Classical and Structural Realism

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The world is a theater where events are played. In it, we see nations acting out their roles - the major powers as the lead cast with the remaining states in the backdrop. It is the stage where we can observe the saga of human polity. It is where we can observe the drama, tragedy and even comedy of state interaction.


The study of international relations has been considered as a complex phenomenon. This does not necessarily mean that it is beyond understanding. The way states tend to act has been thoroughly studied and one of the prominent approaches is termed as Realism. This serves as one of the versions of the "script" states are supposed to follow. Within this approach, two schools of thought have evolved. The first, Classical Realism, served as the precursor to the second school of thought - Structural Realism.
This paper aims to discuss and analyze Classical and Structural Realism. It compares and contrasts these two branches of Realism. With the use of relevant examples and appropriate analysis, it is hoped that the differences and similarities between the two can be thoroughly discussed. In this analysis, the US behavior was used as a model due to the fact that it is the world's lone superpower and is thus the main actor in the play called international relations.
Before discussing Classical and Structural Realism, it is appropriate and proper to first define what Realism is. This approach provides a rational and realistic view of how international affairs are acted. It is based on the way things are done and not on the way things should be done. ...
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