human evolution, and the growing awareness of the role of human beings in the evolutionary process (Korab-Karpowicz 2017).

An unintended and unfortunate consequence of the debate aboutneorealism is that neorealism and a large part of its critique (withthe notable exception of the English School) has been expressed in abstractscientific and philosophical terms. This has made the theory ofinternational politics almost inaccessible to a layperson and hasdivided the discipline of international relations into incompatibleparts. Whereas classical realism was a theory aimed at supportingdiplomatic practice and providing a guide to be followed by thoseseeking to understand and deal with potential threats, today’stheories, concerned with various grand pictures and projects, areill-suited to perform this task. This is perhaps the main reason whythere has been a renewed interest in classicalrealism, and particularly in the ideas of Morgenthau. Rather thanbeing seen as an obsolete form of pre-scientific realist thought,superseded by neorealist theory, his thinking is now considered to bemore complex and of greater contemporary relevance than wasearlier recognized (Williams 2007, 1–9). It fits uneasily in theorthodox picture of realism he is usually associated with.

Constructivism essay international relations
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WP Essay– Theories of International Relations Grade …

Machiavellianism is a radical type of political realismthat is applied to both domestic and international affairs. It is adoctrine which denies the relevance of morality in politics, and claimsthat all means (moral and immoral) are justified to achieve certainpolitical ends. Although Machiavelli never uses the phrase ragionedi stato or its French equivalent, raisond’état, what ultimately counts for him is preciselythat: whatever is good for the state, rather than ethical scruples ornorms

Political Realism in International Relations

Various speculations have been made towards the reasons behind the second invasion of Iraq. The field of political science, however, tries to interpret phenomena such as war through its branch of International Relations. International relations, commonly referred to as IR, is the study of the interactions of the various actors in the international system with the aim of explaining the reasons behind their actions. For a graduate level paper, it is unnecessary to point these kinds of things out to the reader. One would assume that the reader is aware of such things. These actors include individual states, inter-governmental organizations, IGOs, non-governmental organizations, NGOs, and multinational corporations, MNCs, (Aron, 2003). International relations are relevant in the field of public policy especially in the formulation of foreign policies of states. In spite of the fact that it is a branch of political science, the study of International Relations incorporates other diverse fields such as law, economics, philosophy, sociology, history, psychology and anthropology. Ditto here.

Summary/Content: Constructivism and international relations

International relations employ various theories in order to explain the various phenomena in the international system. These theories are based on conceptual models and a set of assumptions in order to analyze international relations. International relations theories can be classified into two categories; positivists and post-positivist. The positivist theories tend to base their focus on the state as their primary level of analysis by looking at issues such as state interactions and balance powers. The differentiation between positivist and post-positivist theories is their treatment of the state, but rather their view of how knowledge is obtained and to be understood. See: Sterling-Folker, c1. The post positivist theories on the other hand focus their analysis on issues beyond the state such as class, gender and security in analyzing the international system. Positivist theories include; realism, liberalism, constructivism and neoliberalism. Post-positivist theories on the other hand include: Marxism, social constructivism, critical theory and international society or English theory (Fayazmanesh, 2008).

of international politics and international relations

Idealism in international relations, like realism, can lay claim toa long tradition. Unsatisfied with the world as they have found it,idealists have always tried to answer the question of “what oughtto be” in politics. Plato, Aristotle, and Cicero were allpolitical idealists who believed that there were some universal moralvalues on which political life could be based. Building on the work ofhis predecessors, Cicero developed the idea of a natural moral law thatwas applicable to both domestic and international politics. His ideasconcerning righteousness in war were carried further in the writings ofthe Christian thinkers St. Augustine and St. Thomas Aquinas. In thelate fifteenth century, when Niccolò Machiavelli was born, theidea that politics, including the relations among states, should bevirtuous, and that the methods of warfare should remain subordinated toethical standards, still predominated in political literature.

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