Elizabeth Cobbs Hoffman Harvard University Press, 2013 Library of Congress E183.7.C595 2013 | Dewey Decimal 327.73
Commentators call the United States an empire: occasionally a benign empire, sometimes an empire in denial, often a destructive empire. In American Umpire Elizabeth Cobbs Hoffman asserts instead that America has performed the role of umpire since 1776, compelling adherence to rules that gradually earned broad approval, and violating them as well.
This report analyzes defense options available to the United States in responding to current and emerging threats to U.S. security and interests in Europe, the Middle East, and Asia. It focuses on ways that the United States might adapt military instruments to meet these emerging challenges, assessing in broad terms the cost of defense investments commensurate with the interests at stake.
In this dynamic portrait of the human community as it enters the twenty-first century, Hugh De Santis argues that in a world of dwindling resources, economic inequality, and unremitting violence, the belief in endless progress can no longer be sustained.
Explaining that we have arrived at a great historic divide, De Santis asserts that the old modern order is giving way to an age of "mutualism." He draws on world history and the study of international relations to explore the emerging future, in which new forms of social and political identity and regional associations and alignments will be needed to solve global problems. Demonstrating that mutualism will require a dramatic change in the way states, international institutions, corporations, and local communities interact, De Santis argues that this transformation will be especially difficult for the United States, which will have to abandon its exceptionalist identity and rejoin a world it can no longer escape.
?Though Britain’s descent from global imperial power began in World War II and continued over the subsequent decades with decolonization, military withdrawal, and integration into the European Union, its foreign policy has remained that of a Great Power. David M. McCourt maintains that the lack of a fundamental reorientation of Britain’s foreign policy cannot be explained only by material or economic factors, or even by an essential British international “identity.” Rather, he argues, the persistence of Britain’s place in world affairs can best be explained by the prominent international role that Britain assumed and into which it was thrust by other nations, notably France and the United States, over these years.
Using a role-based theory of state action in international politics based on symbolic interactionism and the work of George Herbert Mead, Britain and World Power since 1945 puts forward a novel interpretation of Britain’s engagement in four key international episodes: the Suez Crisis of 1956, the Skybolt Crisis of 1962, Britain’s second application to the European Economic Council in 1966–67, and Britain’s reinvasion of the Falklands in 1982. McCourt concludes with a discussion of international affairs since the end of the Cold War and the implications for the future of British foreign policy.
The history of the modern social sciences can be seen as a series of attempts to confront the challenges of social disorder and revolution wrought by the international expansion of capitalist social relations. In Capital, the State, and War, Alexander Anievas focuses on one particularly significant aspect of this story: the inter-societal or geo-social origins of the two world wars, and, more broadly, the confluence of factors behind the Thirty Years’ Crisis between 1914 and 1945.
Anievas presents the Thirty Years’ Crisis as a result of the development of global capitalism with all its destabilizing social and geopolitical consequences, particularly the intertwined and co-constitutive nature of imperial rivalries, social revolutions, and anti-colonial struggles. Building on the theory of “uneven and combined development,” he unites geopolitical and sociological explanations into a single framework, thereby circumventing the analytical stalemate between “primacy of domestic politics” and “primacy of foreign policy” approaches.
Anievas opens new avenues for thinking about the relations among security-military interests, the making of foreign policy, political economy and, more generally, the origins of war and the nature of modern international order.
The Confucian doctrine of tianxia (all under heaven) outlines a unitary worldview that cherishes global justice and transcends social, geographic, and political divides. For contemporary scholars, it has held myriad meanings, from the articulation of a cultural imaginary and political strategy to a moralistic commitment and a cosmological vision. The contributors to Chinese Visions of World Order examine the evolution of tianxia's meaning and practice in the Han dynasty and its mutations in modern times. They attend to its varied interpretations, its relation to realpolitik, and its revival in twenty-first-century China. They also investigate tianxia's birth in antiquity and its role in empire building, invoke its cultural universalism as a new global imagination for the contemporary world, analyze its resonance and affinity with cosmopolitanism in East-West cultural relations, discover its persistence in China's socialist internationalism and third world agenda, and critique its deployment as an official state ideology. In so doing, they demonstrate how China draws on its past to further its own alternative vision of the current international system.
Contributors. Daniel A. Bell, Chishen Chang, Kuan-Hsing Chen, Prasenjit Duara, Hsieh Mei-yu, Haiyan Lee, Mark Edward Lewis, Lin Chun, Viren Murthy, Lisa Rofel, Ban Wang, Wang Hui, Yiqun Zhou
Winston Churchill's visit to Fulton, Missouri, on March 5, 1946, marked the first public recognition of the cold war that was to follow World War II. Churchill delivered his most famous speech, "The Sinews of Peace," which became best known by the phrase he used to describe the cold-war division of Europe, the "iron curtain."
In the United States and Britain, wartime alliances had fostered favorable feelings toward the Soviet Union. By 1946 democratic citizens on both sides of the Atlantic had begun to consider communist Russia a friend. In his speech at Fulton, Churchill exhibited breathtaking flexibility and a clear recognition of the main threat as he reminded the public that true friendship must be reserved for countries sharing a common love of liberty. The "Iron Curtain" speech defined postwar relations with the Soviet Union for citizens of Western democracies. Although it initially provoked intense controversy in the United States and Britain, criticism soon gave way to wide public agreement to oppose Soviet imperialism.
Opening with the full text of the address Churchill delivered in Fulton and concluding with Margaret Thatcher's fiftieth-anniversary address surveying the challenges facing Western democracies in this post-cold war climate, the book brings together essays that reflect on the past fifty years, recognizing Churchill's speech as a carefully conceived herald of the cold war for the Western democracies. These powerful essays offer a fresh appreciation of the speech's political, historical, diplomatic, and rhetorical significance.
After World War II, the major powers faced social upheaval at home and anti-colonial wars around the globe. Alarmed by conflict in Korea that could change U.S.-Soviet relations from chilly to nuclear, ordinary people and policymakers created a fantasy of a bipolar Cold War world in which global and domestic order was paramount, Masuda Hajimu shows.
“It was a quiet on the second floor. The vice-president walked solemnly into Mrs. Roosevelt’s sitting room, where she waited, grave and calm. With her was her daughter, Mrs. Anna Roosevelt Boettiger, her husband, Colonel John Boettiger, and Stephan Early. Truman knew at a glance that his premonition had been true. Mrs. Roosevelt came forward directly and put her arm on his shoulder.
‘Harry, the President is dead.’”
Robert J. Donovan’s Conflict and Crisis presents a detailed account of Harry S. Truman’s presidency from 1945-1948.
The Culture of Disaster
Marie-Hélène Huet University of Chicago Press, 2012 Library of Congress D24.H77 2012 | Dewey Decimal 363.34
From antiquity through the Enlightenment, disasters were attributed to the obscure power of the stars or the vengeance of angry gods. As philosophers sought to reassess the origins of natural disasters, they also made it clear that humans shared responsibility for the damages caused by a violent universe. This far-ranging book explores the way writers, thinkers, and artists have responded to the increasingly political concept of disaster from the Enlightenment until today.
Marie-Hélène Huet argues that post-Enlightenment culture has been haunted by the sense of emergency that made natural catastrophes and human deeds both a collective crisis and a personal tragedy. From the plague of 1720 to the cholera of 1832, from shipwrecks to film dystopias, disasters raise questions about identity and memory, technology, control, and liability. In her analysis, Huet considers anew the mythical figures of Medusa and Apollo, theories of epidemics, earthquakes, political crises, and films such as Blow-Up and Blade Runner. With its scope and precision, The Culture of Disaster will appeal to a wide public interested in modern culture, philosophy, and intellectual history.
What horrors will the twenty-first century bring? For many people, a clash of civilizations and a perilous return to great power rivalries are the dominant visions of things to come. Fueled by daily headlines, overwhelming majorities of people from all walks of life consider the world to be a far more chaotic, frightening, and ultimately more dangerous place than ever before. Christopher J. Fettweis argues that these impressions, however widespread, are wrong.
Dangerous Times? is an examination of international politics that reveals both theoretical logic and empirical data that support the vision of a future where wars between great powers are unlikely and transnational threats can be contained. Despite popular perception, today a far greater percentage of the world’s population lives in peace than at any time in history, and the number and intensity of all types of warfare have dropped steadily since the early 1990s. Terrorism, though reprehensible, can be combated and can actually increase international cooperation among states fighting a common threat. World wars like those of the twentieth century—the true clash of civilizations—are unlikely to be repeated in the close-knit world of the twenty-first century.
In this sharp and insightful book, Fettweis discusses this revolution in human history and its ramifications for international relations theory. He suggests a new vision for a more restrained U.S. grand strategy and foreign policy and reveals how, despite pessimistic perceptions to the contrary, the world is more likely entering a golden age of peace and security.
Contemporary world history has highlighted militarization in many ways, from the global Cold War and numerous regional conflicts to the general assumption that nationhood implies a significant and growing military. Yet the twentieth century also offers notable examples of large-scale demilitarization, both imposed and voluntary. Demilitarization in the Contemporary World fills a key gap in current historical understanding by examining demilitarization programs in Germany, Japan, Honduras, Guatemala, El Salvador, and Costa Rica. Contributors investigate factors such as military defeat, border security risks, economic pressures, and the development of strong peace cultures among citizenry. Exemplifying the political difficulties of demilitarization in both its failures and successes, Demilitarization in the Contemporary World provides a possible roadmap for future policies and practices.
The monumental events in Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union must be understood, Jan Van Oudenaren argues, in the context of a process of East-West détente begun in 1953 in the aftermath of Stalin’s death. Van Oudenaren’s comprehensive and timely study examines the development of Soviet-Western détente from the death of Stalin to the unification of Germany. In redefining détente as a process, rather than a code of conduct, Van Oudenaren looks to its origins in Soviet policy earlier than previously identified and analyzes both its history and character. His study explores the restoration of four-power negotiations in Germany and Austria in the mid-1950s, their subsequent breakdown in the Berlin crisis, their unexpected revival in 1990 in the form of “two plus four” talks on German unity, and the future of the Soviet Union as a European power. Among the key elements of détente discussed are diplomacy, particularly the role of summit conferences; cooperation among parliaments, political parties, and trade unions; arms control; economic relations; and links among cultural institutions, churches, and peace movements.
NATO is an alliance transformed. Originally created to confront Soviet aggression, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization evolved in the 1990s as a military alliance with a broader agenda. Whether conducting combat operations in the Balkans or defending Turkey from an Iraqi threat in 2003, NATO continues to face new security challenges on several fronts.
Although a number of studies have addressed NATO’s historic evolution, conceptual changes, and military activities, none has considered the role in this transformation of the secretary general, who is most often seen as a minor player operating under severe political constraints. In Diplomacy and War at NATO, Ryan C. Hendrickson examines the first four post–Cold War secretaries general and establishes their roles in moving the alliance toward military action. Drawing on interviews with former NATO ambassadors, alliance military leaders, and senior NATO officials, Hendrickson shows that these leaders played critical roles when military force was used and were often instrumental in promoting transatlantic consensus.
Hendrickson offers a focus on actual diplomacy within NATO unmatched by any other study, providing previously unreported accounts of closed sessions of the North Atlantic Council to show how these four leaders differed in their impacts on the alliance but were all critical players in explaining how and when NATO used force. He examines Manfred Wörner’s role in moving the alliance toward military action in the Balkans; Willy Claes’s influence in shaping alliance policies regarding NATO’s 1995 bombing campaign on the Bosnian Serbs; Javier Solana’s part in shaping political and military agendas in the Yugoslavian war; and George Robertson’s efforts to promote consensus on the Iraqi issue, which culminated in NATO’s decision to provide Turkey with military defensive measures. Through each case, Hendrickson demonstrates that the secretary general is often the central diplomat in generating cooperation within NATO.
As the alliance has expanded its membership and undertaken new peacekeeping missions, it now confronts new threats in international security. Diplomacy and War at NATO offers readers a more complete understanding of the alliance’s post–Cold War transformation as well as policy recommendations for the improvement of transatlantic tensions.
In Disarmed Democracies: Domestic Institutions and the Use of Force, David P. Auerswald examines how the structure of domestic political institutions affects whether democracies use force or make threats during international disputes. Auerswald argues that the behavior of democracies in interstate conflict is shaped as much by domestic political calculations as by geopolitical circumstance. Variations in the structure of a democracy's institutions of governance make some types of democracies more likely to use force than others. To test his theory, Auerswald compares British, French, and U.S. behavior during military conflicts and diplomatic crises from the Cold War era to the present. He discusses how accountability and agenda control vary between parliamentary, presidential, and premier-presidential democracies and shows how this affects the ability of the democracy to signal its intentions, as well as the likelihood that it will engage in military conflict. His findings have implications for the study of domestic politics and the use of force, as well as of U.S. leadership during the next century.
This study will interest social scientists interested in the domestic politics of international security, comparative foreign policy, or the study of domestic institutions. It will interest those concerned with the exercise of U.S. leadership in the next century, the use of force by democracies, and the future behavior of democratizing nations.
David P. Auerswald is Assistant Professor of Political Science and International Affairs, George Washington University.
Stephen M. Meyer steps back from the emotions and rhetoric surrounding the nuclear arms debates to provide a systematic examination of the underlying determinants of nuclear weapons proliferation. Looking at current theories of nuclear proliferation, he asks: Must a nation that acquires the technical capability to manufacture nuclear weapons eventually do so? In an analysis, remarkable for its rigor and accessibility, Meyer provides the first empirical, statistical model explaining why particular countries became nuclear powers when they did. His findings clearly contradict the notion that the pace of nuclear proliferation is controlled by a technological imperative and show that political and military factors account for the past decisions of nations to acquire or forgo the development of nuclear weapons.
End of the Nation-State
Jean-Marie Guehenno University of Minnesota Press, 2000 Library of Congress D860.G8413 1995 | Dewey Decimal 909.829
Essays on Twentieth-Century History
Edited by Michael Adas for the American Historical Association Temple University Press, 2010 Library of Congress D421.E77 2010 | Dewey Decimal 909.82
In the sub-field of world history, there has been a surprising paucity of thinking and writing about how to approach and conceptualize the long twentieth century from the 1870s through the early 2000s. The historiographic essays collected in Essays on Twentieth Century History will go a long way to filling that lacuna.
Each contribution covers a key theme and one or more critical sub-fields in twentieth century global history. Chapters address migration patterns, the impact of world wars, transformations in gender and urbanization, as well as environmental transitions. All are written by leading historians in each of the sub-fields represented, and each is intended to provide an introduction to the literature, key themes, and debates that have proliferated around the more recent historical experience of humanity.
Since the end of the Cold War, a new dynamic has arisen within the international system, one that does not conform to established notions of the state’s monopoly on war. In this changing environment, the global community must decide how to respond to the challenges posed to the state by military threats, political and economic decline, and social fragmentation. This insightful work considers the phenomenon of state failure and asks how the international community might better detect signs of state decay at an early stage and devise legally and politically legitimate responses.
This collection of essays brings military and social historians into conversation with political and social scientists and former military officers. In case studies from the former Yugoslavia, Somalia, Iraq, and Colombia, the distinguished contributors argue that early intervention to stabilize social, economic, and political systems offers the greatest promise, whereas military intervention at a later stage is both costlier and less likely to succeed.
How do people decide which country came out ahead in a war or a crisis? In Failing to Win, Dominic Johnson and Dominic Tierney dissect the psychological factors that predispose leaders, media, and the public to perceive outcomes as victories or defeats--often creating wide gaps between perceptions and reality.
The relationship between Western democracies and Islam, rarely entirely comfortable, has in recent years become increasingly tense. A growing immigrant population and worries about cultural and political assimilation—exacerbated by terrorist attacks in the United States, Europe, and around the world—have provoked reams of commentary from all parts of the political spectrum, a frustrating majority of it hyperbolic or even hysterical.
In The Fear of Barbarians, the celebrated intellectual Tzvetan Todorov offers a corrective: a reasoned and often highly personal analysis of the problem, rooted in Enlightenment values yet open to the claims of cultural difference. Drawing on history, anthropology, and politics, and bringing to bear examples ranging from the murder of Theo van Gogh to the French ban on headscarves, Todorov argues that the West must overcome its fear of Islam if it is to avoid betraying the values it claims to protect. True freedom, Todorov explains, requires us to strike a delicate balance between protecting and imposing cultural values, acknowledging the primacy of the law, and yet strenuously protecting minority views that do not interfere with its aims. Adding force to Todorov's arguments is his own experience as a native of communist Bulgaria: his admiration of French civic identity—and Western freedom—is vigorous but non-nativist, an inclusive vision whose very flexibility is its core strength.
The record of a penetrating mind grappling with a complicated, multifaceted problem, The Fear of Barbarians is a powerful, important book—a call, not to arms, but to thought.
Report evaluates strategies for dealing with U.S. partners and adversaries in Europe, Asia, and the Middle East in a time of diminishing defense budgets and American public preference for a domestic focus. The three proposed strategies are to be more assertive, to be more collaborative, or to retrench from international commitments. Each strategy is constrained and a balance will need to be struck among them that varies from region to region.
In the history of international relations, few events command as much attention as revolution and war. Over the centuries, revolutionary transformations have produced some of the most ruinous and bloody wars. Nevertheless, the breakdown of peace in time of revolution is poorly understood. Patrick Conge offers a groundbreaking study of the relationship between war and revolution.
How can we best understand the effect of revolutionary transformations on the politics of war and peace? Conge argues that it is only by bringing in, first, the organizational capacity of revolutionary regimes to extract resources and convert them into military strength and, second, the power of transformative ideas to transcend national boundaries and undermine the ability of opposing regimes to compromise that we are best able to understand the effect of revolution on the origins and persistence of war. By incorporating such key elements, this book provides a new, more comprehensive explanation of the relationship between revolution, war, and peace.
Conditions that lead to and sustain wars in general are identified and placed in the light of revolutionary transformations. Once the argument is presented, historical case studies are used to test its plausibility. Conge demonstrates the importance of the effect of revolutionary organization and ideas on the outcome of conflicts.
Political scientists, historians, sociologists, and the general reader interested in the politics of war and peace in revolutionary times are given new perspectives on the relationship between revolution and war as well as on the implications of political organization for military power and the process of consolidation of new regimes.
Patrick J. Conge is Assistant Professor of Political Science, University of Arkansas.
"Frank C. Zagare combines a deep command of historical scholarship and the sophisticated skills of an applied game theorist to develop and test a theory of why deterrence failed, catastrophically, in July 1914. . . . Zagare concludes with sage advice on how to avoid even more cataclysmic breakdowns in a nuclear world."
---Steven J. Brams, New York University
"Zagare's deft study of the origins of the First World War using his perfect deterrence theory uncovers new insights into that signal event and shows the value of formal theory applied to historical events. A must-read for those interested in security studies."
---James D. Morrow, University of Michigan
"Through an exemplary combination of formal theory, careful qualitative analysis, and lucid prose, The Games of July delivers important and interesting answers to key questions concerning the international political causes of World War I. Its well-formed narratives and its sustained engagement with leading works in IR and diplomatic history . . . make it a rewarding read for security scholars in general and a useful teaching tool for international security courses."
---Timothy W. Crawford, Boston College
Taking advantage of recent advances in game theory and the latest historiography, Frank C. Zagare offers a new, provocative interpretation of the events that led to the outbreak of World War I. He analyzes key events from Bismarck's surprising decision in 1879 to enter into a strategic alliance with Austria-Hungary to the escalation that culminated in a full-scale global war. Zagare concludes that, while the war was most certainly unintended, it was in no sense accidental or inevitable.
The Games of July serves not only as an analytical narrative but also as a work of theoretical assessment. Standard realist and liberal explanations of the Great War are evaluated along with a collection of game-theoretic models known as perfect deterrence theory.
Frank C. Zagare is UB Distinguished Professor of Political Science at the State University of New York at Buffalo.
Cover illustration: Satirical Italian postcard from World War I. Used with permission from The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Libraries.
This book looks at the struggle between the processes of globalization and geopolitical forces over the last 150 years. The twentieth century witnessed a struggle between geopolitical states who wanted to close off and control earth space, resources and population and globalizing ones who wished to open up the world to the free flow of ideas, goods and services. Brian W. Blouet analyzes the tug-of-war between these tendencies, the playing out of which determined the shape and behavior of today's world. Beginning his survey in the late nineteenth century, Blouet shows how the Second World War served to focus international awareness on the ramifications of global controls, and how we may be facing the end of geopolitics today.
This daring collaborative effort showcases dialogues between international scholars engaged with the United States from abroad. The writers investigate the analytic methods and choices that label certain talk, images, behaviors, and allusions as "American" and how to read the data on such material. The editors present the essays in pairs that overlap in theme or region. Each author subsequently comments on the other's work. A third scholar or team of scholars from a different discipline or geographic location then provides another level of analysis. Contributors: Andrzej Antoszek, Sophia Balakian, Zsófia Bán, Sabine Bröck, Ian Condry, Kate Delaney, Jane C. Desmond, Virginia R. Dominguez, Ira Dworkin, Richard Ellis, Guillermo Ibarra, Seyed Mohammad Marandi, Giorgio Mariani, Ana Mauad, Loes Nas, Edward Schatz, Manar Shorbagy, Kristin Solli, Amy Spellacy, and Michael Titlestad.
Hammarskjöld: A Life
Roger Lipsey University of Michigan Press, 2015 Library of Congress D839.7.H3L57 2013 | Dewey Decimal 341.23092
After his mysterious death, Dag Hammarskjöld was described by John F. Kennedy as the "greatest statesman of our century." Second secretary-general of the United Nations (1953 - 61), he is the only person to have been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize posthumously. Through extensive research in little explored archives and personal correspondence, Roger Lipsey has produced the definitive biography of Dag Hammarskjöld. Hammarskjöld: A Life provides vivid new insights into the life and mind of a truly great individual. Hammarskjöld the statesman and Hammarskjöld the author of the classic spiritual journal Markings meet in this new biography - and the reader will meet them both in these pages. A towering mid-twentieth-century figure, Hammarskjöld speaks directly to our time.
Hegemony tells the story of the drive to create consumer capitalism abroad through political pressure and the promise of goods for mass consumption. In contrast to the recent literature on America as empire, it explains that the primary goal of the foreign and economic policies of the United States is a world which increasingly reflects the American way of doing business, not the formation or management of an empire. Contextualizing both the Iraq war and recent plant closings in the U.S., noted author John Agnew shows how American hegemony has created a world in which power is no longer only shaped territorially. He argues in a sobering conclusion that we are consequently entering a new era of global power, one in which the world the US has made no longer works to its singular advantage.
In the United States at the height of the Cold War, roughly between the end of World War II and the early 1980s, a new project of redefining rationality commanded the attention of sharp minds, powerful politicians, wealthy foundations, and top military brass. Its home was the human sciences—psychology, sociology, political science, and economics, among others—and its participants enlisted in an intellectual campaign to figure out what rationality should mean and how it could be deployed.
How Reason Almost Lost Its Mind brings to life the people—Herbert Simon, Oskar Morgenstern, Herman Kahn, Anatol Rapoport, Thomas Schelling, and many others—and places, including the RAND Corporation, the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences, the Cowles Commission for Research and Economics, and the Council on Foreign Relations, that played a key role in putting forth a “Cold War rationality.” Decision makers harnessed this picture of rationality—optimizing, formal, algorithmic, and mechanical—in their quest to understand phenomena as diverse as economic transactions, biological evolution, political elections, international relations, and military strategy. The authors chronicle and illuminate what it meant to be rational in the age of nuclear brinkmanship.
With the collapse of the Soviet Union and its Eastern European bloc, the reunification of Germany was a major episode in the history of modern Europe—and one widely held to have been opposed by that country’s centuries-old enemy, France. But while it has been previously believed that French President François Mitterrand played a negative role in events leading up to reunification, Tilo Schabert shows that Mitterrand’s main concern was not the potential threat of an old nemesis but rather that a reunified Germany be firmly anchored in a unified Europe.
Widely acclaimed in Europe and now available in English for the first time, How World Politics Is Made blends primary research and interviews with key actors in France and Germany to take readers behind the scenes of world governments as a new Europe was formed. Schabert had unprecedented, exclusive access to French presidential archives and here focuses on French diplomacy not only to dispel the notion that Mitterrand was reluctant to accept reunification but also to show how successful he was in bringing it about.
Although accounts of U.S. officials regarding the reunification of Germany boast of American leadership that guided European affairs, Schabert offers a Continental perspective that is far more complex. He reveals the constructive role played by France as he re-creates not only French cabinet meetings but also communications between Mitterrand and George H. W. Bush, Mikhail Gorbachev, Helmut Kohl, Margaret Thatcher, and other world leaders. Along the way, he provides new insight into such major episodes as the fall of the Berlin Wall, European Council summits, the German-Polish border dispute, Germany’s membership in NATO, and the final settlement of reunification.
Schabert’s work is a major piece of scholarship that clearly shows the decisive role that France played in the orchestration of German reunification—by making the “German question” a European question. A primary source in its own right, this book dramatically reshapes our understanding of not only reunification but also the end of the Cold War and the construction of a New Europe.
International Political Earthquakes is the masterwork of the preeminent scholar Michael Brecher. Brecher, who came of age before World War II, has witnessed more than seven decades of conflict and has spent his career studying the dynamics of relations among nations throughout the world.
When terrorism, ethnic conflict, military buildup, or other local tensions spark an international crisis, Brecher argues that the structure of global politics determines its potential to develop into open conflict. That conflict, in turn, may then generate worldwide political upheaval. Comparing international crises to earthquakes, Brecher proposes a scale analogous to the Richter scale to measure the severity and scope of the impact of a crisis on the landscape of international politics.
Brecher's conclusions about the causes of international conflict and its consequences for global stability make a convincing case for gradual, nonviolent approaches to crisis resolution.
Michael Brecher is R. B. Angus Professor of Political Science at McGill University.
Latin America's Cold War
Hal Brands Harvard University Press, 2010 Library of Congress F1414.2.B693 2010 | Dewey Decimal 980.03
For Latin America, the Cold War was anything but cold. Nor was it the so-called “long peace” afforded the world’s superpowers by their nuclear standoff. In this book, the first to take an international perspective on the postwar decades in the region, Hal Brands sets out to explain what exactly happened in Latin America during the Cold War, and why it was so traumatic.
Charles S. Maier Harvard University Press, 2014 Library of Congress JC201.M34 2014 | Dewey Decimal 320.1
Thomas Hobbes laid the theoretical groundwork of the nation-state in Leviathan, his tough-minded 1651 treatise. Charles Maier's Leviathan 2.0 updates this classic to explain how modern statehood took shape between the mid-nineteenth and mid-twentieth centuries, before it unraveled into the political uncertainty that persists today.
Moving world-systems analysis into the cultural realm, Richard E. Lee locates the cultural studies movement within a broad historical and geopolitical framework. He illuminates how order and conflict have been reflected and negotiated in the sphere of knowledge production by situating the emergence of cultural studies at the intersection of post–1945 international and British politics and a two-hundred-year history of conservative critical practice. Tracing British criticism from the period of the French Revolution through the 1960s, he describes how cultural studies in its infancy recombined the elite literary critical tradition with the First New Left’s concerns for history and popular culture—just as the liberal consensus began to come apart.
Lee tracks the intellectual project of cultural studies as it developed over three decades, beginning with its institutional foundation at the University of Birmingham’s Centre for Contemporary Cultural Studies (CCCS). He links work at the CCCS to the events of 1968 and explores cultural studies’ engagement with theory in the debates on structuralism. He considers the shift within the discipline away from issues of working-class culture toward questions of identity politics in the fields of race and gender. He follows the expansion of the cultural studies project from Britain to Australia, Canada, South Africa, and the United States. Contextualizing the development and spread of cultural studies within the longue durée structures of knowledge in the modern world-system, Lee assesses its past and future as an agent of political and social change.
The Limits of Alignment is an engaging and accessible study that explores how small states and middle powers of Southeast Asia ensure their security in a world where they are overshadowed by greater powers. John D. Ciorciari challenges a central concept in international relations theory—that states respond to insecurity by either balancing against their principal foes, “bandwagoning” with them, or declaring themselves neutral. Instead, he shows that developing countries prefer limited alignments that steer between strict neutrality and formal alliances to obtain the fruits of security cooperation without the perils of undue dependency.
Ciorciari also shows how structural and normative shifts following the end of the Cold War and the advent of U.S. primacy have increased the prevalence of limited alignments in the developing world and that these can often place constraints on U.S. foreign policy. Finally, he discusses how limited alignments in the developing world may affect the future course of international security as China and other rising powers gather influence on the world stage.
Differences between human beings have long been used to justify a range of degrading, exclusionary, and murderous practices that strip people of their humanity and dignity. While considerable scholarship has been devoted to such dehumanization, Matthew S. Weinert asks how we might conceive its reverse—humanization, or what it means to “make human.”
Weinert proposes an account of making human centered on five mechanisms: reflection, recognition, resistance, replication of dominant mores, and responsibility. Examining cases such as the UN Security Council’s engagements with crises and the International Court of Justice’s grappling with Kosovo’s unilateral declaration of independence, he illustrates the distinct and contingent ways these mechanisms have been deployed. Theoretically, the cases evince a complex, evolving relationship between state-centric and human-centric views of society, ultimately revealing the normative potentialities of both.
Though the case studies concern specific human relations issues on an international level, Weinert argues in favor of starting from the shared problem of being human and of living in a world in which the humanity of countless groups has been demeaned or denied. Working outward from that point, he proposes, we obtain a more pragmatically grounded understanding of the social construction of the human being.
As part of a larger study on the future of the post–World War II liberal international order, RAND researchers analyze the health of the existing order and offer implications for future U.S. policy. The study’s overall conclusion is that the postwar order continues to enjoy many elements of stability but is increasingly threatened by major geopolitical and domestic socioeconomic trends that call into question the order’s fundamental assumptions.
Metaphorical World Politics
Francis A. Beer Michigan State University Press, 2004 Library of Congress JA85.M45 2004 | Dewey Decimal 320.014
Metaphorical World Politics argues that language and metaphor are important parts of international political reality. Metaphors and world politics have appeared together many times in recent history. The blended space that results is metaphorical world politics, a real- world game for political and scientific actors. This collection picks up the challenge to unravel the game, to examine its rules, to clarify the mixture of images and facts that is so real in politics but so exceptional in science. Scholars have studied metaphor mostly from a linguistic or a literary point of view. This work forces those primarily interested in metaphors to think about applications and implications beyond the text. Others concerned mainly with world politics may consider how metaphors may help to energize and structure international political thought and action.
Scholars have most often studied world politics embedded in so-called "facts." Metaphorical World Politics shows that facts are misleading in their compactness, that facts are often meaningless, that metaphors in contrast are energetic processors of meaning, and that facts in world politics are nothing more than weak emulsions of metaphor. This work outlines the general place of metaphor on the map of politics and highlights the location of specific metaphors on the political terrain.
In recent years, it’s become increasingly clear that emotion plays a central role in global politics. For example, people readily care about acts of terrorism and humanitarian crises because they appeal to our compassion for human suffering. These struggles also command attention where social interactions have the power to produce or intensify the emotional responses of those who participate in them.
From passionate protests to poignant speeches, Andrew A. G. Ross analyzes high-emotion events with an eye to how they shape public sentiment and finds that there is no single answer. The politically powerful play to the public’s emotions to advance their political aims, and such appeals to emotion also often serve to sustain existing values and institutions. But the affective dimension can produce profound change, particularly when a struggle in the present can be shown to line up with emotionally resonant events from the past. Extending his findings to well-studied conflicts, including the War on Terror and the violence in Rwanda and the Balkans, Ross identifies important sites of emotional impact missed by earlier research focused on identities and interests.
Modernity and Power provides a fresh conceptual overview of twentieth-century United States foreign policy, from the Roosevelt and Taft administrations through the presidencies of Kennedy and Johnson. Beginning with Woodrow Wilson, American leaders gradually abandoned the idea of international relations as a game of geopolitical interplays, basing their diplomacy instead on a symbolic opposition between "world public opinion" and the forces of destruction and chaos. Frank Ninkovich provocatively links this policy shift to the rise of a distinctly modernist view of history.
To emphasize the central role of symbolism and ideological assumptions in twentieth-century American statesmanship, Ninkovich focuses on the domino theory—a theory that departed radically from classic principles of political realism by sanctioning intervention in world regions with few financial or geographic claims on the national interest. Ninkovich insightfully traces the development of this global strategy from its first appearance early in the century through the Vietnam war.
Throughout the book, Ninkovich draws on primary sources to recover the worldview of the policy makers. He carefully assesses the coherence of their views rather than judge their actions against "objective" realities. Offering a new alternative to realpolitic and economic explanations of foreign policy, Modernity and Power will change the way we think about the history of U.S. international relations.
Eugene Davidson’s final book, The Narrow Path of Freedom and Other Essays, examines historical instances of man’s inhumanity to man, providing poignant insight that we can profit from as we contemplate an ongoing battle against terrorism. A superb essayist, Davidson here displays an extraordinary range. Long a student of international relations, he writes of the Nuremberg trials after World War II and, as the book’s title indicates, of the narrow path of freedom that the democracies have had to travel during the last half century. The path allowed little stumbling, lest they would fall into the errors that disgraced the dictatorships. Davidson wears his wisdom lightly, delighting a reader with touches of humor and with wry, startlingly appropriate comparisons.
A second set of essays examines the idea of history as it has survived into our present time, including what Davidson describes as the “thin coat of higher learning” in a commencement address in which he advises young men and women to listen to dissent and make up their own minds. As Davidson says, “The war of ideas is far from over, and every coming generation will have to bear its own share of the burden in the endless struggle for the survival of freedom.”
Last is a group of reminiscent essays. One recounts a friendship with the historian Charles A. Beard, who proposed to the young Davidson that he call him Uncle Charlie. In another Davidson plumbs the personality of a major figure of the Nazi era, Albert Speer. He also discusses the pathetic and perhaps demented Ezra Pound, whose genius as a poet may have been questionable but whose ability to survive was remarkable.
The Narrow Path of Freedom and Other Essays is a valuable guide for all who try to keep the idea of freedom alive. The pieces in it are nothing less than a triumph—historical, literary, philosophical. By confronting the idea of history—what the past should mean—Davidson gives us a book that will last well into our already turbulent new century.
A drastic reform of intelligence activities is long overdue. The Cold War has been over for ten years. No country threatens this nation's existence. Yet we still spend billions of dollars on covert action and espionage.
In National Insecurity ten prominent experts describe, from an insider perspective, what went wrong with U.S. intelligence and what will be necessary to fix it. Drawing on their experience in government administration, research, and the foreign service, they propose a radical rethinking of the United States' intelligence needs in the post-Cold War world. In addition, they offer a coherent and unified plan for reform that can simultaneously protect U. S. security and uphold the values of our democratic system.
As we now know, even during the Cold War, when intelligence was seen as a matter of life and death, our system served us badly. It provided unreliable information, which led to a grossly inflated military budget, as it wreaked havoc around the world, supporting corrupt regimes, promoting the drug trade, and repeatedly violating foreign and domestic laws. Protected by a shroud of secrecy, it paid no price for its mistakes. Instead it grew larger and more insulated every year.
Taking into consideration our strategic interests abroad as well as the price of covert operations in dollars, in reliability, and in good will, every American taxpayer can be informed by and will want to read this book. National Insecurity is essential for readers interested in contemporary political issues, international relations, U.S. history, public policy issues, foreign policy, intelligence reform, and political science.
When the North Atlantic Treaty Organization was formed just four years after the United Nations, it provided its members with a measure of security in the face of the Soviet Union’s veto power in the senior organization’s Security Council, as well as a means of coping with Communist expansion. Ever since then, the two institutions have been competitors in maintaining peace in the postwar world. Occasionally they have cooperated; more often they have not.
In NATO and the UN, Lawrence Kaplan, one of the leading experts on NATO, examines the intimate and often contentious relations between the two and describes how this relationship has changed over the course of two generations. Kaplan documents the many interactions between them throughout their interconnected history, focusing on the major flashpoints where either NATO clashed with UN leadership, the United States and the Soviet Union confronted each other directly, or fissures within the Atlantic alliance were dramatized in UN sessions. He draws on the organizations’ records as well as unpublished files from the National Archives and its counterparts in Britain, France, and Germany to provide the best account yet of working relations between the two organizations. By examining their complex connection with regard to such conflicts as the Balkan wars, Kaplan enhances our understanding of both institutions.
Crisis management has been a source of conflict between the two in the past but has also served as an incentive for collaboration, and Kaplan shows how this peculiar but persistent relationship has functioned. Although the Cold War years are gone, the UN remains the setting where NATO problems have played out, as they have in Iraq during recent decades. And it is to NATO that the UN has turned for military power to face crises in the Balkans, Middle East, and South Asia.
Kaplan stresses the importance of both organizations in the twenty-first century, recognizing their potential to advance global peace and security while showing how their tangled history explains the obstacles that stand in the way. His work offers significant findings that will especially impact our understanding of NATO while filling a sizable gap in our understanding of post-World War II diplomacy.
NATO in Search of a Vision
Gülnur Aybet Georgetown University Press, 2010 Library of Congress UA646.3.A935 2010 | Dewey Decimal 355.031091821
As the NATO Alliance enters its seventh decade, it finds itself involved in an array of military missions ranging from Afghanistan to Kosovo to Sudan. It also stands at the center of a host of regional and global partnerships. Yet, NATO has still to articulate a grand strategic vision designed to determine how, when, and where its capabilities should be used, the values underpinning its new missions, and its relationship to other international actors such as the European Union and the United Nations.
The drafting of a new strategic concept, begun during NATO’s 60th anniversary summit, presents an opportunity to shape a new transatlantic vision that is anchored in the liberal democratic principles so crucial to NATO’s successes during its Cold War years. Furthermore, that vision should be focused on equipping the Alliance to anticipate and address the increasingly global and less predictable threats of the post-9/11 world.
This volume brings together scholars and policy experts from both sides of the Atlantic to examine the key issues that NATO must address in formulating a new strategic vision. With thoughtful and reasoned analysis, it offers both an assessment of NATO’s recent evolution and an analysis of where the Alliance must go if it is to remain relevant in the twenty-first century.
How important are foreign affairs in the grand scheme of civilization? Do defenses against the invasion of strangers influence the evolution of culture? Drawing on decades of experience in government as well as in the academy, William R. Polk offers a uniquely informed, comprehensive view of foreign relations. Bridging academic disciplines he treats foreign affairs as they occur in the real world. Instead of separating diplomacy, intelligence and espionage, defense and warfare, trade and aid, intervention and law from one another, he shows how they interact and together form a whole pattern with which we must deal if we are to move safely into the 21st century. But Neighbors and Strangers is not just a guide to the future; Polk draws upon all recorded history, and indeed upon studies of animal and primitive social behavior, and from the entire world for vivid examples to illuminate for the general reader the underlying principles and consistencies that characterize relations with foreigners.
Indeed, going deeper into the human experience, Polk documents "fear of the foreigner" as a visceral response so deep-seated and so pervasive that it transcends human memory, individual experience and even logical analysis. More generally, he shows that the tension created by having to live as neighbors with those who, in the definition of contemporaries, were irredeemably alien has been one of the major causes of the rise of civilizations.
Accessible and engaging, Neighbors and Strangers is a revelatory look at how foreign affairs are a profound reflection of human nature.
We have Nietzsche to thank for some of the most important accomplishments in intellectual history, but as Gary Shapiro shows in this unique look at Nietzsche’s thought, the nineteenth-century philosopher actually anticipated some of the most pressing questions of our own era. Putting Nietzsche into conversation with contemporary philosophers such as Deleuze, Agamben, Foucault, Derrida, and others, Shapiro links Nietzsche’s powerful ideas to topics that are very much on the contemporary agenda: globalization, the nature of the livable earth, and the geopolitical categories that characterize people and places.
Shapiro explores Nietzsche’s rejection of historical inevitability and its idea of the end of history. He highlights Nietzsche’s prescient vision of today’s massive human mobility and his criticism of the nation state’s desperate efforts to sustain its exclusive rule by declaring emergencies and states of exception. Shapiro then explores Nietzsche’s vision of a transformed garden earth and the ways it sketches an aesthetic of the Anthropocene. He concludes with an explanation of the deep political structure of Nietzsche’s “philosophy of the Antichrist,” by relating it to traditional political theology. By triangulating Nietzsche between his time and ours, between Bismarck’s Germany and post-9/11 America, Nietzsche’s Earth invites readers to rethink not just the philosopher himself but the very direction of human history.
William E. Odom combines expertise in political science and military affairs to challenge both conventional and unconventional wisdom about insurgencies and political development. The author concludes that in all three components of U.S. strategy for counterinsurgency—political, economic, and military—faulty notions of causation inform policy. U.S. advice to embattled governments fails to recognize the inherent clash of development goals; direct fiscal aid hurts more often than it helps recipient governments; and the focus of U.S. military assistance on fighting insurgents plays to their strengths and fails to exploit their weaknesses. On Internal War reviews the contrasting theory and practice in Soviet and American approaches to their competition in the Third World and relates them to indigenous causes of internal wars. Odom also integrates the military dimensions of insurgencies with external influences and internal politics. Drawing on political development theory, he underscores the sources of instability in Third World states that make insurgencies more likely and offers ways to assess the prospects for democracy in specific cases. The centerpiece of the study is a practical application of the author’s analysis to three case studies—El Salvador, Guatemala, and the Philippines—and a regional assessment of the Middle East. Odom provides no panaceas but suggests that more promising strategies can be devised.
"Joseph's book is especially valuable and distinctive for its freshly mapped avenues into the sometimes dense field of international relations. His sophisticated analysis of 20th century U.S. peace movements is richly textured and analytically revealing."
--Cynthia Enloe, Clark University, and author of Bananas, Beaches, and Bases
The end of the Cold War promises a new era of global peace in which domestic reform could be achieved. Yet armed conflict persists throughout the world. Economic inequality, declining public services, environmental degradation, and other forms of domestic decay threaten the quality of life in the U.S. In Peace Politics, Paul Joseph develops a systematic comparison of the "old" and "new" world orders that links foreign and domestic affairs. By examining the issues that are central to any realignment of American politics, he offers a sweeping account of the possibilities and obstacles for progressive change over the 1990s.
Acknowledging that all nations and people have a right to security, he argues for a global attack against a broad range of shared threats, including human rights violations, nuclear devastation, poverty and despair, politically repressive governments, and environmental threats. Joseph also addresses the links between the militarism in the U.S. and deforestation of the Amazon, the uncertain victory of the Gulf War, the effect of public opinion on security issues, the impact of peace movements, nuclear weapons policy, and the need for a peace dividend.
Linking war and peace issues with environmental renewal, stronger democracy, economic justice, and citizen activism, Peace Politics is a rallying cry for rationality, genuine security, and mutual survival.
"Paul Joseph offers a much needed, coherent, progressive U.S. foreign policy, based on an analysis of the emerging world and the realities of American society."
--Louis Kriesberg, Director, Program on the Analysis and Resolution of Conflicts, Syracuse University
"Peace Politics is the first book that I have found that fully and systematically explores the implications of the dramatic shift in the international system that we have witnessed in the past few years."
--William A. Gamson, Professor of Sociology, Boston College
"This book is a tour de force. Joseph has packed an enormous amount of material and thoughtful analyses in a very readable presentation. The book is comprehensive, balanced, and wise."
--S.M. Miller, Visiting Professor, Boston College and Senior Fellow, Commonwealth Institute
Experts dominate all facets of global governance, from accounting practices and antitrust regulations to human rights law and environmental conservation. In this study, Ole Jacob Sending encourages a critical interrogation of the role and power of experts by unveiling the politics of the ongoing competition for authority in global governance.
Drawing on insights from sociology, political science, and institutional theory, Sending challenges theories centered on particular actors’ authority, whether it is the authority of so-called epistemic communities, the moral authority of advocacy groups, or the rational-legal authority of international organizations. Using in-depth and historically oriented case studies of population and peacebuilding, he demonstrates that authority is not given nor located in any set of particular actors. Rather, continuous competition for recognition as an authority to determine what is to be governed, by whom, and for what purpose shapes global governance in fundamental ways.
Advancing a field-based approach, Sending highlights the political stakes disguised by the technical language of professionals and thus opens a broader public debate over the key issues of our time.
Why are some discourses more politically efficacious than others? Seeking answers to this question, Ty Solomon develops a new theoretical approach to the study of affect, identity, and discourse—core phenomena whose mutual interweaving have yet to be fully analyzed in International Relations. Drawing upon Jacques Lacan’s psychoanalytic theory and Ernesto Laclau’s approach to hegemonic politics, Solomon argues that prevailing discourses offer subtle but powerfully appealing opportunities for affective investment on the part of audiences.
Through empirical case studies of the affective resonances of the war on terror and the rise and fall of neoconservative influence in American foreign policy, Solomon offers a unique way to think about the politics of identity as the construction of “common sense” powerfully underpinned by affective investments. He provides both a fuller understanding of the emotional appeal of political rhetoric in general and, specifically, a provocative explanation of the reasons for the reception of particular U.S. foreign policy rhetoric that shifted Americans’ attitudes toward neoconservative foreign policy in the 1990s and shaped the post-9/11 “war on terror.”
With the collapse of the Cold War following the Eastern European revolutions and the ongoing democratization of the Soviet republics, optimism about peace has transformed the international political climate. Incidents such as the Gulf War, however, have tempered this optimism and cast doubts on the prospects for demilitarization. In this book, Martin Shaw examines some of the developments that lie behind the recent momentous changes and argues that, despite the Gulf War and other regional wars, militarism is in decisive retreat.
Writing from a broadly sociological perspective, Shaw examines the roles of war and military institutions in human society and the ways in which preoccupation with war has affected domestic, regional, and international politics in the twentieth century. In doing so, he asks: When does the post-war era end? How have nuclear weapons altered the perception of war by society? What is the relationship between industrialism and militarism?
The author contends that, despite the militarism of some Third World countries, societies in the advanced industrial world (especially in Europe) have been undergoing a profound demilitarization. These societies have become politically insulated from war preparation, have recognized the effect of social movements on inter-state relations, and are experiencing a "revolution of rising expectations."
Offering evidence of "post-military citizenship," Shaw describes the increasing resistance to military conscription throughout the Western world, the replacement of blind obedience with demand for accountability in Eastern bloc countries, and the simultaneous rise of nationalism and communitarianism among common market members. And, in light of the collapse of Stalinist militarism in Europe and the USSR, Shaw suggests some of the changes that face Soviet society.
Beer and Hariman provide a coherent set of essays that trace and challenge the tradition of realism which has dominated the thinking of academics and practitioners alike. These timely essays set out a systematic investigation of the major realist writers of the Post- War era, the foundational concepts of international politics, and representative case studies of political discourse.
Only recently have international relations scholars started to seriously examine the influence of collective memory on foreign policy formation and relations between states and peoples. The ways in which the memories of past events are interpreted, misinterpreted, or even manipulated in public discourse create the context that shapes international relations.
Power and the Past brings together leading history and international relations scholars to provide a groundbreaking examination of the impact of collective memory. This timely study makes a contribution to developing a theory of memory and international relations and also examines specific cases of collective memory’s influence resulting from the legacies of World War II, the Holocaust, and September 11. Addressing concerns shared by world leaders and international institutions as well as scholars of international studies, this volume illustrates clearly how the memory of past events alters the ways countries interact in the present, how memory shapes public debate and policymaking, and how memory may aid or more frequently impede conflict resolution.
How states cooperate in the absence of a sovereign power is a perennial question in international relations. With Power in Concert, Jennifer Mitzen argues that global governance is more than just the cooperation of states under anarchy: it is the formation and maintenance of collective intentions, or joint commitments among states to address problems together. The key mechanism through which these intentions are sustained is face-to-face diplomacy, which keeps states’ obligations to one another salient and helps them solve problems on a day-to-day basis.
Mitzen argues that the origins of this practice lie in the Concert of Europe, an informal agreement among five European states in the wake of the Napoleonic wars to reduce the possibility of recurrence, which first institutionalized the practice of jointly managing the balance of power. Through the Concert’s many successes, she shows that the words and actions of state leaders in public forums contributed to collective self-restraint and a commitment to problem solving—and at a time when communication was considerably more difficult than it is today. Despite the Concert’s eventual breakdown, the practice it introduced—of face to face diplomacy as a mode of joint problem solving—survived and is the basis of global governance today.
In Powerless by Design Michel Feher addresses Western officials’ responses to post–Cold War conflicts and analyzes the reactions of the Left to their governments’ positions. Sometime in the early 1990s, Feher argues, U.S. and European leaders began portraying themselves as the representatives of a new international community. In that capacity, they developed a doctrine that was not only at odds with the rhetoric of the Cold War but also a far cry from the “new world order” announced at the outset of the decade. Whereas their predecessors had invested every regional conflict with an ideological stake, explains Feher, the representatives of this international community claimed that the crises they confronted did not call for partisan involvement. Exemplary of this new approach were Western responses to ethnic cleansing in the former Yugoslavia and genocide in Rwanda. In order to avoid costly interventions, U.S. and European leaders traced these crimes to ancient tribal enmities and professed that the role of the international community should be limited to a humanitarian, impartial, and conciliatory engagement with all the warring parties. They thus managed to appear righteous but powerless, at least until NATO’s intervention in Kosovo. Faced with this doctrine, both the liberal and radical wings of the Western Left found themselves in an uneasy position. Liberals, while lured by their leaders’ humanitarianism were nonetheless disturbed by the dismal results of the policies carried out in the name of the international community. Conversely, anti-imperialist militants were quick to mock the hypocrisy of their governments’ helpless indignation, yet certainly not prepared to demand that Western powers resort to force. Are we still in this “age of the international community”? Feher shows that with NATO’s intervention in Kosovo, both liberal and radical activists suddenly found their mark: the former welcomed the newfound resolve of their governments, while the latter condemned it as the return of the imperialist “new world order.” For Western leaders, however, the war against Serbia proved an accident rather than a turning point. Indeed, less than a year later, their indifference to the destruction of Chechnya by Russian troops suggested that the discursive strategy exposed in Powerless by Design might remain with us for quite some time.
What explains variance in the policy of Great Powers toward drug traffickers, pirates, and terrorists? Does counterharm policy depend just on the degree of material harm caused to a powerful state by such nonstate actors, or do normative, moral, and emotional factors also play a role? Why did the U.S., for example, harshly punish al Qaeda after 9/11 but avoid taking similar forceful measures against foreign drug traffickers who enable the deaths of thousands of Americans each year by selling highly illegal and harmful narcotics? Oded Lö wenheim argues that the answers to these questions lie in the social construction of agents of harm.
"Predators and Parasites shows, with impressive scholarship, that world politics is characterized by a cartel-like structure that gives states monopolies of legitimate violence. Sovereignty and a global structure of authority are not mutually exclusive. In a sense, anarchy is in the eye of the beholder."
— Robert O. Keohane, Princeton University
"An invaluable contribution to the growing body of constructivist literature in international relations and should be read by anyone interested in the use of force in contemporary global politics . . . Goes a long way toward explaining America's War on Terror against al Qaeda and the Taliban and the widespread global support for this policy, as well as the highly negative global reaction to America's own intervention in Iraq and its norm-threatening doctrine of preemption."
— Richard W. Mansbach, Iowa State University
"Prepare to be boarded! Lö wenheim delivers an essential constructivist tutorial on Great Power sovereignty and authority. An intellectual swashbuckler!"
— Rodney Bruce Hall, Oxford University
"Rejecting preventive war for moral consistency and just conduct, a fascinating discussion of pirates, terrorists, and revenge."
— Jon Mercer, University of Washington
Oded Lö wenheim is Lecturer in the Department of International Relations at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.
In this magnificent synthesis of military, technological, and social history, William H. McNeill explores a whole millennium of human upheaval and traces the path by which we have arrived at the frightening dilemmas that now confront us. McNeill moves with equal mastery from the crossbow—banned by the Church in 1139 as too lethal for Christians to use against one another—to the nuclear missile, from the sociological consequences of drill in the seventeenth century to the emergence of the military-industrial complex in the twentieth. His central argument is that a commercial transformation of world society in the eleventh century caused military activity to respond increasingly to market forces as well as to the commands of rulers. Only in our own time, suggests McNeill, are command economies replacing the market control of large-scale human effort. The Pursuit of Power does not solve the problems of the present, but its discoveries, hypotheses, and sheer breadth of learning do offer a perspective on our current fears and, as McNeill hopes, "a ground for wiser action."
As editor of Modern Age in the 1960s, Eugene Davidson introduced each quarterly issue with a thought-provoking contemplation of one or another of the decade's dizzying events. Gathered together here for the first time, the essays in Reflections on a Disruptive Decade present an intellectual conservative's perspective on an era which, because it underscores so many of the political divisions still with us today, continues to hold our fascination.
Davidson deals with the marvelous but confused realm of post-1945 international politics, in which the American people faced a new enemy, one often baffling and terrifying. The Cuban missile crisis was probably the most uncertain moment in foreign policy during this century. Although the crisis was resolved without bloodshed, there was intense danger of irrationality, for the Russians foolhardily had sent nuclear missiles to Cuba.
Other topics Davidson addresses are the Civil Rights movement, the policies and programs of Lyndon Johnson's Great Society, and the East-West battles of ideology and arms in Europe, Vietnam, and the Middle East. With remarkable shrewdness, Davidson illuminates many contradictions and excesses of the decade's liberal ascendancy, and presciently detects signs pointing to a resurgence of the nation's conservative forces.
Although more than thirty years have passed, Davidson's essays still contain great clarity, and his appraisals are still keen. Reflections on a Disruptive Decade is a truly remarkable addition to the work of this distinguished scholar.
From the earliest campaign against Augusto Pinochet’s repressive practices to the recent massive demonstrations against the World Trade Organization, transnational collective action involving nongovernmental organizations has been restructuring politics and changing the world. Ranging from Santiago to Seattle and covering more than twenty-five years of transnational advocacy, the essays in Restructuring World Politics offer a clear, richly nuanced picture of this process and its far-reaching implications in an increasingly globalized political economy. The book brings together scholars, activists, and policy makers to show how such advocacy addresses—and reshapes—key issues in the areas of labor, human rights, gender justice, democratization, and sustainable development throughout the world.
A primary goal of transnational advocacy is to create, strengthen, implement, and monitor international norms. How transnational networks go about doing this, why and when they succeed, and what problems and complications they face are the main themes of this book. Looking at a wide range of cases where nongovernmental actors attempt to change norms and the practices of states, international organizations, and firms in the private sector—from debt restructuring to protecting human rights, from anti-dam projects in India to the prodemocracy movement in Indonesia—the authors compellingly depict international nongovernmental organizations and transnational social movements as considerable, emerging powers in international politics, initiating, facilitating, and directing the transformation of global norms and practices.
Contributors: Karen Brown Thompson, U of Minnesota; Charles T. Call, Brown U; Elizabeth A. Donnelly, Harvard U; Darren Hawkins, Brigham Young U; Thalia G. Kidder; Smitu Kothari; Paul J. Nelson, U of Pittsburgh; August Nimtz, U of Minnesota; Mark Ritchie, Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy; Jackie Smith, SUNY Stony Brook; Daniel C. Thomas, U of Illinois, Chicago.
Rethinking the Cold War
edited by Allen Hunter Temple University Press, 1997 Library of Congress D843.R437 1998 | Dewey Decimal 909.82
The end of the Cold War should have been an occasion to reassess its origins, history, significance, and consequences. Yet most commentators have restated positions already developed during the Cold War. They have taken the break-up of the Soviet Union, the shift toward capitalism and electoral politics in Eastern Europe and countries formerly in the USSR as evidence of a moral and political victory for the United States that needs no further elaboration.
This collection of essays offers a more complex and nuanced analysis of Cold War history. It challenges the prevailing perspective, which editor Allen Hunter terms "vindicationism." Writing from different disciplinary and conceptual vantage points, the contributors to the collection invite a rethinking of what the Cold War was, how fully it defined the decades after World War II, what forces sustained it, and what forces led to its demise. By exploring a wide range of central themes of the era, Rethinking the Cold War widens the discussion of the Cold War's place in post-war history and intellectual life.
Revolutions, as much as international war or nationalism, have shaped the development of world politics. In cause, ideology, and consequence they have merited description as a “sixth great power” alongside the dominant nations. In Revolution and World Politics Fred Halliday reassesses the role of revolution from the French Revolution to the Iranian Revolution and the collapse of communism. Halliday begins by tracing the origins and evolution of the modern concept of “revolution” and placing it in historical context. Arguing that revolution is central to any understanding of international relations, he examines the internationalist ideology of revolutionaries who are committed to promoting change elsewhere by exposing revolution. In contrast with the claims of revolutionaries and counterrevolutionaries alike, he sees revolutions both as part of an internationalist social conflict and as a challenge to the system of states. Chapters on the distinct foreign policies of revolutionary states are followed by discussions of war, counterrevolution, and postrevolutionary transformation. The study concludes with a reassessment of the place of revolution within international relations theory and in modern history, drawing out implications for their incidence and character in the twenty-first century. Students and scholars of international relations, political science, sociology, and history will value this major contribution to understanding worldwide developments in government and society.
George W. Bush and Al Gore were by no means the first presidential hopefuls to find themselves embroiled in a hotly contested electoral impasse. Two hundred years earlier, Thomas Jefferson and John Adams endured arguably the most controversial and consequential election in American history. As the result of an intensely divided party process--the Federalists and the Republicans each convinced that the other would destroy the new nation if in control--the electoral system produced a tie, throwing the final decision to a House vote. Focusing on the wide range of possible outcomes of the 1800-1801 melee, this collection of essays situates the American "Revolution of 1800o in a broad context of geopolitical and racial developments in the Atlantic world as a whole. In essays written expressly for this volume, leading historians of the period examine the electoral, social, and political outcome of Jefferson's election in discussions strikingly relevant in the aftermath of the 2000 election.
Joyce Appleby, University of California, Los Angeles
Michael Bellesiles, Emory University
Jeanne Boydston, University of Wisconsin
Seth Cotlar, Willamette University
Gregory Evans Dowd, University of Notre Dame
Laurent Dubois, Michigan State University
Douglas R. Egerton, Le Moyne College, Syracuse
Joanne Freeman, Yale University
James E. Lewis Jr., independent scholar
Robert M. S. McDonald, United States Military Academy, West Point
James Oakes, City University of New York Graduate Center
Jeffrey Pasley, University of Missouri, Columbia
Jack N. Rakove, Stanford University
Bethel Saler, Haverford College
James Sidbury, University of Texas
Alan Taylor, University of California, Davis
James Horn is Saunders Director of the International Center for Jefferson Studies at Monticello and author of Adapting to a New World: English Society in the Seventeenth-Century Chesapeake.
Jan Ellen Lewis is Professor of History and Director of the Graduate History Program at Rutgers University, the author of The Pursuit of Happiness: Family Values in Jefferson's Virginia, and coeditor with Peter S. Onuf of Sally Hemings and Thomas Jefferson: History, Memory, and Civic Culture (Virginia).
Peter S. Onuf, Thomas Jefferson Foundation Professor of History at the University of Virginia, is the author of Jefferson's Empire: The Language of American Nationhood (Virginia).
In Rising Powers and Foreign Policy Revisionism, Cameron Thies and Mark Nieman examine the identity and behavior of the BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa) over time in light of academic and policymaker concerns that rising powers may become more aggressive and conflict-prone. The authors develop a theoretical framework that encapsulates pressures for revisionism through the mechanism of competition and pressures for accommodation and assimilation through the mechanism of socialization. The identity and behavior of the BRICS should be a product of the push and pull of these two forces as mediated by their domestic foreign policy processes.
State identity is investigated qualitatively through the use of role theory and the identification of national role conceptions. Both economic and militarized conflict behavior are examined using Bayesian change-point modeling, which identifies structural breaks in time series data, revealing potential wholesale revision of foreign policy. Using this innovative approach to show that the behavior of rising powers is governed not simply by the structural dynamics of power but also by the roles that these rising powers define for themselves, they assert that this process will likely lead to a much more evolutionary approach to foreign policy and will not necessarily generate international conflict.
Ronald Searle in Le Monde
Ronald Searle University of Chicago Press, 2002 Library of Congress D860.S4 2002 | Dewey Decimal 741.5942
Ronald Searle, a master of modern caricature, has tremendously influenced the work of other artists. His biting, darkly satirical wit and unique graphic style have also earned him admirers from far and wide; Groucho Marx called him a genius, and John Lennon named him as one of two people (along with Lewis Carroll) who most affected his life.
Since 1995, Searle has plied his sardonic trade on the coveted op-ed pages of the French daily newspaper Le Monde. This book presents more than a hundred of the best of these cartoons, ranging across politics, the new Europe, the nature of the contemporary economy, social games, and various "angels," both benign and mischievous. Whether skewering the greed of the rich with images of men in suits padding each other's pockets with cash or conducting business under the table, or making a poignant comment about how much harder peace has to work than war to stay in the same place, Searle displays the same pungent, incisive, yet infinitely humane wit. The deceptive simplicity of his lines and shadings combine with meticulously observed details of dress, background, and facial expression to produce arresting images that convey his messages powerfully and beautifully.
By turns delightful, amusing, and disturbing, but always deeply thought provoking, Searle's work reaches well beyond the specific occasion that inspired a given cartoon to illuminate key aspects of public life in the West at the end of the millennium. This book contains twenty-five illustrations not found in the French edition, together with a new preface for English-speaking readers written by Searle himself.
William I. Hitchcock Harvard University Press, 2016 Library of Congress JZ1313.S534 2016 | Dewey Decimal 327.101
Shaper Nations provides perspectives on the national strategies of eight countries that are shaping global politics in the twenty-first century. The volume’s authors offer a unique viewpoint: they live and work primarily in the country about which they write, bringing an insider’s feel for national debates and politics.
Featuring essays by some of the most prominent names in contemporary political and cultural theory, Sovereignty in Ruins presents a form of critique grounded in the conviction that political thought is itself an agent of crisis. Aiming to develop a political vocabulary capable of critiquing and transforming contemporary political frameworks, the contributors advance a politics of crisis that collapses the false dichotomies between sovereignty and governmentality and between critique and crisis. Their essays address a wide range of topics, such as the role history plays in the development of a politics of crisis; Arendt's controversial judgment of Adolf Eichmann; Strauss's and Badiou's readings of Plato's Laws; the acceptance of the unacceptable; the human and nonhuman; and flesh as a biopolitical category representative of the ongoing crisis of modernity. Altering the terms through which political action may take place, the contributors think through new notions of the political that advance countermodels of biopolitics, radical democracy, and humanity.
Contributors. Judith Butler, George Edmondson, Roberto Esposito, Carlo Galli, Klaus Mladek, Alberto Moreiras, Andrew Norris, Eric L. Santner, Adam Sitze, Carsten Strathausen, Rei Terada, Cary Wolfe
That Africa—one of the superpowers' crucial diplomatic and economic battlegrounds—now verges on political developments as dramatic as those of eastern Europe compels us to consider the tremendous influence that East and West have wielded in recent African political development. Drawing from American diplomatic archives, firsthand interviews, and the African and international press, Zaki Laidï presents a historical analysis of how the dialectical relationships of the United States, Soviet Union, and African actors evolved to their present state.
The lapse of European influence in the 1960s left a diplomatic void, which the superpowers rushed to fill. Just as Dien Bien Phû and the Suez crisis thrust Asia and the Near East, respectively, into the diplomatic spotlight, so the Angolan crisis lent a multifaceted cast to Africa's international relations. The ebb and flow of African crises is now linked to the rhythm of superpower relations, but Laidï is quick to warn that Africa's internal political circumstances shape the boundaries for external influence and constrain any efforts of the superpowers to exert total control.
Laidï's provocative study, here in its first English translation, addresses diplomatic strategy, often neglected economic considerations, the growing influence of the Bretton Woods institutions, and the decline of French influence in Africa.
Telling Young Lives presents more than a dozen fascinating, ethnograph-ically informed portraits of young people facing rapid changes in society and politics from different parts of the world. From a young woman engaged in agricultural labor in the High Himalayas to a youth activist based in Tanzania, the distinctive voices from the U.K., India, Germany, Sierra Leone, South Africa and Bosnia Herzegovina, provide insights into the active and creative ways these youths are addressing social and political challenges such as war, hunger and homelessness.
Telling Young Lives has great appeal for classroom use in geography courses and makes a welcome contribution to the growing field of “young geographies,” as well as to politics and political geography. Its focus on individual portraits gives readers a fuller, more vivid picture of the ways in which global changes are reshaping the actual experiences and strategies of young people around the world.
Why were the leaders of the United States and the Soviet Union able to negotiate a series of arms control agreements despite the deep and important differences in their interests during the Cold War? Lisa A. Baglione considers a variety of explanations for the successes--and failures--of these negotiations drawn from international relations theories. Focusing on the goals and strategies of individual leaders--and their ability to make these the goals and strategies of their nation--the author develops a nuanced understanding that better explains the outcome of these negotiations. Baglione then tests her explanation in a consideration of negotiations surrounding the banning of above-ground nuclear tests, the Strategic Arms Limitation Talks of the 1970s, the negotiations for the limitation of intermediate-range nuclear forces in the 1980s, and the last negotiations between the Americans and the disintegrating Soviet Union in 1990 and 1991. How these great rivals were able to negotiate significant arms control agreements not only will shed light on international relations during an important period of history but will help us understand how such agreements might develop in the post-Cold War period, when arms proliferation has become a serious problem.
This book will appeal to scholars of international relations and arms control as well as those interested in bargaining and international negotiations and contemporary military history.
Lisa A. Baglione is Assistant Professor of Political Science, St. Joseph's University.
"Toward a Just World is an insightful and thoughtful history. The first half of the twentieth century and the heroic efforts of those who sought international justice during that time will be much better understood and appreciated thanks to this fascinating book."—Robert F. Drinan, Georgetown University
A century ago, there was no such thing as international justice, and until recently, the idea of permanent international courts and formal war crimes tribunals would have been almost unthinkable. Yet now we depend on institutions such as these to air and punish crimes against humanity, as we have seen in the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda and the appearance of Serbian leader Slobodan Milosevic before the Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia.
Toward a Just World tells the remarkable story of the long struggle to craft the concept of international justice that we have today. Dorothy V. Jones focuses on the first half of the twentieth century, the pivotal years in which justice took on expanded meaning in conjunction with ideas like world peace, human rights, and international law. Fashioning both political and legal history into a compelling narrative, Jones recovers little-known events from undeserved obscurity and helps us see with new eyes the pivotal ones that we think we know. Jones also covers many of the milestones in the history of diplomacy, from the Treaty of Versailles and the creation of the League of Nations to the Nuremberg war crimes tribunal and the making of the United Nations.
As newspapers continue to fill their front pages with stories about how to administer justice to al Qaeda and Saddam Hussein, Toward a Just World will serve as a timely reminder of how the twentieth century achieved one of its most enduring triumphs: giving justice an international meaning.
From a decidedly multidisciplinary perspective, the articles in Transnational Political Spaces address the notion that political space is no longer fully congruent with national borders. Instead there are areas called transnational political spaces—caused by factors such as migration and social transformation—where policy occurs oblivious to national pressure. Organized into three sections—transnational actors, transnational spaces, and critical encounters—this volume explains how these spaces are formed and defined and how they can be traced and conceptualized.
Un-American is Bill Mullen’s revisionist account of renowned author and activist W.E.B. Du Bois’s political thought toward the end of his life, a period largely dismissed and neglected by scholars. He describes Du Bois’s support for what the Communist International called “world revolution” as the primary objective of this aged radical’s activism. Du Bois was a champion of the world’s laboring millions and critic of the Cold War, a man dedicated to animating global political revolution.
Mullen argues that Du Bois believed that the Cold War stalemate could create the conditions in which the world powers could achieve not only peace but workers’ democracy. Un-American shows Du Bois to be deeply engaged in international networks and personal relationships with revolutionaries in India, China, and Africa. Mullen explores how thinkers like Karl Marx, Jawaharlal Nehru, Mohandas Gandhi, and C.L.R. James helped him develop a theory of world revolution at a stage in his life when most commentators regard him as marginalized. This original political biography also challenges assessments of Du Bois as an American “race man.”
For nearly a half century, from 1945 to 1991, the United States and the Soviet Union maneuvered to achieve global hegemony. Each forged political alliances, doled out foreign aid, mounted cultural campaigns, and launched covert operations. The Cold War also deeply affected the domestic politics, cultures, and economic policies of the two superpowers, their client states, and other nations throughout the world.
Teaching the Cold War is both necessary and challenging. Understanding and Teaching the Cold War is designed to help collegiate and high school teachers navigate the complexity of the topic, integrate up-to-date research and concepts into their classes, and use strategies and tools that make this important history meaningful to students.
The volume opens with Matthew Masur’s overview of models for approaching the subject, whether in survey courses or seminars. Two prominent historians, Carole Fink and Warren Cohen, offer accounts of their experience as longtime scholars and teachers of the Cold War from European and Asian perspectives. Sixteen essays dig into themes including the origins and end of the conflict, nuclear weapons, diplomacy, propaganda, fear, popular culture, and civil rights, as well as the Cold War in Eastern Europe, Western Europe, East Asia, Africa, Latin America, and the nonaligned nations. A final section provides practical advice for using relevant, accessible primary sources to implement the teaching ideas suggested in this book.
When the Stakes Are High is based on the premise that powers have continually played a decisive role in international conflicts. Consequently, one of the key questions concerns the conditions that are likely to trigger or abate dispute escalation into major power conflicts. In this book, Vesna Danilovic provides a rigorous theoretical and empirical analysis of these conditions.
Since the most precarious and common form of dispute between major powers arises over third nations, the author's primary focus is on so-called extended deterrence. In this type of deterrence, one side attempts to prevent another side from initiating or escalating conflict with a third nation. When the Stakes Are High addresses such questions as: When is extended deterrence likely to be effective? What happens if deterrence fails? In what circumstances is war likely to result from a deterrence failure? The author's main argument is that a major power's national interests, which shape the inherent credibility of threats and which are shaped by various regional stakes, set the limits to the relevance of other factors, which have received greater scholarly attention in the past. Strongly supported by the empirical findings, the arguments in this work draw important implications for conflict theory and deterrence policy in the post-Cold War era.
This book will appeal to the reader interested in international relations, in general, and in theories of international conflict, deterrence, causes of wars, great power behavior, and geopolitics, in particular.
Vesna Danilovic is Assistant Professor of Political Science, Texas A&M University.
In Which World?, scientist Allen Hammond imaginatively probes the consequences of present social, economic, and environmental trends to construct three possible worlds that could await us in the twenty-first century: Market World, in which economic and human progress is driven by the liberating power of free markets and human initiative; Fortress World, in which unattended social and environmental problems diminish progress, dooming hundreds of millions of humans to lives of rising conflict and violence; and Transformed World, in which human ingenuity and compassion succeed in offering a better life, not just a wealthier one, and in seeking to extend those benefits to all of humanity.
This work tries to bridge the gap between international lawyers and those political scientists who write about international politics. In the first part, the author discusses the influence of Professor Morgenthau's realist school on the current thinking of political scientists and the abandonment of this school by its originator in the last years of his life. The author concludes that the best way to test the validity of different approaches is to discuss various international crises in the light of contrasting theories and to analyze each situation from both the legal and political points of view. In particular, he tries to ascertain to what extent vital national interests could be accommodated within an international legal framework, or could require a distortion of international rules in order to achieve national objectives.
In the second part, the author dissects the Entebbe raid, where Israeli forces rescued a group of hostages being detained by hijackers at a Ugandan airport. His analysis shows the deficiencies of the international system in dealing with such a complex issue, where several contradictory principles of international law could be applied and were defended by various protagonists.
The third part starts with a parallel problem--the Iranian hostages crisis, where a group of U.S. officials found themselves in an unprecedented situation of being captured by a band of students. A critical analysis of the handling of this problem by the Carter Administration is followed by vignettes of other crises faced by the Administration and by its successor, the Reagan Administration. This part is less analytical and more prescriptive. The author is no long satisfied with pointing out what went wrong; instead, he departs from the usual hands-off policy of political scientists and tries to indicate how much better each situation could have been handled if the decision makers had been paying more attention to international law and international organizations. The theme is slowly developed that in the long run national interest is better served not by practicing power politics and relying on the use of threat of force but by strengthening those international institutions that can provide a neutral environment for first slowing down a crisis and then finding an equitable solution acceptable to most of the parties in conflict.
The value of this book lies primarily in giving the reader a real insight into several important issues of today that are familiar to most people only from newspaper headlines and television news. While not everybody can agree with all his criticisms of the mistakes of various governments, there is an honest attempt by the author to present issues impartially and to let the blame fall where it may. Being both an international lawyer and a political scientist, the author has had the advantage of combining the methodology of these two social sciences into a rich tapestry with some startling shades and tones.
Since the first world’s fair in London in 1851, at the dawn of the era of industrialization, international expositions served as ideal platforms for rival nations to showcase their advancements in design, architecture, science and technology, industry, and politics. Before the outbreak of World War II, countries competing for leadership on the world stage waged a different kind of war—with cultural achievements and propaganda—appealing to their own national strengths and versions of modernity in the struggle for power. World’s Fairs on the Eve of War examines five fairs and expositions from across the globe—including three that were staged (Paris, 1937; Dusseldorf, 1937; and New York, 1939–40), and two that were in development before the war began but never executed (Tokyo, 1940; and Rome, 1942). This coauthored work considers representations of science and technology at world’s fairs as influential cultural forces and at a critical moment in history, when tensions and ideological divisions between political regimes would soon lead to war.
Writing Political History Today
Edited by Willibald Steinmetz, Ingrid Gilcher-Holtey, and Heinz-Gerhard Haupt Campus Verlag, 2013 Library of Congress D443.W725 2013 | Dewey Decimal 909.82
In recent years political history has been rediscovered by historians. In this volume the contributors approach the new political history in a constructivist way, conceiving the political as a communicative space whose boundaries are constantly reconfigured through acts of verbal, visual, and sometimes violent communication. Writing Political History Today is organized into four sections, focusing on politics and the political as contested concepts; boundary disputes between the political and other spheres; the question whether violence is a means, an object, or the end of political communication; and on a future agenda for writing political history.