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International Affairs v. Liberalism - Assignment Example

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In the paper “International Affairs v. Liberalism” the author discusses a sharp contrast between the domestic political realm and the international sphere in contemporary times. While liberalism is pervasive in most domestic affairs, the opposite is true in international relations…
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International Affairs v. Liberalism
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Download file to see previous pages As a matter of fact, Hoffman’s statement that “international affairs is the nemesis of liberalism” has a grain of truth in it and this is especially so after the 9/11 incident.
There are two schools of thought or perspectives that are used to view international affairs: liberalism and realism. The study of these two perspectives is significant to the idea posed by Stanley Hoffman because they determine the reasons why international affairs, according to him, does not only see eye-to-eye with liberalism but seems to stand on the opposing side of it.
Liberalism can be defined as having four elements: citizens; the legislature; property rights, and; a market-driven economy (Dunne 186). Realism, on the other hand, has four sets of assumptions relative to the following: sovereign states; destruction; anarchy, and; uncertainty. 1 In a liberal society, all citizens must be equal before the law, have access to free education and their religious preferences respected and tolerated. The legislative assembly, in a liberal society, represents the people and cannot exercise powers not delegated to them by the people. Moreover, a liberal society guarantees the right of individuals to own private property with its accouterment productive forces and has an economy that is solely driven by market forces and not by the governmental bureaucracies. 2 The concept of realism, on the other hand, assumes that the sovereign states are the primary actors in international affairs and these states are motivated by their respective survival; have the capability to inflict damage on one another; an air of uncertainty characterizes the relations of states as each does not know exactly what the others want or are capable of doing, and; anarchy is an underpinning organizational principle. 3
The preceding assumptions of realism point to the element of insecurity being its fundamental character and that of international relations which could account for what Hoffman implied. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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