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Lecture 10

Political Science lecture 10b DPT.doc

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McMaster University
Political Science
Todd Alway

Political Science 1G06 2013 Lecture 10b Democratic Peace TheoryConsider Does a democratic state act differently in its Foreign Policy than a nondemocratic stateDemocratic Peace theory see the article by Rosato from whom our discussion is takenAccording to proponents of this theory a simple study of the empirical evidence reveals the following pattern Democracies do not go to war against other democraciesDemocracies do go to war against nonDemocracies but not against each otherWhy multiple causal explanationsRecall that correlation does not imply causationFor what reason is it likely for Democracy to cause states to not go to war against one anotherAt the same time the causal explanation must account for why democracies will go to war against nonDemocraciesAmongst modern scholars there are generally two types of causal explanation offered Norm based explanationsDemocracy creates certain norms that promote the peaceful resolution of conflictsDemocratic leaders are socialized into nonviolent conflict resolution in their domestic disputesThese leaders are likely to transfer this conflict resolution strategy to the international realmInstitution based explanationsDemocratic institutions place certain constraints on democratically elected leadersoConstraints that do not restrain nondemocratically elected leaders1 Public constraintThe public is likely to restrain democratically elected leaders from declaring war1
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