Robert O. Kehoane and Joseph S. Nye, Jr. “Power and Interdependence” In this text, Keohane and Nye try to shape and define a new concept of power applied on international relations based on the notion of interdependence, which is a concept broadly used and misunderstood in the discipline. Interdependence is getting more and more important in defining international affairs, inter-state relationships and worldwide behaviors; for a good understanding of the issue, we should now define the cornerstone, the backbone of the whole topic. Interdependence means, in Keohane and Nye's words, the situation of “mutual dependence [...] characterized by reciprocal effects among countries or among actors in different countries”. Although it is certain …show more content…
These three features will be, moreover, compared to some realistic assumptions, in order to evaluate their potential adherence to the present situation. Multiple channels: informal meetings or discussion that work as “trasmission belts” among governments and, more in general, societies; they take place at three different levels. We must notice that bureaucrats from different countries deal directly with one another at meetings and on the telephone as well as in writing ,moreover, it is a date of reality that multinational firms and banks affect both domestic and interstate relations. Absence of hierarchies among issues: Whereas “the Cold War period was so dominated by the issue of military security that other important issues were almost neglected. Minor role of military force: As military resources are getting more and more costly, and as particularly among industrialized, pluralist countries the perceived margin of safety has widened. These three features can be put in comparison with three main assumptions of the realist tradition, namely the “state-as-sole-actor” model, a hierarchy of issues in which security is the primary task and finally the consideration of force as the most effective instruments. Looking at the world today, we may think that these three realistic assumption may seem fairly demode; however,
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To understand changing patterns of global power is no easy feat, but several theories may give us an insight to the shift of power in our modern world, I wish to talk about these theories and how we can use them to better understand our past and present global power situations.
Taking realism as the security argument that deals directly with state security, it is accepted that nation states have valid concerns in protecting their borders and populations within from external threats, be they military force or manifestations of problems stemming from
In a realist world, states have “supreme power” over its territory and population, there is an absence of a higher authority. The fact that there is no higher authority has its consequences. States become self-interested, they compete for power and security. It can lead states to continuously struggle for power “where the strong dominate the weak (Kegley, 28).” This ultimately creates a system in which each state is responsible for its own survival, making them cautious towards their neighboring states. In addition, a realist world is a self-help system; “political leaders seek to enhance national security” by building armies and forming alliances (Kegley, 28). Economic and military power are key components to a state sovereignty and to national security.
The analytical text “The Paradox of American Power,” written by Joseph S. Nye was quite a fascinating read, as it analyzes the reasons behind why the U.S. has become a worldwide leader and is able to maintain its position as a leader. In addition Nye writes about “hard” and “soft” powers as one of the main reasons why the U.S. is able to hold its position as a world leader, and describes it as a major factor in determining whether or not other countries, such as Russia and China, have the ability to emerge as global superpowers. Throughout the book, Nye teaches the readers about the “Game of Politics,” describing unilateral and multilateral approaches to problems, and why the U.S. should initiate more cooperative relations with the other countries of the world in an analytical objective manner; even with its faults, it manages to convey this message in a way that gives its many of its strong points.
A realist’s view of the world is based on the idea of an anarchic global structure, where there is no higher power or authority above that of the states. Such a person sees the world as having competing power bases, maintaining individual states’ interests through the exercise of power. The primary concern is survival and this is accomplished by leveraging power. It is “the realist’s conception of power that has come to shape mainstream accounts of world politics.” Based on this view, in simplified terms, one might say that only through force can power be achieved. And one might assume that such force must be physical, coercive, or military in nature.
Realist presumptions are based on an anarchic system vested in the interest of the individual states through their own national interest. The state is expressed as rational and unitary actors; the main actor making rational decisions as a whole on behalf of the state. Power is hailed above all else and morals are irrelevant when the security of the state is at risk.
The balance of power theory is viewed as critical policy in the handling of international relations. To fully comprehend how the balance
John Mearsheimer’s theory of offensive realism follows similar assumptions to that of other realist theories such as Thomas Hobbes and Niccolò Machiavelli’s realism, or Kenneth Waltz’s structural realism. Mearsheimer’s theory operates on five core assumptions. First, as with other realist theories, Mearsheimer assumes that the international system is anarchic, meaning there is no overarching institution that governs nation states. Second, under offensive realism all great powers possess offensive military capabilities. Third, States can never be sure that other states will not use their offensive military capabilities against them. Fourth, drawing from neorealist thought, states seek to maintain their survival above all other goals. Finally, all states within the system are rational actors (Mearsheimer, 2001).
The term, “security” is usually defined with a specific focus on the “national security”; therefore the term usually refers to the neo-realist definition of the security that is absence of the military threat to the states. Hence, the neo-realist definition, which is the dominant one in the field, mainly concerns about the security of “states”. However, as one can see in the movie, Buried (2010), the realist definition is only the surface of the security problem because it is sure that there are some other subjects of the security such as “humans”. These two subjects of the security, unfortunately do not always go hand in hand but conflict with each other.
Realism , and how the Syrian government's agreement to hand over its chemical weapons is inconsistent with the realist theory. Realism starts with two key assumptions:that states are the dominant actors,States must live in fear of one another.Realist assume that anarchy which is the absence of central authority , shapes the interest and interactions that matter in world politics ( ). Realist emphasizes that the lack of a central government or international police enforcement ,Leave no other option but to add extreme measures of security;In order To protect its sovereignty and its people.With the high interest of state Security ; comes an interest in acquiring power- usually having stronger military capabilities than other states. This leads to Neighboring states competing on building
The Realist paradigm of International Relations has played a significant role in the field of security studies. It focuses on military security in inter-state conflicts. Realism helps to explain certain aspects of foreign
The topic of interdependence has been an issue since the inception of the state system and more prominently after the Cold War. Political scientists have debated its significance and vitality in a realism dominated discourse for years. However many alternative theories have surfaced supplying theorists with new material to analyze the question of conflict and interdependence. Interdependence does reduce the likelihood of conflict.
To explore more about the mindset of neoliberalism, Robert Keohane (2000) suggested the idea of complex interdependence. To begin with, non-state actors can participate in international politics directly, while transnational world breaks down the assumption of state as the only actor, and increases the importance of non-state actors like NGOs and TNCs. Besides, international issues are complicated, breaking down the level of politics. In other words, there is no absolute difference or hierarchy between high politics like military security and low politics like public affairs and economy. Thirdly, military power is important for balancing, but it is not the only method to solve the problems. Military power, for example, cannot solve economic problems. While interdependence between states becomes more and more prominent under the increasingly globalizing world, the costs of using force to resolve disputes therefore become much
An Analysis of Joseph Nye’s Use of “Soft Power” and its Relationship with Morality in International Relations
The acknowledgement of core and peripheral states on global stage has long been existing as a nature of international relations. The presence of commanding powers, constructed by advancements in economy, social complexion, technology, and ideology, enables world orders in which underdeveloped countries find their gap with established states challenging to narrow. Imperialism and dependency theories were therefore begotten to explain complicated relationships between nations, among them the flow and tendency of influence. While these two get their own criticism, in the age of globalization, the notion of interdependence threatens the validity of such theories (Hesmondhalgh, 2008). However, this essay attempts to argue that imperialism and dependency theories are still applicable to communications policy field in a world of global inter-connectedness due to varied outlooks on interdependent conditions.