Great Powers and World Order encourages critical thinking about the nature of world order by presenting the historical information and theoretical concepts needed to make projections about the global future. Charles W. Kegley and Gregory Raymond ask students to compare retrospective cases and formulate their own hypotheses about not only the causes of war, but also the consequences of peace settlements. Historical case studies open a window to see what strategies for constructing world order were tried before, why one course of action was chosen over another, and how things turned out. By moving back and forth in each case study between history and theory, rather than treating them as separate topics, the authors hope to situate the assumptions, causal claims, and policy prescriptions of different schools of thought within the temporal domains in which they took root, giving the reader a better sense of why policy makers embraced a particular view of world order instead of an alternative vision.

Great-Power Struggles for Primacy in the Modern Era

Great-power struggles for primacy in the modern era

The story of international politics is written in terms of the great powers of an era.

—Kenneth N. Waltz, International Relations Theorist

During a speech delivered on January 19, 2018, to unveil the publication of a new National Security Strategy of the United States of America, then U.S. Secretary of Defense James N. Mattis declared that great-power competition was now the primary focus of American foreign policy. The United States, he asserted, faced a serious threat from revisionist states that were attempting to reshape world affairs to promote their values and interests. In his estimation, the ambitions of these authoritarian regimes imperiled the principles and practices that had underpinned global stability ...

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