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Lecture 6

POLI 244 Lecture 6: POLI 244 9-28-2016

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Political Science
POLI 244
Fernando Nunez- Mietz

POLI 244-World Politics-9/28/2016 Balance of Power Theory Uses/Definitions -A situation where power is distributed equally -Or a systemic tendency towards equilibrium (theory explain his idea) What Brings About a General Balance -States seek security, which is inherently tough in anarchy -Balanced System: Power differential between great powers leads to security, power gap minimization -Worked well in 19 century Europe with the UK serving as an offshore balancer -If somebody became too powerful they would challenge the UK’s supremacy -If all states sought this wars would be rarer; tough to use self restraint because others will not usually do so -Defensive realists assume states follow this -Even they believe that achieving hegemony brings about peace -Unbalanced distribution where each state seeks the upper hand -Power-gap maximizes who seek their own power’s maximization -Offensive realists believe all nations think this way -War often brings things back into balance for these theorists -Amongst great powers Means of Balancing -Internal: Building up your own military in reaction to growing power of other states -Economy is not necessarily a predictor/form of internal balancing -EG Japan being constitutionally banned from having a standing army (Until Shinzo Abe rips all of the provisions to bits) -External: Alliance building, such as what occurred before World War I -Mutual defense is a key pillar of thi
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