• Entry
  • Reader's guide
  • Entries A-Z
  • Subject index

The term realism is used in various ways in many different disciplines. In philosophy, it is the opposite of idealism and nominalism; whereas in literature and cinema, it is counterposed to escapism and romanticism. In political analyses, realism is wedded to power and can be best understood as a philosophical disposition about society in general and about political matters in particular. Thus, realism has been the theoretical foundation of analyses of both domestic as well as international politics. Realist analysis of society and politics usually makes a set of assumptions about the society and especially about human nature. With a focus on power, the key concern for realist analyses is the competition for power.

Realism is inclined to a certain attitude regarding human nature, the ...

    • Loading...
    locked icon

    Sign in to access this content

    Get a 30 day FREE TRIAL

    • Watch videos from a variety of sources bringing classroom topics to life
    • Read modern, diverse business cases
    • Explore hundreds of books and reference titles