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Realism, Assumptions of Realism as a theory or international politics Distinction between ordered politics within nations and disordered politics between nations POWER Hierarchy vs. anarchy The interaction between the two is equivalent to the state of nature Politics is the continual states of war, all against all No way out, order cannot be created, but can exist on a whim States are the ONLY important actors in international politics—essentially LARGE states The UN exists only because states allow it to exist acts for and by and through the states States are functionally (and fundamentally) identical Defined borders, bureaucratic administration, economy, government (taxes, revenue), military power Characteristic of government is unimportant (doesn’t necessarily need to be a democracy) Ideologies are unimportant (Cold War competition not ideological) Cultural, religious, ethnic differences unimportant States are only distinguished by the amount of power they possess “Hard” military power, not “soft” persuasive power Element of Rationality states act to better themselves States live in a “self-help” system (Anarchy) When in a conflict, states can only truly rely on themselves Power Influence —relational concept, reactions of the states Measure —GDP and size of military economic capacity to create, sustain, and project military force across long distances Quality and nature of the miliaty Population-larger army Technology-arms available Resources to extract resources and build army Societal wealth/income Political institutions Exercise of Power —decisions made at the expense of minorities (why do losers remain complacent?) Force and legitimacy discourage the losers (lack of power to change and acceptance of outcomes) The distribution of power Balance among great powers, secure because power evenly distributed Insecure in unequal distribution One power can gain influence over another War more likely Power Transition Theory Hegemonic cycles
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State system not inherently anarchic, rather hierarchic Shift between hierarchy and anarchy results from rise and decline of hegemon ORDER emerges in hegemonic systems, WAR in transitional stages Created, imposed, and managed by the hegemon Stability of the 19 th century vs. disorder of the early 20 th century Classical Balance of Power Balance among great powers, secure because power evenly distributed Insecure in unequal distribution One power can gain influence over another War more likely Hegemony/Unipolarity Creates order through POWER and LEGITIMACY Power Use military power to make other countries feel more secure (lessen the pervasive insecurity of anarchy) Treatment of Germany between treaties of WWI and WWII was dependent on how countries (France) perceived security Physical vs. economic Defense against external threats Preventative wars and installation of friendly governments Legitimacy Establish and enforce laws, institutions, etc that benefit the subordinate nations
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This note was uploaded on 03/31/2008 for the course POLI 150 taught by Professor Mosley during the Spring '08 term at UNC.

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study guide complete - Realism, Assumptions of Realism as a...

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