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POL208Y1 Study Guide - Midterm Guide: The Need, American Imperialism, Legal Positivism

Political Science
Course Code
Lilach Gilady
Study Guide

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POL208 Midterm Study Notes
Mariela Libedinsky
Realism & Liberalism
The Battle of Antietam
- 150 years old
- 23000 casualties
- Political and critical connection to images and pop culture
The Need for Analytical Tools: Sylvie & Bruno
- Building models for reality social science
- Lewis Carroll (text)
In Search of an Analytical Knife
- “cutting” reality to make it more manageable
- Models omit dimension of reality
- Models include implicit fundamental assumptions on what matters most
- There is always more than 1 way, more than 1 way to cut a cake
- Eg maps are a model of reality
Correlation vs. Causation
- Theory
o Description
o Explanation
o Prediction
- The ability to falsify
- IR is the relation between nations
30 Year War 1618-1648
- The Pope Holy Roman Empire
- French & Swedish king underground rule
- Protestant conversion created turmoil
- Ferdinand II elected” new emperor
The Defenestration of Prague 1618
- Defenestration = to throw someone out a window
- 50% of population lost in 30 years
- Peace of Westphalia he who rules chooses the religion
- Augsuburg 1555 Treaty in 1648
o With all manner of jurisdiction and sovereignty, without any contradiction from the
emperor, the empire, house of Austria or any other
o 1st time sovereignty is legally addressed in political law led to construction of political
Sovereignty: What does it mean in Practice?
- A people, a territory, a bureaucracy, the king (authority) as a legal entity
- Monopoly over the functions of the state in a defined territory, excluding all external
intervention (over the legitimate use of force)
- The right to conduct foreign relations and sign treaties
- Sovereign equality
- Internal and external sovereignty (including/excluding internal/external intervention)
Sovereignty and the UN
- Non-intervention not challenge but to protect
- Equality reflects and mirrors principles
- Does not go above states but between them

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Contested Sovereignty
- Where sovereignty (internal or external) is contested = trouble
- Contestation from inside = failed states and civil wars (think congo, yugoslavia, Somalia etc)
- Contestation from outside = no recognition (think Taiwan, Afghanistan)
- Contestation over borders (arab/israel conflict)
The Westphalian System A myth?
- Independence, non-intervention, equality, internal and external sovereignty, territory,
population, bureaucracy
- Living in a westphalian word
o This structure affects the conduct of IR
o How will nation-states react to crisis?
o Assumptions the nature of units (human nature), interest of units, nature of structure
(anarchy), distribution of capabilities, nature of crisis
- See: Zombieland
- A group of theories that shares fundamental assumptions paradigm
Realism the realist A-Team
- Bismak realpolitik
- The politics of reality: based on practical rather than moral or ideological considerations
- Conservative: minimalistic/expansionist, militaristic
- Unholy alliances
- In accordance to foreign policy E.H Carr 20 years Crisis 1919-1939
o Dichotomy of foreign policy: idealism and realism
o Coined realism as we know it
- Different isms
- Paradigms which compete: models
- Important questions: threats, cooperation, actors, change
- Realism
- E.H Carr vulnerability of the world against Germany, led to WW2
Thomas Hobbes
- English 1588-1679
- Thucydides, Paloponnesian war translator
- Worked with geometry and the works of Galileo
Leviathan 1651
- The state of nature: a “war of every man against every man” life is “solitary, poor, nasty, brutish
and short”
- The state is the solution
The Logic of Hobbes’ Argument
- Man is a selfish hedonist: “of the voluntary acts of every man, the object is some good to
- All people are equal, rational and possessing a passionate love of survival (right of nature)
this may be violated
- A person’s right of nature justifies violence against everybody else
- In the interest of personal survival, people will come around to agreeing that they should
renounce their right to use violence no one to enforce this
- This is an unstable equilibrium
- The creation of the Leviathan enforces stability, citizens give up their independence to buy

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- Leviathan gets ultimate authority and monopoly over the use of violence
- Morality, justice, property are social constructs imposed by the state and exist only so long as
the state is strong enough to impose them maintaining stability
- Essence of the state = leviathan
- Law is dependent on power “legal positivism
- Justice is whatever the law says it is
- An “unjust law” is an oxymoron!
The Bull: Domestic Analogy
- Offensive and defensive realism
- Hobbes + IR = the international system is in a Hobbesian state of nature, individual = state,
unitary actor
- Anarchy = without a leader, the absence of higher governing authority beyond the state: no
world government
- Anarchy does not mean chaos/lack of order
- Westphalia, sovereign equality established anarchy
- Survival, self-help, self-interest, constant potential for violence
- Thin cooperation in realism we cannot trust anyone but ourselves
- Very limited potential for cooperation fear of defection
- No leviathan = no room for moral considerations
- Survival and self-interest are more important under anarchy
The Security Dilemma
- Time 1: constant fear and insecurity “counter force with force or be ready to pay the cost of
weakness” WALTZ
- Time 2: Actor A resorts to weapons, defensive wall, allies in order to increase security (this
makes Actor B insecure)
- Time 2: Actor B fears A, forces to invest in the same measures A started with
- Time 3: Actor B also reaches for means of security
- The Dilemma: how can we increase our security without threatening others arms race
Thucydides 5th century BC
- Athenian in Spartan war
- Realist believe that the rules of IR are constant
- Things that don’t change: human nature, the structure of government
- The Peloponnesian war began due to Athens erecting a wall around its city
The Malian Dialogue
- Athens gives the island of Melos a choice to give them their ports /land or surrender/die
- “the strong do what they have the power to do and the weak accept what they have to accept
- The strong do what they want, the weak do what they must
- If you abuse power (as Athens did) then you will lose (as Sparta won)
Niccolo Machiavelli 1489-1527
- “The Prince”, discourses – banned from the Catholic Church
- Politics has its own laws
- He was a realist, understanding human nature is key for understanding politics
- Humans are evil and selfish, determination/power prevails over reason
- The sole aim of a Prince is to seek power, regardless of religion or ethical considerations
- Church & State divided: “it is better to be feared than loved” the end justifies the means
Modern Realism
- Hans J. Morgenthau
- Politics among the nations 1948
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