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Crisis in the Heartland
Against mainstream accounts, Peter Gowan argues that the origins of the global financial crisis lie in the dynamics of the New Wall Street System that has emerged since the 1980s. Contours of the Atlantic model, and implications—geopolitical, ideological, economic—of its blow-out.
A Calculus of Power
John Mearsheimer’s Tragedy of Great Power Politics disdains liberal-imperial rhetoric for a tough-minded theory of ‘offensive realism’. Peter Gowan argues that, whatever its merits, the behaviour of states in the international system cannot be dissociated from the internal dynamics of the political orders they protect.
A reigning doctrine of international relations proclaims that, despite everything, the world is entering a new epoch of hopeful cosmopolitanism—narrow state sovereignty being overcome by the common and, where necessary, armed resolve of a ‘Pacific Union’ of democratic nations. What then of the asymmetric hegemony of the United States?
The Origins of Atlantic Liberalism
Peter Gowan on Richard Tuck, Rights of War and Peace: Political Thought and the International Order from Grotius to Kant. The origins of ‘liberal’ interventionism by the NATO powers today in the doctrines of colonial retribution and expropriation of the seventeenth century.
The NATO Powers and the Balkan Tragedy
Western powers usually legitimize military interventions in terms of a proclaimed commitment to some universalist norm or to some goal embodying such a norm. These declared goals can oscillate, but they are important because a central element of their foreign policy, particularly when it involves starting a war, is maintaining . . . read more
Eastern Europe, Western Power and Neo-Liberalism
John Lloyd’s article is helpful, above all, in revealing more fully his forms of thought. He appears to think my article was a piece of Marxist economics. Unfortunately it was entirely pre-theoretical: an attempt to introduce the claims of neo-liberals like Lloyd to some pertinent facts, with the aid of . . . read more
Neo-Liberal Theory and Practice for Eastern Europe
Eastern Europe’s market for policy ideas, suddenly opened in 1989, was swiftly captured by an Anglo-American product with a liberal brand name.footnote1 This policy equivalent of fast food erected barriers to other new entrants and established a virtual monopoly on advice in most target states in the region. While some . . . read more
The Gulf War, Iraq and Western Liberalism
The states of the North Atlantic have, since the days of Palmerston, frequently hoisted the flag of liberalism on their way to war. But rarely since 1945 have the principles of right, law and justice been invoked as strongly as in the call to arms for Desert Storm. The populations . . . read more
Western Economic Diplomacy and the New Eastern Europe
Hobbes once remarked that if you are forced at gunpoint to go through a door, you are still free to go through it: you can be forced and be free. For most of us today this is a perversity that smacks of Stalinism. But what if someone throws walls around . . . read more
The Origins of the Administrative Elite
Aquarter of a century ago, Perry Anderson wrote a path-breaking article challenging the framework that historians had established for explaining, among other things, political change in 19th-century Britain.footnote1 His analyses at that time, along with the work of Tom Nairn, have received reinforcement from subsequent research and offer a more . . . read more