Understanding International Relations

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Understanding International Relations Through Liberalism and Realism To understand the international relations of contemporary society and how and why historically states has acted in such a way in regarding international relations, the scholars developed numerous theories. Among these numerous theories, the two theories that are considered as mainstream are liberalism and realism because the most actors in stage of international relations are favouring either theories as a framework and these theories explains why the most actors are taking such actions regarding foreign politics. The realism was theorized in earlier writings by numerous historical figures, however it didn't become main approach to understand international relations until it replaced idealist approach following the Great Debate and the outbreak of Second World War. Not all realists agrees on the issues and ways to interpret international relations and realism is divided into several types. As realism became the dominant theory, idealistic approach to understand international relations quickly sparked out with failure of the League of Nation, however idealism helped draw another theory to understand international relations. The liberalism is the historical alternative to the realism and like realism, liberalism has numerous branches of thoughts such as neo-liberalism and institutional liberalism. This essay will compare and contrast the two major international relations theories known as realism and liberalism and its branches of thoughts and argue in favour for one of the two theories. The liberalism and the realism approaches the international relations from very different perspective, and even though many of its views contrast from each other, the ... ... middle of paper ... ... between the theory of liberalism and realism to find which one of the theory gives better explanation and prediction of the international relations. For instance, each theories would approach the explanation for the peaceful relations between Republic of Korea and Japan different. If the reason for the friendly relation between the two countries are due to the balance of power to counter the Chinese interest, this would be the perspective of the realist. But if the economic interdependence between the Japan and Korea caused the peaceful relations, this is the view of the liberalism. Contemporary society analyze certain issues of international relations with different perspective, but it is utterly important for individuals to approach issues of international relations from one perspective and approach from contrasting critic view to study international politic.

In this essay, the author

  • Compares the two major international relations theories known as realism and liberalism.
  • Compares the views of liberalism and realism on international relations. the realist view views war as a legitimate policy tool in anarchy.
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