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Political Realism: Peace through Power?

  • Félix E. Martín
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Abstract

Political realism and its contemporary derivative, neorealism, constitute one of the most influential analytical traditions in world politics. E. H. Carr places the origin of this school of thought “far behind utopianism and by way of reaction from it.” He affirms, nonetheless, that “the thesis that ‘justice is the right of the stronger’ was, indeed, familiar in the Hellenic world.”1 While Carr traces the inception of realist ideas to ancient Greece, Robert Gilpin is more specific and asserts that “the classic history of Thucydides is as meaningful a guide to the behavior of states today as when it was written in the fifth century B. C.”2 Such expressions are common among many contemporary realists who claim that Thucydides’s analysis of the Peloponnesian War and his focus on the concept of relative power are fundamental pillars of political realism. Accordingly, it is reasonable to conclude that one of realism’s primary concerns has been the investigation of the causes of war and peace in interstate relations. Given the focus of this book, it will evaluate the causal relationship between the most relevant realist propositions and the prevalence of peace in South America.

Keywords

International Politics Political Realism General Deterrence Polar Configuration Hegemonic Power 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Notes

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