Cores of Realism

Masters
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Philosophy
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This essay examines the relevance of the core ideas of Realism in a contemporary world. It explores the roots of the theory, from Machiavelli, Hobbes and Rousseau to Morgenthau, Beitz and Doyle. Are the core ideas of Realism still relevant in a contemporary world?…

Introduction

This essay examines the relevance of the core ideas of Realism in a contemporary world. It explores the roots of the theory, from Machiavelli, Hobbes and Rousseau to Morgenthau, Beitz and Doyle. The core assumptions are that states are inherently self interested, unitary actors performing on an anarchic global stage.It looks at modern problems of Realism presented by a re-emergence of liberalism, the emergence of globalisation and its apparent incompatibility with democracy. Realism is a term we commonly use to define a motivation for behaving in accordance with truths and facts which exist independently of sentiment, emotive persuasions or overtly ideological tendencies. Within politics and more specifically, international relations, Realism has come to mean to mean a rejection of moralistic or ethical concerns in favour of a more pragmatic approach to policy and diplomacy. Realism places emphasis on the national security of a state rather than focusing on the application of moral concepts such as justice. Are these ideas still relevant in today's society or is there significant evidence to suggest states are primarily motivated by concepts of what is right, rather than what is necessary These issues will be explored throughout this essay, beginning with an investigation into the history of Realism. The roots of Realism can be traced back centuries to Machiavelli (1513) and Hobbes (1651). Both have had and continue to have a major influence on the shaping of political theory, particularly with their most celebrated works, The Prince and Leviathan. ...
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