Realism: Difference Between Realists and Liberalists.

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INTRODUCTION No single theory reliably explains the wide range of international interactions, but one theoretical framework has historically held a central position in the study of International relations. This approach called realism, is favored by some International relations scholars and vigorously contested by others, but almost all take into account. Realism is a school of thought that explains international relations in terms of power. The exercise of power by states toward each other is sometimes called realpolitik, or just power politics. On the other hand the liberal tradition in International Relations is closely connected with the emergence of the modern liberal state. Liberal philosophers, beginning with John Locke in the seventeenth century, saw great potential for human progress in modern civil society and capitalist economy, both of which could flourish in states which guaranteed individual liberty. Modernity projects a new and better life, free of authoritarian government and with a much higher level of material welfare. The purpose of this paper is to contrast between these two schools of thought by looking at their assumptions with the help of concrete examples. The liberalist view Liberals generally take a positive view of human nature. They have great faith in human reason and they are convinced that human principles can be applied to international affairs. Liberals recognize that individuals are self-interested and competitive up to a point. But they also believe that individuals share many interests and can thus engage in collaborative and cooperative social action, domestically as well as internationally, which results in greater benefits for everybody at home and abroad. In other words, conflict and war a... ... middle of paper ... ...uction to International Relations: Theories and Approaches. New York: Oxford Machiavelli, Niccolo (1957) The Prince and the Discourses. Translated by Luigi Ricci. Revised by E.R.P Vincent New York: Modern Library.Mienecke, Friedrich.Machiavellism: The Doctrine of Raison d’état and its place in Modern History. Translated by D.Scott. Yale, 1957. Morgenthau, H. J & Kenneth W. T (1985) Politics among Nations: The Struggle for Power and Peace.6th ed.Knopf Nincic, M (1992) Democracy and Foreign Policy. New York: Columbia University Press. Smith, M J. (1992) Liberalism and International Reform’, in T.Nardin and D.Mapel (eds) (1992: 201-204) Zacher, M & Matthew, R.A (1995). Liberal International Theory: Common Threads, Divergent Strands,’ in C.W Keglay, Jr., Controversies in International Relations: Realism and the neoliberal Challenge. New York: St. Martin’s Press, 107-50.
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