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Compare and contrast traditional Marxist approaches to international relations with EITHER Neo-Gramscian OR Frankfurt School vie - Essay Example

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ORTHODOX MARXISM AND NEO-GRAMSCIAN THEORY: A COMPARATIVE ANALYSIS by Presented to [Name of the Professor, Name of the Class] [Name of University] [Name of the City and State] May 3, 2011 Introduction This essay will deal with common and distinct features of orthodox Marxism and neo-Gramscian school as approaches to research of the IR…
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Compare and contrast traditional Marxist approaches to international relations with EITHER Neo-Gramscian OR Frankfurt School vie
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Download file to see previous pages The essay will be structured as follows. In the first section, the basic assumption and specific views of orthodox Marxist theorists of the IR will be examined. It will be argued that orthodox Marxism proceeds from the notion of primacy of international economic relations over political processes in the world system of states, neglecting ideological dimensions of international system. The second section will be devoted to analysis of neo-Gramscian approach to the IR. The questions of neo-Gramscian view on interrelation between economic and social factors of the IR will be given due attention. Finally, in the third section which will represent a conclusion to the essay, the direct comparison between orthodox Marxism and neo-Gramscianism will be presented, with a view to proving the difference between these two schools of international political thought. 1. Orthodox Marxism as a Theory of International Relations Basic Assumptions of Orthodox Marxism The crux of orthodox Marxist approach to the study of the IR lies in its assumption of primacy of economic and technological development over purely political processes, and of predominance of the struggle between different social classes over conflicts between political states (Linklater, 2005, p. 110). Unlike idealist and realist perspectives that centre on assumption of basically unchanging process of competition between self-interested individuals/political entities, a Marxian political analysis rests on the idea of historical specificity of social processes and of organic nature of social relations (Rupert, 2007b, p. 150). The Marxist theory implies the interconnection between productive forces as material bases for social production, and relations of production, which refer to the social relations between individuals, usually organized into classes, over the issues of production and distribution of social product. A Marxist perspective on the social processes proceeds from the idea of dialectic of “relations in process” (Rupert, 2007b, p. 151), where the social subjects, or agents, are both dependent on social structures that set the framework for their actions and effect their maintenance and further development. In that way, social structures simultaneously determine the actions of social agents and are continuously altered by them (Rupert, 2007a, p. 36). In class society the nature of social agents is determined by their class nature, with capitalist social relations being preconditioned by the struggle between two socio-economic classes: the bourgeoisie (capitalist entrepreneurs) and the proletariat (propertyless wage workers). The View of International Relations in Orthodox Marxism Just as Marx and Engels viewed economic structure of specific societies as the factor defining the whole variety of its political, juridical and ideological forms (the former was regarded as “basis” of society, the latter as its “superstructure”), so they regarded the problems of the IR as the result of interactions of different economies controlled by national dominant classes, whose interests are represented politically by their state. According to Marx and Engels, as the existence of bourgeoisie as a class in capitalist society was predicated on ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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