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lect notes pol2103 - for International relations.docx

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Lecture notes from pol2103 International Relations IR winter session of 2012Theories of IRThe realists view or realismFrom the realists view the states look at the balance of power and how it is distributed to determine their position visvis another great power As per the author Mearsheimer from the article that we read Anarchy and the struggle for power argued thatCooperation with one another can be difficult to maintain because of the competitive nature of the world Cooperation is an unlikely unless the distribution of power is more or less equal According to Mearsheimer he argued also that great powers are rational actors because they are considerate toward the behavior of other states since this could affect their own strategy for survival and are careful about the consequences of their short and long term actions Bipolarity 2 superpowers is the most stable international system because it serves as a system of checks and balances Realists dont all agree on this The multipolarity world other hand is seen astoo unstable because too many states that can ally togetherRealists were high critics against the war in IRAQIn conclusion IR is a conflictive place to beRealists dont see institutions as a serious place to conduct politicsSecurity dilemma vicious circle wherestates are so distrustful that they make worstcase assumptions about each others intentions and as a result define their interests in selfhelp terms because there is no international central government or authoritythat states can turn tofor help they try to make sure that they have the capabilities or meansto defend themselves at all time With the Security dilemma security leads states to feel more insecure For exampleNormally England gets along with Canada butif Canada buysa bunch of military fleets and navals England will interpret this gestureas a security issue and they start buying their own military goods to keep up with Canada because with the security dilemma states cannot trust each other and can never be certain of each others intentions In our example therefore England can never be certain that Canada will not use these weapons against it Relative gains States make a deal with others based on their selfinterest only The realists believe that even if a state act in selfinterestI didnt catch this part but I googled it hopefully it applies to us Relative gain in international relations describes the actions of states only in respect to the balance of power without regard to other factors likeeconomics In international relations cooperation may be necessary to balance power but concern for relative gains will limit that cooperation due to the low quality of information about other states behavior and interests Relative gain is related to zerosum game which states that wealth cannot be expanded and the only way a state can become richer is to take wealth from another state wiki definitionMutual fear Nato after the Cold War got 20 counties to cooperate because they feared the Soviet would use the Nukes so they cooperated togetherLiberalismLiberalism in IR is the most ancient opponent to realismClassical liberal thought has many versions and meanings ththe father of liberal thought is John Locke who inspire othersliberalism takes off in the 18 centuryEnlightment agebig movement against religion the rise of the scientific revolution Religion operate on faith But with Liberalism it is about the natural law or rights of individualsexby virtue of being a human I have rights that no one can eliminate
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