The English School in IR Theory

and are subdivided between solidarists. . Unlike neo-realism.International society theory (the English school) • focuses on the shared norms and values of states and how they regulate international relations. and international law. it is not necessarily positivist. who place greater value in order and sovereignty. Theorists have focused particularly on humanitarian intervention. who tend to advocate it more. and pluralists. order. Examples of such norms include diplomacy.

despite the condition of 'anarchy' (literally the lack of a ruler or world state).The 'English School' • Particular strand of international relations theory. . but it also draws heavily on realist and critical theories. maintains that there is a 'society of states' at the international level. Grotianism or the British institutionalists. also known as Liberal Realism. Its strongest influence is functionalism. Rationalism.

Systems of States (1977) • Martin Wight. • Martin Wight. Power Politics (1978) • Martin Wight. Grotius. Kant.Literaturtipp: Key Works • Hedley Bull. and Mazzini (2005) • Martin Wight. Four seminal thinkers in international theory : Machiavelli. The Anarchical Society (1977). • Herbert Butterfield. International Theory. Martin Wight (eds). The three traditions (1991) . Diplomatic Investigations (1966).

A comparative historical analysis. A History of the English School. Cambridge 2004 .Literaturtipp • Adam Watson: The Evolution of International Society. Oxford 1984 • Tim Dunne: Inventing International Society. Basingstoke 1998 • Barry Buzan: International Society and World Society. London 1992 • Hedley Bull/Adam Watson (eds): The Expansion of International Society. tional-relations-security/english-school/ .polis.leeds.Website • www.

the balance of power. diplomacy. Basingstoke 1999 .): Hedley Bull on International Society. and international law. the great powers.International Society • International relations represents a society of states. This international society can be detected in the ideas that animate the key institutions that regulate international relations: war. • Kai Alderson/Andrew Hurrell (eds. especially in the mutual recognition of sovereignty by states.

International Society II • There are differing accounts concerning the evolution of those ideas. especially their survival. maintaining that the contemporary society of states is partly the product of a common civilization . and others such as Hedley Bull. . some (like Martin Wight) arguing their origins can be found in the remnants of medieval conceptions of societas Christiana. Most English School understandings of international society blend these two together.and partly that of a kind of Lockean contract.the Christian world of medieval Europe. and before that. the Roman Empire . in the concerns of sovereign states to safeguard and promote basic goals.

• Later Wight changed his triad into a four part division by adding Mazzini (see: Martin Wight. seeking a middle way (or via media) between the 'power politics' of realism and the 'utopianism' of revolutionism.Reexamination of traditional approaches • A great deal of the English School of thought concerns itself with the examination of traditional international theory. Kant. • In broad terms. after Immanuel Kant). Grotius. Four Seminal Thinkers in International Theory: Machiavelli. . after Hugo Grotius) • Revolutionist (or Kantian. the English School itself has supported the rationalist or Grotian tradition. casting it into three divisions (described by Buzan as the English schools' triad): • Realist or Hobbesian (after Thomas Hobbes) • Rationalist (or Grotian. and Mazzini).

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