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Modern State System

The present day world community is composed of a

number of nation-states.
The states are the basic units of the international
In recent times many non-state actors have also become
important in international relations
The state system is the present organization of the
worlds population into a number of Independent
sovereign nation states.
According to Palmer and Perkins, the state system is the
pattern of political life in which people are separately
organized into sovereign states that interact with one
another in varying degrees and in varying ways.
The rise of sovereign states back to the end of the Middle ages in
1.The protestant Reformation ended the spiritual dominance and
ideological universalism of the Roman Catholic Church in the
Western world.
2.The parallel disintegration of the Holy Roman Empire into a
series of independent sovereign nations such as Spain,France,etc,
also contributed to the development of the nation state system.
3.In these newly emerged nations the medieval feudal system
declined and it was displaced by highly centralized and powerful .
4.The theoretical contributions of thinkers like Machiavelli, Bodin,
Grotious, Hobbes and others also laid the foundation of an
independent secular nation state.
The Treaty of Westphalia in 1648 was the first attempt to
build up an international system based on independent
National Sovereignty.
It recognized the independence of Holland and it gave to
France the treaty of Alsace
The European state system depended largely upon a
balance of power to prevent international disputes.
Treaty of Westphalia 1648, the treaties of Utrecht 1713,
Vienna 1815, Versailles 1919, and the San Francisco Charter
1945, all contained plans for the preservation of peace.
After two world wars non European states like the USA,
USSR , Japan and many other new states have become
powerful and influential.
The European state system has been transformed
into a global structure.
Today this global structure is composed of a
number of states of varying capabilities and of
extremely diverse cultures.
Features :
2.Concept of legal sovereignty
3.Doctrine of Nationalism
4.National Power
5.Political Anarchy
Richer and Poor countries
Based on Ideology
Based on Power
Challenges to the Modern state
Development of Military Technology
Psychological Challenges
Economic Dependency
Emergence of Non-State Actors