International Relations Narratives: Plotting World Politics (New International Relations) [1 ed.] 0367027992, 9780367027995, 9780429397721

This book presents an innovative approach to research in International Relations by examining 12 theoretical contributio

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International Relations Narratives: Plotting World Politics (New International Relations) [1 ed.]
 0367027992, 9780367027995, 9780429397721

Table of contents :
Cover
Half Title
Series Page
Title
Copyright
Dedication
Contents
Series editor foreword
Preface and acknowledgments
1
Introduction
2
Narrative explanation and basic plots
3
Previously charted IR grounds
4
Unexplored IR terrains
5 Conclusion
References
Index

Citation preview

International Relations Narratives

This book presents an innovative approach to research in International Relations by examining 12 theoretical contributions to the field as competing narrative bids. It demonstrates the pervasive nature of storytelling and considers narratives as a means of causal explanation in the human sciences. By introducing four classic literary plot structures with their respective characters, events, moods and denouements, the book divides IR literature into tragedies, romances/epics, comedies and ironic/satirical stories. For each plot type, its characteristic features, logic and appeal are first reprised through some well-known prose examples before being employed in the analysis of major IR texts. King Lear, for example, helps bring out the tragic logic of Politics among Nations, and Sleeping Beauty demonstrates the romantic appeal inherent in The End of History. Twelfth Night is used to approach The Transformation of Political Community as a comedy, and A Modest Proposal paves the way for the examination of Bananas, Beaches and Bases as irony/satire. Rather than assess the absolute merits and shortcomings of the competing theories, the book discusses the relative strengths and weaknesses of stories that adhere to different plots in giving meaning to actors and events in the international arena. Discussing a broad range of theories, this text will be of interest to scholars and students of International Relations and World Politics, including various subcommunities such as specialists in peace research and Feminist IR. Riikka Kuusisto is Lecturer in World Politics at the University of Helsinki, Finland. She has published articles on themes including conflict rhetoric and foreign policy narratives in journals such as International Politics, Journal of Peace Research, European Journal of International Relations and Quarterly Journal of Speech.

The New International Relations Edited by Richard Little University of Bristol

Iver B. Neumann Norwegian Institute of International Affairs (NUPI), Norway

Jutta Weldes University of Bristol

The field of international relations has changed dramatically in recent years. This new series will cover the major issues that have emerged and reflect the latest academic thinking in this particular dynamic area. Special Relationships in World Politics Inter-state Friendship and Diplomacy after the Second World War Kristin Haugevik Kinship in International Relations Edited by Kristin Haugevik and Iver B. Neumann Small States and Shelter Theory Iceland’s External Affairs Baldur Thorhallsson The Use of Force under International Law Lawyerized States in a Legalized World Fernando G. Nuñez-Mietz Discourse and Affect in Foreign Policy Germany and the Iraq War Jakub Eberle Tactical Constructivism, Method, and International Relations Edited by Brent J. Steele, Harry D. Gould and Oliver Kessler International Relations Narratives Plotting World Politics Riikka Kuusisto

International Relations Narratives Plotting World Politics

Riikka Kuusisto

First published 2020 by Routledge 2 Park Square, Milton Park, Abingdon, Oxon OX14 4RN and by Routledge 52 Vanderbilt Avenue, New York, NY 10017 Routledge is an imprint of the Taylor & Francis Group, an informa business © 2020 Riikka Kuusisto The right of Riikka Kuusisto to be identified as author of this work has been asserted by her in accordance with sections 77 and 78 of the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988. All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reprinted or reproduced or utilised in any form or by any electronic, mechanical, or other means, now known or hereafter invented, including photocopying and recording, or in any information storage or retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publishers. Trademark notice: Product or corporate names may be trademarks or registered trademarks, and are used only for identification and explanation without intent to infringe. British Library Cataloguing-in-Publication Data A catalogue record for this book is available from the British Library Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data Names: Kuusisto, Riikka, author. Title: International relations narratives : plotting world politics / Riikka Kuusisto. Description: New York : Routledge, 2020. j Includes bibliographical references and index. Identifiers: LCCN 2019030512 j ISBN 9780367027995 (hardback) j ISBN 9780429397721 (ebook) Subjects: LCSH: International relations. j Politics and literature. j Narration (Rhetoric) Classification: LCC JZ1242 .K896 2020 j DDC 327–dc23 LC record available at https://lccn.loc.gov/2019030512 ISBN: 978-0-367-02799-5 (hbk) ISBN: 978-0-429-39772-1 (ebk) Typeset in Times New Roman by TNQ Technologies

This book is dedicated to Eikka and Rami without whom not.

Contents

Series editor foreword Preface and acknowledgments

ix xii

1

Introduction

1

2

Narrative explanation and basic plots

4

The importance of storytelling 4 Types of stories: tragedy, romance/epic, comedy and irony/satire 8 International relations plots 14 3

Previously charted IR grounds: dismal tragedies and exuberant romances Realist despair 18 Oedipus and King Lear 19 Classical realists: Hans Morgenthau and Politics among Nations 21 Structure and main claims 22 Tragic appeal 24 Offensive realism: John Mearsheimer and The Tragedy of Great Power Politics 28 Structure and main claims 29 Tragic appeal 32 Romantic progress 36 Odyssey, Saint George and the Dragon and Sleeping Beauty 37 Liberal visions: Hegelian end of history and Kantian peace 39 Francis Fukuyama and The End of History 40 Structure and main claims 40 Romantic appeal 42 Bruce Russett, John Oneal and Triangulating Peace 46 Structure and main claims 47 Romantic appeal 49

18

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Contents Marxist theories: Immanuel Wallerstein and World-Systems Analysis 53 Structure and main claims 54 Romantic appeal 57 Peace research: Johan Galtung and Peace: Research, Education, Action 60 Structure and main claims 62 Romantic appeal 65

4

Unexplored IR terrains: hopeful comedies and cynical satires

70

Comedies of errors 70 Twelfth Night, A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Pride and Prejudice 71 Pacifism: Mahatma Gandhi and Hind Swaraj 74 Structure and main claims 76 Comic appeal 78 Constructivism: Alexander Wendt and Social Theory of International Politics 82 Structure and main claims 84 Comic appeal 86 Critical theory: Andrew Linklater and The Transformation of Political Community 91 Structure and main claims 92 Comic appeal 95 Ironic and satirical scorn 99 The Rape of the Lock and A Modest Proposal 100 Feminist critique: Cynthia Enloe and Bananas, Beaches and Bases 102 Structure and main claims 104 Ironic/satirical appeal 106 Poststructuralism: David Campbell and Writing Security 110 Structure and main claims 112 Ironic/satirical appeal 115 Postcolonialism: Tarak Barkawi and Globalization and War 119 Structure and main claims 120 Ironic/satirical appeal 123 5

Conclusion

128

References Index

135 143

Series editor foreword

There is no consensus within the discipline about how best to approach the study of international relations. The field has always been characterized by competing approaches, and with the emergence of these approaches there have also been attempts to identify and classify the divergent ways of thinking about the subject. In the aftermath of the First World War, for example, when international relations began to be systematically and extensively studied and taught within universities, a distinction was drawn between realist and idealist conceptions of international relations, and this distinction looked likely to become entrenched following the Second World War. But the distinction was, from the onset, subject to criticism on the grounds that the very terminology seemed to privilege realism at the expense of idealism. The term realism appeared to indicate that its adherents were confronting the facts on the ground whereas idealists were doing no more than postulating how they would like the world to operate. Unsurprisingly, those identified as idealists or utopians objected strongly to this characterization of their analysis. However, in the wake of the publication of Thomas Kuhn’s book The Structure of Scientific Revolutions in 1962 and its introduction of the term “paradigm shifts” to analyze the evolution of the natural sciences, some specialists in international relations seized on the idea to specify how the study of international relations was evolving. It was argued that idealism had prevailed in the interwar years only to give way to realism after the Second World War, thereby marking a paradigm shift. But by the 1970s it was argued that realism was facing increasing criticism and it was time for a further paradigm shift. Apart from the fact that realists showed few signs of stepping down gracefully, there was also little agreement about what the new dominant paradigm would be. Instead, the idea of an inter-paradigm debate emerged. Realism was initially pitched against Liberalism and Marxism – at least in some descriptions of the debate – but before long Constructivism and Feminism were brought into the affray. But, in fact, the idea of an inter-paradigm debate was completely at odds with Kuhn’s original thesis and, as a consequence, the idea of a paradigm was drained of any of its original meaning. It was simply a term that gave putative analytical rigor to the longestablished fact that the study of international relations has always been characterized by competing approaches.

x

Series editor foreword

The failure of the idea of a paradigm to provide a coherent framework for understanding the relationship between the various approaches to the study of international relations is unsurprising. Kuhn, himself, argued that the debates between different approaches throughout the social sciences are indicative of a failure to establish any authoritative paradigm in the social sciences. As a consequence, Kuhn argued that the social sciences have never developed beyond a pre-paradigmatic position. Because the existence of competing approaches in International Relations is incontestable there has, unsurprisingly, been a persistent interest in formulating a matrix or framework that would help to show and understand the relationship between these different approaches. So, for example, in Steven D. Krasner’s book Sovereignty: Organized Hypocrisy, such a framework is established in the context of his analysis of sovereignty. The framework reveals how the major approaches have assessed sovereignty and thereby reveals where each of the major approaches to international relations stands in relation to each other. In this book, Riikka Kuusisto makes her own distinctive contribution to this body of literature. Her starting point presupposes the central importance of storytelling in every attempt to impose meaning on any kind of human experience. So, from this perspective, we can only make sense of international relations on the basis of the stories that we tell about international relations. It follows that underpinning any approach to the subject there is a distinctive kind of story or narrative and it is on this basis that we can start to chart the relationship between the different approaches that have been developed to comprehend international relations. Each approach, therefore, is seen to have its own distinctive kind of plot and distinctive kind of characters. Kuusisto acknowledges, however, that to chart these plots and characters she does not have to start from scratch because it has long been recognized that although it might seem that every story is different, any story can be identified with one of a very limited number of narrative plots or genres. Attempts to identify these genres can be traced all the way back to Aristotle, and despite some minor variations, there has been a remarkable degree of consensus over the centuries about the types of narrative that exist. Kuusisto argues that there are essentially four types of narrative: tragedies, romances, comedies and satires. At first sight, this might not seem to be a very promising typology for distinguishing the different approaches to international relations, apart from the reference to tragedies. Without doubt, it is almost a clich´e to suggest that for realists, international relations are intrinsically tragic. But the other types of narrative do not immediately resonate with popular conceptions of the other major approaches to international relations. Even when Kuusisto unpacks each narrative type and identifies their distinctive features, it is still not at all obvious how they can relate to the dominant approaches in the discipline. It is, therefore, quite revelatory when she shows how all the major approaches to international relations can be tagged to one of the four types of narrative. By the end of the book she has made a powerful case that her types of narrative can open up in very distinctive ways specific texts used to

Series editor foreword

xi

represent the familiar approaches to international relations. It is not being suggested that this is the definitive way of distinguishing the different approaches but it is without doubt a very illuminating way of thinking about these texts and the approaches they represent. Perhaps unsurprisingly the book leaves open the question of which narrative type this book itself adopts and no doubt readers will have their own answer to the question, but I would view it as a very satisfying satire even if it does not satisfy all of Kuusisto’s criteria for such a narrative. Richard Little Emeritus Professor University of Bristol

Preface and acknowledgments

Two things have motivated me to write this book. The first is a growing feeling that International Relations (IR) literature shares essential features with other types of literature, and the second a desire, also growing during the years, to analyze and teach IR theories from a novel perspective. The similarities between IR research and other prose started to intrigue me ever since I started my BA studies at the University of Helsinki. I pursued a double major in IR and English Philology, and found that the set literature in both curricula consisted of powerful stories. I found that I enjoyed Politics among Nations first as a tragic portrayal of misguided heroes and only then appreciated it as a theoretical bid to understand and explain international relations. The End of History with its scary monsters and great historical battles seemed to me much like a fairy tale. I had completed a course on King Lear and another on Pride and Prejudice and was just taking one on Twelfth Night at the English Department when beginning my MA thesis in the discipline of IR on the war rhetoric of the Western major powers. At that time and later, when working on my doctoral dissertation, I discovered that the explanations and justifications formulated by political leaders – in addition to novelists and scholars – also adhered to narrative conventions. The official storytellers of the United States, Britain and France resorted to epic and tragic, and sometimes comic, frameworks in their attempts to make events and actors meaningful to their audiences. Clearly, stories did not belong simply in the realm of fiction, but had wider relevance in human endeavors. As to later experiences with IR literature, I have had the pleasure of teaching a course on IR theories, or theories of World Politics, for over 20 years now. I have used various readers, including several editions of The Globalization of World Politics: An Introduction to International Relations (Baylis et al., 2017 (eds.)), Theories of International Relations (Burchill et al., 2009) and International Relations Theories: Discipline and Diversity (Dunne et al., 2013 (eds.)), and different kinds of teaching methods. Like Cynthia Weber in International Relations Theory: A Critical Introduction (preface to the first edition, 2014: xxiii– xxvii), I have struggled with presenting the canon and new perspectives in a way that would enable students to critically compare the competing approaches, but not encourage them to choose the “most true” theory – or the one that fits their preconceptions of “the way things are” – and stick to it inflexibly thereafter. I still

Preface and acknowledgments

xiii

find Steve Smith’s (1995) introduction to the 10 key debates, and silences, of the field very relevant, and usually start my course by discussing it. However, I also include new research articles in the reading list every year – and consequently have to drop some others. In my teaching and research, I strive to share my passion for IR theories and to help other readers appreciate each IR story as a whole, both to do justice to the narrative choices of the different authors and to draw attention to the aspects that are highlighted and hidden with each choice. I believe that each story deserves to be comprehended first on its own terms, focusing on its particular main characters and events. Without some original feeling for a theory – some personal excitement about the particular depiction offered or compassion for the author’s efforts, as it were – it is difficult to provide a sound critique, a fair analysis of the limitations of the approach and tensions within it. Moreover, finding the right balance between properly presenting an interpretation (be it of one’s own work or someone else’s) and leaving room for alternative interpretations is never easy, and certainly not within the confines of a single course covering “all” significant IR theorizing. Like Martin Wight, I believe that students of international politics should also learn history, the classics, literature and languages, and like Hayward R. Alker, I believe that humanistic concerns should be at the heart of International Studies. Approaching IR theories as literature – relating them to plays, novels, epics, mythic stories and fairy tales we are familiar with – furthers these goals, as it highlights the common features of constituting meaning in different human realms and sketches one way of sharing analytical tools among disciplines. The underlying theme of this book is that telling stories is what explanation (in IR) is essentially about. The facts – brute and social ones – are not irrelevant to the exercise, but they seldom speak for themselves. I started developing the ideas that form the basis of this book in an article published in International Politics, titled “Comparing IR plots: dismal tragedies, exuberant romances, hopeful comedies and cynical satires” (Kuusisto, 2018). This article contains an early version of the analytical framework I use in this book, and although the conclusions I draw here are slightly different, my commentaries on previous research follow similar lines. This book has been written with both advanced undergraduate and graduate IR students in mind. Although it presents an independent overview and analysis, it will also complement a more traditional reader. It has also been written with colleagues in mind, to provide a different analytical framework and a fresh reading of some of the classics in the field, and to suggest novel ideas about teaching. Hopefully it will also engage interdisciplinary audiences interested in applications of narrative analysis to world politics. I am grateful to Sonja Amadae, Erkki Berndtson, Konsta Kotilainen, Kaisa Lange, James O’Connor, Heikki Patom¨aki, Niki Sopanen, Teivo Teivainen, Hern´an V´asquez, Katri Vihma and Matti Yl¨onen – some of you gave valuable comments on the entire manuscript, others helped me improve individual chapters or clarify specific points.

1

Introduction

This is a book on academic narratives about international relations, that is, on International Relations (IR) narratives. It studies various theoretical traditions and individual research contributions as competing stories about the central actors and developments on the world scene. By introducing four classic plot structures with their respective characters, events and denouements, the book divides IR literature into tragedies, romances/epics, comedies and ironic/satirical stories. I contend that plotting world politics is what scholars in the field engage in; persuasive explanations come in narrative form, and a particular plot makes a particular solution to a problem seem appropriate. In the context of a familiar narrative, readers know what to expect as to the proper means and fitting ending. Theoretical storytelling organizes the chaotic world around us, constructing consequential sequences out of evidence that can be plotted in many different ways. With this book I aim to accomplish several things: to demonstrate the pervasive nature of storytelling, to consider narratives as a means of causal explanation in the human sciences, to deepen our understanding of different ways to frame world politics and to provide a systematic reading of some central works in the field of IR. The omnipresence and indispensability of narratives have been noted by many (see e.g., Shenhav, 2015: 2–4), but scientific narratives have been relatively understudied. This applies also to the case at hand: although research has been conducted on documents such as official state declarations and foreign policy speeches of national leaders – the narratives of the alleged main actors in international relations – the narratives produced by scholars have not been systematically examined. This book gives an overview of the narrative traditions in IR and analyzes specific examples of each generic plot. Instead of concentrating exclusively on the core assumptions and main theses of a particular IR school or scholar, it looks at plot types and individual stories. The stories are construed as wholes: their narrative appeal is evaluated from beginning to end, all the main characters and events are scrutinized and the general mood is assessed. The most important claims of authors are studied in their original context, and the development of the plot, the temporal dimension of the story, is also taken into account. In the next chapter, I discuss narrative explanation and basic plots. I present storytelling as a fundamentally human way to make sense of the world: to understand its actors, to organize its events, to map causal links between actions

2

Introduction

and to achieve closure. I trace the development of classic Western plot sequences and characters – and their study – back to ancient Greece and Aristotle. For this book, however, 20th-century literary theory, and in particular the work of Northrop Frye and Kenneth Burke, will be more important than Aristotle’s Poetics. After justifying the heuristic typology subsequently applied – romance/ epic, tragedy, comedy, irony/satire – I survey what has already been written on the use of the four plots in IR literature. Although there do exist commentaries on the tragic or romantic tendencies of IR scholarship – and on the tragically constrained or romantically progressive nature of international politics – comedy, irony and satire have been mentioned less often as frameworks for understanding and explaining. Chapter 3 focuses on IR tragedies and romances/epics. Examples of tragedies are found in the works of the so-called realist school, and the romantic/epic IR stories chosen for analysis come from the traditions of liberalism, Marxism and peace research. Chapter 4 concentrates on IR comedy and irony/satire: pacifism, constructivism and critical theory are identified as approaches that accommodate writers of comic tales, and ironic/satirical scorn is evidently the style that goes well with feminist, poststructuralist and postcolonial critiques. The analysis of the workings of each plot starts with literary examples: the characteristic features and general mood of tragedies, romances/epics, comedies and ironic/satirical stories are brought to mind via references the (Western literate) audience is presumably familiar with. After that, I compare specific writings in IR research to the literary examples. Thus, Oedipus and King Lear are put to work in bringing out the tragic features of Politics among Nations and The Tragedy of Great Power Politics. Odyssey, St George and the Dragon and Sleeping Beauty, meanwhile, demonstrate the romantic appeal inherent in The End of History, Triangulating Peace, World-Systems Analysis and Peace: Research, Education, Action. Similarly, Twelfth Night, A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Pride and Prejudice are drawn on in considering Hind Swaraj, Social Theory of International Politics and The Transformation of Political Community as comedies. And finally, The Rape of the Lock and A Modest Proposal pave the way for analysis of Bananas, Beaches and Bases, Writing Security and Globalization and War, all understood as ironic/ satirical stories. Although the IR stories chosen for analysis are considered as independent works, they are also loosely placed within a wider theoretical tradition. When the particular tradition in question is one that is often discussed in IR contexts – be it realism, liberalism, Marxism, constructivist IR, critical theory, feminism, poststructuralism or postcolonialism – I also give a very brief characterization of the tradition through references to well-established readers. In addition to justifying the particular choice I have made, I name at least one other work that might be analyzed in a similar fashion, as a classical realist tragedy or a postcolonial satire, for example. The treatment of each IR work starts with laying out its structure and main claims, and proceeds to an analysis of its plot-specific appeal. The concluding chapter summarizes the main findings and compares the competing IR narratives to each other. Instead of assessing the absolute merits or

Introduction

3

defects of the theories, or making judgments on their accuracy of description or probability of materialization, the final chapter discusses the relative strengths and weaknesses of each in giving meaning to actors and events in the international arena. While no specific stance is advocated, the consequences of adopting the different plots for our understanding of world politics are assessed. The longer and more often they are employed, the more likely all plots are to turn into selffulfilling prophecies. This in itself provides grounds for cultivating our sensitivity to the workings of narratives and the importance of comparing the competing bids. Critical comparison of existing stories might also help us in imagining new stories, ones that might explain past events from a fresh perspective or bring about futures we want to see on the international scene.

2

Narrative explanation and basic plots

This chapter looks into various understandings that scholars coming from different fields of human sciences have formed of the narrative and its genres. As I argue, narratives both describe and explain the social world: by identifying central events and giving roles to actors, narratives answer both descriptive and causal questions. The activity of storytelling is important not only in the arts, but also in the sciences – at least the sciences that deal with reflexive actors. Occasionally, the arts are even given deeper explanatory function than stories treating actual happenings. Aristotle, for example, claims in the Poetics that poetry is more philosophical and more serious than history, since poetry tends to express universals, whereas history expresses only particulars (51b6–8). In IR scholarship specifically, it is not objective accounts of law-like regularities that we deal with, but more or less convincing stories. Although each narrative is unique, and no typology can do justice to the infinite variety of possible realizations, for analytical purposes, recurring elements and plot types can be discerned. Accordingly, I argue that IR stories should be studied with the help of a heuristic division into tragic, romantic/epic, comic and ironic/satirical plots. I conclude with a summary of earlier commentaries on international relations and IR plots.

The importance of storytelling The persistence and importance of the narrative has been recognized and appreciated in different human disciplines including literary criticism and history, philosophy and psychology, and the social sciences. Literary critic Walter Benjamin (2006 [1936]) praises both the oral storyteller and the novelist, and even though he separates the traditions from each other in many respects, he finds a common denominator in history and memory. According to Benjamin, what is central to the narrative is the meaning of life itself. Roland Barthes (1975 [1966]), another literary theorist known for his concern with narrative, underlines the ubiquitous nature of narratives: they are universal, come in an infinite number of forms, and they are present at all times, in all places and in all societies. Historian Hayden White (1987: 14–24, 44, 60) has examined how the human desire to have real events display the coherence, integrity, fullness and closure of ideal life causes us to impose narrative order on the world, and on our descriptions of it.

Narrative explanation and basic plots

5

Moral meaning is possible only through narrative form, and human truths are products of narrative representations of reality. White claims that any given set of real events can be emplotted in a number of ways, that is, can be told as many different kinds of stories each endowing a specific kind of moral meaning. In his view, emplotment is an explanation, comprehension means the recognition of the narrative form and causation may be narratological when agents act as if they were characters in a story charged with the task of realizing the possibilities inherent in the plot. Folklorist Katherine Galloway Young (1987) also emphasizes the ability of stories to render merely consecutive events consequential, meaningful and significant to the narrator and her/his audience. For Paul Ricoeur (1984, 1985, 1988), one of the foremost advocates of philosophical hermeneutics, narrative is a response to the human experience of feelings of discord and fragmentation in regard to time. By telling stories and writing history, Ricoeur claims we provide a public shape for what ordinarily remains chaotic, obscure and mute. Philosopher John R. Searle (1995: 134–135) believes that temporally extended sequences of experiences come to us with a narrative or dramatic shape. It is dramatic categories that structure events into narrative shapes; they give us scenarios of expectation to help us cope with people and objects. Psychologist and psychotherapist Donald E. Polkinghorne (1988: 11) sees narrative as a primary scheme by means of which human beings give meaning to their experience of temporality and personal actions. According to Polkinghorne (ibid: 18), narratives display purpose and direction in human affairs and make individual human lives comprehensible as wholes. Polkinghorne (ibid: 170–177) asserts that causation and explanation in the mental realm – as opposed to the material and organic realms – refer to (recounting) the connections between events and actions that have led to a particular occurrence: the “why” question in human sciences is best answered by a narrative stating the reasons for an occurrence. Literary theorist Kenneth Burke (1966, 1969a, 1969b) studied the fundamental functions that symbolic action and familiar, perfected story forms have. People everywhere and at all times tell stories that make their joys and miseries part of something eternal and meaningful, stories that give them dramatistic pleasure and give their conflicts a resolution (Burke, 1966: 240–253, 295–307, 380–409). He concentrated on the persuasiveness of form itself and on the tendency of certain terms – “god terms” such as freedom or money (Burke, 1969a: 355–356, 1969b: 149–153) and terminological oppositions such as cosmos versus chaos, love versus death – to direct our literary and political visions. According to Burke (1966: 25–43), the principle of perfection drives us to search for perfect worlds, utopias, and perfect characters, such as entirely virtuous and invincible heroes, entirely evil villains and scapegoats who are truly fitting to be sacrificed. He underlines the formalistic pleasure in carrying terministic possibilities through to their logical conclusions, seeing an action through to its ultimate end. For literary theorist Northrop Frye (1973: 77–79), narratives convey a sense of movement in time, being linearly ordered verbal constructs that resemble events in the “real” world. According to Frye (ibid: 351), literature, in addition to being a

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Narrative explanation and basic plots

language of its own, is a commentary on an external “life.” He describes both narratives and plots as sequences of gross events and presents a detailed model of the typical events and characters in, and the relations among, generic plots. They are phases in a cycle, comparable to the seasons of the year: one blending into another, with certain elements fading away and returning again, maintaining a dialectical movement between different orders as part of the narrative process. Frye claims (ibid: 352–354) that the verbal structures of philosophy, politics, history, law and theology alike – in short, every endeavor built out of words – are informed by the same kinds of myths and metaphors that we find in literature. Our understanding of all texts is connected to our awareness of the mythic identifications and organizing patterns. Frye underlines that form itself and similarity of form do not reveal the quality of argumentation: to note that a social theory has been informed by the myth of the sleeping beauty is an argument neither for nor against the theory. Working in the context of linguistics and literature, Bradley Berke (1982) has studied the basic structure, the grammar, of the tragic myth. He demonstrates (ibid: 13–15, 90–92) how different stories can systematically be generated from a single “Ur-myth,” with the informational content and aesthetic appeal remaining intact in the process. The grammar of the particular genre – whether it is tragedy or some other genre – accounts for the basic structure of all variants, the essence lying within the plot. Myths uphold social order; they give hope and promise relief from suffering and desire. Berke claims that individuals constantly need reassurance and reaffirmation of the mythical archetypes to which they must conform in order to attain ultimate bliss or “nonexistence.” Belief and identification in the archetypes results in intense artistic, psychological and philosophical pleasure. Unsurprisingly, even among literary theorists, the terminology employed to designate sequential, meaning-giving verbal constructs – story, narrative, plot, genre – is not uniform (Frow, 2005: 5–71; Cobley, 2014: 1–27). Accordingly, in what follows I will use the terms story and narrative interchangeably to refer to general linguistic ordering of time, space, actors and events into causal chains. The terms plot and generic plot will refer to broad story types – perhaps not universal, definitely not fixed, but nonetheless widely recognized. Stories and narratives are seen as ordering both memories and expectations, the past and the future. Different plots refer to loose categories of stories that I will discuss in more detail in the next section. It should be noted that I will not be concerned with genre in the sense of “the novel,” “the news story,” or “the testimonial,” etc., or narratives presented through the visual arts or primarily through spoken language. Neither do I attempt to study social narratives at large – as Shaul Shenhav (2015) does, for example. Instead, I approach IR theories as literature, in effect evaluating 12 important IR studies as a literary critic. Hayward Alker was one of the first IR theorists to focus on the recurring elements of major societal and historical texts. Alker (1996: 267–302) claims that no matter how objective and scientific our stories aim to be, they contain mythic and poetic elements – king’s daughters, dragons and heroes, kidnappings, rescues

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and rewards – that are normally associated with folktales and legends. Alker picked up on the research done by structuralists such as Vladimir Propp (1971 [1928]) or Joseph Campbell (1993[1949]) on clearly “fictional” data (fairy tales, mythology, folk legends, dreams, religions, rituals) and moved on to “factual” material such as historiography and scientific reports. Like White, he asserts that people want to hear and tend to formulate accounts of the life of their community in a specific story-like manner. Both White and Alker find historical and imaginative narratives to be often similar in form, and the human desire to narrate to be universal. They demonstrate that the status of facts does not diminish when placed in a narrative – on the contrary, it is only within a narrative that facts become meaningful. Moreover, if there is no contest whatsoever over the interpretation, there is in principle no story to tell. Self-evident facts do not require narrating, since they speak for themselves – which is a rare occurrence indeed. Hidemi Suganami (1996: especially 139–152, 2008) has also written of narrative accounts as a means by which truth claims about world politics are presented. He believes in the narrative as a means of causal explanation in IR: to explain an event in world politics, we use stories that move from the original input through the middle parts to the eventual output. In these stories, three conventional ingredients are always present: chance coincidences, mechanistic processes and human acts. Causal narratives explain – in addition to making understandable – both the particular and, by extension, the general: they take into account both circumstances and statistical generalizations, history and theory. Suganami claims that narratives solve puzzles, make events more intelligible – something that mere correlation is unable to achieve. “Grasping the plot” is what understanding is mainly about. In her study of the interwar peace movements in Britain and the United States, Cecelia Lynch (1999) criticizes the dominant IR narrative about the topic, a narrative based on unhelpful dichotomies, and provides an alternative understanding. She argues that journalists, pundits and academics alike construct stories that emphasize particular aspects of evidence for particular purposes, and that the construction of narratives is an essential theoretical enterprise. Richard Ned Lebow (2010) also appreciates the complexities of causation in open-ended, contingent, nonlinear systems. He emphasizes (ibid: 3–28) that in addition to trying to discern regularities, we should look for ruptures, accidents and surprising decisions by individual agents. To better understand (for we will never be able to predict) international relations, we should imagine counterfactual pasts, stories about what might have happened “if.” By realizing that the past was not inevitable, we can achieve better theories of causation also for the future. Lebow claims (ibid: 276–283) that the distinction between fact and fiction is to a great extent artificial, and is difficult to sustain in practice. Referring back to Aristotle, White and Searle, amongst others, Lebow argues that fiction relies on factual knowledge and that history must to be told in narratives. Brute facts become institutional facts only in language – specifically, through stories. Even our most direct efforts to make sense of the world require a notable degree of fictional representation. Moreover, according to Lebow, the appeal of factual, counterfactual and fictional arguments alike rests on the quality of their

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assumptions, the tightness of the logic connecting cause to effect and the richness of supporting evidence. Scholars, like ordinary mortals, look for familiar narrative patterns, recognize typical roles of actors and need closure. Rather than denying this, Lebow argues that we should bridge the divide between fact and fiction and study narratives for analytical purposes.

Types of stories: tragedy, romance/epic, comedy and irony/satire The study of classic Western plot sequences and characters goes at least as far back as Aristotle (1996 [c. 335 BCE]). His analyses of the art of poetry in general and its species – epic, tragedy and comedy – have formed the foundation and reference point of subsequent literary theory or literary criticism. Like Aristotle’s work more generally, the Poetics has been handed down to us through various translated and edited versions. This makes it difficult to determine what exactly it is that Aristotle originally said, let alone what he meant with certain expressions, concerning the different forms of poetry. For example, it has been questioned whether Aristotle ever himself wrote the word “catharsis,” or even “pity” or “fear,” in his definition of tragedy (Scott, 2003: 256–262) – something that for generations was considered evident and important. Also, the second part of the Poetics, addressing comedy, has completely disappeared; we can only make educated guesses as to what it included. But because my focus here is on the further use of established interpretations, the inaccuracies, simplifications and false assumptions concerning missing parts these interpretations might contain can be set aside for the moment. Aristotle (47a–b) names tragedy, epic and comedy as the chief forms of imitative poetry, that is, as fiction imitative of what could happen under specific, real-life circumstances. While tragedy and comedy refer primarily to drama designed to be acted out onstage, and epic to a poem rather than to something performed, the differences are not clear cut. Aristotle encouraged the study of dramatic texts independently of their individual renderings, and in his time epics were often recited before an audience (Heath, 1996: xviii–xx, lxi). Aristotle (49b26–30) defines tragedy as an imitation of action that is admirable, is complete and possesses magnitude. Tragedy effects pity and fear, and through pity and fear, catharsis, pleasurable relief from an excess of (those) emotions (see also Heath, 1996: xxxvi–xxxix). Tragedies contain reversals and recognitions: actions bring about results they originally set out to prevent and actors suddenly come to know things they previously did not (Aristotle 52a23–52b9). Tragedies also involve suffering in the form of destruction or pain. Tragic heroes are basically decent people like us – not morally outstanding, but not exceptionally defective either – who suffer bad fortune. This undeserved suffering evokes pity and fear in us, and in the end has a purging effect. Epics, like tragedies, are according to Aristotle (49b10–21) imitations of admirable people. Epics narrate events that usually stretch over a long period of time and contain a multiplicity of stories or episodes (56a16–17). In addition to the lengthy plot-structure, epics are differentiated from other forms of poetry by their verse form (59b17–18). Epics

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aim at grandeur, with the most stately and grandiose form of verse being the heroic verse (59b34–35). Moreover, Aristotle asserts (60a21–22) that the irrational is more feasible in epic than in tragedy or comedy, since “everyone exaggerates when passing on news, on the assumption that they are giving pleasure.” Comedy, for Aristotle (49a33), is an imitation of inferior people – inferior either morally or socially. Comic characters will tend to behave badly; comedies focus on human weaknesses and follies. Comedy aims to evoke laughter, and the laughable, according to Aristotle, is disgraceful. Finally, Aristotle specifies that the comic error or disgrace does not involve pain or destruction. According to Aristotle (53a41–42), in comedy, even those who are the bitterest of enemies in the story are reconciled with each other in the end, and “no one gets killed by anybody.” When it comes to evaluation, Aristotle considers tragedy artistically superior to epic, and most probably to comedy. However, as his definitions and descriptions make clear, each form of poetry imitates different kinds of action and actors, evokes different kinds of emotions and thus serves a different purpose. On the other hand, Aristotle affirms that certain principles concerning the plot and characters apply to all poetry, regardless of the specific function. The plot, the ordered sequence of events, is of foremost importance, and is the source and soul of poetry (Aristotle 50a41–42). Aristotle appreciates structure and wholeness. Events must be connected and follow from previous events as necessary consequences, and there must be a proper beginning and ending to the story, a definite starting point for the action and a logical, nonarbitrary, closure. In other words, the action must be complete and unified (50b28–51a36). Second comes character: good poetry depicts people with appropriate kinds of qualities and ways of reasoning that are appropriate for the plot (50b1, 54a16–54b21). Characters should be consistent, or if the subject of imitation is inconsistent, then they must be “consistently inconsistent” (54a30). Typologies more recent than Aristotle’s usually distinguish from three to five basic plots. As different kinds of stories, Hayden White (1987: 43–44) names “for example” epics, romances, tragedies, comedies and farces. These story types have their specific plot structures: events, agents and agencies encoded as right kinds of story elements. When discussing possible notions of historical development, he (ibid: 65) outlines three alternative plot structures (with accompanying world views): comedy (idealism, belief in progress), tragedy (cynicism, resignation to the degeneration of the human race) and irony (skepticism, continuation at the same level). Kenneth Burke (1966, 1969a, 1969b) is interested in three types of plots: the heroic combat myth, tragedy and comedy. In discussing the heroic combat myth, Burke demonstrates (1966: 380–409) how the virtuous or divine character of the champion is dramatically built up, how the heroic battle against the vicious and cunning enemy is described (champion nearly loses, enemy is finally destroyed) and how a radical triumph and a celebration of victory in the end are necessary. The tragic hero, according to Burke (1966: 44–62, 186–200), is basically virtuous, but is prone to dangerous absolutism, excess and vehemence. His

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destiny is preordained: he understands that his uncompromising attitude will lead to disaster, but he cannot be helped and will not turn back. Burke claims that the audience both identifies with the tragic character – sympathizes with his struggles, feels his pain – and deep down wants him punished and is relieved to see him and his cause defeated. For Burke (1966: 223–239), comic characters have faults that we can laugh at, and comic plots result in happy endings. There are no true villains in comedies. He sees comic errors and incongruities as enjoyable: interesting comic embarrassments arise, for example, from differences in social status, and allow for new kinds of gallantry. Northrop Frye (1973: 162–239) distinguishes four narrative categories or generic plots or mythoi: comedy, romance, tragedy and irony or satire. He defines these narrative categories as being broader than and logically prior to the literary genres of epos, prose, drama and lyric. In Frye’s categorization, narratives refer to expectations of structure, mood and character types. According to Frye, romances resemble wish-fulfillment dreams and are dialectical in form: virtuous heroes save beautiful heroines, while monstrous villains threaten to pull the world into darkness, confusion and death. A perilous journey, a crucial battle and an exaltation of the hero form the three main stages of a romance. Tragic heroes typically disturb a balance in nature, one which sooner or later must right itself. The divine is almost within their grasp, yet catastrophe is the normal outcome in tragedy. Tragedies paradoxically combine a fearful sense of rightness (the hero must fall) and a pitying sense of wrongness (it is too bad he falls). Frye approaches irony as a parody of romance and satire as militant irony; thus, these two plots are “parasitic” on romance. Irony and satire are both mythoi of winter where, instead of heroic efforts, we witness obscene attacks against conventions by outsiders to society. Frye discusses comedy first and understands it as the mythos of spring: the story of a new, better society replacing the old, absurd one. Some kind of happy ending is inevitable, but not much else is, as all sorts of gimmicks along the way are possible. According to Frye, comedies bring about a new social order and law while including an element of grace in the revolution. Even the exposed braggart and the annoying hanger-on may join in the final feast. Sometimes the line between positive and constructive comedy and negative and destructive irony/satire is not that easy to draw, nor even necessary or useful. In his brilliant study of François Rabelais, Mikhail Bakhtin (1968) presents Rabelais’s carnivalesque images as stemming from the rich tradition of thousands of years of folk humor, a tradition where grotesque style, debasing images and bodily amusement go together with liberation from fear, progressive purposes and philosophical argumentation. Despite the radical reversals, the bold critique and the mocking spirit in the stories of Gargantua and Pantagruel, Rabelais believed in the immortal and ultimately free people who create history, explains Bakhtin. While Bakhtin’s reading of Rabelais seems to argue for the possibility of positive mockery or satire, Quentin Skinner (1996) studies a definite case of contempt and ridicule, namely Thomas Hobbes’s use of “the potentially lethal weapon” of ironic/satirical humor. Skinner approaches Hobbes as “the most

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dangerous among scoffers” of his time, and examines the rhetorical techniques through which Hobbes directed a remorseless barrage of scornful comment against the alleged defects and imperfections of his intellectual adversaries in Leviathan. Laughter often goes together not only with comedy but also with irony/satire, but assessments as to its benevolence or maliciousness – laughing with or laughing at – need to be made case by case, and one assessment may differ from another. Hayward Alker (1996: 267–302) devotes special attention to three kinds of stories: fairy tales that point toward noble missions, decisive moments and great individuals in societal existence; tragedies that convey a haunting inevitability of failure and provide emotional purging or catharsis; and comedies that make us happy and restore our faith in life. Citing White, Frye and Berke among others, Alker outlines different attitudes both toward history and the future, a better future of multiple possibilities. Fairy tales fulfill the role of societal utopias; they give dignity to our lives and a direction to our being. They indicate that one’s own society has a higher purpose – a purpose for which it is collectively and legitimately willing to kill or die. Tragedies stage the destruction of a social order, destruction through the self-annihilation of the lonely tragic hero. Finally, although comedies point at laughable inadequacies of political or social actors, they preserve existing societal virtues. In addition to studying the three or four stories individually, Burke, Alker and Frye all look at various mixed types and interfaces between stories. This is especially evident in their analyses of the supreme Western merger, the story of Christ. Burke (1966: 380–409) studies the story of the life of Christ as the “ultimate” Western tragedy and combat myth and divine comedy – merging the ideas of an omnipotent hero, a sacrificial lamb and a scapegoat. The brave champion, explains Burke, undergoes hardships, is unjustly killed and then miraculously resurrected, with the same story providing both despair, hope and laughter. Alker (1996: 140) concludes that “as with most other epics, Jesus’s story is tragicomic” (emphasis added). Alker underlines the generative nature of the meanings of the Jesus story, its “viral” character. Alker notes how Toynbee, already, was able to detect the elementary features of the hero story of the Jesustype in various pagan and Christian settings. He finds reproductions, for example, in the Polish Solidarity’s resistance movement and in the revolt against the Somoza regime in Nicaragua. Frye (1973: 141–142) claims that the conception of “Christ” unites all categories of being in identity: Christ is both the one God (divine world) and the one Man (human world), the Lamb of God (animal world), the tree of life (vegetable world) and the rebuilt temple (mineral world). The cyclical rhythms of all worlds bear relevance to the story of Christ; there are elements of all generic plots in his life. Good stories regularly combine elements from different plots, and the greatest and/or longest stories might be able to operate with all classic structures and characters. Narrative forms are interrelated and overlapping, as Frye demonstrates with his “phases of myths” (1973: 177): each mythos contains six phases, three being parallel to the phases of the neighboring mythos in the cycle. Thus, for

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example, even though comedy has distinct features of its own, it blends into irony and satire at one end and into romance at the other. There is certain uniformity of structure even though the triumph of the humorous society in a cos`ı fan tutte, “thus do they all” manner seems quite different from comic oracular solemnity. No individual realization can contain the whole spectrum of choices and all elements adhering to a particular plot; the universe of possible stories is infinite. Underlining the pervasiveness and universal appeal of basic plots need not amount to determinism. Unusual solutions are possible. And often, the effectiveness of the unusual choice is founded on our understanding of the typical and the appropriate in the particular case. As John Frow (2005) maintains in relation to genres, categories may be fuzzy, open-ended and constantly modified by usage, and still guide our expectations, interpretations and text production processes. Generic plots should be seen as distinct, but not self-contained, categories. Moreover, the plots may be resorted to with varying degrees of consciousness. Although prose authors may set out to write a tragedy, for example, scientific authors probably do not first choose a structure among the available (four) options and then meticulously obey its dramatic demands. Nevertheless, they are not somehow outside or above the general traditions and conventions of giving meaning in written form. For analytic purposes, generic plots work best as heuristic tools, as one possible way to systematically read texts. My purpose in what follows is not to squeeze every story into its proper box, but to encourage paying attention to typical features, widely appealing forms and contents, to appreciate each narrative in its entirety, and to foster novel interpretative possibilities. The grouping and systematizing is done in order to probe and discuss, not to impose or conclude. As Polkinghorne (1988: 167–169) underlines, both the similarities that narratives share with other narratives and the uniqueness of the particular narrative need to be recognized by the researcher. No typology alone can do justice to the variety of stories, although typologies may be useful when seen as inventories of abstractions and concepts. Recognizing a plot and understanding how it functions makes it easier to imagine alternative plots for the same occasion. The analysis of plot structures consists of looking for typical sequences of events and characters, studying how the story moves toward its logical ending and, on the way, paying attention to the aspects and actors that get highlighted and the ones that get downplayed. Like Frye, my analysis employs four plots, two of which have “slash” titles: romance/epic, tragedy, comedy and irony/satire. To summarize the claims made so far and to organize the typology, I will present certain basic dimensions or divisional lines (see also Table 2.1). First, there is the distinction according to the type of ending, that is, happy versus sad denouement. There are also important differences in the characters or roles of actors, the means they resort to and the general manner of progression: stable or inconsistent characters, clear or ambiguous roles, violent or nonviolent means, predictable progression or novel and surprising developments. Finally, the general mood of the story can be described as either optimistic or pessimistic. Again, these distinguishing features echo Frye’s way of distinguishing narrative categories or generic plots through

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Table 2.1 Distinguishing features of basic plots

Ending Characters/ roles Means Progression Mood

Tragedy

Romance/epic

Comedy

Irony/satire

Sad Stable/clear

Happy Stable/clear

Nonviolent and violent Predictable Pessimistic

Nonviolent and violent Predictable Optimistic

Happy Inconsistent/ ambiguous Nonviolent

Sad Inconsistent/ ambiguous Nonviolent and violent Surprising Pessimistic

Surprising Optimistic

expectations related to structure, mood and character types. In romances and epics, unfailingly brave heroes slay evil enemies on a designated path toward a happy end, whereas in tragedies proud heroes fiercely fight for doomed causes and face demise. In comedies, everyone encountered on the bumpy but bloodless road – the whole messy lot – is invited to the final celebration. Ironic and satirical stories portray incoherent characters and incomprehensible events, violent clashes and outright absurdity. As I have pointed out already, this typology does not do justice to the variety of logical possibilities and actual realizations, but it is useful in grasping the basic alternatives in storytelling and assessing their relative merits in the context of international relations narratives. Studying the crude differences might also increase our appreciation of skillful combinations of different plots and outline storylines that have not yet been realized in practice. Before engaging in my own analytical exercise, I will give a brief overview of what has already been written on international relations plots, mainly on tragedies and comedies. I will not go into research on international relations or foreign policy stories more generally. Amongst others, Michael J. Shapiro (1988, 1992, 1996), David Campbell (1990, 1992, 1993, 1998), Michael Billig (1995) or Robert L. Ivie (1987, 2003) have studied the symbolic practices of making strange and drawing boundaries, imagining community and creating identities in various contexts. Ronald R. Krebs (2015) has analyzed the role of narratives in US debates over national security from the 1930s to the 2000s, and Alistair Miskimmon et al. (2013) have focused on narrative contests over the Libya crisis of 2011 and on crises that have emerged during Israel’s conflicts with its neighbors. Later (in Chapter 4 section ‘Poststructuralism: David Campbell and Writing Security’), I will analyze Campbell’s Writing Security (1992) as an example of poststructural irony/satire, but my focus in the overview of earlier research on world politics plots is confined to studies dealing explicitly with the typology of tragic, romantic/epic, comic and ironic/satirical stories. Furthermore, I will not present findings concerning specific narrative structures employed in international relations practice, that is, in the stories of prominent world political actors. Examples of studies attending to the generic plots found in the statements and speeches by political leaders and other public figures include

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Erik Ringmar’s (2006) examination of competing Iraq War stories, my own analysis (Kuusisto, 2009) of Western conflict resolution narratives and Robert A. Payne’s (2013) reading of the global war on terror. These studies operate explicitly with the classic plots, but the texts examined in these studies are mainly political rhetoric, not academic research. Although my goal is partly to demonstrate how the same basic structures, roles and expectations can be found in all narratives whether fictional or factual – whether the storytellers are politicians, scholars or novelists – my analysis in this book will concentrate on IR theory and texts produced by scholars.

International relations plots Many, if not most, major contributions to IR theory view world politics as a tragic affair. Starting from classic “pre-IR” interpretations such as Thucydides’s portrayal of the Melian dialogue, tragedy is very much present. Alker (1996: 23–63) shows how the Melian dialogue is pure tragic drama, a scientifically written classical “morality play” about might and right. According to Alker, Thucydides rigorously displays the arguments of both sides – the Athenians claiming that voluntary Melian submission is in the interest of both the Athenian empire and the Melians, the Melians pleading for neutrality and looking toward Sparta for help – and reports on the final slaughter. His method of dialectical reconstruction is both analytical and engaged. In contrast to certain realist readings, Alker sees Thucydides neither as a positivist or a fatalist. Thucydides took sides on the key issue of moral-political responsibility for the war, and elaborated on the “cases” of the two parties so as to show all grammatical possibilities. Alker emphasizes that when we understand that theater in Athens was an accepted part of political dialogue, we can understand how Thucydides was attempting to cathartically instruct his audience. The tragic destruction of, first, the idealistic and proud Melians, and later the arrogant and lustful Athenians, was meant to move the audience and to teach several lessons. As Paul Roe (2000) purports, the security dilemma (at play also in the relationship between Athens and Sparta) – an illusionary incompatibility between actors concerning their security requirements – is in itself a tragedy. Two sides, neither intending to harm the other, end up going to war due to uncertainty and misunderstandings. It has been pointed out that the tendency to focus on the security dilemma and to view the human condition as tragic pertains especially to the so-called realist school of IR. Jonathan Kirshner (2010) describes the classical realist attitude as very wary and always skeptical: realists share a certain pessimism with regard to humanity and especially the prospects of fundamental progress in the nature of human behavior. Similarly, Robert A. Payne (2014) notes how in realist stories, states are essentially doomed to suffer the consequences of preparing for, and engaging in, recurring acts of competition and violence. Kirshner differentiates between classical realists such as Morgenthau and offensive realists, namely Mearsheimer, claiming that whereas the latter produce or are prone to produce dangerously simple, even deterministic, analyses

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and policy recommendations, the former believe that political choices are always manifold and make a difference. Robert Shilliam (2007) discusses Morgenthau in terms of tragic sensibility, in the context of a European tragic tradition of political thought in which the human condition is considered one of antiperfection and human action is characterized by hubris. In this tradition, according to Shilliam, to act in accordance with a moral principle is deemed to bring consequences of suffering upon oneself and one’s community to the extent that the action undermines the very principle it is designed to promote. Shilliam sees Morgenthau’s realism as tragic liberalism: it is the tragically crusading liberal spirit that is, according to Morgenthau, in danger of destroying the world. Nicholas Rengger (2005) underlines that for Morgenthau, human rationality is incapable of mastering tragedy: the tragic cannot be “overcome”; it should simply be confronted in all its forms without undue optimism. Torbjørn Knutsen (2002) compared stories of the twentieth century written by historians, on the one hand, and social scientists, on the other, and concluded that while historians employed the narrative forms of tragedy, comedy and satire – all reactions to romance in his view – social scientists also, or still, used the romantic plot. As romantic storytellers, Knutsen identified Francis Fukuyama (1992) and Bruce Russett and John Oneal (2001), and of these romances, he focused on Triangulating Peace, on how Russett and Oneal portray the institutions of democracy, trade and organizations producing more peaceful relations among states. Suganami (1996, 2008) is reluctant to draw a sharp distinction between International Relations and International History (based on their treatment of narrative). As regards narrative lines within IR, he notes that “idealism” voluntaristically reads/writes potentialities of progress into history and “realism,” by contrast, determinalistically reads/writes constraints on the states’ freedom of action. Payne (2013, 2014) claims that despite the realistic/tragic dominance, the field of IR has a relatively strong tradition of scholars and practitioners telling romantic adventure stories and that generally, these optimistic IR storytellers can be viewed as liberals. Ken Booth and Nicholas J. Wheeler (2008) note that IR schools of thought that maintain, in a romantic manner, that the traditional insecurities of world politics can be transcended by the extension of moral and political community globally include approaches as varied as functionalism, theories of world government, Marxism, anarchism and pacifism. White (1987: 142–168) also discusses the romantic narrative of Marxism. Many of the contributions concerning different ways to plot international relations do not take a stand as to which narrative we should embrace or avoid. However, some scholars express their views on the merits and disadvantages of the narratives. Knutsen (2002), for example, appears to praise certain peace researchers for seeing romantic hope for humanity, while Mervyn Frost (2003) envisions deeper understanding of tragic agonies as the key for transforming our international practices for the better. According to Frost, by appreciating the tragic situation – where acting ethically right causes pain and suffering, where compromise between competing ethic codes is not possible, where unanticipated consequences may destroy the very thing we sought to protect in the first place – we may learn to

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direct our efforts to changing the social practices that repeatedly produce tragic outcomes. Frost joins others who praise the tragic sensibility of realists in general and certain ones (here, namely Butterfield, Niebuhr, Carr and Morgenthau) in particular, and also names the English School as often being appreciative of tragedy – although sometimes too pessimistic, shutting out possibilities for progress. He is much less approving of current normative IR theory where the notion of tragedy does not figure prominently. Lebow (2005) situates his position close to Frost’s. For him also, tragedy is central to international relations. The potential for tragedy is omnipresent and powerful leaders in particular may succumb to hubris, forget their limitations and become blind to risks. Lebow argues that both Thucydides and Morgenthau combined sensitivity to the causes and consequences of tragedy with a belief in progress, however strongly tempered. Like them, he harbors hope and does this through tragedy, not despite it. Certain forms of realism, claims Lebow, have the unfortunate potential to make our expectations of a fear-based world selffulfilling. While tragedy helps us appreciate what went wrong in the past and makes us aware of present dangers, the future need not resemble the past. James Mayall (2003), member of the English School, in his answer to Frost, stands behind the idea that tragedy is the political idiom that international relations respond to. According to Mayall, the modern world cannot easily escape tragic outcomes, despite the idea of progress being the coin of democratic politics. Obviously, he does not rejoice over the strong grip that tragedy holds on world politics, but he warns about the dangers of over-optimism. Rengger (2005) considers even Mayall’s and Lebow’s modestly positive outlooks – not to mention Frost’s belief in social transformation that is possibly already under way – to be misguided. He seems to dismiss the usefulness of the notion of tragedy in world politics altogether, curiously, due to the hope that it may kindle. Much like Oakeshott in his critique of Morgenthau, Rengger would rather go with complete skepticism than with a sense of the tragic. Continuing the debate, Chris Brown (2007) specifically advocates full acceptance of the tragic nature of the choices that have to be made when deciding on issues related to humanitarian interventions or free trade or global distributive justice, for example. Contra Rengger/Oakeshott, he claims that the notion of tragedy has political purchase. He does not focus on the existence or nonexistence of signs of progress, but his recommendations to international political theorists might come close to those of Mayall. According to Brown, awareness of tragedy ought to cause us to act modestly, to be aware of our limitations and to be suspicious of grand narratives of salvation which pretend that there are no tragic choices to be made. Sometimes, Brown argues, we must act even though we know the result will be morally unsatisfactory – some will lose if others are to win; some will suffer when others are rescued – and we should not turn our backs on this tragedy of human existence. Finally, in a response to Lebow, Ian Hall (2014) suggests that satire can provide just as good a form of political education as tragedy, and just as robust a foundation for IR theory. He argues that by mocking human vice and folly, one can

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both present a more realistic version of politics and approbate a specific moral code. Robert L. Ivie (2003) invokes Burke’s idea of comic correctives as a means of observing oneself critically while acting, and of creating consubstantial rivals instead of evil enemies. He recommends fuzziness, spirited debate and malleable categories as a democratic way of dealing with political problems. Payne (2013, 2014) calls for “comedy and especially satire” and purports that these narratives go well together with Frankfurt School critical theory and the Gramscian scholarly position. According to Payne, romantic and tragic narratives (liberals and realists) devote insufficient attention to many interesting and important actors, actions and circumstances in global politics. As the main advantages of comedic or satiric stories (critical theory), he advances the focus on ordinary people and human security, the ability to expose foolishness and weaknesses, and an emancipatory purpose. Earlier already, Jennifer Milliken and Davis Sylvan (1996) explicitly spoke for employing irony or satire in the study of international affairs, and conducted a satiric discourse analysis of US policy-making in Indochina. To conclude, many IR scholars believe that tragedy is the plot that we should embrace more fully in our research not only because it provides the most accurate answers to crucial “how?” and “why?” questions, but also because it directs us toward a better future. No one, of course, is content with tragedies being acted out as such, i.e., with the gloomy endings witnessed so far or the dismal scenarios concerning the future. Happy endings have been detected in IR romances about democratic peace and the end of history and comedies concerning the civilizing process. It has been suggested that critical theory might bear resemblance to comedy. Finally, the idea of ironic/satirical criticism as a foundation for IR theory has been touched upon, but as yet not developed very far.

3

Previously charted IR grounds Dismal tragedies and exuberant romances

Although studying IR contributions as competing narrative bids is far from being a central metatheoretical occupation in the field, tragedies and romances have been discussed more often than comedies and satires. I provide an analysis of these preliminarily charted grounds in this chapter before moving on to the analysis of even stranger territories in Chapter 4. The heroes, scenes and denouements in tragedies and romances/epics are opposite in many ways: epic heroes conquer huge obstacles and celebrate their great victory in the end, whereas tragic heroes unavoidably proceed toward their gloomy demise. However, there are also important similarities: the characters of the main actors remain stable throughout the story, most of the events contribute to the predictable conclusion and violent means must be resorted to at some point.

Realist despair As discussed already, it is the realist school of IR that has been credited for producing the best tragedians in the field. Tragic realists were described as wary and skeptical, pessimistic with regard to human nature and progress. In the realist vision, states are doomed to suffer the consequences of preparing for acts of violence, and leaders regularly succumb to hubris, forget their limitations and become blind to risks. Acting in accordance with moral principles, acting ethically, often brings about pain and suffering. Difficult choices and tragic outcomes simply cannot be avoided: we end up hurting the very people we wanted to save, and helping some at the expense of others. In general textbook contexts, realist theories are characterized as sharing certain core assumptions such as self-help, statism and survival (Dunne and Schmitt, 2017: 101–115), or anarchy, egoism and power politics (Donnelly, 2009: 31–56). The analysis of realist theories as tragic narratives does not dismiss or contradict the analysis of their essential assumptions and claims. Rather, it draws attention to how these assumptions and claims are presented, and how they are tied together as elements of an explanatory story. As examples of realist tragedies, I will focus on Hans Morgenthau’s Politics among Nations: The Struggle for Power and Peace and John Mearsheimer’s The Tragedy of Great Power Politics. Both, I will demonstrate, bear essential features

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of the classic plot: they both draw their power from tragic narrative force, and direct expectations toward a dismal end. There are also major differences between the two tragedies, as I will also show. First, however, I turn to two literary examples, Sophocles’s Oedipus and Shakespeare’s King Lear. I begin by providing a concise summary of the two stories. My intention is not to offer a highly sophisticated or original literary analysis, but to recapitulate the essential characters and events. The assumption is that most readers will know these stories – or know that based on their education and experiences they should know these stories. This is also what many other forms of culture rely on, namely familiarity with the Western literary canon. I realize that by relying on the canon I contribute to reinforcing its biases. My defense is that I also accomplish something else: after studying the established texts and forms, one can probe their limits and search for alternatives. Oedipus and King Lear The story of Oedipus recounts the life of a mythical Greek king of Thebes. The legend has been told and retold in many versions, Sophocles’s three Theban plays (Sophocles, 1984 [c. 429 BCE]) probably forming the primary reference. Oedipus is the son of King Laius and Queen Jocasta of Thebes. Before Oedipus is born, the Oracle at Delphi prophesizes that should Laius have a son, this son will kill his father and marry his mother. Consequently, when Oedipus is born, his parents decide to get rid of him: they tie his legs together to prevent him from crawling, and give him to a servant boy to abandon in the mountains. Instead of dying, Oedipus ends up being raised by the king and queen of Corinth as their own child. Oedipus consults the same oracle that his birth parents consulted and gets to hear the same prophecy: you are destined to kill your father and marry your mother. In order to avoid this fate, Oedipus decides not to return home to Corinth, but heads toward Thebes instead. At a crossing on the way, he fights with the driver of another chariot over the right to go first. Oedipus kills the other driver when the driver tries to run him over. The driver is his father, Laius. Continuing his journey to Thebes, Oedipus rids the city of the monstrous Sphinx by being able to answer the Sphinx’s riddle. As a reward, he is made king and given the widow queen’s hand in marriage – that is, he marries his mother. Oedipus and Jocasta have four children. Years later, when seeking an answer to why Thebes is struck by a plague of infertility, both find out what had happened. Jocasta hangs herself. Oedipus blinds himself and asks to be forever exiled from Thebes. Shakespeare based his King Lear (1991 [1608]) on the legend of Leir of Britain, a mythological Celtic king. Shakespeare’s play begins with a scene in which the aged king, having decided to retire, wishes to divide his realm among his three daughters, Goneril, Regan and Cordelia. Lear offers to give the largest share to the one who loves him most, expecting this to be Cordelia. However, whereas Goneril and Regan declare their love in excessive terms, Cordelia merely states that she loves him according to her bond. Infuriated, Lear disinherits Cordelia. Cordelia marries the King of France; Goneril and Regan, charged with

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taking care of their old father, treat Lear badly. Lear goes mad, rushes out into a storm and wanders on the heath. After losing all his power, possessions and sanity, Lear has three companions: his Fool, his loyal friend Kent and Edgar, the son of Lear’s friend Gloucester, disguised as a madman. Edmund, Gloucester’s other son, plots against his brother and father. Regan and her husband Cornwall, accusing Gloucester of treason, gouge out Gloucester’s eyes; Cornwall gets killed by his servant for doing this. Blind Gloucester, too, wanders on the heath, tries to kill himself, but is saved by Edgar. Both Goneril and Regan court Edmund. Goneril’s husband Albany denounces his wife. The French army commanded by Cordelia lands in Britain; Kent takes Lear to Cordelia; the French are defeated in battle. Cordelia and Lear are captured by the British forces of Regan, Albany, Goneril and Edmund. Edgar wounds Edmund fatally. Goneril poisons Regan and stabs herself to death. Cordelia is hanged on the orders of Edmund. Lear dies – mourning Cordelia, but at his very last moment believing that she might be alive. These brief summaries naturally leave out many characters and scenes, such as the blind prophet Tiresias who wisely tries to talk Oedipus out of looking for Laius’s murderer, and the scene where the destitute, sightless and mad (insane Lear, “Poor Tom” Edgar, the professional Fool and blind Gloucester) hold an insightful conversation about true and untrue children and parents. However, these basic features are evident: both stories have a sad ending (for almost everybody concerned), both heroes set out to accomplish something good (prevent the fulfillment of a horrible prophecy, retire with dignity), both heroes are prone to resort to excessive measures (giving up their fortunes, leaving their families, generally dashing off with fury), both stories include a violent element that is essential to the denouement (patricide, death of beloved daughter), both chains of events are consistently dismal (no saviors out of the blue). Both heroes, though proud and stubborn, clearly love their families (traditionally, a virtue) and have a reasonably well-developed sense of justice. Despite this, they end up hurting the ones they most love and bringing about general misery. At various moments when the story unfolds, the reader or spectator wishes that things might turn for the better, as there are points of return, and occasional hope. However, the catastrophic scenario that is hinted at in the beginning is eventually realized, usually to the extreme. Oedipus sets out to save his beloved parents. Among Lear’s daughters, Cordelia is the one who loves his father most, and Lear genuinely loves Cordelia. Oedipus kills his father; he marries his mother, has children with her and drives her to suicide; and in the end, he himself is blind and homeless. Not only does Lear lose all his three daughters and die, but there are also many other bodies produced along the way (Cornwall and his loyal servant, Edmund, Gloucester and presumably the war casualties). Oedipus might have attached less importance to the prophecies of the Oracle or not relied so completely on his own ability to avert fate; Jocasta need not have killed herself. Lear might have understood Cordelia better; Cordelia might have humored her old father. Nevertheless, in all the terrible things that happen, there is some formal and psychological satisfaction: projects once begun are followed to the bitter end; proud and passionate people learn about the limits of their power. The second time around in particular, all the

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pieces fall into their right places: in the eyes of the audience, certain actions now need to be taken in order to complete the pattern. Ideally, we feel pity and fear, and ultimately experience catharsis, in the process of watching the events unfold. Classical realists: Hans Morgenthau and Politics among Nations Kirshner (2010), Shilliam (2007), Rengger (2005), Frost (2003) and Lebow (2005, 2013) do not praise Morgenthau’s tragic sensibility without good reason. Morgenthau does indeed stand out from among the classical realist writers on international relations, and he does have a tragic view of life and politics. Another excellent example of classical realist tragedy would be E.H. Carr’s (1964 [1939]) The Twenty Years’ Crisis. Carr was deeply skeptical of humanity’s progress, although the world was not yet faced with the possibility of nuclear holocaust. While Lebow (2013: 61) claims that Morgenthau wrote no tragedies as such, I take a step further and claim that he did. As Lebow (ibid: 75) confirms, Morgenthau understood tragedy as a quality of existence, not a creation of art. He was also painfully aware of the limits of social inquiry. Of course, he understood himself as someone with a scientific outlook, “a scientific man,” not as an author of morality plays. But it is not only the interpretative framework applied in this study but also Morgenthau’s own views that point to the existence of tragic scientific works. Morgenthau might well have written his tragedy by intentionally exploiting the generic dramatic resources available. Articulated belief in the power of a generic plot, however, is not a necessary requirement for producing effective narratives. Irrespective of its author’s beliefs and intentions, I argue that Politics among Nations is an impressive tragedy about two postwar superpowers, both blinded by nationalistic universalism and the belief in their omnipotence, heading toward a dismal end. In the following, I will focus on the characters, events and explanations offered in Politics among Nations, published originally in 1948 and since then in several (revised) editions (7th ed. in 2005), although it is not Morgenthau’s only tragedy. His Scientific Man versus Power Politics, for example, also bears the features of a tragedy, as demonstrated with the following remarks on the bleak situation of man in the social world: A giant Prometheus among the forces of the universe, he is but a straw on the waves of that ocean which is the social world. In his struggle with nature, he is like god. In his struggle with his fellow-men, he is more powerful than a beast but not so wise […] scientific man errs when he meets the challenge of power politics with weapons of science, and the freedom of man is challenged to renew the fight with other means. Without assurance of victory and with the odds against him, man persists in the struggle […] (Morgenthau, 1946: 222–223). According to Morgenthau, then, not only statesmen but also scholars are tragic heroes with the odds against them: they need to try, but they are unlikely to

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succeed. They tend to imagine being more wise and powerful than they are, and consequently accept huge challenges. Their well-meaning efforts to tame the social world with their theories may lead to disaster, but they cannot give up. It is the actions of statesmen and states – the tragedy of international politics – however, which is of primary interest here, not the closely connected efforts of IR scholars (and the tragedy of International Politics). I will begin by laying out the structure of Politics among Nations, the organization of the story and Morgenthau’s central claims, before turning to the tragic logic and appeal of Morgenthau’s story. Structure and main claims Morgenthau’s book consists of three large sections. The first deals with basic definitions of international relations theory and practice (chapters 1–7, parts 1–2: Theory and practice of international politics, International politics as a struggle for power); the second with national power and its limitations (chapters 8–19, parts 3–6: National power, Limitations of national power: the balance of power, Limitations of national power: international morality and world public opinion, Limitations of national power: international law); and the third with the problem of peace in the age of nationalistic universalism (chapters 20–32, parts 7–10: International politics in the contemporary world, The problem of peace: peace through limitation, The problem of peace: peace through transformation, The problem of peace: peace through accommodation). The two organizing themes, as the book’s title suggests, and as is explicitly stated in the introduction, are power and peace (1973: 24). Although he spends more time on the definition of power and is better remembered for studying it, Morgenthau wrote the book in order to enhance the prospects for peace. He believed that in the postwar world, the problem of peace was more urgent than ever before: “peace has become the prime concern of all nations” (ibid). The measures he deemed necessary for keeping the struggle for power in the international sphere within peaceful bounds in the long run were radical: ultimately only a world state could guarantee peace. So radical, indeed, that the story has a tragic plot: Morgenthau himself demonstrates that the chances of success are meager. The way his story is told makes us expect that the hero is unlikely to listen to words of warning or to turn back. Morgenthau begins his treatment of international politics by affirming to his readers that whatever the ultimate aims of this activity, power is always the immediate aim. According to Morgenthau, “international politics, like all politics, is a struggle for power” (1973: 27) and “statesmen think and act in terms of interest defined as power” (ibid: 5). For Morgenthau (ibid: 3), the laws of politics have their roots in human nature that has not changed essentially with time. Power is then defined as “man’s control over the minds and actions of other men” (ibid: 29). Morgenthau moves on to discuss the manifestations of the struggle for power (policies of status quo, imperialism and prestige) and the elements of national power (geography, natural resources, industrial capacity, military preparedness, population, national character, national morale, quality of diplomacy and quality

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of government). Of the elements, he picks out the quality of diplomacy as the most important one; for Morgenthau, diplomacy is the “brains of national power” (ibid: 140). Morgenthau then turns to the limitations of national power – the balance of power, international morality and world public opinion, and international law – and finds each of them to be either unreal, uncertain or inadequate, especially in the bipolar world of nuclear powers. Finally, Morgenthau studies international politics in the contemporary world. He finds both the new moral force of nationalistic universalism and the tendencies toward total war deeply disturbing. Morgenthau emphasizes that the nationalism of the late 20th century shares only the reference to “the nation” with earlier nationalism, everything else is different. While nationalism previously sought to have a state for each nation – envisioned coexistence of similar and equally justifiable goals – nationalism in Morgenthau’s day “claims for one nation and one state the right to impose its own valuations and standards of action upon all the other nations” (1973: 329). Moreover, Morgenthau sees changes in attitudes toward interstate violence: instead of limited wars for limited purposes between well-defined groups, “war in our time has become total in four different respects” (ibid: 355): it is war of a total population identified with the project, waged by the total population participating in the war effort, against the total enemy population, for total stakes. According to Morgenthau, peace is in principle possible in any of three ways: limitation (disarmament, system of collective security, judicial settlement, intergovernmental organizations), transformation (world state, world community) and accommodation (diplomacy). As the three limitations of national power, these three paths to peace are logically conceivable, but in practice mostly unavailable or ineffective in today’s world. Our feeble light of hope, according to Morgenthau, lies in diplomacy: “as there can be no permanent peace without a world state, there can be no world state without the peace-preserving and communitybuilding processes of diplomacy” (ibid: 547). As regards this route, however, there is a major problem right in the beginning: the institution of diplomacy has lost its former vitality; its important functions have withered away. Morgenthau devotes nearly all of his book, the first 30 chapters, to a somber discussion of the realities of international politics. He engages in a more detailed analysis of diplomacy only in the two final chapters, guidelines for the revival of the institution being the topic of the last 15 or so pages. According to Morgenthau, national sovereignty is at the heart of humanity’s problems, the main obstacle to world peace: “as long as the supreme lawgiving and law-enforcing authority remains vested in the national governments, the threat of war […] may be said to be unavoidable” (1973: 323). Morgenthau insists that there is a confrontation between two mutually exclusive preferences in our age, the preference for peace and the preference for national sovereignty: “While people everywhere are anxious to free themselves from the threat of war, they are also anxious to preserve the sovereignty of their respective nations” (ibid). In this confrontation, there are no compromise solutions available: “the advice to give up ‘a part of national sovereignty’ for the sake of the preservation of peace is

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tantamount to the advice to close one’s eyes and dream that one can eat one’s cake and have it, too” (ibid: 324). Thus, something like a community and just a few basic rules of conduct will not do: to guarantee peace, it is all or nothing. For the moment, we need to rely on the instrument of diplomacy to promote national interest by peaceful means, and to mitigate and minimize conflict (ibid: 517). But in the long run, there is only one possible answer: “There can be no permanent international peace without a state coextensive with the confines of the political world” (ibid: 487). While Morgenthau is particularly worried about the unsophisticated, universalistic aspirations of the two postwar superpowers and ideologies – the US crusading in the name of democracy, and Soviet support to all variants of communism – he is suspicious of the present actors and mentality more generally. For Morgenthau (1973: 189–193, 242–245), it was in 18th-century Europe where things looked most promising: the balance of power mechanism worked relatively well; the morality of the cosmopolitan aristocratic society had a restraining influence on foreign policies. Starting from the French revolution, the system has deteriorated: “While the democratic selection and responsibility of government officials destroyed international morality as an effective system of restraints, nationalism destroyed the international society itself within which that morality had operated” (ibid: 248). The Concert of Europe was successful in preserving general peace during the 90 years of its existence, the era between the Holy Alliance and the League of Nations, mainly due to a succession of brilliant diplomatists and statesmen, but the attempts at formalizing international government – the Holy Alliance, the League of Nations, the United Nations – were all doomed to fall short of expectations. Again, there simply is no guarantee of law and order if there is no society and state to back these up. Tragic appeal Although Morgenthau does not place the blame for the current situation on any one actor – and there are thus no absolutely wicked characters or evil enemies in Politics among Nations – the United States is the tragic hero of the story. All actors operate under the same difficult conditions of sovereignty, all are in danger of being consumed by the same nationalist forces and all often suffer as the result of decisions made by similarly short-sighted foreign policy leaders. All the major actors in Morgenthau’s story are states or nations; a nation is defined as “an abstraction from a number of individuals who have certain characteristics in common” (1973: 103). Morgenthau further clarifies: “a nation pursues foreign policies as a legal organization called a state, whose agents act as the representatives of the nation in international politics” (1973: 104). The United States plays the leading role in the story mainly because the perspective of this nation is that of both the author and the primary audience of the book, not because of its moral superiority or outstanding skills among states. And even though the hero of the story is in practice pitted against the Soviet Union, the main problem is not the different values and political system of the adversary as such. The United States

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and the Soviet Union occupy central stage in the final battle simply because they are the most powerful actors and the most likely to end up in conflict with each other in the present situation, under the current forces. This is not a story of the battle of the forces of light against the forces of darkness, but of the pursuit of a dangerous dream by a hero succumbing to hubris. In order to underline the tragic nature of the action of “today” – that is, in the late 20th century – and to strengthen its dramatic force, Morgenthau uses extensive historical comparisons and illustrations. The contemporary situation is different from anything that we have seen before, Morgenthau assures us: the praiseworthy “common system of arts, and laws, and manners” and the “shared sense of honor and justice” are now a mere historic reminiscence (1973: 255). His description of stage before the final act is grim indeed: As for the influence of that system of supranational ethics upon the conscience of the actors on the international scene, it is rather like the feeble rays, barely visible above the horizon of consciousness, of a sun that has already set. Since the First World War, with ever increasing intensity and generality, each of the contestants in the international arena claims in its “way of life” to possess the whole truth of morality and politics, which the others may reject only at their peril. With fierce exclusiveness, all contestants equate their national conceptions of morality with what all mankind must and will ultimately accept and live by. (Morgenthau, 1973: 255). Instead of the civilized and flexible leaders of bygone days who were free to act in accordance with the demands of the particular situation and to carefully assess the national interest, we now have puppets of the often unpredictable and uninformed public opinion who can easily be goaded into extravagant moves. What follows is arguably the finest tragic depiction ever written in IR theory: The morality of the particular group, far from limiting the struggle for power on the international scene, gives that struggle a ferociousness and intensity not known to other ages. For the claim to universality which inspires the moral code of one particular group is incompatible with the identical claim of another group; the world has room for only one, and the other must yield or be destroyed. Thus, carrying their idols before them, the nationalistic masses of our time meet in the international arena, each group convinced that it executes the mandate of history, that it does for humanity what it seems to do for itself, and that it fulfills a sacred mission ordained by Providence, however defined. Little do they know that they meet under an empty sky from which the gods have departed. (Morgenthau, 1973: 256). The missiles with their nuclear warheads are not yet in the air, but they might as well be, since even the mighty gods have given up hope and left the auditorium.

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The sun has already set, darkness is quickly gaining ground and the masses are on the move. We are aware of the mutually exclusive goals of the parties and of the fact that everybody believes to be on a sacred mission. Nobody on a sacred mission turns back and reconsiders whether the project is worth taking the risk after all. We do not know the exact moment when the explosion will take place – somebody might be able to postpone the confrontation – but it is extremely unlikely that it will be altogether canceled. In a complicated way, the hero deserves to be punished for nurturing an impossible dream and pretending to be able to rise above history and social conventions. If the hero is not punished, our basic moral codes have no relevance. There were words of warning, he should have known better. Yet we understand that it is not malignancy or thirst for blood that drives the parties forward, but love of their nation and genuine convictions. They not only believe to be doing the right thing but also that they have no choice: in their minds, they have to fight for their supreme system, for democracy, freedom or equality – and of course the immediate goal of power to guarantee their sovereignty and security. In the process, however, they will end up destroying the whole world. Though annoyingly stubborn, the hero is admirably consistent, and there is a certain grandeur to his moves. The kind of diplomacy that Morgenthau (1973: 517–548) advocates, by contrast, seems mundane and shifting. While outlining the four tasks, two organized instruments, four fundamental rules and five other rules of sound diplomacy or foreign policy, Morgenthau constantly stresses the importance of the ability to compromise. According to Morgenthau, one should denounce the crusading spirit, study things from the point of view of other actors, give up worthless rights and compromise on everything not vital. He admits that this is a difficult task: “the highest feat of statesmanship” is accomplished by a “roundabout and zigzag course” (ibid: 546). The nationalistic audiences, however, demand absolute victory and applaud impressive measures. They are drawn to the game of all or nothing instead of the dull and secretive game of diplomacy. The appeal of the story with absolute stakes and consistent characters is understandably often greater than that of stories of ad hoc bargaining among experts behind the scenes. Also, although a savior out of the blue might provide a convenient way out of the impasse, there is no one introduced in Politics among Nations. The appearance of a surprise actor or a total change of character of the hero would disrupt the flow and break the style: the plot does not prepare for a rescuer in any way. Like the characters, the progression of the story is predictable. Morgenthau’s meticulous analysis of all the mechanisms that might limit sovereign power and guarantee world peace makes it clear that no miracles are to be expected. According to Morgenthau (1973: 338–350), the balance of power does not work in a two-block system: there is no balancer and the colonial frontier has disappeared. International law, courts and organizations – seemingly restraining and arbitrating instruments – contribute to the illusion that international politics is under control (ibid: 271–305, 379–475). Rather than adding to the potential of peace, these instruments actually make the situation more dangerous and explosive: content with disarmament agreements, high-level negotiations and

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organizations promising collective security, people forget the stark realities. There is no international society or morality; controls work only in good times; ill-founded hope might get us all killed. Modern technology cannot be undone or forgotten. Instead of engaging in prudent community-building, the hero of the story seems unable to tell apart vital and not vital interests and all too susceptible to endless demands of numerous allies, the armed forces and the public opinion. In sum: things do not look good at the moment and there is little reason to anticipate a major change in the course of events. Even though Morgenthau does not provide the final scene of destruction, and officially even harbors hope in the revival of diplomacy, we know that the ending will in all probability be sad and violent. To deduce Morgenthau’s own guess concerning the future of mankind, it is worth considering one more passage: Thus the international situation is reduced to the primitive spectacle of two giants eyeing each other with watchful suspicion. They bend every effort to increase their military potential to the utmost, since this is all they have to count on. Both prepare to strike the first decisive blow, for if one does not strike it the other might. Thus, contain or be contained, conquer or be conquered, destroy or be destroyed, become the watchwords of new diplomacy. (Morgenthau, 1973: 353). What we are to expect is total war: everybody will be drawn in; all weapons will be used. Again, Morgenthau does not paint the final scene in detail: he does not have to. The readers of the first edition would never forget the images from Hiroshima and Nagasaki; the readers of the fifth edition here used lived in the midst of the Cold War with evermore destructive and agile nuclear weapons being constantly developed and talked about. In fact, not elaborating only increases the horror: we have no comforting, exhaustive lists of the effects of thermonuclear war; we simply have our limited natural science knowledge and our imaginations without any limits. Politics among Nations is a tragedy about international relations. Morgenthau most likely wrote it in order to alert his audience, to warn people about the dangers that lay ahead if everything continued moving logically forward. On a tragic mission himself, he talked about the necessity and impossibility of change: unless we want to see the tragedy of great power war played out, we need to radically reorient ourselves – but probably will not. The message relied on tragic force, on evoking associations to other tragedies. Oedipus could not avert the catastrophe despite his best efforts: he killed his father and drove his mother to suicide; King Lear had a rational plan of succession, but he and his three daughters ended up first miserable, and then dead. They went to the extremes, they refused to compromise. Lear should have placed himself in Cordelia’s shoes; Oedipus should not have attempted to know and master everything. They should have sought to understand the positions of others and listened to wise words. In both Oedipus and King Lear the heroes, to a certain extent at least, had it coming to them, but also innocent characters were drawn into the turmoil and suffered as a consequence.

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The tragedy of international politics in Morgenthau’s story is both enchanting and horrifying: the logic of the moves of the two superpowers as well as the proper conclusion of the struggle is convincingly laid out for us. We get to appreciate the situation, to sympathize with the hero and his efforts. Identifying with the hero comes naturally: after all, this is a story about our choices, the choices of the Western bloc. The most powerful nation on earth, believing to be fighting for a good cause, will lead us to a war in which there are no winners. This need not happen – nations with different interests can coexist – but it will. When nations define their interests in universalistic terms and set out on grand crusades, all hope is lost. We know that Morgenthau is not the only one to warn the United States against getting tied into small battles all over the international scene and formulating its objectives in black and white, absolute terms. The importance of prioritizing and bargaining skills is stressed often enough; restraint and the ability to think ahead are repeatedly praised by foreign policy experts. The tragic demise is not unexpected: powerful heroes set on executing a crucial mission do not care about the quibbles of academics or critique based on cowardice. They cannot be stopped, and they will not turn back. The audience both admires the hero and fears his recklessness. Grand gestures and finishing off with style have dramatic power even in connection with a lost cause. Once the narrative provides evidence of how the hero succumbs to hubris, his wrong moves become right, fitting into the tragic plot with its sad denouement. Offensive realism: John Mearsheimer and The Tragedy of Great Power Politics Like Morgenthau’s Politics among Nations, Mearsheimer’s The Tragedy of Great Power Politics portrays international relations as a tragedy. Both writers can be described as exhibiting tragic sensibility instead of, for example, excessive optimism or a humoristic attitude. Both stories dedicate attention to state actors and the importance of power: in a situation where there is no higher authority and no true community, states struggle for power and cannot, in the end, count on instruments of cooperation. However, the two tragedies are very different. While Morgenthau envisions a dismal end to the world of crusading, nuclear superpowers, he emphasizes the role of choice and diplomacy. Mearsheimer’s world, on the other hand, is condemned to great power competition (2001: 2): great powers have little choice (ibid: 3), states are like billiard balls (ibid: 11) and survival mandates aggressive behavior (ibid: 21). Morgenthau is deeply worried about the present situation where the ability to bargain and compromise is not appreciated the way it formerly was and still should be. Mearsheimer argues that states should behave according to the dictates of offensive realism: aggressively, always seeking to maximize their relative power, the ultimate goal being the status of world hegemon (ibid: 11–12, 21, 54). While Morgenthau grieves for the “two giants eyeing each other with watchful suspicion,” Mearsheimer affirms that any state bent on survival must be “at least suspicious” of others (ibid: 32). Morgenthau paints a gloomy picture of the nationalistic masses meeting “under a

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sky from which the gods have departed”; Mearsheimer maintains that “God helps those who help themselves” (ibid: 33). For Morgenthau, the possibility of total war fundamentally altered the logic of international relations. For Mearsheimer (ibid: 128–129), nuclear weapons do not change the essence of the balance of power. As long as at least two states in the system have retaliatory capability, the competition continues much like before. Another good example of realist tragedy different from classical realism would be one of Kenneth Waltz’s two famous books, Man, the State, and War (2001 [1954]) or Theory of International Politics (1979). These two, like The Tragedy of Great Power Politics, could well represent structural realism – in contrast to Morgenthau’s “human nature realism” (Mearsheimer, 2001: 19) – but Mearsheimer’s offensive realism drives several points further than defensive realists, such as Waltz, do. Mearsheimer perfects the motive of the quest for power. Whereas defensive realists stop at maintaining the state’s position in the system and ensuring security at a given moment, Mearsheimer (ibid: 19–21) claims that status quo powers are rarely found since every state always seeks to maximize its power in order to survive. Moreover, Mearsheimer explicitly chooses the terms tragedy and tragic, not only in the title but in passages such as the following: This cycle of violence will continue far into the new millennium. Hopes for peace will probably not be realized, because the great powers that shape the international system fear each other and compete for power as a result. Indeed, their ultimate aim is to gain a position of dominant power over others, because having dominant power is the best means to ensure one’s own survival. Strength ensures safety, and the greatest strength is the greatest insurance of safety. States facing this incentive are fated to clash as each competes for advantage over the others. This is a tragic situation, but there is no escaping it unless the states that make up the system agree to form a world government. Such a vast transformation is hardly a realistic prospect, however, so conflict and war are bound to continue as large and enduring features of world politics. (Mearsheimer, 2001: xi–xii). As with Politics among Nations, I will first lay out the structure and main claims of Mearsheimer’s story about international relations, and then turn to its tragic appeal and resolution. Structure and main claims The book consists of an Introduction that lays down Mearsheimer’s premises and main claims (chapter 1), a discussion of power in the state system (chapters 2–4: Anarchy and the struggle for power, Wealth and power, The primacy of land power), an outline of the strategies available to states (chapters 5–9: Strategies for survival, Great powers in action, The offshore balancers, Balancing versus buck-passing, The causes of great power war) and a prediction concerning great

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power competition over the next 20 years, that is, developments up to 2020 (chapter 10: Great power politics in the twenty-first century). Throughout the book, Mearsheimer emphasizes that the struggle for power is never-ending – states stop at nothing less than global hegemony – and that it is structural factors, anarchy and distribution of power in the system, that determine policy choices. According to him (2001: 21), great powers behave aggressively not because they want to or because they possess some inner drive to dominate, but in order to maximize their odds of survival. Moreover, it is not just great powers that act in accordance with the power-maximizing logic: the same rules basically go for all states (ibid: 32–35). All states think about defense and offense; there is constant security competition “where states are willing to lie, cheat, and use brute force if it helps them gain advantage over their rivals” (ibid: 35). Against this description of the general situation and motives of actors, the predicted ending to the story comes as no surprise: there is trouble ahead (ibid: 384–386). In all of the scenarios that Mearsheimer sketches (ibid: 386–400), either security competition among existing great powers increases dangerously or a new formidable potential hegemon appears on the scene. The possibility of another great power war – this time a tragedy among nuclear powers – is quite real, if not inevitable. Mearsheimer’s story begins by correcting a false prophecy: the vision of perpetual peace being finally at hand (2001: 1). Mearsheimer notes that the end of the Cold War was seen by many as a qualitative systemic change: henceforth, cooperation and prosperity would increase; war between the great powers would be purged from the international arena. According to Mearsheimer, there is no international community to speak of, and there never will be – regardless of what the traditionally optimistic and moralistic Americans are prone to believe (ibid: 23–27). Great powers invariably fear each other and always compete with each other for power; they are never happy with the status quo or see peace or stability as a goal in itself (ibid: 50). In the chapters on power, Mearsheimer underlines that survival is the number one goal of states: survival trumps wealth and ideology, order and cooperation, not to mention national unification or human rights (ibid: 46–53). In an anarchic system where all great powers act rationally and possess some offensive military capability, and where no state can be certain about other states’ intentions, the desire to survive strongly encourages aggressive behavior (ibid: 30–31, 54). Mearsheimer believes that Stalin put the point well: “Everyone imposes his own system as far as his army can reach. It cannot be otherwise” (ibid: 37). In practice, this aggressiveness, however, does not lead to constant war. Great powers think carefully, attempt to weigh the costs and risks of offense against the likely benefits, before engaging in action (ibid). Mearsheimer defines power in markedly material terms: a state’s power is based on the size and strength of its army (actual power), together with the size of its population and the level of its wealth (potential/latent power) (2001: 43, 55–57). Latent power is important because it can be transformed into military power: money and large populations result in big and well-equipped, i.e., powerful, armies. Land power, according to Mearsheimer (ibid: 43, 83), is the dominant form of military power in the modern world. Only large bodies of

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water limit the power-projection capabilities of land forces – making the situation of insular powers somewhat different from that of continental states (ibid: 126). While the air and naval forces that directly support the land forces are of importance too, independent sea power and strategic airpower do not really matter. Nuclear weapons, claims Mearsheimer (ibid: 130–133), do not affect the primacy of land power or change the logic of competition. Great powers operating in a world of mutually assured destruction (retaliatory nuclear capability) are likely to act more cautiously than the pre–Second World War great powers, but nuclear powers just like states equipped with conventional weapons only, plan for war and seek superior power (ibid: 224). Mearsheimer explains that he defines power in largely military terms because “force is the ultima ratio of international politics” (ibid: 56). He does not dismiss the role of nonmaterial factors – for example strategy, intelligence, resolve, weather and disease, especially strategy – but simply considers material resources to be the foundation of power on which everything else is built. For Mearsheimer (ibid: 60), power is a material capability, not a policy outcome. Unlike Morgenthau who incorporates nonmaterial factors into the definition of national power itself, Mearsheimer sticks with the tangible here, and discusses employment abilities and results elsewhere, together with historical examples and the strategic choices that states have available to them in today’s world. As to the strategies of survival, Mearsheimer (2001: 138) distinguishes two groups: strategies that states use to shift the balance of power in their favor and strategies that states use to prevent other states from shifting it against them. The former are further divided into the strategies of war, blackmail, bait and bleed and bloodletting; the latter into balancing, buck-passing, appeasement and bandwagoning (ibid: 138–139). Mearsheimer devotes half of his book to a discussion of these strategies, and to test and prove his claims he uses cases from the French Revolution onward. He focuses on the policies of Russia/Soviet Union, France, Prussia/Germany, Austria, the United Kingdom, the United States, Japan, China and Italy – great powers at one moment or throughout the period. In addition to the two world wars, he often refers to the Napoleonic Wars, Bismarck’s wars and the Cold War as evidence. Mearsheimer (ibid: 147–155, 232–233) concludes that war is the main strategy that states use for gaining more power. Blackmailing and the strategy of bait and bleed, though appealing options, are difficult to make work in practice; bloodletting sometimes comes in useful, but relies on the independent choices of others. When it comes to dealing with aggressors trying to increase their share of power, appeasement and bandwagoning are ineffective and dangerous strategies in Mearsheimer’s view (ibid: 139–140). According to him (ibid: 269), when an aggressor comes on the scene, at least one other state will eventually take direct responsibility for checking it, that is, balancing against the threat. However, if possible and often for as long as it can, each state will first try to buck-pass the balancing job to some other state. Mearsheimer (2001: 168–170) claims to demonstrate that the history of great power politics involves primarily the clashing of revisionist states, that the appetite for power does not decline once states have much of it. According to

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Mearsheimer (ibid: 210), all kinds of states with very different kinds of political systems have adopted offensive military policies, and these aggressive policies have often paid off. When comparing the relative war proneness of different international systems, Mearsheimer (ibid: 334–338) finds (balanced) bipolar distribution of power to be the most peaceful configuration. Unbalanced multipolarity – an aspiring hegemon more or less likely to go to war with all other great powers – is the most dangerous situation. Balanced multipolar systems with power distributed roughly equally among the major states fall somewhere in between. Mearsheimer concludes his book by envisioning different patterns of great power politics in the first two decades of the new century (ibid: 360–400). Whether the United States, the only regional hegemon, withdraws its overseas troops or not, Mearsheimer predicts that tensions will build up in various areas. His different scenarios portray Germany or Russia as Europe’s, and China as Southeast Asia’s, future potential hegemons. Mearsheimer considers it quite possible that Germany and Japan might acquire nuclear weapons. These aggressive developments, together with US unwillingness to balance (China) in time, make war between great powers possible once again. Tragic appeal The Tragedy of Great Power Politics does not succumb to pessimism in the end; it explicitly celebrates pessimism from the very beginning. Pessimism maximizes a state’s chances of survival; pessimism should guide all foreign policy choices that states make. According to Mearsheimer (2001: 17), realists, in contrast to liberals, are pessimists when it comes to international politics. They believe there is no way, or at least no easy way, to escape the harsh world of security competition and war. Mearsheimer himself sums up the story he is telling by referring to the tragic plot: This situation, which no one consciously designed or intended, is genuinely tragic. Great powers that have no reason to fight each other – that are merely concerned with their own survival – nevertheless have little choice but to pursue power and seek to dominate the other states in the system. (Mearsheimer, 2001: 3). The tragic hero of Mearsheimer’s story is the United States: it is the US perspective that is studied most carefully; it is the US policy makers who are given advice. At the moment of writing, Mearsheimer was worried about the US policy toward China: instead of engagement, he recommended containment that the United States “do what it can” to slow the rise of China (ibid: 4, 401–402). Generally speaking, however, Mearsheimer is satisfied with the hero: despite the worrisome legalistic-moralistic rhetoric of policy elites and academics, the United States has acted and still acts in accordance with the dictates of realist logic (ibid: 23, 25, 234–261, 361). Before 1853, it acquired a huge land mass stretching from the Atlantic to the Pacific, and during the latter part of century, it consolidated its

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territorial gains and created a rich and cohesive state. The United States gained hegemony in the Western hemisphere on the cheap, without significant opposition and without need for a large military machine. During the 20th century, being the only regional hegemon in the world, the United States only needed to act when a potential peer competitor emerged somewhere else, in Europe or in Northeast Asia, and when it was no longer possible to buck-pass the balancing to another great power. However, it is not only the United States, but in fact all great powers that receive praise from Mearsheimer. As a rule, they have made rational calculations and grabbed opportunities for increasing their relative power – as they should do in order to survive (ibid: 168–233). Of course, they have made mistakes and their plans have not always succeeded. But this does not mean that they have acted irrationally or in a self-defeating manner. Mearsheimer underlines that although difficult, the pursuit of (regional) hegemony is not a quixotic ambition – after all, the United States made it – and the security benefits of hegemony are enormous. Thus, in The Tragedy of Great Power Politics, there are no permanent enemies or evil villains. There are, from the perspective of every state, changing rivals, competitors, aspiring hegemons, adversaries and aggressors. Mearsheimer emphasizes that all states act according to the same logic: drawing distinctions between “good” and “bad” states makes no sense (2001: 17–18). He refrains not only from condemning Soviet objectives in the Cold War, but also those of, for example, Nazi Germany: in Mearsheimer’s opinion, Hitler was an evil mass murderer but also an adroit strategist, and Nazi Germany’s attempt at regional hegemony was quite reasonable at the time (ibid: 216–219). After the revolution, Lenin quickly abandoned grand ideas and became “a political realist second to none,” and Stalin ran Soviet foreign policy for almost 30 years according to the logic of realism (ibid: 191). The tragic hero is struggling amidst other actors in a similar predicament. The fight is not against any particular malignant opponent, but the actor who is thrown on the stage next by the force of the distribution of power in the anarchic system. Fear and competition are endemic in the system and great powers must assume the worst about each other’s intentions (ibid: 45, 345). All characters are constant and their reactions predictable: the way the movements of billiard balls tend to be. Mearsheimer describes the great powers as “billiard balls that vary only in size” (ibid: 18) and as “prisoners trapped in an iron cage” (ibid: 12). In Mearsheimer’s tragedy, great powers have the main roles. Smaller states seldom appear on the scene, and individual great power leaders are rarely considered important. Mearsheimer explains that the focus is on great powers “because these states have the largest impact on what happens in international politics” (2001: 5), “because these states dominate and shape international politics” (ibid: 17). Minor powers are mentioned in passing in the examination of theoretically possible conflicts dyads (ibid: 340), for example, or as the great power’s last resort to contain aggressors (ibid: 270). Since structure, relative power and geography rule international politics, for Mearsheimer, it does not matter who rules a specific country or what the political system is like (ibid: 11). People do not do the crucial thinking: “the basic structure of the international

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system largely determines how states think and act toward each other” (ibid: 369). This means that diplomacy is not valued highly in the story. Mearsheimer regards diplomacy generally as an uncertain process with changing, if any, rules (ibid: 342–343) and mocks individual, seemingly diplomatic moves (ibid: 184, 189). Diplomacy or idealism – something else than aggressive realist logic – is resorted to only in situations where a formidable army is not available. With the constant characters and calculable power configurations, the tragedy moves along without great surprises. Sometimes, actors have imperfect information and difficulties in determining developments in advance, or they make mistakes for other reasons, but generally speaking, they act rationally, seeking to maximize their share of world power. According to Mearsheimer, “it pays to be selfish in a self-help world” (2001: 33), and the great powers are aware of this. The logical ending is evident right from the beginning: “Peace […] is not likely to break out in this world” (ibid: 35). States will always look for chances to achieve hegemony and “potential hegemons create spirals of fear that are hard to control” (ibid: 346). At the moment, the United States has no peer rivals, but the situation is bound to change, possibly both in Europe and in Northeast Asia. Also, the United States is not satisfied for good. All this is sad, but inevitable: The sad fact is that international politics has always been a ruthless and dangerous business, and it is likely to remain that way. Although the intensity of their competition waxes and wanes, great powers fear each other and always compete with each other for power. The overriding goal of each state is to maximize its share of world power, which means gaining power at the expense of other states. But great powers do not merely strive to be the strongest of all the great powers, although that is a welcome outcome. Their ultimate aim is to be the hegemon – that is, the only great power in the system. (Mearsheimer, 2001: 2). Even the best endings that Mearsheimer is able to imagine – in practice, either extremely unlikely or plainly impossible – do not present a world living in harmony. In Mearsheimer’s view, “In an ideal world, a state would have the world’s only nuclear arsenal, which would give it the capacity to devastate its rivals without fear of retaliation” (2001: 145) and “the most peaceful world would probably be one where all the great powers were insular states with survivable nuclear arsenals” (ibid: 137). In these “ideal” worlds, fear, self-help and power maximization would still be the driving forces, and military power would guarantee relative stability. Although Mearsheimer claims that the situation is sad and tragic, things are also as they should be: “great powers should always act as good offensive realists” (ibid: 12) and history proves that they have mostly done so. He fervently refutes the claim that something essential changed with the appearance on the scene of nuclear weapons or the disappearance of the Soviet Union. This also is good, since it proves that realism is still the most relevant theory and continues to offer the most powerful explanations of international politics in the 21st century (ibid: 360–361). The fact that nonrealist policies are doomed to fail

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(ibid: 4) and that states are destined to compete for power among themselves for the foreseeable future (ibid: 361) are reassuring: things are meant to happen this way. When Mearsheimer reaches the conclusion that the real world remains a realist world (ibid), he is not only sad. After all, his theory of offensive realism is prescriptive in addition to being descriptive (ibid: 11): it can reliably tell states what to do. In order to survive, great powers should now and always prepare for war, not cooperation. The Tragedy of Great Power Politics features characters who know the rules of the game with all the problems inherent in the rules. Great powers understand that surviving on the international scene often requires an actual battle and always preparation for battle. War as such is nobody’s goal, but the fact that everybody else is a potentially deadly enemy should never be forgotten. It is the idealistic audience that occasionally frets about natural developments and suggests cooperative solutions. The tragic hero of Mearsheimer’s story, like Oedipus or King Lear, is convinced of the need to continue down his chosen path: he has to think about conquest in order to guarantee existence. He is passionate and brave, and painfully aware of the difficulty of selling his tragic truth to people who want to believe in fairy tales. The mission is dangerous, and the specific moves of others are unpredictable. Some innocent bystanders might be crushed, and there is a chance that the hero will lose all, but the ultimate goal offers such a great reward that risks are worth taking. Both in matters of offense and defense, compromises and partial settlements are usually bad ideas. Noble goals need to be sought consistently until the end, and trouble will not go away simply by choosing to ignore it. At some moment – by the time Jocasta begs Oedipus to stop searching for Laius’s murderer, or already when Cordelia refuses to play along, or when another nuclear power is evidently planning for war – the hero probably feels an impulse to turn back, but he simply cannot. In tragedies, the hero is prepared to perish, but never to give up. As already pointed out, Mearsheimer’s tragedy differs from Morgenthau’s in many ways. For example, the two authors view the role of choice, diplomacy, nuclear weapons and aspirations for peace differently. The Tragedy of Great Power Politics celebrates the plot, whereas Politics among Nations expresses horror of the tragic developments and officially refuses to give up hope. Both, however, paint a dismal picture of the international arena. There are no good and bad states, no absolutely virtuous or clearly irrational motives of great powers, no magic solutions or final guarantees to the problems of war and peace. Hugely destructive weapons are available, and states are planning their use. Things do not look good, and they are unlikely to take a turn for the better even if the actors were to better understand their own actions. Destroying an evil enemy seems easy in comparison with working around tragic dilemmas. Tragedies deal with universal forces and eternal laws, fate of man and destiny of nations. The attitude is not that of problem-solving, but rather, one of awe and despair. The main characters in both Mearsheimer’s and Morgenthau’s tragedy are states, and great powers play the leading roles. According to the latter author, the skills of individual statesmen and diplomatists can make a difference; the former

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treats states more like black boxes that produce certain kinds of policy choices regardless of the people in charge, as a function of the relative power of the state in the system. Neither author accords (important) roles to actors such as international organizations, multinational corporations, the civil society or the world community. On the whole, individuals have little impact on international relations; science as an institution, or religions and political ideologies as social forces, likewise, only play auxiliary parts. It is the moves of the most powerful state actors that matter – that move the story forward – and these moves are usually predictable. Big surprises or saviors out of the blue are not part of the plot. Tragic heroes are unlikely to abandon their dangerous projects, they feel their missions are worth major sacrifices and immense risks. Moreover, in the end, they are likely to use all means available to them in their desperate fight, to go down with a bang, not a whimper. Violence is always an option in the story, and always part of the final scene.

Romantic progress As suggested before, the romantic IR storytellers can be found in many schools. Both believers in the virtues of liberal democracy and proponents of Marxism may interpret human history in terms of progress and envision a happy ending to the story of interstate violence. Anarchists find it necessary to abolish coercive and illegitimate centralized state structures; certain theories of world government look forward to the centralization of political and military power globally, in the hands of a world state. Peace researchers are by definition optimists: they count on the possibility of a more peaceful world, though getting there may require intense struggle, epic efforts against the seven-headed beast of violence. Romantic or epic theories present rational actors some of which are (more) ethical, peaceful, just or democratic and others (more) unethical, aggressive, dishonest or authoritarian. The joyful denouement will not come about without suffering. Whereas it can rather safely be claimed that most IR realists are tragedians, a similar statement concerning IR liberalists, Marxists or peace researchers is more difficult to justify. Some peace researchers are better understood as comedians, for example. Moreover, although possibly the most interesting feminist and postcolonial contributions to IR theorizing can be read as ironic or satirical, there are also feminist romances of a better world ruled by women and postcolonial fairy tales where the subaltern actually, against all odds, finds a way to speak and her story can be incorporated to the story of mankind. Although a multitude of other illustrative examples are available, the IR romances analyzed in the following have not been chosen at random. Francis Fukuyama’s The End of History and the Last Man describes the victorious path of capitalism and liberal democracy in a genuinely exciting, yet comforting manner. Triangulating Peace: Democracy, Interdependence, and International Organizations by Bruce Russett and John Oneal is a classic among stories building on the democratic peace thesis, often mentioned as the theory that IR has to offer. Immanuel Wallerstein’s world-systems analysis switches around the characters of

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the liberalist fairy tale: it is not the capitalist world-economy but possibly the spirit of Porto Alegre or even a socialist world-government that emerges as the triumphant organizing structure. Finally, Johan Galtung’s work recounts the story of dedicated professionals from different fields and cultural backgrounds joining forces in order to tirelessly work for a supreme cause, world peace. Before turning to these different kinds of IR romances/epics, I will present summaries of three useful literary examples: the epic story of Odysseus, the legend about Saint George’s encounter with a dragon, and a classic fairy tale, Sleeping Beauty. To lay the foundation for my reading of romantic IR research, I will comment on the type of ending, on the characters and roles, on the means used by the hero, on the general mood and on the manner of progression of events in these stories. Odyssey, Saint George and the Dragon and Sleeping Beauty The story of Odysseus is told in two books, the Iliad and the Odyssey, attributed to the Greek poet Homer and dated to around 750 and 700 BCE, respectively (Lattimore, 1956: 29; Knox, 1996: 5). In the Iliad, Odysseus is introduced as the King of Ithaca, great fighter and counselor, and close friend of Agamemnon, chief leader of the Greeks. But it is in the Odyssey (Homer, 1996 [c. 700 BCE]) that we get to hear more about him, as it recounts his eventful 10-year-long journey back home from the Trojan War. Odysseus starts off with 12 ships; he alone survives the journey and reaches Ithaca. On the way, he and his men encounter not only the normal challenges of seafaring, the storm winds sent by Zeus and the hostility of Poseidon, but also various other obstacles: the lethargic Lotus-eaters, the lawless Cyclopes, the cannibalistic Laestrygonians, the witch-goddess Circe, the spirits of the dead, the enchanting Sirens, the monster Scylla, the whirlpool Charybdis and the possessive nymph Calypso. Finally helped home by the Phaeacians, Odysseus finds his house occupied by a crowd of suitors: his son Telemachus has been unable to stop them from swirling around his wife, Penelope. Disguised as a beggar, Odysseus wins an archery competition organized by Penelope, and, with the help of Athena, kills the suitors and their collaborators. At last, Odysseus identifies himself to Penelope who has remained true to him during his 20-year absence, and in the end of the story, he meets his old father Laertes. With Athena’s final assistance, peace is restored to Ithaca. The episode of the Trojan horse – Odysseus’s successful scheme to conquer Troy – is mentioned in the Odyssey, but narrated in more detail in Virgil’s Aeneid. The Legend of Saint George and the Dragon is most probably based on the life of a Roman soldier of Greek origin who was sentenced to death for refusing to give up his Christian faith around 300 CE. It is the mythical elements that were added with time – the meeting with the dragon and the princess – more than the original persecution and death of the Roman soldier that take place in the end, that qualify the story as a romance. According to the Golden Legend (originally around 1260), Saint George arrives by chance in Silene, Lybia. The city is plagued by a venom-spewing dragon who lives in a pond nearby. To appease the dragon, the inhabitants have daily offered him sheep and men, and then children

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and young people, and now the lot has fallen on the king’s daughter. Waiting by the pond dressed as a bride, she explains the situation to Saint George and asks him to continue his journey. He promises to help her in the name of Jesus and stays. The dragon charges at the couple. From upon his horse, Saint George wounds the dragon. Together, they lead the dragon to the city. Saint George promises to slay the dragon if the people of Silene agree to become Christians. The people are baptized; Saint George beheads the dragon. The king offers Saint George money as a reward, but Saint George asks the money to be given to the poor instead. He continues on, is tortured for his faith and dies a martyr. Fire from heaven falls upon his persecutors. In the church built in his and Virgin Mary’s honor, there remains a spring with water that cures all diseases. Originally a folk tale (or several folk tales), Sleeping Beauty can be found, for example, in Charles Perrault’s Stories or Fairy Tales from Past Times with Morals (or Mother Goose Tales) from 1697 (2009: 83–97) and the Brothers Grimm’s Children’s and Household Tales first published in 1812–1815. The Perrault version recounts the story of a princess whose parents invite seven fairy godmothers to her christening, forgetting one, an old fairy who has not been seen in public in more than 50 years. To everybody’s surprise, this eighth fairy appears at the celebration too, enraged, and curses the princess so that she will one day prick her hand on a spindle of a spinning wheel and die. One of the nice fairies is able to reverse the prediction partially: the princess will fall into a deep sleep for a hundred years and be awakened by a kiss from a king’s son. Despite precautions, the accident happens, and the rest of the household (except for the king and the queen) is wrapped up in sleep together with the princess. A hundred years later, a prince (not of the same family) comes by and awakens the princess (still a radiant teenager). They fall in love, get married and have two children, Dawn, a girl, and Day, a boy. The prince becomes king. His mother, of ogre origin, tries to eat the young mother and two children when he is away waging war against a neighbor. This failing, she decides to throw them in a cauldron filled with toads, vipers and snakes of all kinds. The king comes back just in time to save his family. The ogress flings herself into the cauldron and dies. The beautiful family is happy. As with Oedipus and King Lear, these short summaries necessarily leave out details and fail to convey certain nuances. Nonetheless, they sketch out the main characters and events and hint at the shared features of the stories. In all three cases, we witness a happy ending (from the point of view of the hero and his cause). All heroes are brave and unselfish, and all enemies are evil. All heroes prove themselves in violent battles. In all stories, in addition to the courageous and just heroes and cunning villains, we find pure and innocent actors – victims of cruel fate, not on account of their own doing. The characters and events are consistent and predictable: actors stick to their plans, and surprises in the plot are provided mostly by more of the same: more hardships, yet another obstacle, another display of gallantry, one more proof of innocence. The stories are exciting – they include perilous journeys and fierce battles – yet reassuring. We know that things will work out for the best.

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We know that Odysseus will make it home, that Saint George will slay the dragon and that Sleeping Beauty will eventually awake. Odysseus is a war hero who longs to be reunited with his loving wife and son; Saint George is exceedingly strong in and because of his faith; the prince is not afraid to search for the princess deep in the woods amidst the royal household immersed in deathlike slumber. There is nothing suspicious in the projects of the heroes, nothing that we find reproachable or trivial. The heroes do not ask anything particular for themselves; they fight mainly to save others. As to the ones to be saved, Penelope remains true, the king’s daughter is willing to be sacrificed and Sleeping Beauty is intelligent, good and beautiful. On the villain front, Odysseus is challenged by horrible monsters, angry gods and shameless suitors, the dragon living in the pond has a liking for the flesh of innocent children and both the bitter fairy and the jealous mother-in-law try to kill the princess who has done no harm to anyone. The readers have no difficulty in choosing sides in the stories due to the blackand-white characters with their clear-cut plans. The violence is unfortunate but necessary: dragons cannot be reasoned with and murderous enemies cannot be left running free. In Odyssey, the Legend of Saint George and the Dragon and Sleeping Beauty, causes are worth fighting for and everybody gets what they deserve in the end. Liberal visions: Hegelian end of history and Kantian peace The two liberal romances/epics studied in the following both envision a better future for mankind: one where democracy spreads and wars become fewer and fewer. More generally, IR liberalism is defined as a theory which champions scientific rationality, freedom and the inevitability of human progress (Burchill, 2009: 57) or seeks to project values of order, liberty, justice and toleration into international relations (Dunne, 2017: 118). Liberalism believes that cooperation among rational egoists is possible to achieve (ibid: 123) or that humans are able to cooperate and construct a more peaceful and harmonious society despite their self-interest (Russett, 2013: 95). In contrast to IR tragedies, IR romances do not see history repeating itself and actors making the same mistakes over and over again, with evermore horrible consequences. Like the tragedies, the romances studied here portray stable characters with clear roles. In principle, the actors are ready to resort to all means necessary to achieve their goals. Moreover, the progression of events in both tragedies and romances is predictable once the basic picture is made clear. The heroes and the villains in Fukuyama’s story and the story of Russett and Oneal are basically the same – democracy and free trade triumph over authoritarian/totalitarian rule and closed economies. However, there are also enough differences to justify the analysis of two realizations of the liberal romantic plot, and not just one. In addition to these two, others would naturally have been available. For example, Steven Pinker’s The Better Angels of Our Nature (2011) or Enlightenment Now (2018) could well be read in a similar manner, as romances about interstate relations – although Pinker’s works are primarily contributions to a

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different field than IR, namely cognitive or evolutionary psychology. Linklater’s The Transformation of Political Community (1998) – which I analyze later (in Chapter 4 section ‘Critical theory: Andrew Linklater and The Transformation of Political Community’) as a comedy – works with many of the same claims concerning progress, but is less triumphant and more modest and playful in tone. Francis Fukuyama and The End of History Fukuyama undoubtedly believes in historical progress: in The End of History (1992, and also 1989) he goes as far as to suggest that history has progressed up to a point where there is nothing more to be accomplished, that humanity has found the best imaginable system both economically and politically thinking. According to Fukuyama, “liberal democracy in reality constitutes the best possible solution to the human problem” (1992: 338). The system is not perfect: “no regime – no ‘socio-economic system’ – is able to satisfy all men in all places.” (ibid: 334). But liberal democracy is not only good and better than its competitors, but also as good as it will conceivably ever get: The best regime was extremely difficult to realize because it had to satisfy the whole of man simultaneously, his reason, desire and thymos. […] when compared to the historical alternatives available to us, it would seem that liberal democracy gives fullest recognition to all three parts. (Fukuyama, 1992: 337). Like a proper fairy tale, The End of History is genuinely exciting: the heroic victory in the end is not too obvious from the beginning. In fact, up to very last pages, Fukuyama keeps up the suspense: the monsters of historic times might reawaken. But probably not: the posthistoric world, our civilization, is “quite satisfied with what is and will be” (ibid: 337). From among all IR romances, Fukuyama’s theory deserves to be chosen for closer inspection because it is optimistic not just about the success of a particular hero at a certain moment, but also about the hero’s absolute virtues, his superiority in any terms that we are capable of imagining. In the following, I will first outline the structure and present the main arguments of The End of History and the Last Man, before turning to the story’s romantic elements and appeal. STRUCTURE AND MAIN CLAIMS

Fukuyama devotes his book to the study of the question whether or not humanity has reached the final stage of development: whether we are, in fact, last men no longer driven by a passion to be recognized as greater than others, fundamentally satisfied with the system as it is. To start with, Fukuyama justifies this research question and the idea of Universal History – a single, coherent evolutionary process – more generally. The answer to the question comes in two parts: an

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assessment of the historical record up to now and an analytical gaze into the future. Part II of the book recounts the tale of the spread of capitalism. Fukuyama claims that in the economic sphere, modern natural science is the mechanism of directional change. Modern science or technology confers decisive military advantages and makes possible the limitless accumulation of wealth. Part III carries out a similar exercise with regard to the political sphere: Fukuyama explains how expressions of the thymotic desire for recognition have evolved from the violent struggle to death of the first man to a democratic society where former slaves are their own masters and mutually recognize each other’s dignity. As to the future of capitalism and democracy, Fukuyama is confident that the current trends are likely to be victorious in the long run. Part IV demonstrates that no serious competitors to liberal democracy any longer exist. There are and will be some setbacks and disappointments in the process, and a part of the world is still stuck in history. Also, in order to function, the posthistorical world needs not only rational but also irrational desires: a thymotic work ethic and sentimental pride in the political system. But no viable alternatives are in sight: the future seems secure. Finally, Part V examines whether, in principle and not only in practice, a better system could be imagined. Fukuyama acknowledges that there is a real danger that the last man might get bored with liberal democracy itself, but asserts that this contradiction cannot be dissolved by our efforts. Liberal democracy is the best denouement to the story that humanity can come up with. Like Hegel and Marx, Fukuyama believes that there is a meaningful pattern in the overall development of human societies generally (1992: 55). Obviously, he goes with Hegel’s definition of the final stage of this development and not Marx’s: the liberal state constitutes the end of history. For most of his interpretations of Hegel, Fukuyama relies on the work of Alexandre Koj`eve (ibid: 144); in fact, it is Koj`eve’s claim that the universal and homogenous state is completely satisfying to its citizens (ibid: 139) that prompts Fukuyama to write his book. Fukuyama is certain about the worldwide liberal revolution: liberal democracy has conquered the rival ideologies of hereditary monarchy, fascism and communism, and there now exists a remarkable consensus concerning its legitimacy and desirability (ibid: xi, 45). On the international level, the spread of liberal democracy means the end of imperialism and, eventually, war (ibid: 245). The end of history amounts to the end of wars and bloody revolutions since men in the posthistoric world have no large causes for which to fight (ibid: 311). At the moment, power politics continues to prevail among states that are not liberal democracies (ibid: 276) – and in the dealings of posthistorical states with the historical world (ibid: 279) – but democracies, according to Fukuyama, pose little threat to one another (ibid: 264). Moreover, in a global system of free trade, war does not make the economic sense it did 200 or 300 years ago (ibid: 262). Our desire for comfortable self-preservation has made us docile, and there is no reason to doubt that the still passionate actors in the international arena will soon follow suit. Fukuyama expressly speaks for optimism and against realist despair. He finds convincing and abundant evidence of a process that dictates a common

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evolutionary pattern for all societies (1992: 48); the world has gotten better in various ways contrary to what pessimists insist. While authoritarian and totalitarian regimes still exist in certain places and while liberal democracies have their problems, the ideal cannot be improved on any more (ibid: xi). Fukuyama accuses realism of reductionism and inability to take into account progress (ibid: 254–265). According to him, the anarchic structure of the system does not force states to behave aggressively: in the absence of threats from thymotic states, war does not ignite by itself. In Fukuyama’s opinion, original anarchy, like Rousseau postulated, produces peace: desire for self-preservation makes solitary states quiet and self-absorbed. Fukuyama maintains that realism describes a specific stage of development, the time in history when states fought for recognition. Imperialism and war were products of aristocratic societies; today, democratic capitalist societies have other outlets for their energies. Realism is weak both as a description of reality and a prescription for policy; it no longer fits the world. In Fukuyama’s words: “Treating a disease that no longer exists, realists now find themselves proposing costly and dangerous cures to healthy patients” (ibid: 253). ROMANTIC APPEAL

The natural hero of Fukuyama’s romantic story is liberal democracy. The hero is superbly powerful and universally recognized: it has spread across the globe and produced unprecedented levels of material prosperity (1992: xiii). Democracy is the only legitimate source of authority in the modern world (ibid: 21); capitalism is the world’s only viable economic system (ibid: 90). One cannot be presented in much more impressive terms than these, and the characterization is given right in the beginning of the story. The hero’s epic strength and formal perfection – after all, we are told that liberal democracy represents the best possible balance between reason and passion – make it challenging for Fukuyama to create suspense later on. To be captivated by the story, the readers should first wonder, however slightly, about the success of liberal democracy in today’s world and then about its future; uncertainty maintains interest in the developments. Thus, moments of doubt are provided along the way: what about the remaining authoritarian regimes, what about partly totalitarian China, what about Islam, what about inequality in liberal democracies, what about our human dignity and desire for recognition? Fukuyama keeps looking for cases that might prove that the worldwide liberal revolution, as formidable as it seems, is only an illusion: that there are serious competitors, that there are geographical areas that will never be conquered or that there is an inner rot somewhere. Moreover, if the hero is Herculean, so is the test: it is not a single battle that he is charged with, but a trial for the title of the completely satisfying form of social organization. The stage is set; our interest is aroused; we know that we can expect great things from the hero. Yes, we are confident in his victory, but the obstacles are great, too. As to individual proponents of liberal democracy – nation state heroes in The End of History – the United States and the countries of Western Europe should definitely be recognized. According to Fukuyama, the United States and the

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European liberal democracies are already there both in terms of economic and social organization: material well-being and political rights have progressed so far that efforts can be made to soften even the inevitable blows delivered to equality by differences due to nature and healthy competition (1992: 289–299). Koj`eve already talked about postwar America as Marx’s (sic) classless society where natural need had been effectively abolished and people could appropriate what they wanted in return for a minimum amount of work (ibid: 291). Koj`eve was also highly impressed by postwar Western Europe: these societies had no further great political goals to struggle for, they could preoccupy themselves in economic activity alone (ibid: 67). The European Community was for Koj`eve an institutional embodiment of the end of history and the end of philosophy as well (ibid: 67, 311), and he was quite content with the resolution. Even though Fukuyama believes that liberal democracies should work together to promote liberal democracy and peace in the world (ibid: 281), he does acknowledge certain merits in other systems as well. According to Fukuyama, Marxism (attempts at extreme social equality at the expense of liberty) has utterly failed (ibid: 95, 293), but there is something to say for modernizing dictatorships: authoritarian regimes are in principle better able to follow truly liberal economic policies – policies undistorted by redistributive goals that constrain growth – than democracies are (ibid; 119, 123–124). If the romantic story he is telling were only about economic progress, certain Asian and Latin American countries might qualify as heroes. Most of the villains of the story have already been mentioned. Monarchism in its various forms was beaten before the story proper begins, by the beginning of the 20th century (ibid: 45). Fascism and communism – liberal democracy’s main competitors – discredited themselves by the end of the Second World War (ibid: 17) and by the late 1980s (ibid: 12, 35, 205), respectively. Fukuyama reminds us that the genocides perpetrated by Hitler’s Germany and Stalin’s Soviet Union were monstrous, and that not too long ago, right up to the end of the Cold War, virtually all policy experts believed in the permanence of mighty communism (ibid: 6–8). According to Fukuyama, the Soviet people became aware of their system’s weaknesses earlier, by 1956 probably, than certain Western believers in socialism. Totalitarianism eventually failed not only in the Soviet Union but also in the People’s Republic of China and the countries of Eastern Europe (ibid: 33). The reforms in China began with the restoration of private property and the opening up of the country to the global capitalist economy. Once control is relaxed in one sphere, freedom will sooner or later proliferate to other spheres. Since Eastern Europe had the system forced upon itself in the first place, rebuilding civil society, democratic institutions and functioning markets happened more quickly. Fukuyama attributes the most recent attempt to keep Marxism alive to dependency theories; he calls these theories obstacles to Third World growth, self-defeating ideas, hindrances to clear thinking, intellectual mirages (ibid: 99, 101, 108). At the moment of the writing, however, there is nothing to fear from the once formidable ideological enemies, liberal democracy’s main competitors. As to smaller villains of the story, Fukuyama notes that right-wing authoritarian governments – in Southern Europe and Latin America especially – seemed to

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thrive for a while alongside liberal democracies (1992: 13–22). Moreover, there is Islam, basically a systemic and coherent ideology with potentially universal appeal (ibid: 45–46). The countries ruled by right-wing regimes experienced democratic transitions in the late 1960s, 1970s and 1980s: the military governments and dictators “were swept from power by the idea of democracy” (ibid: 22). According to Fukuyama, strong states of various kinds are ultimately weak (ibid: 40). Islam, reaching out to all men equally, cannot be dismissed offhand. However, “Islam has virtually no appeal outside those areas that were Islamic to begin with” (ibid: 45). The Islamic world is vulnerable to liberal ideas in the long run, not the other way around. Fukuyama assures us (ibid: 37) that any comebacks of authoritarian or totalitarian regimes will remain localized and unsystematic, and that Islam is not a threat to the Western world. The powerful passions of religion and nationalism, in Fukuyama’s romantic story, are not only enemies materializing as state actors out in the still historical world, enemies that will soon be beaten by liberal democracy. They are also enemies within our posthistorical world, enemies within each and every one of us, originating from the thymotic part of our souls (1992: 213–214). The last man might take up arms simply out of boredom, tired both of liberalism and democracy, having no suitable outlets for his desire to be greater than others. This is where the fairy tale might become too scary for children. Whereas the monsters out there can be taken care of by Odysseus, Saint George, a proper prince and liberal democracies, the monsters within can be conquered neither with physical force nor force of example. While describing these dark passions on the one hand, and people totally without passions, people who have lost their essential humanity, on the other, Fukuyama refers to Nietzsche’s works. “The men without chests” (ibid: 300–312) and “the coldest of all cold monsters” (ibid: 211–222) are described vividly indeed. Battles to death suddenly seem comforting compared with the zombie-like existence of actors who no longer crave for anything, have no dignity or self-worth, nothing to fight for. Inner contradictions of the liberal democratic system are the only enemy that has not been triumphed over with certainty yet. The main characters of Fukuyama’s romance are consistent: the noble heroes do not engage in ignoble projects, and there is nothing good in Marxism, for example. Liberal democracies do not look for personal gain or more recruits: they already have a superb system safe from outer threats, abundant wealth and wellbeing. Like Saint George, they simply want to help others see the light, too. States interfering with market mechanisms is simply wrong – regardless of how the interference is justified, and whether it comes in the form of right-wing mercantilism or left-wing planned economies. There is nothing we can say in defense of the dragon; its motives or possible virtuous characteristics do not need to be discussed. Many actors in the fairy tale remain passive victims whose destinies are determined in the battle of greater forces: certain African countries, for example, are first duped by socialism, and then brought to their senses by the supreme feats of liberal democracy. Likewise, the countries of Eastern Europe were put to sleep for almost 50 years, before they were released from the horrible

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spell by the death of the Soviet system, and able to resume active existence in the capitalist world. Islamic states are still captured in history and deluded, but their Sirens will not succeed in enchanting travelers outside the borders of the Islamic world. The End of History recounts the systematic progression of liberal democracy. As Odysseus outwits or slays one beast after another, liberal democracy conquers its opponents. We are aware that in practice there is still distance to cover, but based on the record so far, we have confidence in the hero. In many of the battles, it is not his military might – the technically superior Western armed forces – which ensures victory. On the economic front, in fact, we have mainly witnessed “victories of the VCR.” On the political front, it is the yearning for freedom and democracy that drives people onward to begin with; only active force and repression can stop them from instituting a democratic form of governance. Thus, the hero gets help from all around; it seems that the forces of nature are on his side. And should major obstacles arise, we know that he is not afraid to resort to violence. After all, liberal democracies emerged victorious from the fierce battle against fascism. According to Fukuyama (1992: 313–321), armed service provides an outlet for the thymotic passions of individuals in liberal democracies during peacetime, and wars are the one remaining foreign policy activity that accords recognition to nations as greater than others on the international scene. Even though liberal democracies do not fight each other, wars with countries in the historical world serve a definite purpose, and therefore, will not disappear in the near future. From time to time, the hero of the story is bound to use force. The dragons and the suitors need to be slain, although some conquests can be accomplished by simply kissing the princess or drinking a potion that gives the power to resist Circe’s magic. In proper fairy tales, the ending needs to be definitive and happy. As pointed out before, there is a delicate balance to strike between being genuinely exciting, yet reassuring. The storyteller is supposed to maintain the interest of the readers, to provide thrilling episodes and preferably at least one magnificent battle – but the readers are not supposed be uncertain about the final victory of the hero. Fukuyama leaves no doubt about the present situation: fascism was defeated in the Second World War; centrally planned economies have failed; the grip of the last totalitarian governments is being broken; there are no barbarians at the gates. He reminds the readers (1992: 200) about Hegel’s conclusion: liberal democratic states satisfy both the desiring (economic) and thymotic (political) parts of our souls. Moreover, we repeatedly get to follow Koj`eve’s powerful arguments for liberal democracy’s absolute merits (e.g., ibid: 288, 310–311). Koj`eve argues that liberal democracy fully satisfies man’s longing for recognition. Nietzsche’s claims (ibid: 301–308) seem to present a real challenge: to remain human, we in fact need radical inequality and suffering, not the secure and comfortable life provided by liberal democracies, the real monsters of the story. Fukuyama, however, finds a way out: we can take heed of Nietzsche’s acute psychological observations, but reject his conclusions (ibid: 313–315). According to Fukuyama, when underscoring the thymotic passions, Nietzsche

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underestimates the amply proven desire for material well-being. Moreover, in contrast to earlier aristocratic wars, modern total war undermines popular faith in the meaning of concepts like courage and heroism, concepts so important for Nietzsche. When Fukuyama looks around, “it does not strike me that we face the problem of an excess of megalothymia” (1992: 336). He sees people who are quite happy with their protected lives and the project of filling these lives with material acquisitions. These people cherish not only the rights of each other, but the rights of other species as well. For extreme sensations, they go mountain climbing or excel in science. As long as we remember to pay attention to both reason and passion, the supreme victory of liberal democracy is safe. The End of History not only has a happy ending but a happy ending for ever after – a core element of romantic fairy tales. Fukuyama’s story gives us reason to be proud of the achievements of our society and confident in the future. Bruce Russett, John Oneal and Triangulating Peace Like The End of History, Triangulating Peace is a romantic/epic theoretical work about the virtues of democracy and free trade. Both Fukuyama and Russett and Oneal definitely describe international relations in an optimistic manner: liberal democracies have very few reasons for fighting each other, but plenty of reasons not to fight. The community of like-minded democratic states is getting bigger and bigger, and also the system as a whole is becoming more peaceful. There are, naturally, differences: while The End of History relies mainly on philosophical reasoning, the evidence and methods used in Triangulating Peace are primarily statistical. As to the favorite philosophers of the authors, Hegel/Koj`eve and Nietzsche figure prominently in Fukuyama’s work, whereas Russett and Oneal anchor all their analyses on “Kant’s three-cornered intellectual construct of the structure of a peaceful world” (2001: 10). Fukuyama focuses on economy (desire for wealth, liberal peace) and politics (desire for recognition, democratic peace), but Russett and Oneal add a third element: the pacific benefits of membership in international organizations. Despite the many obstacles met by the heroes of both stories, The End of History is scarier than Triangulating Peace: while Fukuyama’s most terrible monster lives within the hero (as thymotic passions that have to be given proper outlets from time to time), the main challenger of the Kantian triangle, Huntington’s The Clash of Civilizations, is simply statistically tested and proven to be an unsuccessful explanation (ibid: 239–269). Finally, although the authors position their stories in a similar fashion close to other liberal IR contributions, and in opposition to dependency theories and Marxist endings, for example (ibid: 131), their stand vis-`a-vis realism is different: according to Fukuyama, realism is unrealistic and no longer fits the world, but Russett and Oneal explicitly seek to combine the realist and liberal perspectives (ibid: 90). Instead of choosing to examine Triangulating Peace, one might study liberal romances associated with the democratic peace thesis through other examples. Michael W. Doyle’s work (1983, 1997: 251–300) would provide another mainly

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qualitative story relying specifically on Kant; sophisticated statistical analyses have been conducted, for example, by Paul K. Huth and Todd L. Allee (2002). Triangulating Peace offers a Kantian story backed up with accessible statistical evidence. To balance all the work dedicated to analyzing vicious circles possible in anarchic settings, Russett and Oneal study virtuous circles of peaceful interactions seen as mutually beneficial (2001: 24). They make their intentions known early on: “We hope to convince the reader in the following pages that there are sound grounds for optimism about the future of global interstate relations” (Russett and Oneal, 2001: 40). They end with a reassuring summary: “There are good reasons for optimism. We have seen that the three Kantian elements substantially reduce the danger of war, and we can reasonably expect that the number of democracies and their economic interdependence will increase” (Russett and Oneal, 2001: 301). The excitement grows out of tracing all the causal connections between the three elements and peace, and the fact that “every good thing must be re-won each day” (2001: 42). According to Russett and Oneal, the proponents of peace can never sleep. Like vicious circles, virtuous circles can sometimes be interrupted or broken (ibid: 41). We have reason to rejoice about all the new findings in Triangulating Peace, but we should not lull ourselves into believing that a happy ending is automatic. The processes need to be helped along; we need to support the spread of Kantian peace. In the following, I will first present the structure and main claims of Triangulating Peace and then analyze the romantic appeal of the story. STRUCTURE AND MAIN CLAIMS

Russett and Oneal set out to study whether the claims that Kant made in Perpetual Peace in 1795 stand up to modern statistical analysis, whether international peace is in fact established on the foundation of republican constitutions, cosmopolitan law embodied in free trade and economic interdependence, and international law and organizations. In the Preface, they state that the assumption of their book is that the likelihood of serious conflict between two countries can be plotted (emphasis mine) with some confidence if one knows three pieces of information: what kinds of governments they have, how economically interdependent they are and how well connected they are by a web of international organizations (2001: 9). The first two chapters expound on the Kantian triangle and on the logic of deepening and widening cooperation. Chapters 3–5 each deal with one of the three elements – investigating, in turn, whether democracy, economic interdependence and membership in international organizations do reduce conflict both as regards pairs of countries and the system as a whole. Chapter 6 proves that the Kantian influences are both direct and indirect: there is evidence of a set of feedback loops that result in virtuous circles. According to the analyses, causal relations between most variables are strong in both directions. Chapter 7 evaluates the challenge posed by Huntington’s claims and concludes that any one of the realist or Kantian variables has a far greater impact on interstate conflict than does

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the clash of civilizations. In the eighth, final chapter, Russett and Oneal sum up their results and formulate policy recommendations to the members of the Kantian system. Russett and Oneal explicitly want to move beyond mere democratic peace: democracy is the keystone, but trade and international organizations need to be added to the picture in order to make it complete (2001: 71). They interpret Kant’s “republican constitutions” as representative democracy and measure this political character of regimes by using Polity III data; economic interdependence is estimated by means of trade-to-GDP ratios; and the membership of states in international organizations comes down to intergovernmental ones listed in the Yearbook of International Organizations. For militarized disputes, Russett and Oneal use data from the Correlates of War (COW) Project, and for most of the analyses the years studied are 1885–1992. As mentioned, the story focuses on pairs of states or dyads, but also the system as a whole is of interest to the authors. Since the purpose is to combine the realist and liberal perspectives, the explanatory power of the three Kantian variables is constantly compared with that of the realist variables: geographical distance, balance of power and alliances. Russett and Oneal find that while the realist variables make a difference, also the Kantian variables are significantly related to the incidence of conflict, and often, better explain conflict or the lack of it. Triangulating Peace makes a case for examining the Kantian variables not only because they have been relatively neglected, but also because they represent voluntary constraints, choices made by governments rather than nature. Democracy and trade in particular have pacific effects and can be increased without any harm or threat to anyone, claim Russett and Oneal, and that is why they should be actively promoted (ibid: 268, 273–282, 301–303). Russett and Oneal discover that democracy, economic interdependence and IGO membership reduce conflict both independently and together with each other. As Kant suspected at a time when democracies were few, most countries followed mercantilist trade policies and international organizations in today’s sense did not exist, the three variables form a whole and work in the same direction (2001: 157). Triangulating Peace affirms that good things often go together: perhaps its most striking finding is that the likelihood of a dispute drops by 71% if all the Kantian influences are increased simultaneously (ibid: 193, 282). The findings concerning the individual variables are maybe less spectacular, but definitely promising from the point of view of world peace, and now solidly proven by statistical analyses. Moreover, Russett and Oneal provide some specifications to earlier results. Democracies do not fight other democracies and are more peaceful in general; also, states are not especially war-prone during a transition to democracy or as new democracies (ibid: 107–124). Both bilateral trade and openness to the global economy in general have pacific effects; also, even unbalanced economic interaction reduces the likelihood of military conflict (ibid: 145–155). IGO membership reduces the likelihood of a dispute, but its effect is essentially limited to the states that are directly involved (ibid: 171–184). Although Triangulating Peace operates with data reporting occurrences of militarized conflict – not the prevalence of peace – Russett and Oneal start with

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the assumption that peace is the norm: “most countries at most times are at peace” (2001: 81). Their broad definition of peace makes it possible to underline that peace is the usual condition of interstate relations. They also employ the metaphor traditionally resorted to in peace research circles, namely “war is like disease.” Russett and Oneal consider the similarities between their approach and that of the epidemiologists: scientists using statistical methods to uncover the causes of war/ disease work in similar ways (ibid: 82–85). Big databases are important for both; mere correlations, while important, do not establish causes in either field; predictions of physicians and political scientists alike are probabilistic, and their theories are never complete. Toward the end of the book, the authors return to the medical metaphor, and once again demonstrate their optimistic attitude: In this final chapter, we review our principal findings and present our prognosis for international relations in the twenty-first century. We believe that the chances of peace are good, probably better than at any time in history. (Russett and Oneal, 2001: 272). Russett and Oneal admit that a deep and sustained economic downturn might threaten the global Kantian system (2001: 41), but they do not delve into this fear. The authors of Triangulating Peace are confident in their positive findings, confident enough to give policy advice to the Kantian community: democracy, trade and networks of international organizations are to be actively promoted (ibid: 282). ROMANTIC APPEAL

Russett and Oneal directly treat the question of actors in world politics: as actors, they name countries/states, intergovernmental and nongovernmental organizations and private individuals (2001: 16–17). Although they emphasize that a narrow focus on states alone gives a deceptive picture of how international relations work, states are the main characters of their story, too. However, IGOs play an important supporting role in Triangulating Peace. As the story unfolds, romances between pairs of states or dyads build up to the general romance of international relations. Or from another interpretative angle: the three heroes – democracy, trade and IGOs – work both individually and by joining forces to bring about international peace. Much like Fukuyama, Russett and Oneal treat the force of democracy as capable of doing things: spreading, reducing conflict, helping to inoculate countries. Likewise, trade as an actor creates incentives, induces cooperation and encourages international organizations. As to individual state heroes, again, “the economically advanced democracies of the West” (2001: 155) stand out from the rest of the cast. These democratic, interdependent and economically open countries are most likely to be at peace. They are prosperous, stable, strong and active – ideal heroes in many ways. In the end, it is the United States that is singled out: “The United States has a major role to play” (ibid: 303). Russett and Oneal emphasize that the unipolar character of our world is inevitably

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transitory, that extending the Kantian world will require cooperation and multilateralism, but the United States should lead. The authors are not completely satisfied with their hero – “The United States has undermined its moral authority in recent years” (ibid: 304) – but there is time to adjust course. Moreover, the hero has friends (ibid) who will help in the project. The villains and threats in Triangulating Peace seem relatively inoffensive and mild; Russett and Oneal certainly do not play up their horrendous nature. On the level of forces, as already mentioned, democracy and interdependence – and thus peace – potentially face the enemy of economic downturn, “the primary threat to the Kantian system” (2001: 41). On the level of state actors, “it is the isolated countries of the world that represent the greatest danger to peaceful international relations” (ibid: 149). The authors affirm that “peace is not inevitable” (ibid: 272); they even paint a picture where the sword of Damocles hangs over “us,” “the world,” in the form of nuclear weapons (ibid: 301–304). But for the most part, the book is a story of the virtuous circles in international relations: self-fulfilling prophecies where good forces strengthen each other and where villains do not get to play any role. The success of the Kantian system rises out of the excellent performances of the team members. The competitors are defeated primarily in statistical comparisons, not on bloody battlefields. Wars have not completely faded away, not even from the modus operandi of the Kantian states: Russett and Oneal echo Fukuyama in their observation that “in their relations with nondemocratic states willing to use force, democracies, too, will resort to the older, more terrible logic of realism” (ibid: 275). Triangulating Peace is not a story about these terrible wars, but rather a story of pleasant things having many pleasant and mutually reinforcing consequences. The heroes in Russett and Oneal’s romance are therefore more like the brave prince in Sleeping Beauty than Odysseus or Saint George. They do not have to do a lot of fighting – a mere kiss is enough – to succeed, albeit the existence of monstrous characters, such as autocracies. The authors explicitly assure the audience that national leaders need not attempt “a Herculean task” (2001: 268) and that people need not be “transformed into angels” (ibid: 302). Peace, the Kantian system, does not depend solely on shared values, norms and identity, but is also supported by the self-interest of citizens and policy makers alike (ibid: 269). “Even self-seeking devils” if they have any sense, according to Russett and Oneal (ibid: 302), will succumb to the system of incentives. Despite its close affinity to many classical liberals, Triangulating Peace dissociates itself from idealism: not all wars can be eliminated, and peace does not depend upon great moral conversion (ibid: 272). Russett and Oneal remind their readers that Kant did not believe that the citizens of democratic states were necessarily more moral than other people, just that they made careful calculations concerning the costs of war to themselves and could affect the policies of their country accordingly (ibid: 273). The threat to Kantian forces introduced by Huntington, civilizational or cultural differences, is given a chapter of its own in Russett and Oneal’s romance (2001: 239–269). Huntington’s The Clash of Civilizations (1996) is presented as “probably the most prominent alternative theoretical perspective to the realist and

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Kantian ones” (ibid: 241). Russett and Oneal explain that Huntington’s greatest worry regards the civilizational divide between “the West and the rest,” and that he is particularly concerned about the danger to the West arising from Islamic states (ibid: 244). Although Huntington’s theses have been widely commented, according to Triangulating Peace, systematic statistical analyses of the theory are rare (ibid: 247). Thus, Russett and Oneal set out to conduct tests with several new variables. As mentioned already, Huntington’s defeat is total: any one of the realist or Kantian variables has a far greater impact on interstate conflict than do the civilizational variables (ibid: 255). Half of the civilizations actually have greater conflict among their members than the dyads split across civilizational boundaries (ibid: 257). Earlier already, classical Marxist views and those of later dependency theorists are proven wrong (ibid: 131). There is no evidence that points to the direction that capitalist great powers will end up fighting terrible wars with one another. Also, according to Russett and Oneal, all trade is beneficiary from the point of view of peace, and most probably, trade benefits both partners in dyads more generally (ibid: 147–148). Consequently, we do not need to worry about the more powerful states exploiting the weaker ones; as the authors put it, “Trade is not forced. It is voluntary” (ibid: 148). Triangulating Peace moves steadily toward the happy ending. More and more tests establish the power of the Kantian variables – democracy, trade and international organizations – to secure peace. Since both democracy and interdependence are on the rise, we have reason to be optimistic about the future of international relations. The only disappointment – a slight one indeed – is that the number of IGOs worldwide does not have a dramatic effect on states that are not extensively involved (2001: 184). The fact that the pacific benefits of international organizations, although significant, are smaller than that of democracy and trade is probably something that the audience can be expected to cope with even in the case of fairy tales. Moreover, Russett and Oneal console their readers by pointing out that “the constructive role played by the IGOs” may be captured in some statistical analyses by the measures of democracy and trade, that the pacific benefits of IGOs may be derivative of the more fundamental liberal factors (ibid: 281). Triangulating Peace assures us that the results do not mean that IGOs are unimportant (ibid), quite on the contrary. It is just that the splendor of the two superheroes leaves the third one somewhat in the shadows. The characters in Triangulating Peace can be counted on: their past behavior has been examined by using empirical evidence and scientific methods (2001: 9, 267, 272), and the liberal prognosis does not rely on idealism (ibid: 272). The likelihood of conflict between two countries can be reliably established on the basis of certain quantifiable background information. Russett and Oneal underline that states outside the Kantian system may be dangerous, that wars still occur for various reasons and that military force remains an important tool for preventing and rebuffing aggression (ibid: 302). Violence, therefore, is a part of the story in episodes involving autocratic states in particular. But the history of interstate relations does not give us reason to believe that the democratic heroes will suddenly start picking military fights with each other or that an

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autocratic peace will develop somewhere in the world. The roles in the story are clear and constant; we basically know who will carry the project forward and where the trouble spots most probably lie. Having access to the basic logic of international relations makes foreign policy choices rational, too. Surprises cannot be totally excluded but they can be minimized. After studying the results of the analysis, the readers can confidently join the authors in giving advice to the heroes. As to specific recommendations, Russett and Oneal speak for the integration of Russia and China into the Kantian system. They propose bringing Russia into NATO and China into the WTO (ibid: 288–297). Moreover, they view the United Nations in general and the Security Council in particular as significant fora for coordinating action (ibid: 297). Although nobody matches the US hero at the moment on any front – the economic, military or cultural – preeminence is not a permanent solution to the danger of international anarchy (ibid: 299). Cooperation is needed; democracy, interdependence and the rule of law have to be actively promoted. Russett and Oneal also recommend Western economic and political assistance to countries willing to liberalize their systems. They remind us that the beneficial effects of these policies do not depend on mutual trust and goodwill: selfishness of all parties is quite enough. This is almost too good to be true: even before giving up their evil ways – autocratic government, trade controls, isolation – the countries officially opposing the Kantian system may contribute to strengthening it. Triangulating Peace explicitly encourages the Western heroes to seize the opportunity to create an evermore peaceful world (ibid: 305). Although the outcome is not certain (ibid: 302), there certainly is great hope. Moreover, following our moral imperative is getting easier as the virtuous circle encompasses more actors. Like romances more generally, Triangulating Peace tries to find a balance between generating excitement and offering reassurance: as the story unfolds, the audience genuinely needs to fear for the success of the hero and yet, in the end, be confident that all the monsters, suitors, dragons and rancorous fairies have been beaten. While testing the Kantian variables, Russett and Oneal remind us that realist explanations, such as geographical distance and minor power status, continue to be relevant in accounting for pacific dyads. While studying the logic of virtuous circles and Kantian peace, they also pay attention to the existence of vicious circles and countries outside the Kantian system. While singing the praises of democracy and free enterprise, they allude to villains like Asian authoritarians, religious fundamentalists and Western postmodernists (2001: 303). Despite the promising developments and sound evidence, international relations are not free from danger – just yet. The Phaeacians still need to help Odysseus to complete the final leg of the journey; the people of Silene still need to agree to become Christians; after the princess has been awakened, the ogress still needs to be taken care of. Nobody in the audience doubts eventual success, but we need to be patient. Although supremely powerful, the hero needs to be wise and ask for assistance. If we happen to read Triangulating Peace as a bedtime story, we can sleep in peace: Kantian forces will triumph in the end.

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The final argument that Russett and Oneal present for listening to reason is nuclear weapons. They claim, first of all, that the incidence of nuclear weapons markedly changed the calculus of peace and war (2001: 112). They point out that the greatest Cold War threat to the West was not the Warsaw Pact itself, but the danger of stumbling into a nuclear war (ibid: 300). They underline that it is vital that China and Russia not depend on nuclear deterrence for their security in the future (ibid: 293). Even acknowledging this horrible threat – or maybe precisely because of it – they manage to remain optimistic: But force no longer needs to be the chief means of maintaining peace – nor, because of the risks created by modern weapons, can it continue to be. Deterrence is unnecessary in most situations because international politics is not an unending violent struggle. Assuming that everyone is a potential enemy is a mistake, and a poor guide to action. It risks becoming a selffulfilling prophecy that is ultimately self-defeating. (Russett and Oneal, 2001: 302). Even though we cannot count on the victory of reason beyond absolutely all doubt, the epic success of the Kantian variables does give us the grounds for optimism that Russett and Oneal originally hoped to establish. Assisting the romantic heroes – democracy, trade and international organizations – may give not only state actors, but private individuals too, a positive purpose in life. Marxist theories: Immanuel Wallerstein and World-Systems Analysis In many ways, Marxist theories of IR present a mirror image of the liberal plot: they tell the story of the eventual fall, not the final victory, of the capitalist system. While Marx, in his theoretical works, wrote relatively little about international relations, others have developed his ideas further or used them as an inspiration. Lenin examined capitalism’s transborder characteristics in Imperialism, the Highest Stage of Capitalism in 1917; more recent classics include studies by Robert Cox (1987), Justin Rosenberg (1994) and Immanuel Wallerstein (1979). Widely used IR readers find the common features of Marxist theories to be elements such as a commitment to analysis of the social world as a totality, a materialist conception of history and a focus on class and class struggle (Hobden and Wyn Jones, 2017); or a dynamic view of social organization as entailing political, cultural and economic aspects, and a critical understanding of capitalism as an historically particular way of organizing social life (Rupert, 2013); or finally, an emphasis on production, property relations and class, a belief in the importance of the development of capitalism to the development of the modern international system and attention paid to structures of hegemony, patterns of inequality and zones of resistance (Linklater, 2009a). Most of the elements listed above can be found in the story chosen for analysis here, Immanuel Wallerstein’s world-systems approach, as recounted in his book World-Systems Analysis: An Introduction (2004).

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Wallerstein has elaborated his world-systems approach – “not a theory, but a protest against neglected issues and deceptive epistemologies” (2000: xxii) – in many writings. The Essential Wallerstein (ibid), for example, would provide another illustrative text. This time, however, I chose a monograph instead of a collection of articles – mainly in order to gain in focus on the particular theme and avoid dealing with the author’s views evolving during almost 40 years. With WorldSystems Analysis, Wallerstein himself hopes to “explain in one place” the premises and principles of his approach, to give “a holistic view of a perspective that claims to be a call for a holistic historical social science” (2004: xi). He affirms to be writing for several audiences at once – undergraduates and graduates, members of the general public and experienced practitioners – to explain “the totality” of what he means by world-systems analysis (ibid). Thus, evidence suggests that Wallerstein’s basic story can indeed be found in World-Systems Analysis. Evidence also suggests that his story is a romance: revolutions and conflicts are essential to the story, opposite forces are pitted against each other in various battles for survival and the ending is hopeful. Excitement and uncertainty are there until the very last pages, but there is nothing gloomy in the final words: The tasks before us are exceptionally difficult. But they offer us, individually and collectively, the possibility of creation, or at least contributing to the creation of something that might fulfill better our collective possibilities. (Wallerstein, 2004: 90). Wallerstein asserts that the capitalist world-economy, the world in which we are now living, is encountering problems it can no longer resolve. The systemic crisis will mean an end to the logic of social organization that has been around since the 16th century. The situation is chaotic and violent, but the choice is ours. In order to understand what is going on at the moment and make informed moral choices about the future, we might like to consult the insights offered by world-systems analysis, maintains Wallerstein. In the following, I will start the project by first outlining the structure and main claims of Wallerstein’s book, and then study its romantic elements and appeal. Structure and main claims World-Systems Analysis is divided into five chapters each with their specific topics, and with the most important themes recurring all through the book. The first chapter deals with structures of knowledge of the modern world system, and specifically, the historical origins of social sciences and world-systems analysis. The second chapter focuses on the basic institutions of the capitalist worldeconomy: the markets, the firms, the states, the households, the classes and the status-groups or identities. The third chapter studies the rise of sovereign nationstates and the logic of the interstate system. The fourth chapter mainly discusses political ideologies and antisystemic movements. The final fifth chapter lays out the contemporary realities and possible futures. Among the themes that keep

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recurring are, for example, the fundamental unity of politics, economics, the social structure and culture, and certain important turning points of our modern worldsystem: the long 16th century when our capitalist world-economy came into existence, the French Revolution that introduced the ideas of the normalcy of political change and the citizen as a subject, and the world revolution of 1968 that started the terminal phase of the modern world-system. Wallerstein situates worldsystems analysis in opposition both to the deep inequalities embedded in the present realities and to the standard ways of analyzing the social world (2004: xi). Wallerstein claims that world-systems, rather than national states, should be our units of analysis if we want to grasp the phenomena traditionally associated with international relations (2004: 16). According to him, historical systems have thus far existed in three variants: minisystems and world-systems of two kinds, namely world-economies held together by a common division of labor and world-empires held together by a single political authority (ibid: 16–17, 57). Wallerstein claims that the modern system is a capitalist world-economy, and he defines a capitalist system as one that gives priority to the endless accumulation of capital, that is, a situation where people and firms accumulate capital in order to accumulate still more capital (ibid: 17, 24). What capitalism, for Wallerstein, does not mean is free markets; quite on the contrary, totally free markets would make the endless accumulation of capital impossible (ibid: 25). In a perfect market, the buyers could bargain down the sellers to an absolutely miniscule level of profit, and this would make the game entirely uninteresting to producers. Instead, partially free markets with relatively strong states enforcing quasi-monopolies for leading industries and products for a limited period of time constitute the essence of capitalist endeavors (ibid: 25–27). The division of labor in the capitalist world-economy comes primarily down to a division between core-like production processes and peripheral production processes (ibid: 17–18, 28). With core-like processes Wallerstein refers to the relatively monopolized and thus more profitable production located in the (thus) more wealthy countries. The peripheral almost-free-market production takes place in weaker and poorer states. In this way, surplus-value flows from the peripheral states toward the core states, but Wallerstein emphasizes that the notions of core and peripheral states should not be reified: core and periphery are first and foremost attributes of production processes. Wallerstein holds that the relationship of states to firms is a key to understanding the functioning of the capitalist world-economy (2004: 46). While laissez-faire is the official ideology of the system, entrepreneurs do not really want it to be implemented, and states, in practice, assert their authority over production and the division of surplus-value between the capitalists and the working strata in multiple ways (ibid: 45–51). In terms of geoculture – widely accepted norms and modes of discourse within the system – the situation is similar: the inclusion of all is the official definition of good society, but in practice, the political debate of the 19th and 20th centuries was essentially about the line that divides the included from the excluded (ibid: 60). The ideologies of conservatism, liberalism and radicalism originally presented different answers to the problem, but eventually it was the centrist liberal program that won and managed to transform the other two into mere

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variants of itself (ibid: 60–66). Wallerstein claims that since the antisystemic movements – the workers’/social, the ethnic/nationalist and the women’s – insisted on fighting their separate battles and often also fought against each other, they paradoxically ended up sustaining the system they opposed (ibid: 67–75). The geoculture received its final support from a theoretical apparatus: the separate social sciences devoted to the scientistic study of the Western present (economics, political science, sociology) on the one hand, and to the humanistic study of “the rest” and the past (history, anthropology and Oriental studies) on the other (ibid: 1–22, 73–75). World-Systems Analysis concludes with an overview of the ongoing systemic crisis. The problem that cannot be solved in the present framework is roughly the following: in order to ensure endless accumulation of capital, the producers constantly seek ways of increasing the sales prices and reducing the costs of production, but the costs of production are actually rising steadily, and sales prices are going down (2004: 76–83). Wallerstein identifies various reasons for both trends. Production costs rise due to, for example, rising remunerations paid to the better organized employees, rising fees demanded for waste disposal and renewing raw materials, and higher taxation of firms by more democratic governments (ibid: 78–83). Sales prices cannot keep pace due to the steady expansion in the number of producers and reasons originating in the buyers: the limits of their purchasing power and their changing preferences (ibid: 78, 83). According to Wallerstein, the optimism of the oppressed that supported the largest expansion of the productive structures in the history of the modern world-system in the years after 1945 and kept the system stable is now gone (ibid: 83–85). Although capitalism prospered and popular movements of all kinds seemed to be achieving their objectives, the world did not change. The disillusionment led to the world revolution of 1968, and ever since, chaos has increased: capitalists seek profits not in the arena of production, but in financial speculation, and this has rendered the world-economy volatile; the world political left is organizing in movements such as the World Social Forum; violence is erupting everywhere in smaller and larger doses (ibid: 86–87). Obviously, the Establishment attempts to restore order and many people seek security by persisting in their accustomed behavior (ibid). But the system is close to reaching asymptotes on several fronts: in some 25 or 50 years, we will see the emergence of the successor system (ibid: 77). As already mentioned, Wallerstein believes that we have a choice: In constructing the successor system (or systems) to our existing one, we shall be opting either for a hierarchical system bestowing or permitting privileges according to rank in the system, however this rank is determined (including meritocratic criteria), or for a relatively democratic, relatively egalitarian system. (Wallerstein, 2004: 89). After depicting the downfall of the capitalist world-economy, Wallerstein gives his readers romantic hope. The narrative appeal is built into the actors and events, the progression and denouement of World-Systems Analysis. Wallerstein himself

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is aware of this and engages eagerly in the storytelling: “all forms of knowledge activity necessarily involve grand narratives” and “world-systems analysis is indeed a grand narrative,” he states (ibid: 21). Romantic appeal Although Wallerstein focuses his story on world-systems, not states, states appear as major actors in the story. It might be claimed that they play a major role in the traditionally most important scene of strife of Marxist romances, the allocation of surplus-value: “in this ongoing class struggle […], the state is a central actor shifting the allocation in one direction or the other” (2004: 51). States, as mentioned earlier, can for shorthand purposes be divided into core and peripheral states – and semiperipheral ones that have a near even mix of core-like and peripheral production (ibid: 28). States compete with each other, and in particular the semiperipheral states compete ferociously for formerly leading industries, they are “eager recipients of the relocation of erstwhile leading products” (ibid). The two sides in the class struggle are the capitalists and the working strata (ibid), or the employers and the proletarians (ibid: 35), or the upper and the lower classes (ibid: 62). These classes of the capitalist system, according to Wallerstein, are best understood as comprising of households, not individuals – it is a household that is proletarian, heavily dependent on wage-income, or semiproletarian or capitalist (ibid: 34–36). In addition to states, classes and households, Wallerstein considers also firms to be important actors: “Firms are the main actors in the market” (ibid: 27). Again, the situation is characterized by intense struggle: “Firms are normally the competitors of other firms […] Fierce capitalist rivalry is the name of the game. And only the strongest and the most agile survive” (ibid). Finally, in addition to locating themselves in a particular class, households usually maintain a common identity or are part of a single status-group organized on the basis of race, religion, ethnicity or code of sexuality, for example (ibid: 36–38). And, as with classes, certain status groups are more highly ranked than others: whites over non-whites, heterosexuals over gays and lesbians, urbanites over rural dwellers etc. (ibid: 39). As to the heroes and the villains, World-Systems Analysis is unmistakably on the side of the oppressed and the excluded. The descriptions of the different battles – between the capitalists and the workers, among firms, among states – are quite neutral, but it is clear that the author is not on side of those who want to keep extracting profits as large as possible. Wallerstein is not looking for ways to keep the capitalist world-economy going; he is recounting the story of its demise. In the end, the many battles are one and the same: The world is facing increasingly a struggle on many fronts between the spirit of Davos and the spirit of Porto Alegre. (Wallerstein, 2004: 87). Although Wallerstein mainly observes and analyzes this struggle, if the readers are drawn into the story, they will cheer for the spirit of Porto Alegre, not the

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spirit of Davos. Likewise, although the interaction between entrepreneurs and states is described in a matter-of-fact manner (ibid: 46–50), the reader probably sympathizes with the party that tries to ensure better working-conditions, equal rules of the game and measures to restore raw materials, such as the rain forests, not the party that seeks to remunerate workers as little as possible, acquire a (quasi)monopoly position in the so-called free market and externalize the costs of production. In the account of the present (losing) struggle of the capitalists to achieve higher sales prices and lower production costs (ibid: 78–83), too, it might be precisely the neutral tone that is expected to move readers to the side of the workers. Capitalists are presented as actors who take production to wherever it is cheapest and are content to exhaust all the yet unspoiled areas of the globe. The fact that Wallerstein does not blame individuals or groups for immoral behavior or point a finger at any specific corporations makes the villains even scarier: this is simply the logic of the capitalist world-economy; this is how it works throughout. As long as the capitalist world-economy is with us, there will always be monsters; their names at a particular moment do not make a difference since the system constantly breeds new ones to replace those crushed in battle. Like the ever new challenges encountered by Odysseus, the wicked manifestations of capitalism will take time to be beaten. The augmenting chaos is frightening; there will still be great numbers of casualties in the near future. The institutions of capitalism not only compete fiercely with each other – firm versus firm, state versus state, class versus class, firm versus state, firm versus class – but also have certain common interests. States share an interest in holding together the interstate system (2004: 56); entrepreneurs and firms need each other, a competitive environment where the endless accumulation of capital is possible (ibid: 27–28). Sometimes, it is even in the interests of the employers to pay higher wages to workers (ibid: 80), or of the firms to be taxed by states (ibid: 49). For employees formerly located outside the wage-economy, any remuneration means added wealth, even lower-than-standard wages amount to a win-win arrangement (ibid: 80). States usually provide their citizenry some sort of security, infrastructure and benefits such as education and health services (ibid: 82–83), and they might promote the interests of firms located within their boundaries vis-`a-vis other governments – thus, both individuals and firms gain from state action. Generally speaking, the “privileged strata” or the “Establishment” or “the powerful” have a vested interest in the system as it is, and they realize this (ibid: 61–62, 84, 86, 88). The “ordinary people,” the “oppressed people” (ibid: 84) and the “antisystemic movements” (ibid: 67), on the other hand, have greater difficulties in finding each other and organizing to demand change together. In deep crisis, clinging to the old rules may be the preferred solution of even those who might benefit from a fundamentally different system and rules. This adds to the eeriness of the situation: the victims of the monstrous system are unable to mobilize; they are like Sleeping Beauty or the king’s daughter waiting by the pond. The heroes of Wallerstein’s romantic story are the forces who try to combine liberty/democracy and equality (2004: 88–89). Ideally, liberty means both the

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liberty of the majority and that of the minorities, and equality first has to exist socially and economically in order to be meaningful politically (ibid). This runs in stark contrast to the message of liberal romances of Fukuyama, Russett and Oneal where democracy and free trade eventually bring along all the other good things. The tasks that Wallerstein accords to his heroes are manifold and interlinked – they are intellectual, moral and political: We need first of all to try to understand clearly what is going on. We need then to make our choices about the directions in which we want the world to go. And we must finally figure out how we can act in the present so that it is likely to go in the direction we prefer. (Wallerstein, 2004: 90). Wallerstein emphasizes both the uncertainty of the outcome of the struggle and the fact that we have a choice between vastly different alternatives and an ability to effect matters. World-Systems Analysis ties together not only political, social and economic, but also intellectual history. In the context of intellectual efforts, the proponents of world-systems analysis are obviously the heroes. Wallerstein explains that the research perspective of world-systems analysis emerged in the early 1970s as an attempt to combine coherently three concerns: concern with the unit of analysis (world-system instead of state), concern with social temporalities (long-term and transitions instead of near-past and steady development) and concern with the barriers between social science disciplines (unidisciplinarity instead of separate or combined disciplines) (2004: 16–19). World-systems analysis was a protest against older perspectives, on the one hand, and built on earlier arguments and critiques, on the other (ibid: 1). In major intellectual supporting roles, Wallerstein places dependency theorists, Marx, Paul Sweezy and Fernand Braudel (ibid: 11–16). From orthodox Marxism, world-systems analysis differs mainly in its skepticism about the inevitability of progress and criticism concerning the overemphasis on relations of production within states (ibid: 14–18, 20). Wallerstein explains that while for orthodox Marxists, the actor is the industrial proletariat, for world-systems analysis, all actors are products of a process (ibid: 21). Moreover, orthodox Marxists tend to conflate the market and capitalism, while from the perspective of world-systems analysis, capitalism is anti-market, based on monopolies (ibid: 18). Evidently, Wallerstein, too, is interested in class struggle, modes of production and markets – but primarily on the world scale. The prominence he gives to system-scale processes does not render the role of the (global) industrial proletariat or capitalist enterprises in World-Systems Analysis unimportant. Actors are both free and prisoners of their social systems, claims Wallerstein (ibid: 21). A similar tension holds for the entire progression of events in Wallerstein’s romance, and thus keeps up the interplay between suspense and predictability, excitement and reassurance: nothing is inevitable; there is “total uncertainty about the outcome of the struggle” (2004: 88), and yet change is imminent; various trends “inevitably approach asymptotes” (ibid: 76). Although the process of bifurcating is

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chaotic at the moment – there is anxiety and violence – at some point, there will be a clear outcome, and we as members of the system are collectively called upon to make a historical choice: which path to follow, what kind of a new system to construct (ibid: 76–77). While the ending of World-Systems Analysis leaves the readers hopeful that the spirit of Porto Alegre will win over the spirit of Davos, that “something better” will be created, in other texts Wallerstein is slightly more specific about the new system. It might be a socialist world-government, a system of social organization we have not seen before (1976, 2000: 102). This new system would not be a world-economy or a world-empire, and the endless accumulation of capital would not be its defining feature – but the exact contours are left undrawn. Or it might be a system where production is organized by nonprofit units, a system of rainbow coalition governments with limited powers and basic social rights of all (1998). The thing that we can be certain about is that the present system cannot be mended – we are not experiencing a mere problem, yet another normal stagnation or recession phase in a Kondratieff cycle (2004: 30–31) – but a systemic crisis (ibid: 76). A new system will emerge to replace the capitalist world-economy that has exhausted its logical possibilities. World-Systems Analysis leaves its readers optimistic about the future. In a time frame of 400 years or so, another 25 to 50 years of observing capitalist monsters in their death rattles does not sound too bad. Soon, we will be able to leave the present – polarized and deeply unequal – system behind. The fact that the exact ending of the fairy tale is left open gives more room to imagination and provides the readers with an opportunity to dream big. Marxist-oriented dreams follow from the general plot most effortlessly, but other options are available, especially ones based on liberty, equality and solidarity. Much like the “movement of movements,” the World Social Forum is “a meeting-ground of militants of many stripes and persuasions” engaging in a variety of local, regional and global actions (2004: 86), Wallerstein’s romance offers something for all groups looking for fundamental change. Like we assume that Sleeping Beauty, the king’s daughter, Odysseus and Penelope will live happily ever after since the evil villains have been crushed, we are simply content to hear that capitalism is doomed. Although Wallerstein underlines that we need to choose a direction and act accordingly, many readers would probably find the details of the strategy boring or, even worse, controversial. We are not really interested in the mundane activities of the people of Silene or Ithaca; it is for a reason that the famous stories focus on their enemies, heroes and defining battles. The readers of World-Systems Analysis are told that they matter and that their actions make a difference. At this crucial moment in history, we actually get to forge the next world-system. After having studied the terrible logic of capitalism throughout the book, many of us are eager to embrace this ending. Peace research: Johan Galtung and Peace: Research, Education, Action Peace research, by definition, constitutes a romantic, normative approach to international relations: the objective is not simply to observe and report

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regularities relating to pacific and aggressive relations among states, but to contribute, actively by scientific means, to reducing violence and enhancing peace, to ensure a happy ending to the stories of people, groups, states and the world. Although most peace researchers would probably see their efforts as interdisciplinary – something more than, or even antithetical to traditional IR – treating theories of peace research as IR theories can be justified by many shared concerns, questions and discussions. Direct, interstate violence is one, though not the only, of the concerns of peace research, too, and identifying specifically with peace research is not a precondition for envisioning better, peaceful futures for the world community. Like liberal and Marxist approaches, peace research views economic questions as integrally connected to political ones. Peace research often enters into discussions with developmental theory, Sociology and Cultural Studies, much like other strands of IR engage with some of the neighboring fields. While I argue that peace research generally adheres to the epic/romantic plot, there are exceptions: total pacifism qualifies as comic due to its refusal to paint scenes of heroic battles against evil enemies, and postmodern peace research is probably best described as ironic/satirical. In the following, I will focus on Johan Galtung’s collection of essays Peace: Research, Education, Action (1975) which is the first volume in a series of six volumes of Essays in Peace Research published between 1975 and 1988. Instead of Galtung’s work, for example, Kenneth Boulding’s Stable Peace (1978) would have provided an alternative, romantic peace research classic. Galtung was opted for due to his varied interests and central role in establishing the peace research agenda. Precisely because he has written extensively on a wide range of topics during a roughly 60-year period, the choice of the individual book of his for the analysis is by no means obvious either. The True Worlds: A Transnational Perspective (1980) or Peace by Peaceful Means: Peace and Conflict, Development and Civilization (1996) would also have served as examples of Galtung’s romantic stories, and being more recent monographs, might be assumed to represent more refined argumentation and add up to more coherent wholes. I chose early essays written between 1965 and 1973, however, since these show how the academic enterprise of peace research got started – paying respect to Galtung’s view that “exactly when the discipline is new does it have something to contribute” (1975: 19). Also, Galtung edited each volume of essays “to appear as a relatively integrated whole” (ibid: 14) – he aimed at a complete story, that is. Moreover, the basic themes and claims of the later Peace by Peaceful Means can be found already in Peace: Research, Education, Action: the most important concepts are defined, the general orientation is justified, and many individual ideas, such as the role of the “peace worker,” are introduced very early on. Even the deepest form of violence – cultural violence – is hinted at, but not developed very far yet, in this early collection already. Galtung definitely believes that peace is possible; he is optimistic about the future. He approaches the problematique ambitiously, both by outlining a detailed typology of peace thinking – with three levels and 35 main classes – and by

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looking for a general theory of peace, one built around the concept of entropy (ibid: 20–21, 47–75). He is explicitly interested not only in the fate of peace, but also that of peace research. Galtung believes that science is capable of revealing facts about the world and contributing to change in the world. The challenges to peace and peace research are manifold; the task ahead is not easy. Galtung chooses to be hopeful: In other words, peace is possible – and if we do not have it, it is because something and/or somebody is against it. (Galtung, 1975: 149). Galtung points out that there is no evidence to support the claim that violence is embedded in the human actor (1975: 142–143). On the contrary, human beings are essentially benevolent; they resort to violence – sometimes extreme violence – only under certain, modifiable conditions (ibid: 144–148). According to Galtung, tracing these conditions that vary from one situation to another is the project we need to embrace. This project is what the fairy tale of Peace: Research, Education, Action is about. As with the previous stories, I will first outline the structure and present the main claims of the book, and then move on to analyze its romantic elements and appeal. Structure and main claims Peace: Research, Education, Action is divided into four main parts: a general discussion of peace and violence, essays on what peace research is about, designs for peace education structures and reflections on the relationship of peace theory and action. In the beginning, peace and violence are defined, various forms of peace thinking and conflict theories are analytically outlined and different models for thinking about aggression are presented. Next, peace research as an oriented science is given a mid-term evaluation and directions forward. Finally, peace education and action are tied into the general project for a less violent world. Themes continue from one part to the other: conceptual questions are taken up in every part, as are issues concerning the identity and performance of the new field of research. Galtung often uses lists, tables, figures and typologies: for example, he lists 20 research proposals (ibid: 196–223), gives a fourfold table of conflict resolution approaches (conflict system preserved/changed, incompatibility eliminated/preserved) (ibid: 86), draws a figure demonstrating how dissociative and associative policies form a continuum and overlap (ibid: 90) and produces an intricate typology of personal somatic violence (ibid: 119). To balance the neat figures, he reminds his readers of their “too clear-cut” nature (ibid: 260) and the importance of “messiness” or entropy (ibid: 48, 74, 140). Most of Galtung’s reasoning is qualitative by nature or based on the statistical analyses of others, but occasionally, such as when operationalizing violence as “man-years lost,” he applies mathematical equations (ibid: 135–139).

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Galtung defines negative peace as the absence of different forms of violence and positive peace as (voluntary, mutually beneficial, on an equal basis) cooperation and integration (1975: 29–30, 150, 245). Thus, ideal peace is not merely passive not-killing, nor is it just any kind of contact, but requires active, creative, harmonious interaction and self-realization. Similarly, his definition of violence is much wider than the standard reference for measuring interstate conflict, that is, the number of battle-related deaths. Galtung divides violence into direct, structural and cultural (ibid: 109–134, 141, 251; 1996: 195–201). The first two are treated extensively in Peace: Research, Education, Action; the development of the last one only starts in this volume (ibid: 348–366), but is completed by the time of Peace by Peaceful Means. Direct or personal violence refers to intended action by a subject, the hurting or killing of people (intimidation, assault, murder, war-death, etc.). Structural violence, according to Galtung, is built into the social structure as various kinds of injustices; it materializes as the difference between the potential and actual realization of human capacity. Structural violence works through exploitation, penetration, fragmentation and marginalization; it does not require acting with an intention to harm. If your position in society or the position of your country in the international hierarchy reduces your life expectancy, if you are constantly denied chances to develop and participate in meaningful ways, there is structural violence against you in the system. Galtung defines cultural violence as the aspects of every civilization’s religion, ideology, language and art that justify and legitimize direct or structural violence. It is mainly the different forms of Christianity with their respective ways of approving of violence that get treated in Peace: Research, Education, Action; other civilizations enter into Galtung’s stories later. Conflict as such is, for Galtung, a neutral term; it simply refers to incompatible goal states (1975: 78). Conflicts are natural and may lead either to positive or negative developments. Only violent conflicts are to be worried about by peace researchers. As regards approaches to violent conflict, one of the central dividing lines runs between symmetric and asymmetric conflict (ibid: 79–81). Symmetric conflicts take place between actors of roughly the same rank: same kind of actors (e.g., both are states) with roughly comparable properties and equal resources at their disposal. Asymmetric conflicts take place between actors of different rank: with different resources and/or of different kinds (e.g., state versus group/ individual). Galtung claims that most research on international conflicts – be it theory of peace or conflict – focuses on symmetric situations with direct violence (ibid: 79). This is a problem because it leaves significant exploitative practices that have concrete, destructive effects for great numbers of people in the shadows. According to Galtung, direct violence is only for the amateur in dominance, while professionals use structural violence (ibid: 80). As a thumb rule, Galtung recommends associative peacemaking for symmetric conflicts and dissociative peacemaking for asymmetric conflicts (ibid: 90–101). Conflicts between highranking topdogs or low-ranking underdogs are best dealt with by keeping the parties as close together as possible, by increasing interaction and ties. Conflicts between a topdog and an underdog, on the contrary, demand separation,

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severance of the exploitative ties, before eventual coming together on an egalitarian basis. Unlike the authors of liberal romances earlier discussed, Galtung emphasizes that inegalitarian interdependence leads to violence, not peace (ibid: 98). For some cases of asymmetric dominance, Galtung even recommends conflict creation: injecting conflict consciousness that would help the underdogs realize and counteract the violence they are suffering from (ibid: 88–89). In this way, peace can sometimes come about through increased conflict, violent conflict included (ibid: 89–90). Peace research, according to Galtung, can be described as an interdisciplinary and international effort to clarify the conditions for peaceful relations between nations and other human groups from a global point of view (1975: 188). Interdisciplinarity refers to the need to incorporate insights and expertise from various established sciences, not only other modern social sciences such as International Relations, but also humanities, Philosophy and physical sciences (ibid: 245–246, 260–262). International efforts refer mainly to exchanges and institutional settings that facilitate cooperation of scholars from different backgrounds (ibid: 190–194, 246–247), and a global point of view means looking at problems from a perspective that surpasses national interest and individual cases (ibid: 188). Galtung explains that peace research is an oriented, instead of a pure, science: while both kinds of sciences explore problems according to certain rules and aim to establish propositions that form theories, oriented sciences derive their research problems from a supreme, predetermined value, such as peace or health, not from the process itself (ibid: 152–155). In Peace: Research, Education, Action, peace research projects are divided into ones oriented toward the past, the present and the future (ibid: 195). Projects studying the future go together with a belief in change for the better: the future need not resemble the past. In terms of lessons learnt, Galtung affirms that peace research has moved toward an ever wider conception of peace and violence, and away from reliance on empiricist methodology (ibid: 244–262). Moreover, Galtung claims that the early symmetrical multilevel approach has been replaced by identification with the victims of (structural) violence and a focus on the individual as the basic unit (ibid). When discussing the nature of peace and peace research, Galtung keeps coming back to the analogy between these on the one hand, and health and medical science on the other (1975: 152–157, 167–187, 299–304). First of all, peace and health constitute values worth seeking; attaining peace and health, not being neutral between peace and violence, or health and sickness, is our goal. As there are various forms of sickness that demand different kinds of treatments, there are various causes of violence and types of violent conflict that need to be approached with different methods. Peace research, like medical science, involves not only doing research, but also teaching and acting. Analyses of existing data and producing scientific publications are complemented by educating future professionals and the general public, and by treating the suffering. Medicine applies information produced by research in anatomy, physiology and psychology; peace theory benefits, for example, from insights in

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development theory, Political Science and Economics. When physicians or peace workers approach sickness or violence, they attempt first to establish a diagnosis of what has gone wrong, then to make a prognosis of how the condition is likely to develop and finally to draw up a therapy to ensure the best possible result available through the intervention. Galtung both cherishes the idea of peace professionals – general practitioners in conflict resolution and specialists in certain types of violence – and is worried about the structural violence inherent in the notion of peace as a profession (ibid: 299–302, 370–379). He emphasizes that researchers, too, should be committed to nonviolent methodology, and that the knowledge produced by them belongs to everyone (ibid: 263–279, 287). Romantic appeal In Peace: Research, Education, Action, Galtung both sets out to ensure a romantic ending to the story from the point of view of not only peace but also justice, and envisions major obstacles along the way: […] there is no reason to believe that the future will not bring us richer concepts and more forms of social action that combine absence of personal violence with fight against social injustice once sufficient activity is put into research and practice. There are more than enough people willing to sacrifice one for the other – it is by aiming for both that peace research can make a real contribution. (Galtung, 1975: 134). Great and noble goals, villains that need to be taken seriously and a promise of a better future are all ingredients of exciting fairy tales. While the liberal romances of Fukuyama and Russett and Oneal were mainly concerned with the reduction of direct, interstate violence and explicitly dissociated the plot from pursuits of social justice, Galtung operates with the widest possible definition of peace that includes various realizations of human potential. Unlike approaches at the other end of the spectrum that advocate the pursuit of social justice even at the expense of peace or see violent chaos as an inevitable phase, Galtung refuses, in principle, to give up nonviolent means. He maintains that both absence of violence and social justice are significant goals – there is no point in determining their relative importance since all forms of violence cause immense suffering – and that they should be part of our definition of peace, not just two separate goals (1975: 131–133). Thus, Galtung’s heroes have a more difficult task ahead of them than many other romantic heroes: they are to bring about a world free from all violence (more ambitious goal) with as little violence as possible (more restricted means). As to the heroes of Galtung’s story, the most important protagonist, the peace worker or peace specialist, has already been mentioned. Peace workers, like physicians or nurses, are ideally well-trained humble professionals who work to eradicate violence in the spirit of the Hippocratic Oath, in the service of mankind,

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not particular interests or passions (1975: 183–187, 230–243, 299–304, 371). Peace workers are people, according to Galtung, who in their professional activities are “without a fatherland” (ibid: 242) and always side “with the underdog” (ibid: 255). The individual is their basic concern even when they deal with interstate conflicts. Galtung claims that national interests are meaningless unless they also are the interests of the lowest of the low, and that GNP/capita is a cynicism unless something is said about distribution within the society. For Galtung, nations are abstractions that may or may not serve human needs (ibid: 254). In principle, Galtung, like Wallerstein, advocates a structural – versus an actor-oriented – perspective to world politics; the acts committed by persons or states are less important than the structures that facilitate or obstruct action (ibid: 23). While he indeed does not present the “top persons from top countries as dramatis personae” of his own story (ibid), narrating world politics without state actors is more difficult. In practice, Galtung refers not only to structures, but also to actors and the possibility of various kinds of meaningful action throughout Peace: Research, Education, Action. As different types of actors, he lists individuals, groups, nations, regions and globes, and it is often nation actors that are considered first (ibid: 79). While both the realist tragedies of Morgenthau and Mearsheimer and the liberal romances of Fukuyama, Russett and Oneal focus on the destinies of states in general and the great powers in particular – and direct their foreign policy advice mainly to the leaders of the United States – Galtung, like Wallerstein, seldom mentions states or their leaders by name. Individual states and people are not essential; the cause of peace and its proponents are. Peace research, according to Galtung, can make a difference. Galtung believes in the power of research and theory not only in analyzing the empirically given, but also the potentially possible (1975: 334). The empirical reality, for him, is not an absolute to be accounted for, but merely one world among several worlds. Good theory seeks to shed light on a potentially infinite set of alternative ways of looking at the world, not only the way that is seen as uncontroversial and factual at a given moment (ibid: 335). The results of peace research should be shared immediately with everyone by as many means and in as many places as possible (ibid: 280–290). Galtung envisions a World Peace Academy (ibid: 306–316) – possibly a mobile one so as to keep it independent and broad-minded – as the institution of highest learning in the field and a growing number of people educated in the basics (ibid: 317–333). He is aware of the many problems facing “this emerging discipline and embryonic profession,” but claims that they do not represent insurmountable difficulties (ibid: 242). Galtung claims that the problem of peace and war may be a problem of life and death for the human race; the peace researcher and the peace specialist will strive “to create an image of the future that may pave way for solutions of problems in the present” (ibid: 243). Like Odysseus, Galtung’s heroes are ready to face all the challenges presented to them by the violent world. The victims of the story are the human beings who are subjected to direct violence or experience a great gap between their potential and actual

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self-realization (1975: 24). Direct violence kills these people as wars and domestic violence, keeps them docile via threats and brainwashing, and denies them access to vital resources (ibid: 109–134). Structural violence kills them as diseases that could easily be cured and as starvation in a world with plenty of food; it denies them access to education and exhausts their energies in the daily struggle for survival (ibid). Social and religious violence keeps them subservient and respectful of higher causes that justify individual suffering (ibid: 348–366). These victims have done nothing to deserve their fate, and individually, they cannot grasp the complicated mechanisms that work against them – let alone do they have the means to better their condition or to fight back. There cannot be victims much more innocent than children dying of malnutrition and diarrhea or learning to accept from an early age that they are not as worthy as other children due to their nationality, religion, ethnic origin or gender. Like Sleeping Beauty, they have a curse hanging over them; like the king’s daughter, they wait for the dragon by the pond. They cannot be blamed for their situation; not to feel pity for them would be cruel. The villain of Peace: Research, Education, Action is violence in its many forms. This seven-headed beast is everywhere: not only with guns on the battlefields or as authoritarian governments with their repressive policies, but also in seemingly harmless practices such as (inegalitarian) trade (1975: 98), (dependency-increasing) technical assistance (ibid: 109) or (unethical) research (ibid: 263–264). Violence lurks around as evanescent ghosts: in deals constantly somehow favoring the topdogs, mysteriously accumulating bad luck for the underdogs and missed opportunities that cannot be pinpointed exactly. If nobody is personally responsible – if nobody intends to hurt or if no intent can be proven – how are the heroes supposed to gallantly face the enemy? The manifestations of structural (and cultural) violence identified by Galtung are like Sirens luring peace researchers into recommending associative policies when, in fact, dissociation might be in order. Galtung affirms that different types of conflicts need different kinds of resolution models; there is no universal cure for violence any more than there is one for disease (ibid: 76–108). Only through careful research can we choose the means most likely to bring about the desired end state in each case. Whereas Fukuyama, Russett and Oneal, in their liberal romances, basically rely on the power of positive example and the ability of the militarily mighty nation state heroes to win a couple of direct confrontations if need arises, and Wallerstein keeps his fingers crossed for the “movement of movements,” Galtung expects sophisticated analytical skills and versatile nonviolent tactics from his peace research champions. While fighting violence, the interests of Galtung’s heroes often confront those of state actors: nation-states prioritize the well-being of their own nationals and especially their national elites, while peace researchers identify both higher and lower, with humanity as a whole and with individual human beings who deserve better. Often, it is not attempts to silence peace researchers and discredit their results, but the opposite – paying them lip service and attempts to integrate their efforts into government (research) agencies – that

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presents problems (1975: 180–183, 327). Galtung also notes that the origin of both direct and structural violence can frequently be traced to state actors: Again, this is not written in any spirit of vilification of nation-states, but most major wars are fought in their name and most systems of repression have their blessing. (Galtung, 1975: 287). Although, for Galtung, “there are two evils, direct and structural violence” (ibid: 141), many of the things that need to be altered come down to state practices. The best way to effect these is not necessarily playing the role of yet another foreign policy expert in the official machinery, but acting as an independent advisor with many alternative policy suggestions. As to competing disciplines and schools, Galtung vigorously differentiates peace research from traditional IR: … [peace research] as a reaction to what preceded peace research; traditional, actor-oriented, nationalistic or regionalistic, and above all strategically oriented, international studies. (Galtung, 1975: 26). Although he often uses the terms interchangeably, peace research, according to Galtung, should operate on the world – not the international, nation state ideology promoting – level (ibid: 307). While the classical tradition studies direct violence on the international level through rationalistic methodology, peace research is interested in all kinds of violence and applies empiricist, critical and constructivist approaches (ibid: 260). In Peace: Research, Education, Action, the basic assumptions and orientation of peace research are often compared to the competing visions of liberals, on the one hand, and Marxists, on the other. Galtung sees liberals as too occupied with negative peace, too ready to accept “law and order” societies with blatantly oppressive structures (ibid: 130–134, 248–258). Marxists, claims Galtung, tend to choose the other extreme: promoting violent struggle to achieve social justice, believing uncritically in the pacific nature of socialism (ibid). Peace research is more analytical (developing general theory, analyzing each case specifically) and more ambitious (aiming at positive peace), at the same time more objective (no nation state bias) and more engaged (siding with the underdogs, not embracing neutrality), than the other options available. Galtung’s story is definitely exciting: while liberal romances define violent conflicts in such a way that makes them rare episodes – and the heroic mission almost accomplished – structural (and cultural) forms of violence are far from overcome. Exploitation, penetration, fragmentation and marginalization are all around; their eradication is a truly epic challenge. While Galtung underlines that the efforts of the peace researcher should always remain nonviolent, there is still plenty of violence in the world, and Galtung is aware that structural violence

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sometimes amounts to an effective means of keeping direct violence at bay, and vice versa, direct violence sometimes works in putting an end to structural violence. Although Galtung recommends dissociative tactics and conflict creation in specific circumstances, obviously, he does not recommend resorting to violence as such. However, he acknowledges that sticking to nonviolence is by no means an automatic choice. The discussion on nonviolence and peace (1975: 89–90) includes almost as many questions as declarative sentences. Thus, while the hero of Galtung’s story is more peaceful than the average romantic hero, he is certainly just, brave and resourceful. Moreover, he is up against an exceptionally terrible monster. Peace: Research, Education, Action, like a proper fairy tale, proceeds in a predictable manner and maintains an optimistic mood. We sometimes fear for the hero – we wonder just how he will find ways to save the innocent victims – but we do not need to worry about his perseverance or drastic surprises in the plot. The hero seems to come up with new ideas all the time, and none of the old ones have proven to be fundamentally wrong, some of them simply in need of little refinement. As we read along, we can see that the nascent approach of peace research is getting stronger by the day. The enemies and goals, too, appear reassuringly stable. Violence and states are likely to remain a problem and positive peace a supreme value. Galtung promises his readers already in the first part of the book that peace is possible. Man is not inherently violent, no vivid catastrophe scenarios for humanity are painted, and there is no feeling of desperate urgency or imminent doom. Galtung’s romance gives us confidence not only in a better future for mankind but also in the positive role of (our) scientific efforts.

4

Unexplored IR terrains Hopeful comedies and cynical satires

This chapter will focus on the two IR plots that have been explicitly analyzed almost not at all: comedies and ironic/satirical stories. Very few metatheoretical contributions identify comic or satirical theorizing as taking place in the field, and very few researchers directly claim that international relations can best be understood as a comedy or a satire. However, certain clues have been given by other scholars as to where one might start looking for comic or satirical elements. Comic, ironic and satirical stories share several features: something is made fun of in these stories; their plots include surprises and inconsistencies; their characters are ambiguous and unstable. There are, however, important differences, too: comedies are more optimistic than ironic/satirical stories; comic characters are more benevolent and comic scenes less violent; and comedies have happy endings for almost everyone concerned, whereas ironic/satirical stories end in uncertainty or despair.

Comedies of errors Although the logic of the comic narrative has not been extensively analyzed in the context of IR theorizing, the basic plot and associated roles as such are familiar to almost everyone. Comic stories feature fallible heroes, no real enemies, essentially nonviolent but winding progression and happy endings. The comic attitude is self-reflexive and open-minded; even after presenting the best explanation and recommendation he/she can arrive at, the comic theorist will ideally admit liability to err and cheerfully change course if need arises. Comic theory not only tolerates, but outright celebrates contingency, indeterminacy, surprises and novel solutions. In addition to certain forms of critical theory, the comic disposition is particularly compatible with pacifism and constructivist IR, the former due to its commitment to nonviolence and the latter on account of its “the world is what we make of it” attitude. As with other generic plots, comic theory is not a clear-cut category. Not all research relying on the social theory of constructivism would qualify as happyending comedy; some of the numerous variants of critical theory might better be understood as romances or even tragedies. Some scholars identifying with peace research or feminist IR might also write in a comic vein. The three comic works analyzed below can, however, be described as examples of pacifism, constructivist IR and critical theory, respectively.

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The first comic story chosen for analysis is a pacifist comedy of Mahatma Gandhi, Hind Swaraj. In its optimism and trust in peaceful means, this comedy in many ways presents a mirror image to realist despair, especially to Mearsheimer’s offensive realism. Alexander Wendt’s Social Theory of International Politics is one of the founding works of constructivist IR. In a mildly hopeful and selfreflexive manner Wendt assures his readers that anarchy and the security dilemma need not lead to a violent battle for survival on the international scene. Finally, Andrew Linklater’s The Transformation of Political Community argues for the emergence of a global, culturally sensitive ethic and cosmopolitan citizenship. Before turning to these three comedies, I will synopsize two of Shakespeare’s comedies, Twelfth Night and A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and Jane Austen’s romantic comedy, Pride and Prejudice. Naturally, other options would have been available. Comic portraits have been painted of not only lovers but also soldiers, ˇ as the examples of Good Soldier Svejk and Baron M¨unchausen show. Child audiences might recognize such comic heroes as Pippi Longstocking, Puss in Boots and Ali Baba. Those interested in the culture of ancient Greece would be familiar with Aristophanes’s The Knights and devotees of opera have certainly come across several comic ones. The aforementioned comedies of Shakespeare, however, are probably the best-known comedies of errors in the Western world, and Pride and Prejudice is perhaps the most popular novel in English literature, and therefore I will focus on these three. Twelfth Night, A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Pride and Prejudice Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night (1985 [c. 1602]) recounts the story of three couples being formed in the faraway land of Illyria. One of the opening scenes portrays Viola surviving a shipwreck, but therewith, losing contact with her twin brother Sebastian. Dressed as a young page named Cesario, Viola enters the service of Duke Orsino, the ruler of Illyria. Orsino believes to be in love with Lady Olivia who is in mourning due to the recent loss of her father and brother, and uninterested in all suitors. Orsino confides in Cesario/Viola and uses her as an intermediary to deliver messages to Olivia. Olivia falls in love with Cesario/ Viola. Viola/Cesario falls in love with Orsino. A subplot features Sir Toby, Olivia’s uncle, Sir Andrew, another would-be suitor of Olivia, and servants in Olivia’s household: gentlewoman Maria, head steward Malvolio, gentleman Fabian and Feste the fool. Malvolio scolds Sir Toby and Sir Andrew for drinking and singing late into the night. Sir Toby, Sir Andrew, Maria, Fabian and Feste punish Malvolio by tricking him into acting like an idiot in front of Olivia and then lock him up in a dark cellar to “cure” him of his madness. Sebastian arrives on the scene; Olivia mistakes him for Cesario/Viola and asks him to marry her; they are then wedded in secrecy. Orsino and Olivia encounter Cesario/Viola and Sebastian at the same location and express their surprise at the similarity of the twins; Viola explains the situation. Orsino proposes to Viola; Viola agrees to marry him. Fabian reveals that Sir Toby has married Maria. Malvolio storms off swearing revenge, and Orsino sends Fabian to

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pacify him. The play ends with Orsino’s assurances of happy times and Feste’s merry song. In A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Shakespeare (1992 [c. 1596] relates the fortunes of four couples in ancient Athens. The unifying theme is provided by the forthcoming marriage of the Duke of Athens, Theseus, to the Queen of the Amazons, Hippolyta. Oberon and Titania, the king and queen of the fairies, are on their way through the woods to attend the celebration. Among the Athenian youth, the situation is complicated: both Lysander and Demetrius love Hermia, Hermia loves Lysander, Hermia’s friend Helena loves Demetrius. Hermia’s father Egeus orders Hermia to marry Demetrius. Hermia and Lysander run away to the woods together; Demetrius follows Hermia; Helena follows Demetrius. In the woods, an amateur theater group is rehearsing a play for the wedding. Oberon and Titania quarrel over a young Indian page; Oberon decides to punish Titania’s disobedience by asking his court jester Puck to retrieve a magical flower nectar that Oberon can apply to Titania’s eyelids while she is sleeping and that will cause her to fall in love with the first creature she sees upon waking. Puck transforms the head of one of the amateur actors, Bottom, into that of a donkey. Titania is awakened by Bottom’s singing and falls in love with him. Oberon orders Puck to spread some potion on the eyelids of Demetrius in order to punish him for being cruel to Helena. Puck mistakes Lysander for Demetrius. Lysander falls in love with Helena. Oberon then uses the potion on Demetrius who also falls in love with Helena. Demetrius and Lysander fight over Helena. Puck removes the charm from Lysander so that he, again, is in love with Hermia. Oberon releases Titania, and arranges it so that the young Athenians believe to have been dreaming when they awaken. Theseus organizes a group wedding for the three happy couples. Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice (1985 [1813]) is a tale of how Miss Elizabeth Bennet, the second of five daughters of a landed gentleman of modest income, and Mr. Fitzwilliam Darcy, a wealthy owner of a family estate, find each other after a series of misunderstandings in late 18th-century Britain. Mr. Darcy arrives on the scene accompanying his friend Mr. Bingley who has rented a house near to the Bennet’s. The first impressions Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy get of each other at a big ball are not promising: she sees him as haughty, reserved and fastidious, and in his eyes she is uninteresting and probably not very intelligent. Mr. Bingley falls in love with Elizabeth’s elder sister, Jane. Mr. Collins, a cousin of Mr. Bennet and heir to his estate, proposes to Elizabeth who rejects him. The Bennets meet Mr. Wickham who comes across as charming and tells Elizabeth about how he has been mistreated by Mr. Darcy in the past. At another ball, Elizabeth dances with Mr. Darcy, while her silly younger sisters and mother expose the family to ridicule. Later, Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy meet at the home of Lady Catherine de Bourgh, Mr. Darcy’s extremely wealthy aunt. Lady Catherine behaves in a domineering and condescending manner. Mr. Darcy proposes to Elizabeth, but she rejects him. Elizabeth hears of the kindness and generosity of Mr. Darcy and certain despicable deeds of Mr. Wickham’s. Mr. Darcy shows hospitality to Elizabeth and her aunt and uncle in his home and secretly saves the

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Bennet family’s reputation about to be ruined by Lydia, Elizabeth’s youngest sister. Mr. Bingley proposes to Jane and is accepted. Mr. Darcy again proposes to Elizabeth, and she accepts his proposal. These short summaries remind us about the essential features of comedies: the typical characters, manner of progression and denouement. In all cases, the ending is undeniably happy: couples are united in voluntary marriages. In Shakespeare’s two comedies of errors, everybody is invited to join the final celebration – even the annoying Malvolio, and Egeus who originally tried to stand in the way of his daughter’s happiness. In Austen’s romantic comedy, even Lady Catherine eventually condescends to wait on Mr. and Mrs. Darcy – if not due to her affection for her nephew, then to her curiosity concerning his wife. Shakespeare’s heroes are witty and resourceful: in order to achieve their generally commendable, love-inspired goals, they wear disguises, write ingenious messages and concoct magic potions. Austen depicts Elizabeth as intelligent, lively and playful – as being quick (sometimes overly so) to sum up people, but also as capable of scolding herself for the mistakes she makes and laughing at her own pride. The heroes are not perfect, they meet all sorts of obstacles along the way and they sometimes first choose the wrong course. The audience, however, sympathizes with the heroes. What is missing from Twelfth Night, A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Pride and Prejudice are grand battles against horrendous enemies. The successes in the three comedies are piecemeal achievements instead of smashing victories. Nobody gets killed, and it is not necessary to use force to move the story forward. The obstructing characters have faults and do unpleasant things, but they are not presented as inherently evil, venom-spewing dragons or child-eating ogres. Almost all characters are profoundly surprised at one moment or another, and many learn about their own fallibility. What we first expected might not have happened in the end, but almost everybody is content when the curtain falls. There is no great bitterness or desire to revenge among the characters; we feel happy and optimistic when finishing the book or leaving the theater. It may well be that we found some of the twists and turns of the plot silly, but most probably, we will not have nightmares caused by these comedies, as we might have after watching a cruel tragedy or satire unfold. Despite the original problems, by no measure minor ones – the man Viola falls in love with ardently courts another woman with Viola’s help, Sebastian has disappeared, Malvolio wishes to drive Sir Toby out of Olivia’s house, Hermia might have to face death for refusing to obey his father’s orders, Helena is heartbroken, Oberon and Puck toss about spells and potions, Mr. Darcy convinces Mr. Bingley to stop pursuing Jane, Elizabeth angrily rejects Mr. Darcy, Lydia elopes with Mr. Wickham – everything is pretty much sorted out in the end. No less than three or four marriages take place in each comedy (in addition to Elizabeth and Jane, also Lydia and Charlotte, Elizabeth’s youngest sister and her best friend, find husbands in Pride and Prejudice). The quarrels between Oberon and Titania are resolved (Oberon gets the Indian page); Feste sings his song; the amateur actors perform their play so badly that the wedding guests howl with laughter; the fairies bless everybody with good fortune. Possibly, we cannot quite

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figure out everybody’s motives or agree with all the choices of the heroes – was it really necessary to lock Malvolio in a dark cellar, why did Puck have to play with poor Bottom’s head – but we are not unduly worried. The messiness of the situation, the misinterpretations and surprises – the cryptic letters and cross-dressing in Twelfth Night, the play within the play and the dreams within the dream in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, the very positive evaluations of Mr. Darcy first by his housekeeper and then his sister in Pride and Prejudice – occasionally make events hard to follow. On the other hand, it is precisely the licensed disorder, the losses of identity and the social commotion and critique that have presumably appealed to audiences during the centuries. Moreover, the fact that the heroes fumble and err – and still reach their goals – gives hope to less-than-perfect spectators: one does not have to be omnipotent and fight monsters in order to achieve happiness. Pacifism: Mahatma Gandhi and Hind Swaraj Hind Swaraj is a comic story about Indian home rule – Indian politics, relations with the British – but Gandhi weaves this national story tightly together with the story of the individual, the society and the world. Swaraj amounts to selfgovernment, independence and courage on all levels, all action relying on the spiritual foundation. Gandhi, like the romantic storytellers, is definitely optimistic about the future of people and nations, but unlike they, refuses to write violent scenes that would be necessary for moving the plot forward or identify gallant heroes and evil enemies among the characters. He states: I am an irrepressible optimist. My optimism rests on my belief in the infinite possibilities of the individual to develop non-violence. The more you develop it in your own being, the more infectious it becomes till it overwhelms your surroundings and by and by might oversweep the world. (Gandhi, 1960: 128). For Gandhi, “Truth [satya] is God,” “all our activities should be centered in truth” and “absolute truth alone is God” (2008: 44–45, 55). Moreover, “the only way of reaching [the truth] is through ahimsa [non-violence, love]” and “nonviolence […] is the greatest force in the world. It is the surest method of discovering the truth and the quickest because there is no other” (ibid: 55–56). So basically, according to Gandhi, a happy ending for humanity is in sight and we know how to reach it. However, despite the evident seriousness of the issues at hand, commitment to the cause of truth and non-violence, and the simple plan, Gandhi exhibits also plenty of playfulness and disregard for stable progression: I have never made a fetish of consistency. I am a votary of Truth and I must say what I feel and think at a given moment on the question, without regard to what I may have said before on it. […] I am not at all concerned with

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appearing to be consistent. In my pursuit after Truth I have discarded many ideas and learnt many new things. […] The result has been that I have grown from truth to truth; I have saved my memory an undue strain […] friends who observe inconsistency will do well to take the meaning that my latest writings may yield unless of course they prefer the old. (Gandhi, 1960: 219–220). In addition to renouncing the role of an infallible sage or a heroic savior offered to him – “I have not conceived my mission to be that of a knight-errant wandering everywhere to deliver people from difficult situations” (1960: 218) – Gandhi approvingly quotes others who have refused to drive themselves into a false position simply in order to appear consistent: “that is why Emerson said that foolish consistency was the hobgoblin of little minds,” he notes (ibid: 228). Optimism, belief in a happy ending and reliance on nonviolent means – detours, surprises and inconsistencies – are all characteristics of a comedy of errors. In tune with romantic comedies, Gandhi claims that permanent peace and perfect love are attainable on earth (2008: 39, 42); in his view, the optimist moves without fear everywhere since “there is none whom he looks upon as his enemy” (ibid: 40). On the other hand, he explains that satyagrahis [exponents of satyagraha or truth-force] must be willing to suffer the penalties of unjust laws and sacrifice themselves rather than to resort to violence (ibid: 310–313). Thus, the task is easy and difficult at the same time: enemies need not be feared once the attitude is right; physical strength is not necessary for achieving victory; but accepting the challenge demands tremendous courage and perseverance. It is not the trivial goals or stakes in his stories that make Gandhi an author of comedies, but the attitude: “If I had no sense of humor, I should long ago have committed suicide” (1960: 221). Although Gandhi’s collected works stretch to 100 volumes, many of his writings are ephemeral notes to friends, personal letters, newspaper columns and speeches, rather than philosophical treatises or scientific articles (Brown, 2008: xxiv; Parel, 1997: xiii–xiv, 195). Out of the larger works, it is Hind Swaraj written in 1909, instead of the two autobiographical books or the religious discourses, which comes nearest to a sustained work of political theory (ibid). Moreover, Hind Swaraj is Gandhi’s only book that he himself translated from Gujarati into English, thus making also the translation original. In this analysis, therefore, I will concentrate on the actors, events and denouement of Hind Swaraj – with occasional references to other texts to elaborate on a specific point. To appreciate Gandhi’s comedy as a contribution to IR theory, one must understand first of all that he believed in a close connection between religion and politics: […] my devotion to Truth has drawn me into the field of politics; and I can say without the slightest hesitation, and yet in all humility, that those who say that religion has nothing to do with politics do not know what religion means. (Gandhi, 2008: 65).

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Second, one should remember that he explicitly affirmed the similarity of the scene and the moves required on different levels of human endeavors: Observance of swadeshi [patronage of indigenous things] makes for order in the world; the breach of it leads to chaos. […] There is no place of self-interest in swadeshi, which enjoys the sacrifice of oneself for the family, of the family for the village, of the village for the country, and of the country for humanity. (Gandhi, 2008: 119). For Gandhi, the whole world is “one family” (2008: 162), “what is true of families and communities is true of nations” (1997: 90), and “there need be no reason for the clashing of interest between nation and nation” (2008: 325). Hind Swaraj can therefore be regarded as a story not only about spiritual quest and Indian home rule, but also the principles that apply to international relations. In the following, I will first outline its structure and main arguments, and then study its comic elements and appeal. Structure and main claims Hind Swaraj is divided into 20 chapters that might be grouped, for example, in the following way: chapters I–III observe the rising discontent in India, chapter IV defines Swaraj, chapters V–VII describe the evils of modern civilization in general, chapters VIII–XII study the specific condition of India, chapters XIII– XIX give advice to the (Indian) people and chapter XX summarizes the main arguments. Gandhi starts by identifying the division of the Province of Bengal by the British into two separate provinces – the western part with a Hindu majority and the eastern part with a Muslim majority – as a significant event: “That day may be considered to be the day of the partition of the British Empire” (1997: 19). According to Gandhi, this event also marked the beginning of the swadeshi movement among the Indian people: reliance on own products and own strength, end of fear of the English rulers (ibid: 21–22). He explains that every reform must be preceded by discontent (ibid: 24), but also that he can never subscribe to the statement that all Englishmen are bad (ibid: 17). He claims that many Englishmen in fact desire home rule for India, just like the Congress Party does. Gandhi defines swaraj as true self-government of the people, not simply taking over the British institutions and adopting the attitude of masters (ibid: 26–29). Gandhi maintains that the English rulers play up local disagreements, drain India of its wealth, reserve the most important government posts for themselves and behave insolently toward the people – basically, keep the nation in a state of slavery (ibid: 27). However, the Indians are not automatically better: “It would be a folly to assume that an Indian Rockefeller would be better than the American Rockefeller” (ibid: 108). While there is much to improve in the condition of India, the condition of England is positively pitiable: it is severely afflicted with modern civilization, a terrible disease (1997: 30–38). Gandhi paints quite a dismal picture of the

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Mother of Parliaments: its members are hypocritical and selfish; their views change all the time and are open to outside influences. Modern civilization, according to Gandhi, delivers better built houses, a variety of clothing and arms, machines for cultivating the fields and moving about, big hospitals and delicately dished-up food. However, “this civilization takes note neither of morality nor of religion” (ibid: 37). The people in this civilization drudge in factories and keep up their energy by intoxication (ibid: 37). When Gandhi recounts the story of how India came under the influence of the evils of modern civilization, he makes sure that his readers understand that the English did not take India, that instead, “we gave it to them” (ibid: 39). The English originally came for the purposes of trade – “money is their God” (ibid: 41) – and they stay because “we alone keep them” (ibid). They are not in India because of the strength of their swords, but because their commerce pleases some quarters and because local fractions have made a habit of seeking assistance from the English in their quarrels. Gandhi claims that modern civilization has not only engulfed Europe, but is on its way to destroying India: “India is becoming irreligious” – not from the point of view of a particular sect, but the “religion which underlies all religions” (1997: 42), that is, the quest for truth. As specific factors confirming English authority and preventing India from regaining mastery over itself, Gandhi enumerates the railways, the Hindu-Muslim disputes, the lawyers and the doctors (ibid: 46–65). According to Gandhi, railways, among other things, carry diseases and enable speculation on grain prices; lawyers advance quarrels and teach immorality; doctors help people indulge themselves. With the English advent, the intercommunal disagreements flared up; people of the same blood should not fight each other merely due to religious differences, since all religions are different roads converging to the same point. Luckily, however, “civilization is not an incurable disease” (ibid: 38). Gandhi sees hope in the ancient civilization, the still sound foundation of India (ibid: 66). Performance of duty and observance of morality should guide people forward (ibid: 67). Gandhi emphasizes that “Swaraj has to be experienced by each one for himself” and that “when we learn to rule ourselves, it is Swaraj” (ibid: 73). Reviving “the ancient and sacred hand-looms” (ibid: 109) is in the center of Gandhi’s swadeshi project; the effort to improve all Indian languages and to adopt Hindi as a universal language for the country are also very important steps (ibid: 105). Gandhi’s satyagraha – often translated as passive resistance – is in fact very active resistance: refusing to obey unjust laws, opting for imprisonment instead of easy life and giving up revenge even when provoked are all major decisions (1997: 79–99). Gandhi compares soul-force/love-force/truth-force – satyagraha – to brute force/body-force, and finds the former superior in all respects: it is the force that keeps up the universe, that keeps men alive (ibid: 89). The history we know notes only wars and battles, but the working of the force of love is the norm: “hundreds of nations live in peace” (ibid: 90). According to Gandhi, “soulforce is matchless” and requires immense courage (ibid: 93). He asks the readers of Hind Swaraj whom they consider to be braver: the man who blows others to pieces from behind the canon or the one that approaches the canon with a smiling

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face knowing that he will most probably be blown to pieces. For Gandhi, “strength lies in the absence of fear” (ibid: 45) and the English err in taking the Indians for cowards (ibid: 44). In the conclusion of the book, he advises both against brute force and derogatory petitioning (ibid: 112–113). If the tenets of realism can be summarized as self-help, statism and survival (Dunne and Schmidt, 2017: 105), Gandhi’s “three s’s” appear to be swaraj, satyagraha and swadeshi (1997: 118). Gandhi asserts that bringing about a just system is a duty and a right, that no enmity toward the English or any particular person is involved. Everything starts with the individual and the truth, even worldwide change. Comic appeal Hind Swaraj is definitely not a slapstick comedy: there is nothing funny about the suffering of the Indian people, the violent disputes between the Hindus and the Muslims, or the aptitude of the British for using their repressive machinery and mighty arms. Despite the happy ending envisioned, neither is it a romantic fairy tale with grand battles, infallible heroes and evil enemies. Gandhi’s story is both optimistic and deeply concerned, both gay and serious – a comedy with decent people and good causes, swindlers and hoarders, lucky chances and unfortunate events, ingenious solutions and momentary setbacks. As to the heroes of Hind Swaraj – the characters whose efforts Gandhi wants to further – the people seeking true self-government stand apart. On the one hand, independence of mind and body and self-sufficiency are achieved through personal efforts and understanding alone, not given to you by anybody, but on the other, the nation – for the purposes of the book, those who are affected by the European civilization (1997: 115) – needs advice (ibid: 116–119). Gandhi’s advice is formulated for the modern elite – the doctors, lawyers and wealthy men – mainly because the millions of poor villagers already live closer to the ideal. The ancient Indian civilization, for Gandhi, was far superior to anything around us now: people found happiness in the proper use of their hands; lawyers and doctors were considered people’s dependents, not their masters (ibid: 66–67). Gandhi’s heroes are not political, let alone military, leaders committed to fighting the British rule, but the people who could not care less about modern problems and rulers: And where this cursed modern civilization has not reached, India remains as it was before. The inhabitants of that part of India will very properly laugh at your new-fangled notions. The English do not rule over them, nor will you ever rule over them. Those in whose name we speak we do not know, nor do they know us. (Gandhi, 1997: 70). Gandhi was abhorred by many Indian customs – child marriage, sacrifice of animals (1997: 70–71), untouchability (2008: 167) – but considered these evils foreign to Indian civilization, as defects, not true symbols. “Under no civilization, have all men attained perfection,” Gandhi explained (1997: 71). Although

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he found the people living in villages happier than the people slaving in factories or assisting the British keep hold of the country, Gandhi was painfully aware of the problems faced in both cities and the countryside: diseases, poverty, “cloth famine” (2008: 264–265). For Gandhi, swadeshi – primarily hand-spinning and hand-weaving – was the solution: it would stop the economic drain and give a subsidiary occupation into the homes of the millions living on agriculture (ibid: 270–271). In complete contrast to the liberal romances of Fukuyama, Russett and Oneal, Hind Swaraj sees nothing good in industrialism or international trade. In a somewhat similar manner as Wallerstein and Galtung, Gandhi criticizes the concentration of “wealth and power in the hands of a few for the exploitation of the many” (ibid: 16). Like Galtung’s, his definition of violence is extremely broad: “The principle of non-violence necessitates complete abstention from exploitation in any form” (1960: 162). However, he rejects violent chaos and socialist revolution – a class war – and speaks instead for “a peaceful revolution in society, and that without any bitterness,” conversion instead of destruction (2008: 95–98). He states specifically that “my identification with labor does not conflict with my friendship with capital” (ibid: 11). Gandhi’s ideal society is neither a liberal democracy nor a socialist government, but “enlightened anarchy”: Representatives will become unnecessary if the national life becomes so perfect as to be self-controlled. It will then be a state of enlightened anarchy in which each person will become his own ruler. He will conduct himself in such a way that his behavior will not hamper the well-being of his neighbors. In an ideal state there will be no political institution and therefore no political power. (Gandhi, 2008: 102). Gandhi emphasized that even though at the moment there was no stateless society anywhere in the world, it could be established first in India (2008: 105). More generally, for Gandhi, quantitative historical evidence, trends and probabilities play a minor role in comparison with the infinite possibilities inherent in the individual. The mere fact that something has not happened before or is unlikely – like the British rulers accepting the role of servants to the people of India – does not keep Gandhi from believing: To say that [It is impossible that Englishmen should ever become Indianised.] is equivalent to saying that the English have no humanity in them. […] To believe that what has not occurred in history will not occur at all is to argue disbelief in the dignity of man. (Gandhi, 1997: 73–74). Whereas Morgenthau is afraid and Mearsheimer certain that the fate of humanity is tragic, Gandhi refuses to give up hope. With comic insistence he keeps on speaking for the “fourfold Constructive Program of khadi [home-spun cloth],

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communal unity, prohibition of intoxicants and the removal untouchability” to attain swaraj “within a year” (2008: 279). Even after two world wars, the use of nuclear weapons against Japan and the partition of his home country into India and Pakistan, in January 1948, just days before his assassination, Gandhi admits no defeat of nonviolence: In any case, whatever I have said does not refer in any way to the failure of ahimsa, but it refers to my failure to recognize, until it was too late, that what I had mistaken for ahimsa was not ahimsa […] Hence, the proper way to view the present outburst of violence throughout the world is to recognize that the technique of unconquerable non-violence of the strong has not been at all fully discovered as yet. […] This confession should strengthen your belief in nonviolence and spur you and friends like you to action along the path. (Gandhi, 2008: 373). Gandhi rests assured that nonviolence will win: the problem is not in the impossible goal, but the still not fully understood means. Moreover, even though he is disappointed in others taking up arms, he blames first and foremost himself: he failed to notice, he did not justify his claims well enough. For Gandhi, there is nothing more important than his cause, but he himself is not important or infallible: I am a humble seeker after Truth and bent upon finding it. […] I am no master. I am but a struggling, erring, humble servant of India and therethrough of humanity. (Gandhi, 2008: 65). While the comic heroes – the satyagrahis Gandhi himself included, the masses of people seeking liberation from the evils of modern civilization – are numerous, steadfast in their endeavors but liable to err, the enemies are to be found nowhere in the story. Gandhi insists on his friendship with the English and the capitalists, among everyone else, and wants to transcend traditional dichotomies: It is a bad habit to say that another man’s thoughts are bad and ours only are good, and that those holding different views from ours are the enemies of the country. […] You will see, too, that if we shun every Englishman as an enemy, Home Rule will be delayed. But if we are just to them, we shall receive their support in our progress towards the goal. (Gandhi, 1997: 17). Like Orsino, in the end, sends Fabian to entreat pompous Malvolio to a peace, like unreasonable Egeus, too, returns to Athens with the others to celebrate the grand wedding and like Elizabeth chooses to remain civil even with Mr. Wickham and Lady Catherine, Gandhi invites the English to celebrate India’s Home Rule. As far as Gandhi is concerned, nobody is left outside the happy reunion; there are

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no hard feelings. The people whose acts obstruct the heroes of Hind Swaraj from achieving their goals at the moment are not evil – they might be misguided, greedy, disrespectful, arrogant, selfish or lazy. Since the Englishmen do not hold India by the sword, no swords are necessary to end their unjust government. Pity, love and non-cooperation are Gandhi’s weapons of conversion (1997:84–85, 94–95). For example, he refuses to condemn the mill-owners despite the fact that people slave in their factories in inhumane conditions, but pities them instead, since “money renders a man helpless” it destroys his “body, mind and soul” (ibid: 108–109). Moreover, according to Gandhi, kings with their kingly weapons live in perpetual fear, while “those who defy death are free from all fear” (ibid: 95). There is an inviolable connection between the means and the end; nothing good comes out of hate, revenge and violence (ibid: 80–81). By refusing to identify enemies apart from the modern civilization that is everybody’s impersonal enemy, Gandhi attempts to save not only the British, but the people of India, too. As already discussed, Gandhi claims that instead of ruling India by arms, the British rule by consent, by appealing to the base self-interest of some people. Modern civilization, likewise, offers alluring objects and bodily comfort that the weaker among us are bound to grab. Gandhi comments on the insidious nature of the disease: Those who are intoxicated by modern civilization are not likely to write against it. Their care will be to find out facts and arguments in support of it, and this they do unconsciously, believing it to be true. A man, whilst he is dreaming, believes in his dream; he is undeceived only when he is awakened from his sleep. […] What we usually read are the works of the defenders of modern civilization […] Their writings hypnotize us. (Gandhi, 1997: 35). Modern civilization is like a magic potion, something that makes us lose touch with reality, the truth, what is good for our souls and bodies. We are under a spell or dreaming or make judgments based on first impressions – or far too many of us act in this way – and it is not good for us. We do stupid things – like Titania falls in love with donkey-headed Bottom and Elizabeth is first charmed by Mr. Wickham – but fortunately spells can be reversed, reevaluations conducted and diseases cured. For Gandhi, what is true on the individual level and with regard to spiritual questions holds for the international level and political matters also. Thus, nonviolence is natural and should be observed among nations, just like among family members (1997: 90). Gandhi, not surprisingly, objects not only to individual use of force, but also to wars and military spending of nations in Hind Swaraj (ibid: 114). He extends the principle of true courage to world politics: “You [the English] may fear Russia; we do not” (ibid). He is certainly not unaware of the pain and suffering and mistrust in the world. But like true selfgovernment of India requires dignity of its people, world peace requires that violence is abandoned on the personal level first. Therefore, Gandhi constantly

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comes back to the transformation of the individual, instead of giving advice to violent states. His comments elsewhere on this subject prove the point: The State represents violence in a concentrated and organized form. The individual has a soul, but as the State is a soulless machine, it can never be weaned from violence to which it owes its very existence. (Gandhi, 1960: 189). Despite the little trust that Gandhi places in states – according to many others, the main actors on the international scene – he remains relentless in his optimism and determination: For my mission is to convert every Indian, even Englishmen and finally the world, to non-violence for regulating mutual relations whether political, economic, social or religious. If I am accused of being too ambitious, I should plead guilty. If I am told that my dream can never materialize, I would answer “that is possible,” and go my way. I am a seasoned soldier of non-violence, and I have evidence enough to sustain my faith. (Gandhi, 1960: 140). Hind Swaraj patiently instructs its readers on the comic road. Gandhi promises a happy ending to the story and his heroes do not need to resort to violence in order to win. The progression is wobbly and there are setbacks and surprises along the way. Some of the most suspicious characters – like the British – might turn out to be true friends and some of the characters who originally align with the good cause – like those of Gandhi’s supporters who really were not devoted to nonviolence – might make grave mistakes. What Hind Swaraj lacks in grand scenes and black-and-white characters, it makes up for in a thoroughly positive and encouraging spirit. Constructivism: Alexander Wendt and Social Theory of International Politics Like Hind Swaraj, Social Theory of International Politics is a comedy that portrays the possibility of a better world and an essentially nonviolent way to get there. Like Gandhi, Wendt refrains from painting pictures of infallible heroes and evil enemies, and leaves room for mistakes and surprises. Both authors exhibit cheerful self-reflection. However, there are major differences between the two comedies. While Gandhi characterizes himself as an irrepressible optimist, Wendt is content with arguing that change for the better is possible. While Gandhi constantly refers to the spiritual truth as the foundation and goal of human endeavors, Wendt is careful to underline the rump materialism behind his idealism. While Gandhi is highly critical of the state as a form of violence in itself, Wendt studies states as rightful actors in international politics and envisions a more peaceful culture of international politics through the evolution of state

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behavior, identities and interests. While Gandhi abhors modern civilization, Wendt finds signs of progress in the modern world. Instead of focusing on Social Theory of International Politics, one might analyze constructivist IR comedies via other examples, such as Martha Finnemore’s National Interest in International Society (1996). Many of these, Finnemore included, would go more directly to our point, analysis of international relations, and spend less time on general social theory and questions of ontology. Wendt’s version, however, is illuminating precisely because it draws attention to general constructivist premises on a systemic level and presents the international system as “a case study” (1999: 42), something that social theory can be applied to. Most quality IR readers devote a chapter to (social) constructivism (Barnett, 2017: 144–158; Fierke, 2013: 187–204; Reus-Smit, 2009: 212–236) and Social Theory of International Politics seems to be a reference they cannot do without, despite their uneasiness with the idea of “constructivism as an IR theory” among the substantive theories. Wendt himself explains the situation by emphasizing, on the one hand, that “constructivism is not a theory of international politics” (ibid: 7, 193), and on the other, separately developing a theory of international politics “of his own” (ibid: 30), namely “a constructivist approach to the international system” (ibid: 32–33) or “a constructivist theory of the states system” (ibid: 194). Accordingly, his book is divided into two parts: Social theory and International politics. While, in the following, I will concentrate on the latter, the former is definitely a part of Wendt’s whole story, and thus, will also be taken into account. A comic reading of an older classic such as Hedley Bull’s The Anarchical Society (1977) – identified as constructivist by Wendt (1999: 3), seen by Linklater as a foundation for his critical theorizing concerning the end of the tyranny of the concept of the sovereign state (1998: 194) – could also be justified. Martin Wight’s work on the three traditions of International Theory (1991) is highly valued by both Wendt and Linklater – comic scholars chosen for analysis here – and would provide another interesting example. The narratives of the English School, however, will only be studied via more recent traces, and the original stories of “the three traditions” and “the anarchical society” will be left for similar exercises in the future. Wendt and Linklater are arguably more playful, selfcritical and optimistic than Wight or Bull, but the nuances of each comedy deserve to be studied separately. Although Social Theory of International Politics is not exuberantly optimistic about the future of the interstate system, Wendt is certainly no pessimist. He denies the inevitability of progress from Hobbesian to Lockean to Kantian structures, but – comically – “with a twist” (1999: 311). According to him, there is no guarantee of moving toward structures of friendship, but there is reason to think that cultural time will not move backward, that the future will not be worse than the past (ibid: 312). Later, he has even argued teleologically for a more specific stand – namely, the inevitability of a world state (2003). As to the attitude Wendt takes toward his intellectual work and competing theories, a comic spirit, again, is evident in passages such as “much of the apparent explanatory power of ostensibly materialist explanations is actually constituted by suppressed constructivist

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assumptions about the content and distribution of ideas” (1999: 95–96), “the two models are not mutually exclusive, at least not if the rationalist model is taken to be a special case of the constructivist” (ibid: 336) and “since both sides are tacit realists in their substantive research, epistemological issues are relatively uninteresting” (ibid: 90). Wendt claims that ontologically, Social Theory of International Politics operates in between the extremes of individualism versus holism and materialism versus idealism: closer to the holistic and idealistic end of the spectrum but, with comic cleverness and flexibility, he seeks to avoid all absolute positions, and “undaunted,” to find novel ways to combine “seemingly incommensurable” properties, as in the Weberian-Pluralist-Marxist–influenced definition of “the essential state” (ibid: 198–199). In the following, I will first present the structure and main claims of Wendt’s book and then study its comic appeal. Structure and main claims Social Theory of International Politics is, as mentioned, divided into two parts: part I dealing with social theory and part II with international politics. Wendt insists that students of international politics should first, before going into substantive theorizing, think carefully about their ontological (and epistemological) assumptions, that is, second-order questions (1999: 5–6). According to Wendt, especially in a field where the most important actors studied, namely states, cannot be “seen,” questions about what kind of things are to be found, how they are related and how they can be known are best tackled upfront, instead of implicitly assumed (ibid). When we have explicated our stand on the nature of human agency and social structures, the role of ideas and material forces in social life and the proper form of explanations, we can move on to first-order questions about international politics, domain-specific research concerning states as agents and the states system. Part I begins with a defense of a particular philosophy of science, scientific realism. Wendt adheres to the view that the world exists independently of human beings and that mature scientific theories typically refer to this world even when the objects of science are not observable (ibid: 47). As already pointed out, Wendt believes that actually both sides of the epistemological debate between the positivists and post-positivists – the comic debate where the “protagonists are not speaking to each other” (ibid: 90) – accept positivist assumptions without which their substantive research would be impossible. He underlines that both natural scientists and social scientists “do” both constitutive and causal theory (ibid: 77) – trying to bridge the gulf separating the apparent epistemological rivals. After treating the “easier” question of epistemology, Wendt turns to ontology. Here, he emphasizes the role of shared ideas and social structures, aligning himself with idealists and holists. However, Wendt holds on both to “rump materialism” (1999: 130) and “rump individualism” (ibid: 178). In addition to identity needs, there are material needs; both system-level mechanisms and the intentions of agents are important. According to Wendt, the meaning of power

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and the content of interests are largely a function of ideas (ibid: 96) and structures have effects not reducible to agents (ibid: 139), in fact, structures constitute agents (ibid: 171). But Wendt also argues that “moderate” forms of idealism and holism do not exclude materialist and individualist considerations (ibid: 96, 184). After establishing the constructivist ontology of social life in general – that structures of human life are primarily cultural and that structures not only regulate behavior but also construct identities and interests – in part II of his book, Wendt focuses specifically on the social form of international politics (ibid: 193). First, he deals with the agents (state actors), then, with the structure (states system) and finally, with the processes (interaction between and co-determination of states and system). As to states, Wendt claims that they are real, unitary actors to which we can attribute intentionality, that they have certain core interests (survival, autonomy, economic well-being and collective self-esteem) and that they are ontologically prior to the system (1999: 243–244). As state behavior is motivated by a variety of interests and interests are rooted in multiple identities, universal “national interests” take us only so far, but still, form a common basis (ibid: 233). An essential part of Wendt’s argumentation relies on the assumption that states are not self-interested or egoistic by nature: they may (often) be self-interested, but not so by nature (ibid: 238–242). They do not (always) hold purely instrumental views of each other and they may learn social or collective identities beyond the state (ibid). As to the states system, Wendt insists that anarchy has no intrinsic logic, that anarchic structures have multiple logics (ibid: 248–249). He identifies three logics or structures or cultures: the Hobbesian, the Lockean and the Kantian ideal types (ibid: 246–259). These cultures have shared ideas about cooperation and conflict that constitute roles through which states interact. The subject position at the core of the Hobbesian culture is “enemy”; the Lockean culture operates through “rivals”; and the actor role central to the Kantian culture is “friend” (ibid). As to processes and structural change, Wendt argues that on the whole, cultures are rather stable: once in place, they tend to reproduce themselves, turning into self-fulfilling prophecies (ibid: 339). However, since agents and structures are themselves processes, reproduction needs to be active – sustaining an international culture of any kind requires constant support by foreign policy practices (ibid: 313). Moreover, it renders transformation possible: cultures change when enough important actors change their behavior (ibid: 340). In the final chapters of Social Theory of International Politics, Wendt focuses on “the problem faced by the international system today”: the challenge of broadening the limited identification of the Lockean culture into the fuller identification of the Kantian one (1999: 339). He holds that while egoism is deeply entrenched in international life, the pressure to become friends is increasingly strong (ibid: 340). Here, he expounds on the “anarchy is what states make of it” theme (ibid: 313, see also Wendt, 1992, 1995), finding definite direction, but steering clear of determinism. Wendt claims that for much of international history states lived in a Hobbesian culture of kill or be killed, an acute security dilemma, but in the 17th century founded a Lockean culture of mutual recognition of

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sovereignty (ibid: 314). At the moment, another structural change is on its way: at least the West is tentatively moving toward a culture of cooperation and collective security (ibid). According to Wendt, change is not easy, but quite possible. Moreover, ideas shared by states have been around since the beginning of the states system – a survival logic is culture just as much as a logic of friendship is, and both can be internalized to various degrees. The distinctive feature of the Kantian logic of anarchy is for Wendt, somewhat paradoxically or amusingly, “an at least de facto rule of law” (ibid: 307). Although in this culture there are limits to what states can legitimately do to advance their interests, no centralized authority to enforce these limits is logically necessary (ibid). If states see their identities and resulting interests in collective terms, they will voluntarily restrain themselves and can mostly count on others doing the same. An anarchy relying on a decentralized authority structure poses an intellectual challenge that scholars have merely begun to take up, affirms Wendt (ibid: 308). Social Theory of International Politics adheres to a moderate version of constructivism or structural idealism (1999: 1). The fact that Wendt constantly keeps coming back to criticizing Kenneth Waltz’s Theory of International Politics is more a sign of respect and even affinity than irreconcilable differences or bitter disagreement, at least on Wendt’s part. For Wendt, Classical Realists, Neorealists, Neoliberals or Neo-Gramscian Marxists are not so much wrong as getting only part of the story. Postmodernists, on the other hand, are basically constructivists anyway – only the silliest among them actually hold on to a post-positivist epistemology. Wendt presents his basic tenets in a framework that both gives constructivist IR distinguishing features in a fourfold table (ibid: 32) and establishes some common ground with absolutely everybody. Wendt’s “constructivist theory of the states system” clearly has comic features and is written in a comic manner. Comic appeal States are the main actors in Wendt’s IR comedy and he tries to make sure that his readers understand that these actors are real, not merely “useful fictions” or “reifications” (1999: 193–198). Wendt’s casting is based mainly on the fact that “states are key actors in the regulation of organized violence, which is one of the basic problems of international politics” (ibid: 193). Wendt also claims – in complete opposition, for example, to Wallerstein – that “the structure of the states system is relatively autonomous from other structures of the modern international system, like the world economy” (ibid). He is conscious of the narrative aspect of theorizing: “as with any designation of actors and structures this will affect the resulting story” (ibid). He does not dismiss other actors as such, but simply is not personally involved in telling their story. According to Wendt, systemic theories cannot problematize states “all the way down”: systems of states presuppose states (ibid: 244). In other words, for Wendt, states are ontologically prior to the system. Moreover, states are unitary actors since, for him, it is not clear how something could be an actor at all if it is not unitary (ibid: 195). States can be

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attributed intentionality, interests and identities (ibid: 243). In a comic tone, Wendt defends the focus and assumptions of his story: I shall argue that states are also purposive actors with a sense of Self – “states are people too” – and that this affects the nature of the international system. Note that this does not reduce a theory of international politics to a theory of foreign policy or state choices. (Wendt, 1999: 194). Whereas state actors are explicitly given central stage, individual states are rarely named in Social Theory of International Politics. When Wendt discusses change in the system, he notes that Great Powers have a more important role than others (1999: 340); the identities, interests and behavior of the United States, Soviet Union, France and Germany are mentioned as examples in various instances (e.g., ibid: 76, 289–290, 337, 340); but the story is not about the history of particular states. Neither is it a story about the heroic victory of a particular kind of state – like the liberal romances of Fukuyama, Russett and Oneal – although in this respect Wendt’s story comes close to liberalism. He emphasizes that a culture is multiply realizable: that there are many ways that any structure can come about (ibid: 364). Yet, he also leans toward the capitalist and democratic pathway to the Kantian culture: “in important ways my theory of international politics is a Liberal theory” (ibid: 364–365). Roles are specified not via individual actors or properties of actors, but via the interaction of Egos and Alters that characterizes the system. For example, when describing the logic of the Kantian system Wendt elaborates: In treating Alter in this way Ego is casting Alter in the role of friend, and, given the symmetry of the role, taking the same role for himself. Ego’s effort may be misunderstood. Alter may mistake offers of security assistance as a trick. […] But with persistence a prosocial security policy should eventually be able to communicate Ego’s desire that Alter be its friend. […] Treating an Other prosocially, “as if” he were a friend, reflects the kind of purpose most likely to create collective identities. (Wendt, 1999: 342). Just like Social Theory of International Politics refrains from presenting (certain friends as) gallant heroes, evil enemies, too, are missing from the story. Even when Wendt describes the logic of the Hobbesian culture, he does not refer to good and bad behavior or side with any party – mostly because action is usually reciprocal, and all actors thus play the same role. In a Hobbesian culture, enemies are constituted by representations of the Other as an actor who does not recognize the right of the Self to exist and will not willingly limit its violence toward the Self (ibid: 260). The role of enemy, like that of friend, is “symmetric, constituted by actors being in the same position simultaneously” (ibid: 263). According to Wendt, “Self mirrors Other, becomes its enemy, in order to survive” (ibid). And

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the same applies to the Lockean role of rival: rivals expect each other to act as if they recognize their right to sovereignty and some “property” (ibid: 279). Many states have demonstrably played all roles during their existence, and all cultures are based on shared ideas – on rather reliable expectations about behavior – not only the “friendly” or cooperative ones. Having only enemies or rivals or friends on stage sounds comic in itself – although life in the Hobbesian culture is definitely not cheerful. Fortunately, according to Wendt’s story, states are not living in a Hobbesian system at the moment, but a mainly Lockean one instead – and moreover, there is evidence of progression toward a Kantian culture. The happy ending – collective security, rule of law, decentralized authority – is not certain, but neither is it unimaginable: […] although there is no guarantee that international time will move forward to a Kantian culture, at least it is unlikely to move backward. (Wendt, 1999: 251). Typically for a comedy, Social Theory of International Politics envisions a good cause and a better future that are attainable through mundane trial-and-error processes. Although Wendt makes no promises – and underlines the difficulty of change – he is able to create a hopeful atmosphere. Change does not require the transformation of human nature or creating a world government out of the blue: the elements are already around us. Once over the tipping point, the new behavior becomes the norm. Acting in a Hobbesian way in a Lockean, let alone a Kantian culture, emphasizes Wendt, does not give you an advantage over the others: representing each other as enemies would be crazy today in almost any dyad (1999: 281). The Kantian culture is essentially nonviolent: disputes are settled without war or the threat of war and threats by third parties are taken care of as a team (ibid: 298–299). While “the rule of non-violence” and “the rule of mutual aid” characterize emerging friendship structures (ibid: 299), we are not universally there yet. Also, identification with others is rarely total and collective security projects often include arguments about free riding and burden sharing (ibid: 306). However, wars are not necessary for moving the plot forward, and they are constantly becoming less frequent. Nonviolence, for Wendt, is thus not a utopian dream, but in a state’s interest in a certain culture. In contrast to Mearsheimer who believes that assuming the worst is the only possible way for states to survive, Wendt recognizes several possible attitudes toward violence that all depend on shared ideas. Wendt not only writes a comic explanation of international relations, but also nurtures a comic perspective on his own work and scientific endeavors more generally. His outlook on the states system can be demonstrated for example with two passages describing our Lockean culture: The “self-help” here, in other words, is one that depends on the restraint of the powerful, which amounts to a passive form of “other-help.” That might

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still be self-help in an interesting sense, but not in the ultimate sense of sauve qui peut. (Wendt, 1999: 292). Westphalian states are possessive individuals who do not appreciate the ways in which they depend on each other for their identity […] Westphalian states are afflicted with a possessive individualism stemming from collective amnesia about their social roots […] (Wendt, 1999: 295). In a playful manner, Wendt suggests that states, like people, sometimes manage to deceive themselves, and that sometimes things are actually better (and not always worse) than we tend to believe. The death rate of states is almost nil and small states are thriving (ibid: 279); neutrality or nonalignment is a recognized status (ibid: 285); and most states follow international law (ibid: 290). Orsino first appears to be indifferent toward Viola, but then falls in love with him. Lysander, Demetrius, Hermia and Helena first do not seem to be able to form the right couples, but eventually everything is sorted out. Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy start off all wrong, but finally recognize that they are perfect for each other. In the states system, self-proclaimed egoists may turn out to be respectful rivals or even friends who view each other’s security truly as their own. Through interaction, they learn more and more about each other and develop their own identity in the process. Wendt claims that in collective security, also states’ military capabilities have a different meaning: the weapons that used to present a latent threat become an asset to all since each knows that they will be used on behalf of the collective (ibid: 301). As if by magic, the seemingly horrible instruments of war become guarantors of peace and foundations for friendship. Even the most material things and brute facts have a socially constructed meaning that can change. Wendt’s comic attitude toward science and research is apparent, for example, in passages where he comments on seemingly irreconcilable differences or mutually exclusive choices in theorizing: Power and interest explanations presuppose ideas, and to that extent are not rivals to ideational explanations at all. (Wendt, 1999: 135). Moderate forms of individualism and holism are not incompatible, because they are calling attention to these different constituting properties of individuality, in effect asking different questions. (Wendt, 1999: 184). It is important to emphasize areas of overlap between rationalist and constructivist approaches to interaction because there is a tendency for proponents of each to assume either that they face a zero-sum situation in which only one side can be right, or that they are simply talking about

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Wendt acts like Feste the fool who can reveal unsettling truths such as the fact that rational choice theory is actually dependent on a constructivist framework (1999: 115) or that even postmodernists have a theory about human nature (ibid: 131). He seems to talk in comic riddles when claiming that self-fulfilling prophecies do not preclude contestation and change (ibid: 188). Like playful Puck, he assumes to be able to get away with things: suddenly turning rival theories into friends, incompatible positions into parts of the same endeavor and alternative approaches into a unified whole. In Social Theory of International Politics, appearances deceive: like Cesario turns out to be Viola, Bottom gets to walk around with a donkey’s head for a while and Mr. Darcy’s true nature is only slowly revealed; hard core realists may be constructivists deep down inside and poststructuralists may do positivist research in practice. The comic attitude toward international politics and its study makes problems of both solvable: there might be an answer even though we cannot see it yet, and novel ways of thinking about complex issues are bound to reveal interesting new opportunities. The atmosphere is full of confidence although definite promises are not made: there is hope for both states and us, students of the states system. Like discussed before, the happy ending of Wendt’s comedy is not a glorious victory but an amicable reunion: more like a wedding party with all sorts of odd guests and some remaining tensions than a once-and-for-all slaying of the dragon. Yes, nothing is certain or inevitable, but the mood is optimistic: Once a Lockean culture has been internalized there is little chance of it degenerating into a Hobbesian one, and similarly for a Kantian into a Lockean. […] With each “higher” international culture states acquire rights – to sovereignty in the Lockean case, freedom from violence and security assistance in the Kantian – that they will be loath to give up, whatever new institutions they may create in the future. This process may not survive exogenous shocks, like invasion (the barbarian invasion of Rome), or a revolution in the domestic constitution of member states (the American and French Revolutions). But with respect to its endogenous dynamic, the argument suggests that the history of international politics will be unidirectional: if there are any structural changes, they will be historically progressive. (Wendt, 1999: 312). Wendt claims that constitutive theorizing enhances our collective capacity for critical self-reflection or reflexivity (1999: 375). His comedy also makes us happy and restores our faith in the future.

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Critical theory: Andrew Linklater and The Transformation of Political Community Linklater’s comedy is a story about the triple transformation of political community under way in modern societies: the widening of moral boundaries (advances in universality), greater respect for cultural differences (sensitivity to particular needs) and stronger commitments to the reduction of material inequalities (creating social and economic preconditions for participation). The optimism, universalism and cosmopolitanism of the story – and the fact that it explicitly builds on the contributions of Kant and Marx – might be seen to point toward a romantic or epic plot similar to that of, for example, Russett and Oneal or Wallerstein, but the numerous riddles and surprises provided by Linklater are markedly comic. Linklater not only advocates universalism, but also recommends celebrating the opposite, difference. He believes in progress, but refuses to settle for a fixed and final version of the future, to define the happy end we need to commit to. Moreover, there are no violent scenes typical of epic quests in The Transformation of Political Community. Wars are touched upon when discussing the evolution of international norms, but they are presented neither as motors of history nor insurmountable obstacles to the development of universal communication communities. Like Gandhi and Wendt, Linklater demonstrates a comic attitude toward his own intellectual endeavors and established schools of thought: for example, he claims that “far from being antithetical, communitarianism and cosmopolitanism provide complementary insights” (1998: 60) and “there are good grounds for arguing that a ‘hidden form of universalism’ underlies the antifoundationalist plea for ‘an active principle of tolerance’” (ibid: 72). He aims more at bringing complex developments into the attention of his readers than proving something beyond all doubt. Linklater presents The Transformation of Political Community: Ethical Foundations of the Post-Westphalian Era as “the third part of a larger inquiry into the nature and possibility of new forms of political community” (first part written originally in 1982, both first and second published in 1990) and promises that “the argument will be taken further” in subsequent books, the next one written together with Suganami and published in 2006 (1998: 9–10). Critical Theory and World Politics from 2007 features a collection of essays grouped under three broad topics: community, citizenship and harm. At the moment, Linklater is working on a trilogy on harm and violence in world politics (first two parts published in 2011 and 2017). Thus, many of his books center on the same themes and build on one another. Most might be best described as critical comedies. The book chosen for analysis here is Linklater’s most highly cited work, and of special interest from the point of view of comic nonviolence: the pacification of the core industrial regions of the modern world system is simply noted in passing (1998: 8, 30). The Transformation of Political Community discusses the same development that has been heralded as the most significant one in the international arena by a variety of authors, including Fukuyama, Russett and Oneal, and Wendt, but from a complementary angle to the traditional: not by presenting evidence of the decreased number of interstate

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conflicts and increased instances of cooperation, but by taking the pacification as an established foundation, and making the related claims that also the moral boundaries of human communities have expanded and should be expanded further. Linklater’s argumentation is explicitly normative and qualitative. The other standard reference for overviews of critical IR theory, besides Linklater’s work and especially The Transformation of Political Community – Cox’s 1981 article “Social Forces, States and World Orders: Beyond International Relations Theory” (Hobden and Wyn Jones, 2017: 138–139; Roach, 2013: 174–177; Devetak, 2009a: 163–165) – constitutes another excellent example of a self-reflective comic narrative, but for the analysis here, I have opted for a monograph. Like Linklater’s, Cox’s works are often placed both under the heading of Marxist theories and critical theories in IR readers – naturally also depending on the organizational choices of the editors and authors, such as whether critical theory gets a chapter of its own or not. Like with Linklater, the Marxist elements of Cox’s work can be interpreted as romantic/epic, while the critical reflexivity and the emphasis on multiple possible, including nonviolent, paths to the final goal are largely comic. Furthermore, no claim is made here that all critical theory is necessarily comic; the writings of some Frankfurt School– inspired critical theorists are somber and pessimistic indeed. In the following, I will first outline the structure and present the main arguments of The Transformation of Political Community. Then, I will study the story’s comic elements and appeal. Structure and main claims The Transformation of Political Community consists of an introduction, six chapters on the principles and practices of inclusion and exclusion in the sphere of (international) politics, and a conclusion. The introduction briefly touches on all the main themes of the book, and in addition to presenting the idea of the triple transformation of political communities (more universal, less unequal, more sensitive to difference), also lays out a triple research agenda for its study: Linklater speaks for critical analysis of normative, sociological and praxeological questions along the lines that Kant and Marx began to draw. According to Linklater, the universalism and progressivism of Kant and Marx need to be reinforced with greater respect for ethnic, cultural and gender differences. Chapter 1 focuses on the contemporary logics of globalization and fragmentation that are disrupting the totalizing project of the state (1998: 30–35). Global interconnectedness in the areas of environmental protection, human rights, economy and security is eroding the power of the classical sovereign state. Fragmentation is presenting a challenge in the form of increasingly vocal ethnic minorities, indigenous peoples seeking special rights, and migrants and refugees sometimes completely without protection from states. Linklater does not anticipate the demise of the state, but envisages new responsibilities for it, and he also counts on the moral resource of (national) citizenship paving way for more inclusive (international) arrangements (ibid: 44–45).

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Chapters 2 and 3 discuss the ethical ideals of universalism and cosmopolitan morality. Linklater advocates “a thin conception of cosmopolitanism” (1998: 48–49), “a thinner notion of progress” (ibid: 76) and “a thin universality” (ibid: 99) – in contrast to a search for objective and permanent moral truths and a final conception of good life. For him, progress and emancipation become possible through the development of wider communities of discourse, through dialogue among cultures, or ideally, among all members of the human race. According to thin universality, every human being has an equal right to participate in dialogue to determine the principles and norms that will affect him/her, impinge on his/her welfare. The process is bound to be somewhat disorderly and definitely neverending, and it will require true respect for others and their claims, a commitment to be moved simply by force of better arguments. That the goal of global arrangements resting upon the consent of each member of humanity is probably unattainable does not discourage Linklater. The process – the construction and active functioning of a universal communication community – can be constantly developed, if never perfected, and this constitutes a goal in itself. Here, Linklater draws on the work of Habermas, especially Habermas’s concept of discourse ethics (ibid: 87–100). However, he integrates also communitarians/pluralists and postmodern/feminist critics of universalism into the project: he claims that there is a good deal of shared ground between communitarians and cosmopolitans (both recognize some loyalties to community and humanity) (ibid: 50) and that postmodernists and feminists, too, prefer the ethic of freedom and tolerance to the ethic of domination (and are thus humanistic and universalistic) (ibid: 72). In chapter 4, Linklater studies historical predecessors to the modern state and observes how modern states have, on the one hand, developed unprecedented powers over society, but on the other, generated equally unprecedented claims for freedom and equality (1998: 9). He combines the three types of inquiry essential to critical theories: philosophical/normative inquiry defending the dialogic imperative and criticizing unjust exclusion, sociological inquiry into the origins and transformation of dialogic communities, and praxeological inquiry aimed at locating the existing resources that can be harnessed for enlarging moral communities and institutionalizing loyalties to the ideal of a universal communication community (ibid: 110). Linklater finds evidence of Habermasian moral-practical learning in international relations and especially in the modern West: increasingly advanced tests of legitimacy of social principles and political arrangements are being developed (ibid: 121). Chapters 5 and 6 are devoted to ideals of citizenship and universal communication community. Linklater believes that the potential of modernity to overcome unjust forms of exclusion lies in the concept of citizenship (1998: 164–168). Like the subjects within national communities who demanded rights as citizens when burdened by taxation, conscription and capitalism (ibid: 155) – and first received exactly the same legal and political rights, then some social rights and eventually certain special minority rights (ibid: 184–189) – the citizens of states unhappy with the present international arrangements can demand and create new post-nationalist social and political arrangements (ibid: 164). Building on Carr,

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Linklater suggests that the struggle against the growth of state power and advancing capitalism created impressive moral reserves that can be used for developing the international society (ibid: 166–167). At the moment, important pockets of solidarism exist within the wider pluralist society of states and, in turn, radical post-Westphalian pockets can be located within the solidarist zone of peace (ibid: 174, 207). Even though each of the three forms of international society marks progress toward eradicating unjustified exclusion, according to Linklater, all should be able to enjoy the right to a separate existence; postWestphalian states should engage in dialogue with, not exclusion of, members of pluralist and solidarist societies (ibid: 167–168). Building on Bull, Linklater advocates a system of overlapping authority and multiple loyalty (ibid: 193–196). In the post-Westphalian society, citizenship can ideally flourish on four sites: the locality, the state, the international region and the world as a whole (ibid: 201). The idea of transnational citizenship is already concretely present in the notion of the European citizen (ibid: 199), and cosmopolitan citizenship as an ideal has survived even the most totalizing projects of states, such as fascism (ibid: 145–146, 160–161, 179–180). Linklater claims that the function of cosmopolitan citizenship is to promote the goal of the universal communication community (ibid: 212). In the conclusion, Linklater recapitulates the main points of his story and his answers to competing narratives. Unlike neo-realism purports, no form of political community is ever complete or stable, domestic change can facilitate international change and the capacity to extend the moral and political boundaries of community has already been demonstrated (1998: 215–216). According to Linklater, as a branch of critical inquiry, the study of international relations should develop the moral principles with which political communities are to be judged, analyze the forces that block or support progress toward more advanced forms of community, and reflect upon the practical opportunities for creating wider communities of discourse (ibid: 216). The Transformation of Political Community places special hope on Europe: Devising forms of citizenship which will guide Europe towards a multicultural, transnational social democracy is one of the central challenges facing the contemporary political imagination. The related challenge is to link this experiment in close political cooperation in Europe with the larger project of increasing autonomy across the world. (Linklater, 1998: 204). In Linklater’s story, multicultural, transnational social democracy (1998: 193, 204, 218) paves the way for cosmopolitan citizenship. A post-Westphalian society of states is the ideal he is committed to defending (ibid: 182). Despite – or, maybe, because of – his radical goals, Linklater adheres to a modest style. He paints no grand scenes of violent struggle or jubilant winners on the international scene, nor does he celebrate the absolute superiority of his analysis, but simply states that peaceful transformation of political communities is possible (ibid: 169)

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and that critical theory seems to able to combine the best of many scientific worlds: the Kantian ideal of equal membership of a universal kingdom of ends, the Marxian project of dismantling systems of exclusion and the (British) rationalist analysis of communities of discourse which are highly sensitive to cultural diversity (ibid: 209–211). Linklater’s story is optimistic, nonviolent and directed toward a happy end, a comedy that is. Comic appeal The post-Westphalian Europe has a leading role to play in The Transformation of Political Community. Article 8 of the Maastricht Treaty – the one that states that “every person holding the nationality of a Member State shall be a citizen of the Union” – is immensely important for Linklater as a principle (1998: 198–201). Although the conception of EU citizenship is thus far thin, it holds a promise of more rights and serves as an opening for further developments. Linklater affirms that adding extensive political rights, democratizing the regional institution, is a crucial task that lies ahead (ibid: 199), but already, the EU has provided one possible realization of a post-Westphalian arrangement. Post-Westphalian states, such as the EU members, have gone beyond pluralism and solidarism – principles that also constitute societies of states instead of a mere “system of states in which rivalry and suspicion prevail” (ibid: 204) – in their institutional commitments to universality and difference (ibid: 181). Their step has been more radical than anything seen so far: they have destabilized the position of the sovereign state as the only legitimate form of political community and they have internationalized “the struggle against the tyranny of unjust exclusion” (ibid: 177). According to Linklater, there is evidence to support Falk’s argument that Europe has embarked on “the most significant political innovation” since the modern territorial state emerged in the 17th century (ibid: 183). In Europe, it is not just the EU, but also the Council of Europe and the OSCE that have made the region a major actor; moreover, Linklater acknowledges “the role which more reformist states, such as the Scandinavian states, play in international society” as “significant” (ibid). The moral achievements of societies of states – post-Westphalian Europe in the forefront – are not insignificant. Some arguments, including those made against slavery and apartheid, enjoy transcultural validity; very different cultures believe that justice ought to reign even in the midst of war; and many cultures even feel a duty to help not only the shipwrecked, but also refugees, to distribute wealth to the poorest members of humanity and to create arrangements that recognize the special needs of indigenous peoples and other minorities (1998: 77–85, 102). According to Linklater, increasing levels of transnational harm have widened the boundaries of moral and political communities; we now regularly engage others in dialogue about matters which affect their vital interests (ibid: 84). The accomplishments of the European Union in removing boundaries of exclusion are historically spectacular: its citizens can move freely within Europe, reside in the territory of another member, petition EU instances and receive help from

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embassies of other members; moreover, they can vote and stand as candidate in local elections in other countries and for the EU parliament (ibid: 199). Linklater claims that Western Europe has become the laboratory for a unique experiment in creating post-nationalist or post-sovereign states (ibid: 17). The effort is commendable and also comically brave: the heroes are free-willingly subjecting themselves to a bold test. They are capable of reflecting on their own practices and ready to try out something new. In later writings (e.g., 2009b, 2010), Linklater has cited additional evidence of moral achievements and widening systems of cooperation: the development of environmental law and international criminal law, concern about personal carbon footprints and child labor, efforts toward fair trade and ethical tourism. As is apparent from Linklater’s description of the comic heroes of the story – societies of states and especially post-Westphalian Europe – the most important opposing force to the project of establishing a universal communication community is the nation-state. The Transformation of Political Community asserts that state-formation was a totalizing project that fused together sovereignty, territoriality, citizenship and nationality (1998: 146, 152). States stamped out existing rights and acquired crucial monopolies: to control the instruments of violence, to tax, to order political allegiances, to enlist, to adjudicate and to represent internationally (ibid: 28). Although the idea of national citizenship can be exploited for radical purposes, states basically stand in the way of the cosmopolitan project. However, states are not presented as evil enemies in Linklater’s story, as actors that need to be eradicated from the scene in order for wider moral communities to emerge. The state’s monopoly powers will not be taken in battle or via revolution, but instead, they will simply continue to erode (ibid: 34). The atmosphere in the book is constructive, instead of destructive: […] these remarks do not anticipate the demise of the state but envisage its reconstruction. […] This is not to advance the unlikely proposition that conventional state structures either will or should disappear, but rather to suggest that states should assume a number of responsibilities which have usually been avoided in the past. […] A crucial responsibility of the modern state is to enable multiple political authorities and loyalties to develop, and to endeavor to bring harmony through dialogue to the great diversity of ethical spheres which stretches from the local community to the transnational arena. (Linklater, 1998: 44–45). Unlike Gandhi whose distrust of states is profound, Linklater does not mind their continued presence in the world arena. Like Gandhi, he believes in the possibility of nonviolent change: “these are the qualities of modernity which make the unitdriven peaceful transformation of the international system possible” (1998: 167). In The Transformation of Political Community, obstacles are not encountered and differences of opinion are not solved by force, but by “wooing the consent of others” (ibid: 183). The action that moves the story forward resembles Orsino’s insistent courting of Olivia much more than St George’s slaying of the dragon or

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Oedipus’s frantic efforts to avoid dismal fate. Linklater’s appreciation of authentic dialogue – where actors are prepared not only to defend but also to question their truth claims (ibid: 92) – compares with Austen’s description of her favorite heroine, Elizabeth, who is capable of recognizing her mistakes and working to correct them. In Linklater’s comedy, there are grounds for anticipating endings of the Twelfth Night kind: surprisingly, Orsino actually finds happiness with Viola, not Olivia after all. In a manner similar to Wendt’s, Linklater does not claim that a happy ending to the international story is inevitable: “no assumption is made here that some invisible hands steers societies towards […] a better balance between ethical universality and respect for difference” (1998: 33–34). Also like Wendt, he pays respect to the English School theorists and frequently refers to their ideas concerning the various possible ways of organizing international society. Like Wendt, he sees parts of the West tentatively moving toward a culture of cooperation and collective security. Despite the cautiousness of claims in The Transformation of Political Community, its author is a firm optimist: All that is argued [here] is that the forces of division and disturbance which Wight identified in past epochs are evident in the current phase of European international society, that a heightened awareness of fluidity and unpredictability prevails, and that less has the air of immutability. Precisely what is in store for the classical sovereign state in Europe and elsewhere remains uncertain, but various trends create the expectation of its steady decline as the most effective and legitimate instrument of close political cooperation. (Linklater, 1998: 34). The road ahead might be uncertain – bumpy and winding – but, according to Linklater, there are no warranted reasons for giving up universalism, belief in progress: In this way, it is possible to extend the central claim of philosophical history, which is that progress involves the transcendence of the barriers to equal enjoyment of the right of self-determination, while abandoning its faith in the existence of a continuous, irreversible path of historical development. Confidence in the notion of progress is retained but progress clearly does not terminate with the rise of the modern European state […] Progress involves […] a conception of dialogue in which universality is wedded to multiculturalism. (Linklater, 1998: 90). The wedding referred to – the one between universality and multiculturalism, or universality and particularity (1998: 49) or universality and difference (ibid: 5) – is the main event of Linklater’s comedy. While Twelfth Night and A Midsummer Night’s Dream portray three happy, and in the beginning of the story not at all certain, marriages, and Pride and Prejudice unites at least two very happy

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couples, The Transformation of Political Community manages to execute an additional twist: a union of three separate principles or projects in one marriage. The triple transformation includes not only universality and difference, but also the reduction of material inequalities (ibid: 3–7, 99, 163, 192–193, 220). Linklater explains that without social and economic resources – basic material assets, social and hermeneutic skills – people are unable in practice to participate in meaningful universal dialogue even if they are in principle given the opportunity to do so (ibid: 99). Since negotiating a satisfactory balance at any particular moment between universally acceptable standards and sufficient attention to special needs of the previously excluded also requires less inequality, or equal opportunities, this third party has to be included in the association. As if the original couple of mutually exclusive opposites was not odd enough, Linklater promises his readers something more comic yet: rounding off the unfinished project of modernity with a triple union (ibid: 17–18, 22, 41). Furthermore, another central theme of the book – the paradoxes of the modern state (1998: 147–157) – can be interpreted as a comic riddle. According to Linklater, the ambiguities of modernity reveal themselves in the strange paradox of the modern state: on the one hand, it is the site on which radical intensifications of social control have been established but, on the other hand, it has been the setting for unprecedented efforts to eradicate the tyranny of unjust exclusion. (Linklater, 1998: 146–147). This is the reason why the state is not the enemy of the story: despite all its horrible powers, it has generated much good and still hosts important feelings of solidarity. And as already mentioned, the present state-form is taking care of its own downfall anyway: “Modern states have therefore contained the seeds of their own eventual destruction” (ibid: 218). Our highest ideal – the universalization of citizenship rights – originates in the radical potential, the dialectics of national citizenship, as it “can be turned against the very political framework within which citizens have defined their own rights and duties – the sovereign state” (ibid: 193). According to Linklater, already the first empires created a basic contradiction between ideologies that were meant to hold a specific, privileged group together and ones that envisioned a universal and egalitarian social order (ibid: 135). Comic contradictions are essential to the plot of The Transformation of Political Community, not mere dispensable interludes. That having been said, Linklater does sometimes make individual humorous observations when recounting the history of political communities: since the consent of all humanity for the decision of some groups to secede from the primordial universal society was not properly acquired, states may be seen as morally questionable to begin with (1998: 105); the very first speech act already anticipated the creation of a communication community of the whole humankind (ibid: 120); the introduction of agriculture and the formation of small city-states in Mesopotamia do not necessarily mark historical progress, but can also be

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interpreted as the first instance when human beings could be trapped in bounded societies (ibid: 134). The most important comic qualities of the narrative, however, are not funny as such. It is the comic persistence of the main characters, their ingenious solutions and flexibility that account for the comic appeal. Like there is “no fixed and final vision” of the better future awaiting societies of states (ibid: 49) in Linklater’s story, there is no one and only intellectual tradition that can pave the way: “this vision of a political community in which the totalizing project is brought to an end can command the support of very different critical standpoints” (ibid: 74–75). Like Sir Toby, Sir Andrew, Maria, Fabian and Feste nonviolently teach Malvolio a lesson he deserves to be taught, and like Oberon and Puck are finally able to organize Hermia, Helena, Lysander and Demetrius into happy couples, The Transformation of Political Community works patiently toward a “maybe utopian” happy end: “a humanity united in domination-free communication” (ibid: 220). Austen devotes the final chapter of Pride and Prejudice to describing events after Elizabeth and Jane have been married off: although “characters suffer no revolutions,” everybody is more or less content. The final words of Linklater’s book – “Realizing the promise of the post-Westphalian era is the essence of the unfinished project of modernity” (ibid) – give readers direction and hope, that is, also constitute a comic denouement.

Ironic and satirical scorn As noted earlier, IR research has rather seldom been studied explicitly as ironic or satirical narratives. A few scholars have hinted at the potential of irony/satire in the context of international relations theory or practice – Hall (2014), Payne (2013, 2014), Milliken and Sylvan (1996), for example – but narrative analyses of ironic/satirical IR works await completion. If irony is defined as a parody of romance and satire as militant irony – in the way that Frye does (1973: 223) – one would expect ironic/satirical IR theorizing to attack first and foremost the romantic stories of liberals, Marxists and peace researchers. As objects of parody, also tragic, realist stories constitute a fruitful possibility, especially due to their status as conventional, mainstream approaches claiming to offer coherent explanations. In certain ways, ironic/satirical stories resemble comic ones: both include inconsistencies and surprises, the characters in both are often ambiguous by nature, and making fun of someone or something is usually part of the plot. However, while comedies do not require violent incidents to move the story forward and always end happily, ironic/satirical scorn hurts on purpose and refuses to provide a denouement that would leave all parties more or less content. In the field of IR theorizing, it is among the “alternative approaches to international theory” (as handily labeled in the third and fourth editions of the reader The Globalization of World Politics, see Baylis et al., 2005, 2008 (eds.)), rather than the earlier established schools, that I have located ironic/satirical narratives. Feminist, poststructural and postcolonial readings of international relations often have harshly critical intentions and offer no reassuring closure. Whereas feminist

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IR comes in several genres – romantic stories optimistic about “adding women” are not uncommon – I claim that poststructural and postcolonial IR works are typically ironic/satirical. As examples of ironic or satirical IR stories, I will study Cynthia Enloe’s Bananas, Beaches and Bases, David Campbell’s Writing Security and Tarak Barkawi’s Globalization and War. Each of these calls for a radical break with previous ways of seeing international relations. They do not settle for constructive critique of our common efforts, but instead, shake the very foundations of the discipline and demonstrate how different scholars most often talk past each other. Enloe focuses on the general absence of women from depictions of international politics; Campbell problematizes stable national identities and the functions traditionally assigned to foreign policy; and Barkawi exposes the Eurocentric limitations of our global imagination. While none of the works analyzed ends in absolute desperation, if one accepts the interpretations of their authors, observing international relations as before becomes difficult. Something has been profoundly disturbed and suddenly there are more questions and incongruities than answers and certainties. My analysis will once again begin with literary examples: two superb specimens of irony/satire from the 18th century. I will first summarize the plots and comment on the style of Alexander Pope’s The Rape of the Lock and Jonathan Swift’s A Modest Proposal and then move on to Enloe’s, Campbell’s and Barkawi’s narratives. The Rape of the Lock and A Modest Proposal Alexander Pope’s The Rape of the Lock (1980 [1712–1714]) is a mock-heroic narrative poem about a young man stealing a lock of hair from a young woman. In the beginning of the story, while still asleep, the young woman, Belinda, receives a message from her guardian sylph, Ariel. Ariel tries to warn Belinda about an impending disaster, but Belinda is uninterested. At their respective quarters, Belinda and the young man, the Baron, prepare for the event of the evening, playing cards at Hampton Court. Belinda wins an intense game of ombre against the Baron. There is a round of coffee. The Baron tries to cut off one of Belinda’s locks; he succeeds on the third try and celebrates his victory. Belinda is furious. Gnome Umbriel journeys down to the Cave of Spleen and gets a sack of sighs and a flask of tears with which he attempts to smother Belinda’s anger. Clarissa, originally accomplice in the Baron’s crime, speaks for good humor and good sense, but her message falls on deaf ears. A general battle with glares, songs and wits as weapons ensues. The lock disappears in the battle. It is suggested that the lock has become a constellation in the sky. Pope wrote the poem in response to an actual incident between two aristocratic Catholic families – to settle their trivial dispute – and in it, makes use of traditional epic conventions such as a dream message from the gods (Sylph Ariel’s warning), arming of the champion (Belinda’s dressing and makeup), sacrifice to the gods (the Baron’s offerings on the altar of love), charge to the troops (Ariel prepares the other sylphs), single combat (card game), epic feast (coffee), journey to the underworld (Umbriel’s

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trip), general combat (commotion at party), divine intervention (gods take the lock) and apotheosis (lock immortalized in the sky). Jonathan Swift’s A Modest Proposal (1996 [1729]) is a satirical essay that presents a single solution to several major problems of the time: poverty, hunger and too many Papists, among other troubles, can all be done away with by eating the children of the poor when they reach the age of one year. Swift begins his essay by compassionately describing the plight of female beggars followed by their helpless infants all around Ireland. He then notes that babies grow plump during their first year merely by drinking their mother’s milk. Thus, by eating the readily available 100,000 or so 1-year-olds, persons of quality and fortune could not only enjoy new, delicious and wholesome dishes, but also relieve the poor of a great burden and generally boost the economy of the country. Another 20,000 should be reserved for breeding. Swift assures his readers that if the children of these ardent flesh-producers were eaten – baby skin also makes admirable gloves for ladies and summer boots for gentlemen – poor tenants would have a means to pay their landlord’s rent, the delicious food would bring extra customers to taverns and trade would prosper. Infant’s flesh would conveniently be in season throughout the year (although a little more plentiful 9 months after Lent), and household happiness would increase with husbands taking better care of their pregnant wives and mothers loving their newborn babies even more. Swift offers statistical support for his assertions, estimates the weight and price of the commodity, and suggests recipes for the new meat. Swift ends his essay claiming that he knows of no objection that could possibly be raised against his proposal, by refuting other expedients to the nation’s problems and by professing that he has no personal interest in the plan, that his only motive is public good. While Pope’s social critique seems benevolent and lighthearted in comparison to Swift’s outrageous proposal, the two works share certain basic features. In both stories, violent scenes are essential to the plot: the attack on Belinda is the most important event in The Rape of the Lock and A Modest Proposal recommends the immediate killing and eating of 100,000 babies. Both have a sad ending: Belinda’s lock is cut off and lost and, in the apparent absence of serious objections, a gloomy destiny awaits the poor children of Ireland. Interventions from the outside do not seem to make a difference: Belinda listens to neither Ariel nor Clarissa, and no solution duly examined by Swift (for example, alleviating the conditions of the less fortunate or limiting mercantilist greed) is as “innocent, cheap, easy and effectual” as the one he has come up with. The readers of both works are in for surprises: a minor incident swells into a senseless battle and the proposal described as modest definitely is not. It is difficult to identify or sympathize with any of the main characters: Belinda and the Baron are presented as idle and vain, small-minded and inconsiderate, and the narrator in A Modest Proposal is ruthless beyond any limit. The mood in both of the stories is pessimistic: in times of trouble, no heroes emerge, but instead, there are petty quarrels among people who should be on the same side, and inhumane suffering that few seem to care about. Both Pope and Swift have been hailed as masters of irony and satire. Both of the works summarized above satirize contemporary society and include signals of

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irony, that is, incongruities of different kinds. The Rape of the Lock is filled with parodies of actual people and texts, puns and anticlimaxes: for example, Pope imitates speeches in Homer’s Iliad (1980: 86, canto I, lines 101–102) and makes fun of Sir Plume’s or Sir George Browne’s attempts to balance between two opposing camps (ibid: 102, canto IV, lines 121–140); the “painted vessel” refers both to Belinda and the boat carrying her (ibid: 89, canto II, line 47); and high items are constantly undermined by lower ones, as in “some dire disaster […] stain her honor, or her new brocade, forget her prayers, or miss a masquerade, or lose her heart, or necklace, at a ball” (ibid: 91, canto II, lines 102–108). Swift uses a matter-of-fact tone to emphasize the absurdity of his proposal. In describing the Irish, he resorts to language ordinarily reserved to animals; in addressing social problems, he applies detached, economic logic. We can safely assume that he says one thing and means another – but what exactly he truly proposes remains unclear. Swift can be interpreted as attacking the English mistreatment of the Irish poor, 18th century theories of labor and production, and general greed and cruelty. While Pope is (still at the time of writing The Rape of the Lock) playful, Swift appears to be enraged and desperate. Accordingly, The Rape of the Lock leaves us critical of silly behavior and strange priorities, but overall amused, while A Modest Proposal haunts us long afterward with its terrible calculations and cryptic message. Feminist critique: Cynthia Enloe and Bananas, Beaches and Bases Feminist studies of international relations are not all ironic/satirical. Liberal feminist romances, for example, while studying gender inequality, see many problems solvable by adding women to crucial places. Mary Caprioli and Mark Boyer (2001) show how the severity of violence used by states in international crises decreases as domestic gender equality increases. To the variables analyzed by Russett and Oneal in their romantic Triangulating Peace, they add the variable of gender. Valerie M. Hudson, Bonnie Ballif-Spanvill, Caprioli and Chad F. Emmett (2012) compile more data and create additional variables in order to subject the women-and-peace thesis to further empirical testing. They find a strong and statistically significant relationship between security of women and relative peacefulness of states. In a romantic manner, they go on to outline a policy agenda that will effect positive change, bring about greater peace and stability in the international system. Sandra Whitworth’s feminist theorizing (1994) builds on Robert Cox’s framework – based on its Marxist elements, her story might be read as a romance, or, emphasizing its critical playfulness, as a comedy. I argue that the feminist work analyzed here – Cynthia Enloe’s Bananas, Beaches and Bases: Making Feminist Sense of International Relations (2014, 2nd ed.) – is best understood as an ironic/satirical narrative due to its radical reinterpretation of the ways of doing and knowing international relations. Although the mood seems friendly and lighthearted, Enloe defies all the rules of the field: she asks different questions, she focuses on different actors and she refuses to directly engage with the most important competing theories. In the beginning, it

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appears like “looking at the world through gender-curious feminist eyes” might be an innocent, modest proposal (2014: 12), but by the end of the book the reader knows that it changes everything, leads to a fundamentally different picture of world politics. Asking how all sorts of things have been made, according to Enloe (ibid), reveals that there is “someone with a certain kind of power” behind all things that previously passed as natural, inevitable, traditional or biological. Suddenly the atmosphere turns dark: there is blame, credit and responsibility to apportion everywhere – and no solutions that would leave everybody content. Other early, equally influential and similarly ironic/satirical feminist IR contributions include Jean Bethke Elshtain’s Women and War (1987), J. Ann Tickner’s Gender in International Relations (1992) and Gendered States (1992) edited by V. Spike Peterson. While these three books touch on several gendered phenomena, they concentrate on one traditional IR theme each: on war, on security and on sovereign states, respectively. Bananas, Beaches and Bases (first edition published in 1989) is broader in its orientation and less interested in providing a systematic critique of other texts in the field. After these groundbreaking works, for example, Christine Sylvester (2002), Laura Shepherd (2008) and Laura Sjoberg (2014) have written feminist stories in an ironic/satirical vein. Here, I will analyze one of the first representatives of the genre, a book that has become a standard reference for later IR feminists. Authors responsible for chapters on feminist research in IR readers have some difficulties in placing of Enloe’s work under a proper heading. Jacqui True discusses Enloe’s ideas under all the three overlapping forms of feminist scholarship that she identifies: empirical, analytical and normative feminism (2009: 238, 240–241, 248, 254). J. Ann Tickner and Laura Sjoberg refer to Enloe’s research right in the introduction of their chapter (2013: 206), feature a book of hers in a separate box (ibid: 207), formulate a question for students based on Bananas, Beaches and Bases (ibid: 220) and define a third book of hers as an example of feminist security theory (ibid: 221), but do not refer to her in their liberal-critical-constructivist-poststructuralist-postcolonial feminism typology. Helen M. Kinsella only mentions Enloe in passing in her chapter on feminism (2017: 192), but Bananas, Beaches and Bases is later referred to as a major feminist study of security (Baylis et al. 2017: 245) and Enloe’s research comes up again in more detail in the chapter on gender (ibid: 278–279). Bananas, Beaches and Bases strives at making the different kinds of women actors and the gendered power structures of international politics visible. The task is not easy – we have been taught to look elsewhere – and the resulting image is not pretty: running things as they are requires, for example, keeping women’s labor cheaper than men’s and favoring nostalgic patriarchal national histories over ones that would give voice to multiple experiences, both masculine and feminine. Enloe outlines strategies by which things might be changed, but there are numerous obstacles on the way, a major one being that gender issues are still largely considered a personal (versus political) and a specific (versus general) problem. Both direct violence and customary practices keep women and men in their various places of power and subjugation, and although some promising trends can be discerned, the reader will probably detect traces of desperation and

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rage in Enloe’s official optimism. Many people have vested interests in women’s fragmentation and international politics being defined as it is; imagining happy endings mocks harsh realities. I will start my analysis of Bananas, Beaches and Bases by outlining Enloe’s main claims and the structure of the book. I will continue by studying the ironic/ satirical elements and logic of the story. Structure and main claims Enloe structures her entire book about international politics – each individual chapter – around answers to four questions: “Where are the women?”, “Why are they there?”, “Who is benefiting from their being there?” and “What do they think about being there?” (2014: e.g., xiv, 81–82, 125, 355). She claims that the “smooth” routines associated with all sorts of mundane activities are integral to the operation of world politics and that “smoothly” usually serves to perpetuate patriarchal international relations (ibid: 173). Or in other words: International politics can be humdrum, with power flowing unnoted and uncontested. Humdrum is political. Humdrum is gendered. (Enloe, 2014: 173). According to Enloe, governments depend on allegedly private relationships in order to conduct foreign affairs (2014: 351). She notes that while international policy-making circles may at times look like men’s clubs, international politics as a whole requires women to behave in certain ways (ibid: 355). Enloe emphasizes the fact that patriarchal societies privileging particular masculinities is a problem not only for women, but also for men (ibid: 31). Valuing the allegedly manly attributes of strength, toughness, courage and rationality – over actively feminized care, reproduction, patience and compassion – creates expectations that not only women but also most men are uncomfortable with. Through her four questions, Enloe attempts to make both different kinds of women and different kinds of men visible – the assumption being that great numbers of people stand to gain from a more detailed picture. Likewise, in the field of IR, it is not just feminist research that benefits from taking gender into account, but research in general: This is worth saying again: explanations of international politics that are devoid of feminist questioning are too-simple explanations. Such nonfeminist explanations shy away from complexity. They underestimate power. (Enloe, 2014: 352). Enloe asserts that while power is officially at the center of the commentaries of many conventional analysts of interstate relations, too, they rarely study agribusiness plantation prostitution, foreign service corps sexism and attempts to tame outspoken nationalist women – that is, they fail to grasp just how much power is wielded all around the international scene.

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Each of the chapters of Bananas, Beaches and Bases concentrates on a specific location of often unnoticed women crucial for international politics – in addition to which Enloe provides an introduction and a conclusion to her book. The introduction lays out the main definitions and themes: gendered power, gendered causes and consequences, the importance of ordinary assumptions and everyday practices for international politics and the distortions produced by the preferred femininities and masculinities of today. Chapters 2–8 deal with the previously neglected IR topics of gendered tourism, gendered nationalism, gendered military bases, gendered diplomacy, gendered agribusiness, gendered garment industry and gendered domestic work. According to Enloe, some of the topics, such as tourism and domestic work, have simply been neglected as central research concerns of the field, while others, such as nationalism and military bases, have been studied before, but largely ignoring the gendered practices shaping the phenomena. In connection with tourism, Enloe studies the distinctive ways in which men and women relate to tourism and traveling: she examines, for example, the Victorian lady travelers; the gendered civilization presented especially in the very first world’s fairs; package tours developed for respectable women; the tourism formula of development; women as cabin crew, hotel chambermaids and waitresses; and sex tourism in its various forms. In the chapter on nationalism, Enloe shows how nationalism springing from masculinized memory, humiliation and hope too often makes it difficult for women to criticize the patriarchal practices of the nation, and how women’s experiences and concerns are put off indefinitely. Thus, although nationalistic projects possibly add new players to the international game, they frequently strengthen the old rules of the game. While exploring the assumption that military bases and prostitution naturally go together, Enloe also touches upon the violent lives of military wives and women soldiers, and discovers that feminized silence may be an important pillar of national security. She claims that the conduct of intergovernmental relations more generally – diplomacy, international trade and organizations – relies on women in their roles as wives hosting parties and helping promote sales, as self-sacrificing secretaries – making the gendered politics of marriage an international issue, too. Through analyzing the gendered politics of bananas, Enloe traces how the male plantation workers in producing countries are supported by women who stay home and farm and women who wash and pack the bananas for women elsewhere to buy as healthy and nutritious food for themselves and their children. In the chapter on the garment industry, she demonstrates how the risk-taking globalized banker needs the conscientious seamstress to hold his world together, and how the pressure inserted by popular brand-name corporations to produce clothes ever faster and ever cheaper is driving women to work at home and in deathtrap factories for wages that cannot sustain their families. Finally, in the chapter on globalized domestic work, Enloe considers the gendered problem of double-days and inquires, among other things, why the world’s most vulnerable workers face special difficulties organizing locally and internationally. While the “Where are the women?”, “Why?” and “Who benefits?” questions of Bananas, Beaches and Bases reveal the cruel, patriarchal and militarized logic of

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today’s international political relations (e.g., 2014: 7), the “What do the women think?” question brings a faint glimmer of hope into the story. Toward the end of each of her analyses, Enloe presents examples that prove that women actors often understand the gendered challenges they are facing and have come up with ways of resisting exploitation. She explicitly wants to fight the image of women as victims (ibid: 32–34) and, therefore, recounts the experiences of three Nepali women founding a trekking company, of Palestinian women successful in getting some of their concerns on the PLO agenda, of the Filipino antibases movement, of the US State Department lifting its ban on married women, of the Honduran bananeras organizing workshops in order to empower women, of the Chinese factory women’s collective demands and of ILO Convention 189 addressing the rights of domestic workers. These examples serve to illustrate how international politics takes place on the individual level. Also the gloomy and violent examples come in the form of personal experiences of women with names. The conclusion of Bananas, Beaches and Bases extends the traditional feminist maxim “the personal is political” or “the political is personal” into the international sphere: “the personal is international” and “the international is personal.” Ironic/satirical appeal As already pointed out, Bananas, Beaches and Bases constitutes a radical break with earlier IR literature: instead of asking and answering direct questions about war and peace, state security and world economy, international culture and morality – the usual concerns – it is first and foremost curious about where the women are. Enloe is intent to look for international politics in places dismissed by conventional foreign policy experts as “private,” “domestic,” “local” or “trivial” (2014: 3). Bravely and proudly, not cautiously or apologetically, she affirms that while making feminist sense of things, we will discover how discos, kitchens, closets and secretaries’ desks can become arenas of international politics (ibid). Although she ends up addressing many of the central concerns of other IR scholars, too, she laughs at the traditional focus on high politics, at ossified research practices and pompous attitudes. Moreover, instead of providing the customary commentaries on earlier major works in the field and situating her contribution with regard to the central debates and competing schools, she makes references primarily to feminist research in different disciplines, and to newspaper articles, interviews, (auto)biographies, films and unrecorded conversations. While studying by and large the same phenomena, she does not play by the established rules. Her way of proceeding with the exercise is purposefully all wrong. The most important actors in her ironic/satirical story are not states, governments, abstract ideas, impersonal global citizens or unspecified members of humanity, but specific women with their diverse experiences: When the common women-need-to-learn-more-about-foreign-affairs approach is articulated by gender-incurious activists (women or men), women are usually portrayed as the objects, even victims, of the international political

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system. […] In this worldview, women are forever being acted upon. […] Rarely are women seen as the explainers or the reshapers of the world. Rarely are they made visible as thinkers or actors. (Enloe, 2014: 33–34). Even though her book gives women the leading roles, Enloe’s general goal is to broaden the idea of the “international” and “political” actor to include every individual: We are not just acted upon; we are actors. Though, even recognizing that one is not part of any elite, acknowledging oneself as an international actor can be unnerving. One discovers that one is often complicit in creating the very world that one finds so dismaying. (Enloe, 2014: 35). Thus, even though Enloe’s suggestion to “make a list of those patriarchal stakeholders, those people who have come to rely on women’s fragmentation” seems to define an enemy, the very next sentence complicates the project: “Not all the people on the list will be corporate moguls and political autocrats” (2014: 357). Not only the actors who openly oppress and benefit most from the oppression are important; every consumer, every tourist, every factory worker, every researcher plays a role. Although gender-curious analysts are better equipped to deal with the complexities of the world than gender-blind ones, nobody can be freed from blame: Becoming smarter in this feminist sense will not make us more comfortable. We are likely to start wondering about our own complicity in the makings of this world’s dysfunctions, its inequalities, its abuses and injustices. For we are not simply readers and questioners standing above or outside what we are exploring. (Enloe, 2014: xv). On the one hand, Bananas, Beaches and Bases explicitly offers readers tools for more fully and realistically understanding the causes of climate change, the new arms race, exploitative globalization and the widening gaps between rich and poor (2014: 358), and on the other, affirms that “patriarchy is ingeniously adaptable” (ibid: xvi) and that “our ideas and actions are helping shape this world” (ibid: xv). When even the people trying to change the system for the better are presented as part of the problem and when we are specifically warned against treating even the victims of garment factory disasters, the targets of sexual assaults in wartime, the trafficked and the low paid as (mere) victims (ibid: 34), it is difficult to find familiar and consistent roles in the story. The characters are ambiguous at best, and probably very confusing to readers looking for positive models, and for actors to sympathize with and others to oppose. For example, Enloe problematizes the “mythic tale” of the banana wars that pitted the fruity David (small farmers in the

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Caribbean and West Africa) against the fruity Goliath (Latin American plantation behemoths owned by major US-based corporations). Enloe shows (ibid: 237–240) how the former colonial masters, the British and the French, while helping the small farmers also reinforced their patriarchal ties with their former colonial subjects, how even the small farms ended up selling to big corporations and the big corporations outsourcing production to small farms in order to rid themselves of direct responsibility, how the WTO kept the neoliberal global economic gears turning smoothly in the name of opposing protectionism, and how the “romantic” banana smallholdings are gendered, male-dominated, too. In addition to which, ironically, Goliath won in the end. Signs in the beginning of the story promised an epic/romantic ending; reality proved to be messy and unfair. Enloe claims to be searching for more nuanced explanations of multiple relationships at work and their consequences (ibid: xiv). Even though she simultaneously promises clarity, in practice, the nuances more often complicate than clarify the explanatory stories. Somewhat like The Rape of the Lock or A Modest Proposal, Enloe’s story is dark and violent beneath the gay surface. Despite the anecdotes about successful rebellion, there is no question about the fact that in today’s international politics, dominant masculinities and femininities place women and men in various horrible places. According to Bananas, Beaches and Bases, since we purportedly live in a dangerous world, some (men) need to go “out there” to aggressively protect others (usually women-and-children) “at home” (2014: 29–31). The culture of violence nurtured in the military can make also homes dangerous places, not to speak about the violence on and around military bases (ibid: 141–162). Brothels, massage parlors, nightclubs and disco-restaurants in Thailand, among other tourist destinations, serve as locations for various types of international sex trade (ibid: 72–76). Revolutionary male leaders everywhere tend to be dismissive of attempts to couple women’s rights to nationalist projects (ibid: 103–119). Ambassadors’ spouses in most countries not only work for free, but also have to do without social security of any kind (ibid: 181–203). Sexist attitudes and policies at all levels of society hold back women farmers’ productivity also in highly developed countries (ibid: 230–231). A lot of patriarchal power goes into defining women’s labor as unskilled in order to keep it cheap, for example, in Bangladeshi garment factories (ibid: 274–282). In Qatar, migrant domestic workers are not allowed to quit their jobs unless their employers agree (ibid: 308). Facts like these fill the pages of Enloe’s book. Although she affirms that women’s political thinking and organizing has become quite elaborate and sophisticated (e.g., ibid: 262), there are many more underpaid and harassed chambermaids than there are ones who have successfully demanded basic rights and respect. According to Bananas, Beaches and Bases, ideas and politics can be altered (ibid: 262), but the task seems Augean given the state of affairs at the moment. As Pope despaired over the divisions among the Catholics who should have been on same side in the difficult situation, Enloe pays attention to the fact that women who have similar interests are pitted against each other in global capitalist competition (2014: 283, 296–299) and that male-dominated unions prioritize male concerns without realizing that uniting forces with women activists might benefit

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both groups (ibid: 241–242, 291). Like Swift who advertised his proposal as “cheap, easy and effectual,” Enloe claims that “[t]he doors and windows have been thrown wide open” for the collaborative, feminist exploratory journey (ibid: xvi). Readers have reason to believe that both Swift and Enloe are saying one thing and meaning another – and, in fact, Enloe immediately qualifies her positive statement with a cynical “Well, they [the doors] should be [open]” (ibid). The happy ending of Bananas, Beaches and Bases portrays an imaginary meeting of various women introduced along the way: Theresa, the Filipina domestic worker who escaped her abusive employer in Qatar, organizes a three-day workshop in order to provide a space where women can “get to know each other informally, speak openly, compare experiences, and build their own collective understandings of the gendered, inequitable world and of their capacity to change that world” (ibid: 344). Iris, Chobi, Lucky, Ray, Takazato, Rosa, Laurie, Marie-Aim´ee and Yoko arrive in Manila and the women start talking, first about each other’s families, their most personal relationships, and then the conversation becomes more political, turning to policies of immigration and child care, the subtleties of racism, gendered stereotypes, fear-nurturing militarism, greedy corporations and unaccountable labor contractors. According to Enloe, these women understand that the personal is political and international, and vice versa (ibid: 347). They are able to create an atmosphere of trust; they are on a journey to understand how the world works (ibid: 358–359). The final words of the book are optimistic and funny: Every time the conversation slips into abstractions, one of the women pulls it back to women’s complex everyday realities. This is what making feminist sense of international politics sounds like. (Enloe, 2014: 359). After studying the actual horrors in the women’s lives, the reader is probably convinced that this should happen: the women should get to organize and fight back, and to do this on their own terms, not on somebody else’s. However, interpreting the final scene as a parody is very tempting, too. Based on the evidence presented in the book, it is far more likely that at least a couple of the women would have died, lost their jobs or given up hope by the time that Theresa gets back home. Most would probably not be able to fly to Manila. When together, they might find it difficult to start talking and never reach common ground. Enloe is not making a case for the likelihood of this scenario materializing, of course; she is presenting it as an idealized goal. If we share the goal, we should be shocked to realize how na¨ıve it sounds. With the scenario, Enloe is also criticizing the standard practices of IR scholars: their exclusive, rather maledominated, expert circles, their tendency to prefer the abstract over the concrete, and their failure to understand the big picture of world politics and the complex workings of power. She does not try to make her approach complementary to existing conventional research; she does not even dignify the IR canon with a direct attack. Suddenly, the optimistic and funny can be read as grave and urgent. For some readers, the ending might even present itself as a cruel joke. With the

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patriarchy being as ingeniously adaptable as it is, the idea of Theresa’s gathering is simply absurd. Taming Bananas, Beaches and Bases – interpreting it as a comedy, even as a romance – is relatively easy, and it might be something that Enloe herself would prefer. It would mean concentrating on the officially hopeful mood, the seemingly happy ending and the encouraging examples of women’s organizing in the story. However, I argue that understanding Bananas, Beaches and Bases as an ironic/ satirical narrative does more justice to the work. The violent scenes depicted in every chapter, the radical break with the IR tradition, the ambiguous characters, the surprising subjects and the far-too-rosy ending resemble the style of Pope and Swift. If one interprets the ending as actually sad, one might also consider the possibility of the work being a tragedy. There are the desperate fights – the probably doomed missions for good causes – that point toward a tragic direction. However, what is missing is the tragic glory and catharsis: the proud hero(es) taking the predestined road, the audience gasping in horror and then in relief. Enloe refuses to create perfectly consistent heroes and to treat anybody as a mere victim, and in her story, we all are complicit in some villainous patriarchal practices. In a tragedy, there is more clarity, order and stability than in Bananas, Beaches and Bases where we suddenly jump from a grocery store in the United States to a military base in the Philippines, find international actors in garment sweatshops in China and Bangladesh and analyze the global politics of marriage. She robs her numerous main characters of conventional roles and the audience of closure. This not out of meanness, but because she believes that the causes and consequences in international politics are complex and that previous explanations have missed a great deal. Bananas, Beaches and Bases disturbs the peace of mind of the reader familiar with IR literature in many ways. Besides the ones already discussed, there is the fact that the text is rather accessible also to laymen. Although Enloe treats complex issues and provides no simple answers, the text as such is easy to read: Enloe has demystified the terminology and chosen plenty of vivid examples. Her ironic/satirical story definitely rocks the IR boat as we know it; she is maybe even trying to sink the entire boat. Poststructuralism: David Campbell and Writing Security Poststructuralism as a body of thought or political philosophy has been associated with the ironic/satirical mood and style. Starting with Michel Foucault’s studies of knowledge, madness, criminality and disease, poststructuralism has sought to disturb, disrupt, and break down normalcy, rationality and continuous progression. White (1987: 104–141), among others, analyzes Foucault as a master of irony or “self-conscious catachresis,” and the story that Foucault tells over and over again as the tale of fundamental human fatality: the will to know. According to Lisa Colletta (2009), (the irony of) postmodernity replaces unity with multiplicity, meaning with appearance of meaning, depth with surface. The other way around, Linda Hutcheon (1992: 13) argues that irony is particularly suited to the

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postmodern environment where meaning is no longer perceived as something single, decidable or stable. She is interested especially in postmodern irony’s subversive potential, the problematization of knowledge, truth and meaning. Heide Ziegler (1991) claims that irony as a mode of consciousness can be related to postmodernism – in addition to the Romantic era, its heyday. Helene Schugart (1999: 435–436) emphasizes that the multiple, complex and inconsistent messages advanced by postmodern, subversive irony can be confusing: there is always the possibility that the audience will not “get it” or will dismiss the artifact as incoherent. Irony and poststructuralism seem to have the same mission: to disturb meanings, knowledge and truths. As an IR approach or attitude, poststructuralism has been introduced via the concepts of discourse, deconstruction, genealogy and intertextuality (Hansen, 2017: 161–166), or discourse, identity, subjectivity and power (Campbell, 2013: 223), and as closely connected to projects identifying themselves as deconstructive, genealogical and postmodern (Devetak, 2009b: 183–184). Among examples of things that have been deconstructed by poststructural IR scholarship, state sovereignty, the anarchy problematique and national boundaries figure prominently. White (ibid: 38) claims that poststructuralists carry out “deconstruction of narrativity.” This is in line with Jean-François Lyotard’s (1984: xxiv) definition of postmodernism as “incredulity towards metanarratives.” I claim that the poststructural skepticism toward all coherent narratives – radical anti-foundationalism tearing down truths and coherence – indicates not an ability to rise above narration and plots as such, but a preference for the most chaotic narrative, the plot with little discernible direction or few responsible actors, the ironic/satirical story. Poststructuralists write stories, but their stories tend to be riotous, polyphonic and incomplete – possibly due to a similarly conceived “reality.” The ironic, poststructural story that I have chosen for analysis here is David Campbell’s Writing Security: United States Foreign Policy and the Politics of Identity. Campbell avows his desire to rethink and problematize (1992: vii), to tackle self-evident categories, to flush out taken-for-granted assumptions, to investigate rituals of power and to make difficult the statements of those involved in the study or practice of international relations (ibid: 245). By analyzing American foreign policy discourses since the invention (not discovery) of America itself, he reveals how difference, danger and otherness have constituted the identity of the United States as a major actor in international politics (ibid: 7). According to Campbell, the state was not prior to the interstate system, and foreign policies give rise to boundaries more than build bridges (ibid: 56). Going against basic assumptions of the field, Writing Security is definitely a subversive book. Besides Writing Security, other poststructural classics would deserve analysis as ironic/satirical narratives. Specifically, two important collections of essays – International/Intertextual Relations: Postmodern Readings of World Politics (Der Derian and Shapiro, 1989 (eds.)) and the special issue of International Studies Quarterly titled “Speaking the Language of Exile: Dissidence in International Studies” (Ashley and Walker, 1990 (eds.)) – would provide interesting material not only because of their provocative theses but also due to their nature as edited

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volumes. Collections are by definition constructed by uniting different perspectives under one heading, by forging a single story out of multiple voices. The possibly resulting cacophony and irreconcilable claims of the authors would demonstrate the difficulties of communication and progress. On the other hand, doing justice to all the essays with their divergent strategies of subversion would require a treatment more extensive than accomplishable here. In the following, I will first outline the structure and main claims of Writing Security and then study the ironic/satirical appeal of the work. Structure and main claims Writing Security consists of a preface situating the book in the field of International Relations, an introduction specifying the epistemological and ontological stance of the book, four chapters on the way the state and foreign policy are understood by Campbell (versus traditional IR approaches), four chapters on the meaning and purpose of American or United States Foreign Policy and a final chapter on the implications the analysis has for theory and practice of international relations. Right from the preface, Campbell emphasizes contrast: “this is a very different sort of international relations book” (1992: vii). In the introduction, he presents his central claim, namely that danger is not an objective condition, but an effect of interpretation (ibid: 1–2). In epistemic terms, Writing Security differs from epistemic realism “whereby the world comprises objects the existence of which is independent of ideas or beliefs about them” and “the purpose of analysis [is] to identify self-evident things and material causes” (ibid: 4); it “celebrates the particularity and context-bound nature of judgements and assessments” (ibid: 5). Instead of the logic of explanation, Campbell embraces the logic of interpretation. Ontologically, he refuses “the force of distinction between discursive and nondiscursive” (ibid: 6). Since every object is constituted as an object of discourse – objects constitute themselves as objects only inside a discursive condition of emergence as Laclau and Mouffe maintain – underlining the separate existence of objects outside discourse makes no sense. Thought and reality do not stand in opposition, according to Campbell, but are part of the same social process. In sharp contrast to Wendt who argues that states are people, too (1999: 194) – let alone the stories where the existence of state actors is taken for granted, not even discussed – Campbell suggests that “the state has no ontological status apart from the various acts which constitute its reality” (1992: 9). Campbell reasons that since states do not exist apart from the practices that constitute their reality, they cannot possess prediscursive, stable identities either. States are always in the process of becoming, permanently in need of reproduction (1992: 11), and this reproduction takes place through the constant articulation of danger through foreign policy (ibid: 12). Moreover, Campbell argues that while the objects of foreign policy concern change over time, the techniques and exclusions by which those objects are constituted as dangers persist (ibid: 12). While drawing examples from US practices all along the way, in the beginning of the book, Campbell investigates foreign policy discourses more generally.

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In Chapter 1, he approaches foreign policy texts not as reactions to threats “out there” in the world, but as instances of the desire to (re)produce a nation’s meaning and purpose (ibid: 32), and IR theory as one site of pervasive cultural practices that discipline ambiguity (ibid: 19). In Chapter 2, Campbell compares conventional formulations and understandings of foreign policy with the idea that the state needs discourses of “danger” to provide a new theology of truth about who and what “we” are and are not (ibid: 54). According to Writing Security, danger might be thought of as “the new god for the modern world of states” (ibid: 55). Like danger replicates the logic of Christendom’s evangelism of fear, “the state project of security replicates the church project of salvation” (ibid: 56). This differs markedly from the conventional “sovereign states in an anarchic world, foreign policy as a bridge between them” formulation (ibid: 46). Chapters 3 and 4 deal with foreign policy as a practice that makes foreign, creates boundaries and performs identity. Starting from Hobbes’s writings, Campbell demonstrates how describing the reality has always been less important for foreign policy than disciplining the self: how “the state of nature” was meant to function as a sanction, a threat, to warn against rebelling against sovereign authority, not to depict existing circumstances (1992: 61–68). “The narrative of the Leviathan is a polemic for science and the rationalism of the Enlightenment” claims Campbell (ibid: 67). He concludes that foreign policy was integral to the constitution of the state and the interstate system, not something subsequent to them (ibid: 68). Campbell distinguishes between foreign policy (all practices of differentiation, in principle both affirmative and abjuring) and Foreign Policy (state practices reproducing the identities made possible by foreign policy, more obviously dependent upon discourses of fear and danger, negative associations) but studies them alongside each other (ibid: 76–79, 85, 100–101). While the political has traditionally been represented in terms of the body (ibid: 87), according to Campbell, disease is the most salient metaphor of political crisis (ibid: 92). Campbell asserts that perceived moral concerns and social dangers are often represented in medical terms (ibid: 96) and that there is a symmetry of medical and military discourses (ibid: 97). Doctors “bombard” sick cells with radiation and chemotherapy, and US Foreign Policy measures are directed against “the plague” of communism and “the cancer” of terrorism. Danger (to health and security) is defined not only in terms of sickness, dirt and pollution, but increasingly also the abnormal and unnatural. Traditionally, groups such as “hysteric women,” “deviant homosexuals,” “lethargic blacks” and “hot-headed labor unionists” have been defined as likely to disturb the healthy political body from within and, moreover, as particularly susceptible to foreign pathological influences. Proper authorities need to make the diagnosis, and they may prescribe violent intervention to cure the disease. While the medical metaphor in Galtung’s romance gave the peace specialist the positive role of a doctor treating the disease of violence, the medical metaphor studied in the ironic/satirical story of Campbell justifies disciplining and punishing anything not deemed normal. The latter part of the book examines America, “the imagined community par excellence” (1992: 105), and US practices of writing security starting from the

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encounters of the Europeans with Amerindians and finishing with the “new” dangers of the post–Cold War era. In Chapter 5, Campbell claims that while no state possesses a prediscursive, stable identity, America is peculiarly dependent on representational practices for its being: since there has never been a country called “America,” nor an ethnic group named “Americans,” “America” exists mainly in symbols and texts, “foreign policy” (ibid). Writing Security describes how the Puritan settlers were the first to undertake “the logistical work and ideological justifications required for long-term colonization of North America” (ibid: 120). They presented colonization as the fulfillment of scriptural prophecy, regarded the land as belonging solely to themselves, and saw “the people and objects encountered as obstacles to their destiny” (ibid: 121). In their imageries, they combined the pagan (cf. Las Casas) and barbaric (cf. Sepulveda) qualities of the indigenous peoples and draw the conclusion that extermination or complete physical separation were the appropriate strategies to deal with the strangers who worshipped the devil (ibid: 122–129). In 18th-century colonial America, the settlers substituted one marginal group for another: the African slaves who were integral to the emerging society were excluded from membership in it (ibid: 129–132). Around the moment of the Declaration of Independence, a line was drawn between the morally inferior or decadent English society and the American colonies, but conserving the Pilgrim past rather than repudiating it was the general purpose of foreign policy, and all other, subsequent revolutions (the French, the Russian etc.) have been abhorred by the Americans (ibid: 132–143). Campbell maintains that the apocalyptic mode has been conspicuous in the catalog of American statecraft (1992: 153). An array of individuals, groups, beliefs and behaviors have occupied the position of Antichrist, but the discourses of danger have been similar in different contexts. After the continental expansion was completed, the time of the global inscription of United States Foreign Policy began. Campbell recognizes the same “arguments which claim universality for particular American values” (ibid: 158) that Morgenthau is so worried about in his tragedy. While Germany was the US enemy in two world wars, communism, according to Campbell, has played a more significant role in the construction of US identity, far more significant than the moves of the Soviet Union (ibid: 156–161). The ideas of communal identity and collectivism, above all, have served as the barbaric or pathological from which the civilized norms of individualism and private property constantly have to be protected (ibid). More often than as military moves by another state, these challenges have presented themselves in the practices of groups within the United States. In various instances, it has been, for example, the Indians, Bolsheviks, pacifists, anarchists, socialists, women’s or labor rights activists, lower classes and free-love college professors who have embodied what “we” are not (ibid: 153–193). Chapters 7 and 8 analyze two post–Cold War discourses of danger: the threat of drugs (ibid: 195–222) and of the economic policies of Japan (ibid: 223–243). In the final chapter of Writing Security, Campbell summarizes the implications of his theorizing for the IR discipline, for US Foreign Policy and for thinking

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about “the political.” He concludes that “epistemic realism is sustainable only through the faith of its adherents believing that they are warding off a threat” (1992: 247), and that the ritual forgetting needed to uphold the faith of traditional scholarship can only increase its anxieties (ibid: 248). As to the US (and the European) case, Cold War practices seem to continue: strategies of otherness produce new, yet familiar exclusive orders (ibid: 249–252). Finally, as to conceptual imagination, “the state has colonized our understanding of ‘the political’” (ibid: 253). The general picture is dim and oppressive indeed. Ironic/satirical appeal Similarly to Enloe’s in Bananas, Beaches and Bases, Campbell provides a surprise glimmer of hope to the ending of Writing Security. After the conclusions – that traditional IR will probably cling to its beliefs, that (US) Foreign Policy has so far been predicated upon a desire to contain, master and normalize threatening contingencies through violence and that the state can be thought of as a Foucauldian ensemble of practices that are at the same time individualizing and totalizing – the following questions and an unexpected answer are presented: Do we have an alternative to the continued reproduction of sovereign communities in an economy of violence? Can we act in terms other than those associated with the predominant (and gendered) discourses of power? The answer to that question is an unequivocal “yes.” (Campbell, 1992: 256). Much like Morgenthau comes up with the possibility of peace-preserving diplomacy on page 517/548 of his book, Campbell sketches alternatives to deeply embedded practices of writing security on the last three pages of his. In Politics among Nations, the desperate move adds to the tragic effect of the story; in Writing Security, it strengthens the satirical appeal. Suddenly, Campbell reminds us that “we might think differently” and that there are other possibilities to explore (ibid: 256). Were those possibilities explored, declares Campbell, American identity and our understanding of “the political” would be very different from that which currently predominates. We could, for example, frame responses to environmental dangers in de-territorialized, communal terms (ibid: 257). To finish off his story about the ability of the prevalent governmental rationality to uphold a “society of security” where the practices of police, war and foreign policy/Foreign Policy are tightly combined, Campbell refers to Foucault’s understanding of power that emphasizes its productive and enabling nature (ibid). Subjects are free: they can articulate counter-demands, engage in counterconduct, resist and struggle (ibid: 258). The bulk of Writing Security demonstrates how new challenges do not escape old logics and how old registers of security accommodate to cover new domains; the solution of “counter-conduct” sounds much like the “easy and effectual” proposal of Swift. Compared with what we know about the problems based on the story, the solution is too easy, too good

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to be taken at face-value. Due to the incongruity, we are led to suspect irony/ satire. While women – both with and without names – have the main roles in Enloe’s ironic/satirical story, Campbell pays individual actors very little attention. He mentions states and people, the traditional IR characters – it is very difficult to write a story about world politics without reference to these actors – but they seem less important than long-term practices and processes. He explicitly tackles “the problematique of subjectivity in international relations” right from the beginning of his book and claims that he will steer away from pre-given subjects; in the preface, already, it is policies, practices, proclamations, declarations, texts and theorizations that are responsible for most of the action (1992: vii–viii). Campbell criticizes “traditional discourses of international relations” and expresses his ideas using a different kind of rhetoric: [J]ust as Foreign Policy works to constitute the identity in whose name it operates, security functions to instantiate the subjectivity it purports to serve. Indeed, security (of which foreign policy/Foreign Policy is a part) is first and foremost a performative discourse constitutive of political order. (Campbell, 1992: 253). Instead of being an instance of the United States reacting to the threat posed by the Soviet Union, the US Cold War policies were “an important moment in the (re)production of American identity” (1992: 157). Instead of scholars participating in rational debate, it is epistemologies that propose competing projects: epistemic realism is committed to containing “Cartesian anxiety” and the logic of interpretation seeks to replace “the command ethic of epistemic realism” (ibid: 247–248). Among the various writings, “the representational practices of those acting in official capacities” take center stage in the narrative and Campbell acknowledges this (ibid: viii). These practices are clearly violent – they “work to inscribe an extensive sovereign community in an economy of violence” (ibid: 240) – but it is difficult to nail the culprits. In the case of the United States, for example, it is administrations more than specific presidents that are responsible, and since not a single affirmative representational practice is analyzed, all administrations seem equally guilty. The reader does not get the chance to identify with the “human rights activists” and the “women’s, youth, ecological, and peace movements” introduced in the second to last paragraph of the book. No heroes are picked out as models for the rest of us – if not possibly Foucault on the intellectual front – and there are no “outside” enemies to attack. As with Bananas, Beaches and Bases, Writing Security makes us into accomplices in the crime of reproducing dominant imageries. Most of the story depicts the marginalization and punishment of liminal groups, the militarization of threats, the scapegoating of certain behaviors as immoral and the stigmatizing of domestic political dissent. There are plenty of victims, and these targets of exclusion are often the same groups of people, irrespective of the specific “danger” constructed: the working class, the poor, the mad, women,

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foreigners and minorities. For example, an influential general interest weekly magazine claimed in 1920 that of the arrested anarchists and communists in America, nine out of every ten are foreigners, many verge on insanity and many are “women with minds gone slightly awry, morbid, senseless” (ibid: 162–163). In addition to going after the usual suspects, each context of securing identity brings along new things to worry about and a specific combination of the old elements. The neo-conservatives of the late 1960s, for example, focused on the family, organized religion and the state – and promulgated a new range of groups and issues considered threatening, such as drugs, crime, welfare, taxes, affirmative action, gay rights, women’s rights, child care, gun control and divorce (1992: 179–187). Writing Security makes it clear that these practices do not deserve our approval or acceptance as mere descriptions of external reality. But what exactly should be done and who would be in a position to effect change remains less apparent. Were we to stop warding off anarchy and disorder the way we do, the whole world as we know it would crumble: The state, and the identity of “man” located in the state, can therefore be regarded as the effects of discourses of danger which more often than not employ strategies of otherness. (Campbell, 1992: 56). Since it is not merely relationships among state actors, but the very constitution of those actors and the identity of every single one of us that need to be made less abjuring, the task is formidable. In fact, so formidable as to make one despair. The readers of Writing Security will probably sneer at the most blatant examples of foreign policy gone excessive in the past – say, requiring a loyalty oath for a fishing permit in New York in the early 1950s (1992: 169) – but the closer the experiences come, the less funny they seem. Campbell shows us that it is not just through grand public rituals and individual boundary-affirming gestures that difference, danger and otherness are produced, but that our mundane, everyday activities are part of the process. Moreover, the binary distinctions organizing different spheres reinforce each other: […] given the culturally pervasive nature of gender norms […] it is not implausible to suggest that a similar regime […] operates in other domains and disciplines other identities, such as the state. Indeed, if we consider how our understanding of politics is heavily indebted to a discursive economy in which reason, rationality, and masculinity are licensed as superior to unreason, irrationality, and femininity, it is not difficult to appreciate that gender norms have also helped to constitute the norms of statecraft. (Campbell, 1992: 10). Like Enloe, Campbell emphasizes the gendered nature of our representations: frontiers as ever-shifting boundaries between “barbarism” and “civilization,” “chaos” and “order,” “feminine” and “masculine” (1992: 165), the fear of female

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sexuality that might entice “normal” men from the moral path as a basis of domestic containment (ibid: 177), restoring patriarchal authority as a means of invigorating the nation (ibid: 184), and war as a process of remasculinization (ibid: 239). The reasoning man, for anyone who has read Writing Security, is not just a harmless manner of speaking, but a violent practice reproducing established order. And what is more disturbing is that we find it difficult to imagine ways in which to speak differently, to avoid participating in clearly questionable practices. Campbell, like poststructural writers more generally, does not offer a “neutral” or “better” or “correct” way of organizing the world and our identities; he simply makes us aware of the violence inherent in our established categories and discourses. To complicate identification even further, Campbell refrains “from self-consciously describing the attitude of this argument as being ‘postmodern’ or ‘poststructural’” (ibid: 246). He explains that this aversion of his is based not on dissimilar concerns and conclusions as compared to those of other scholars labeled “postmodern” or “poststrucural,” but on the labeling itself. Campbell sees this particular label as a strategy used by mainstream IR scholars to fight “foreign” influences on the discipline, to homogenize “continental philosophy” and to present it as unable to say anything useful about the “real world” (ibid). The position is in line with the rest of the book, but leaves the readers not only without positive foreign policy models on the level of practice but without intellectual models as well. Like Pope who was frustrated with everybody – the Protestants making the life of Catholics difficult, the Catholics preoccupied with their trivial disputes – Campbell wants to expose dangerous practices everywhere more than present a coherent alternative around which new troops can be rallied. His satire aims to make facile gestures difficult like the work of Foucault does, to disrupt and to disturb: […] the argument being made here is part of an emerging dissident literature in international relations. […] this dissent does not (and does not desire to) constitute a discrete methodological school claiming to magically illuminate the previously dark recesses of global politics. Nor is it the dissent of a selfconfident and singular figure claiming to know the error of all previous ways and offering salvation from theoretical sin. […] It is a form of dissent that celebrates difference; the proliferation of perspectives, dimensions and approaches to our very real dilemmas of global life. […] it recognizes the universalist conceits of all attempts to force difference into the straitjacket of identity. […] It is a form of dissent which questions the very way our problems have been posed in these terms and constraints within which they have been considered […] (Campbell, 1992: 4–5). Campbell makes fun of endeavors that aim to illuminate reality or constitute an intellectual school, but he is not able to cut all ties to others and go without a story completely. “The emerging dissident literature” he refers to is a group of theories telling an ironic/satirical story where characters are ambiguous, events surprising and often violent, and miracle solutions absent. The ending of the story portrays

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neither a victorious protagonist nor a tragically failing hero, and there is no happy wedding celebration that gathers the competing parties around the same table. In Writing Security, “the globalization of contingency invokes the increasing tendencies towards ambiguity, indeterminacy, and uncertainty on our horizon” and this irruption of contingencies “renders all established containers problematic” (1992: 19). Providing an easy way out, a closure of some sort, in a situation described like this would be absurd. Instead, one can play up the contingencies in a story that does not attempt to discipline ambiguity: a satirical/ironic narrative. Postcolonialism: Tarak Barkawi and Globalization and War Postcolonialism, like poststructuralism, is characteristically a highly critical mood of theorizing. Its critique is directed against Western-centric worldviews that exclude relations of gender, race, inequality, exploitation and colonialization as international relations (Sylvester, 2017: 175), or against the way Europe first wrote the history of “Man” in its own self-image and then degraded the markers of culture, arts, and science for others to the status of folklore, myths and shamanism (Grovogui, 2013: 247). Often, a constructive element is added to the critique: postcolonialism highlights the international relations of colonial actions in the Third World, the continuities between that past and the present, and the ways ordinary people can be involved in shaping the present and the future (Sylvester, 2017: 185), or introduces a multiplicity of perspectives, traditions and approaches, applies local memories, arts and sciences, and entertains the possibility of alternatives (Grovogui, 2013: 248). What is generally not identified as a feature of postcolonial research, however, is the advocacy of a better grand scheme to replace the deficient explanations. The focus “exclusively on heroic or tragic episodes” (Sylvester, 2017) in the field of IR is noted and disapproved of – “rationalist, humanist and other universalist views” are contested (Grovogui, 2013) – but the corrective seems to be paying attention to “daily” international relations concerns and stories (Sylvester, 2017) or producing “contingent and empathetic understandings of the trajectories of human societies” (Grovogui, 2013: 262). Some, notably Gayatri Spivak (1988, 1999), are more cynical: the subaltern cannot speak and postcolonial reason is not helpful in the face of the myriad concrete problems in the world. A grand – romantic, tragic or comic – explanation is missing also from Tarak Barkawi’s Globalization and War (2006), the postcolonial ironic/satirical work chosen for analysis here. Barkawi tells a story about states as agents of globalization and war as a form of interconnection, an occasion for circulation of people, goods and ideas around the planet – that is, a story satirizing the romantic story of economic globalization doing away with aggressive states and the tragic view of war as a breakdown of interchange and circulation, a thoroughly dismal affair (2006: x–xiv and 167–169). There is a lot of violence in Barkawi’s story – both on the economic and the military front – and the ending does not promise change or any sort of resolution: war continues to be centrally implicated in processes of globalization (ibid: 172). Like Enloe and Campbell, Barkawi

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provides surprising scientific interpretations and harsh critique of international practices. Unlike Enloe and Campbell, he does not provide even a mock glimmer of hope – the final gathering of the brave and intelligent women in Bananas, Beaches and Bases, free subjects resisting the prevailing governmental rationality hinted at in Writing Security – to console his readers. The final chapter of Globalization and War deals with the War on Terror: according to Barkawi, its battlegrounds “will come increasingly to resemble those in Israel-Palestine” (ibid: 166), possibly the oldest and most difficult international conflict around. There is no grandeur in the situation; no heroes of any sort can be found – understanding the interconnected logics of globalization and war does not give the readers satisfaction, but instead, makes them frustrated and sad. As before, other examples of ironic/satirical postcolonial IR stories would have been available: Stephen Chan’s The End of Certainty fulfills many of the criteria – although devised by the author to resemble a magical, meandering realist novel (2010: xi), and being more hopeful than cynical in the end (thus bearing romantic or comic traits) – and so does Vivienne Jabri’s The Postcolonial Subject (2012), a predominantly gloomy story of how global operations of power seek to control and govern political subjects. Barkawi’s narrative was selected due to its explicit focus on war, often identified as the problem of international relations, and direct attack on Eurocentric military history and liberal romances. Although seemingly lighthearted in places – as when pointing out the irony of the US campaign to civilize the people who were living on the lands of the world’s oldest civilization in Iraq (2006: 105) – Globalization and War bears a bleak message: colonial attitudes and practices are still very much with us, many conflicts are intensifying rather than waning, and parties fighting different wars are unlikely to agree on a common solution. One more time, in the following analysis, I will first outline the structure and present the main claims of the narrative, and then move on to studying its ironic/ satirical appeal. Structure and main claims Globalization and War is composed of a preface, five chapters on separate but closely related topics, and an afterword. The preface introduces some of the main claims of the book such as: war involves many aspects traditionally associated with globalization and globalization goes hand in hand with war. According to Barkawi, war and globalization are constructed together; they are both forms of interconnectedness of people, ideas and places. Chapter 1 focuses specifically on globalization, Chapter 2 on war and Chapter 3 on how the two have interacted in general, and in the case of the British Indian colonial army. Chapter 4 deals with the cultural dimension of the two phenomena and Chapter 5 examines the ongoing War on Terror. In the afterword, Barkawi emphasizes that no adequate account of globalization can attend only to its economic, cultural or social dimensions and leave out the military dimension, war. And vice versa, war cannot be understood merely locally, without the regional and global dimension.

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Barkawi asserts that most studies of globalization have got it wrong: the present forms of global interconnection are not that recent in origin, and globalization of economy will not dissolve the nation-state (2006: 1–25). He notes that slave-powered sugar trade, already, connected various parts of the globe together (ibid: 15–16), that the French and the Haitian revolutions became caught up with one another in complex ways (ibid: 16–17) and that the world’s markets were first linked by “near real time” communications in the second half of the 19th century, with the laying of submarine intercontinental telegraph cables (ibid: 14). Like Wallerstein, Barkawi views economic globalization as a political project (ibid: 11): “the state is an essential source of power of capitalism and capitalists” (ibid: 8). He claims that the free market as we know it is made through political action (ibid: 8): its construction has required tearing down a range of welfare protections, wage and price controls, trade unions, environmental regulations, local governments and community organizations inside particular countries (ibid: 3) and war and armed force internationally (ibid: 20). Opposite to what Fukuyama, Russett and Oneal affirm, free trade does not lead to peace, but can be productive of war and violence, upholds Barkawi (ibid: 24). Barkawi sees war as “an inherent aspect of economic globalization” (2006: 24) and more generally, “a globalizing force” (ibid: xii, 92, 169) or “a principal form of interconnection between people and places” (ibid: 172). Moreover, for Barkawi, war is always already part of “normal” societal existence, not separate from the society and from normal politics (ibid: 27–28). To demonstrate how “changes in warfare affect society, while changes in society affect warfare” (ibid: 29) – not simply inside nations-states or in restricted areas, but concerning “the entire organization of world politics” (ibid: 30) – he turns to three examples: changes in medieval military order in Europe affecting the emergence of sovereign states, the French revolution introducing “total” war by “the people” and the Cold War logic of two nuclear superpowers avoiding direct engagement in Europe creating proxy wars in the Third World. Barkawi challenges the Correlates of War database frequently drawn on in liberal IR romances, and claims that both “democracy” and “war” have to be defined in a very specific way to make the “democratic peace” thesis hold (ibid: 52–57). It requires, for example, looking the other way with respect to the undemocratic practices of many rich and powerful countries, and dismissing many conflicts fought with superpower arms and assistance, and/or resulting in hundreds of casualties, as mere internal quarrels. In Barkawi’s ironic/satirical story, the case of the colonial British Indian army illustrates the interplay between globalization and war, the interconnection and mutual constitution between different locales and peoples, and the way in which war brings together the parties to a conflict and transforms society and politics. The British Indian army played a world historical role in securing the British Empire and sustaining the Allied cause in two world wars at crucial junctures; it shaped both India and Britain and provided a medium for transmitting political ideas and comparing social practices. According to Globalization and War, the

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British Indian army served as a strategic reserve of reliable professional troops, “a fire brigade” that could make up for military deficits in other parts of the British Empire (2006: 61, 65, 74). Indian soldiers, and later officers, comprised a significant proportion of the British and imperial forces; they took a significant part of the burden of war efforts off the shoulders of the British society. The British Indian army was not only a tool of imperial control, but an object of it: it was divided and ruled just like the rest of India (ibid: 82). Since it was recruited from select populations defined as “martial races” who were given special privileges, it divided the colonized against one another and the mass of their own people (ibid: 68–72). The influences were by no means simple. Although British rule in India rested on the maintenance of traditional religious ideas, illiteracy and caste divisions, the Indian soldiers returning back from British military missions sowed seeds of change and revolution. For example, the ones who had experienced the First World War pondered over American female aviators (gender), European nurses clearing away the contents of bedpans (caste) and the role of extensive popular education for the wealth of a nation (ibid: 79). After getting very little in return for its contribution to the Second World War, the British Indian army became more anxious to serve its own country under its own leaders (ibid: 88–89). When expounding on the cultural dimension of war and globalization, Barkawi comes close to the preceding ironic/satirical IR narrative here analyzed, Campbell’s Writing Security, and explicitly refers to it (2006: 96). Barkawi, too, is interested in the representations of threat and danger, in how the international system is constituted as an arena of potentially hostile nation-states and the community at home as preserving our identity. He identifies both efforts to assert “traditional” ethnic identities in the face of the global, and efforts to organize across borders, sometimes on behalf of a group, sometimes on behalf of the humanity as a whole, as features of globalization (ibid: 98–99). As to other cultural constructions, Barkawi is interested especially in the ones operating with the North-South and the West-Orient distinctions. In the Western imagination, the North represents the advanced, the modern, the civilized, the rational and the sovereign, while the South stands for the backward, the underdeveloped, the uncivilized, the instinctual and the dependent (ibid: 101–107). Similarly, the West is defined in terms of rationality, progress, democracy and economic development, qualities in which the Orient is always found lacking (ibid: 107). In a satirical tone, Barkawi observes that through these distinctions American elites genuinely come to “believe they are working for a better world for all, even when, indeed especially when, this involves invading countries from time to time” (ibid: 106). The “supposed harmony between Western interests and humanitarian purposes” legitimates violating rules (ibid) and causes profound bewilderment and distress when the people being liberated decide to fight back as in Vietnam or Iraq (ibid: 109–122). Globalization and War ends with a discussion on the War on Terror. Barkawi claims that a clash of civilizations is increasingly the product – rather than the original cause – of the conflict (2006: 165). In this conflict, argues

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Barkawi, “civilization” has been reduced to an Anglo-American-Israeli rump facing a “common enemy” seen as the widespread pathology of Islam (ibid: 161–163). The vision amounts to a recipe for continued escalation of the war (ibid: 165). Ironic/satirical appeal Like A Modest Proposal leaves the horrified readers awaiting the execution of Swift’s “fortunate” plan, Barkawi paints a dreary picture of times to come: A problem with war, and force more generally, is that it is a blunt instrument for the pursuit of ideals. Violence generates resistance and further violence. The uncompromising and ultimately impossible nature of some ideals can lead to ever more violence in their pursuit, in part because they often require the complete humiliation and submission, or even extermination, of the enemy, at least some of whom are more likely to fight to the last breath in such circumstances. The notion of war to end terror illustrates some of the problems involved. “Terror” is often a weapon of those who lack other weapons, who believe their voices are not heard and whose desires go unrealized. […] If the terrorists are viewed by the strong as evil fanatics beyond the pale of civilization, […] the tendency is to rely wholly on military and other security means […] This combined offensive in word and deed is escalatory in nature […] The number of victims rises all around, including civilians killed as “collateral damage” and those targeted directly by terror. (Barkawi, 2006: 129–130). Globalization and War depicts how the logic has been set in motion; based on what we have been told, we have little reason to believe that it will be halted. Barkawi does point out that “engagement and compromise” – a “realization that justice lies on both sides” – might change the course of events (2006: 129), but there is almost no indication that it will, except possibly the passing reference to “many Europeans” who view things differently (ibid: 166). Barkawi’s desperation in the face of universalistic projects resembles that of Morgenthau and Campbell – the latter more than the former due to the lack of tragic grandeur. By the time that they get to the final scene, readers find it difficult to sympathize with any of the parties. The world seems to have gone mad: “in many ways, bin Laden shares Huntington’s view of two unalterably opposed civilizations in conflict” (ibid: 138). On the other side, the belief is that “the fate of the Atlantic alliance and of ‘liberal civilization’ hangs on the willingness of the ‘international community’ to aid Israel” (ibid: 163). Neither camp acknowledges the way “Islam and the West have in part constituted one another through their long history of interaction” (ibid: 140). While the West has a long history of intervention in the Middle East – “the West is already in the Islamic world” – “Islam is already in the West,” too, for example, in the form of large Muslim populations (ibid: 139). While the West has built on science and technological innovations developed in

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the Arab world, Western philosophy, ideologies and state structures have had a profound influence on the Arab world. But the main actors in the international arena do not realize this long-term interaction and fluidity of boundaries. Like Belinda and the Baron, they aggrandize their differences on purpose without caring for the consequences. They are hell-bent on acting out the Manichean battle between the forces of light and the forces of darkness. As to the actors, Globalization and War underlines that states still play major roles: […] states are not victims of economic globalization so much as they are agents of it. Contemporary economic globalization is in part the result of the uses of state power to pursue the political project of a global free market. (Barkawi, 2006: 10). According to Barkawi, states and state power are responsible for capitalist globalization: they are needed for building the necessary structures and regulating the system. Internationally, establishing “free trade” often requires war (2006: 168). Barkawi formulates his stance in opposition to the romantic neoliberal story where the globalized economy of unimpeded market forces produces steady economic growth, effectively addresses poverty and inequality, and leaves wars civil and foreign in history (ibid: 1–2, 19–20). In neoliberal thinking, the market is “natural” and state interference is usually a problem. According to the “end of the nation-state” view, most eagerly propagated by Kenichi Ohmae, the role of states is luckily diminishing and might even fade away (ibid: 5–11). Barkawi recognizes the constantly changing nature of the international system, but claims that “states, borders, and political intervention in the economy seem alive and well in today’s world” (ibid: 7). Instead of simply turning the roles around, of pitting “heroic” states against the “evil” economy, however, he makes states accomplices in capitalist processes. For Barkawi, states are not victims or passive bystanders; they play a role in the good and the bad, just like other actors. As opposed to the stable casts in romances and tragedies, the positions of characters in Globalization and War are ambiguous and in flux, and comprehensive solutions are thus difficult to formulate. That having been said, Barkawi recognizes differences among state actors. The United States and the United Kingdom are picked out as “two of the most militarily powerful and warlike states history has ever seen” (2006: 52). Right after these two comes Israel: especially since 9/11, the Israeli leadership has managed to “Israelize” America, to make the United States fight Israel’s wars (ibid: 158). In terms of the Cold War divide, the other bloc is not let off the hook either: especially the USSR involvement in Afghanistan is paid attention to (ibid: 62), and the de facto Soviet control of the East German, Polish and Czechoslovak armed forces is recognized as having limited the actual sovereignty of the Warsaw Pact states (ibid: 46–47). More recently, President Putin is attributed with hypocritically using the War on Terror to frame Russian wars in Chechnya (ibid: 147–150). In addition to studying the military actions of and in the British

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Empire, also French (and Belgian, ibid: 46) imperial practices are referred to in the story, for example, when analyzing the role of the West African soldiers serving France in the two world wars (ibid: 49). The violence of stateless alQaeda (ibid: 45) and the Palestinians (ibid: 150–151) goes to show that although the call for war often comes from states and empires, other actors are not by definition innocent, either. Globalization and War addresses the dynamics of asymmetric conflicts directly: Underneath the civilization-versus-terrorism frame is the nature of armed conflict between weak and strong powers, in which justice does not necessarily belong only to the latter. While the weak may use terror, the firepower of the strong is also horrifying, and it is usually more deadly. (Barkawi, 2006: 151). Barkawi gives voice to those who find it hard to understand why the civilian victims of aerial bombing are less important than the victims of terrorist attacks: for some reason, they seem to be harder to count; their deaths are considered less barbaric in the West (2006: 146–147, 151). The way Globalization and War treats war as normal (ibid: 28) and justice as lying on both sides (ibid: 129) would probably make the romantic storytellers – not only the liberal ones such as Fukuyama, Russett and Oneal, but also peace researchers like Galtung – wince. For the romantically oriented, violence may be necessary before we reach a better system, but we are never to become hardened to war, and good causes can be differentiated from evil ones. For them, war is best understood as an exception. This applies also to the IR comedians – Gandhi, Wendt and Linklater included – who refuse to give violence an indispensable transformative role and believe in the possibility of an international society, even cosmopolitan culture. Like the realist tragedians – Morgenthau and Mearsheimer – Barkawi does not, of course, rejoice over the everyday reproduction of violent practices, or war as such; he simply sees it as part of normal politics (ibid: 27). Barkawi explicitly talks about “our common humanity” (ibid: 124) that might be recognized in wartime and “war’s horror” (ibid: 125) that might be an incitement to all concerned to put an end to it, but there is a certain resignation in his tone. He clearly does not believe in war as a problem-solving mechanism, but his accompanying prognosis is nonetheless cheerless: Indeed, it may well take further collective catastrophes equal to or greater than the Second World War before we realize, if we ever do, that war is often a bigger problem than any it is called upon to solve. (Barkawi, 2006: 126). Globalization and War leads us to expect great catastrophes and pain – possibly to no avail. Not only are the central state and nonstate actors all stuck to their dangerous practices, but also research communities are unable to grasp the big picture: military historians focus on European nation-states, strategic studies deal

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too narrowly with weapon systems and their use, most of sociology ignores war altogether and globalization studies perceive of globalization as standing in opposition to war (2006: 27–31). International relations remain a mystery for both liberal economic theories and studies based on the assumption of states as sovereign political actors. What everybody seems to miss is the complicated and violent interaction, the multitude of ways in which people, places and ideas are connected to each other across the globe. According to Barkawi, critical, historical understanding is very much needed, but seldom formulated and certainly not taken heed of. Somewhat like Enloe, Barkawi appears to be more interested in grasping the actual phenomena – globalization and war, for Enloe, women in international politics – than contributing to the theoretical debates as such. He does not venture into the kinds of ontological and epistemological depths that Wendt or Campbell do, but instead, provides historical trajectories and anecdotes from the field. For example, Barkawi tells us about the British Second World War intelligence officer worried about the Indian soldiers “absorbing ideas about democracy and freedom” (ibid: ix), the Indian soldier writing back home from the Western front in the First World War asking for love potions to attract French women (ibid: 78) and the Italians explaining that their defeat at Adowa in 1896 was due to the fact that the Ethiopians were actually Caucasians, not members of an inferior race (ibid: 107–109). Barkawi uses the technique of pointing out absurdities (2006: 108) and ironies (ibid: 110) throughout the story. Serious issues are dealt with by bringing into our attention strange facts and incongruities. For example, Barkawi notes that: Despite its racial ideology in WWII, Nazi Germany made extensive use of foreign troops. A half-million served in the Waffen SS alone, with foreigners outnumbering native Germans by the end of the war. (Barkawi, 2006: 49). Also, after summarizing Rudyard Kipling’s thesis about the “natives” as half child and half devil, he goes on to explain ongoing Western military logic: “Nativescum-devils must be defeated by force so that natives-cum-children can be civilized peaceably by the well-meaning Europeans” (2006: 102–103). Instead of a “white man’s burden,” there is now “development” and “modernization,” but the logic eerily remains the same. As to the War on Terror, Barkawi claims that by condensing all problems and adversaries into Islamic terrorism, the West might in fact bring people together, but contrary to the way hoped for: The key to mobilizing this popular base is the increasing belief that the West is truly engaged in a war against Islam. Might it not seem to a Moro fighter that this is indeed the case, as he catches sight of US special operations forces on patrol in his backyard, hears of the Palestinian struggle, watches the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, and discovers that the Americans even remembered to include some obscure Muslim brothers in remote parts of China on their lists of enemies? Might he not start returning the favor and begin establishing

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transnational connections with other, like-minded groups, coordinating operations and orienting them toward the larger, global struggle? (Barkawi, 2006: 137). The passage might be funny, if it were not so unnerving. Like many other ironic/ satirical works, Globalization and War operates with dark humor: most readers probably laugh at places, but not without mixed feelings. Some might find that Barkawi goes too far – for example, the section on “the Israelization of America” (2006: 157–166) is bound to ruffle some people – but this is precisely the function of irony/satire. The mood of the story is pessimistic, and Barkawi’s view concerning major scenes and trends in the international arena is dim: “A renewed and virulent American nationalism feeds on a modernist Islamic fundamentalism, and vice versa in a violent spiral” (ibid: xiii). Globalization and War leaves us disheartened and confused: we have no path to follow, no specific direction to head toward.

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Conclusion

In this concluding chapter, I will draw together the findings of the preceding analysis by comparing the relative strengths and weaknesses of the 12 IR narratives as competing bids to explain international relations. Instead of attempting to assess the accuracy of the stories – to check whether the facts are correct and whether the causal links established are sound – I will consider their narrative appeal. More often than disagreeing about the existence of (particular) facts as such, authors of IR theory disagree about the choice and meaning of facts: which facts are essential to the story, how the facts should be interpreted. Moreover, IR scholars seldom deny the existence of causes in the real world, but in their narrative accounts, they are unable to prove these beyond doubt or to accumulate law-like regularities to form theories that would resemble those of natural sciences. None of the IR narratives examined in this book can be demonstrated to be intrinsically better or definitely truer than the others, and no generic plot has achieved the status of being universally valid in all situations. Different readers make evaluations based on different criteria, and their evaluations may change in time. In the following, I will summarize the basic features discussed earlier – types of endings, characters/roles, means, progression and mood – with relation to each of the IR stories, and compare the ways in which the stories make events and actors on the international scene meaningful. I will contemplate the consequences of adopting the different plots and briefly deliberate on the possibility of imagining completely new stories. According to the heuristic typology presented in Chapter 2, the four generic plots can be differentiated from one another in several ways. I will recapitulate. In tragedies, proud and stubborn heroes fight fiercely for doomed causes and face demise. For the audience of a tragedy, the experience is sad but cathartic. In romances/epics, unfailingly brave heroes slay evil enemies on a designated path toward a happy ending. The audience is provided both genuine excitement and a reassuring closure. In comedies, everyone encountered on the bumpy but bloodless road – the whole messy lot – is invited to the final celebration. While the problems presented are real, the idea is not to make the audience scared or desperate at any moment. Ironic/satirical stories portray incoherent characters and unexpected events, unjustified violence and clashing interpretations. Audiences often find it hard to decipher the message of the ironic/satirical story and to draw

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lessons for the future. Although there are features that characterize all stories of a particular type, each realization of the generic plot is also unique. The 12 IR stories analyzed in this book demonstrate this amply. The two tragedies – Morgenthau’s Politics among Nations and Mearsheimer’s The Tragedy of Great Power Politics – both focus on great power actors heading, in all probability, toward a dismal end. In Morgenthau’s story, it is the nationalistic masses that meet under an empty sky from which the gods have departed. The two nuclear superpowers have succumbed to hubris and adopted universalistic, mutually exclusive goals. They both believe to be on a sacred mission: they are unlikely to listen to words of warning or to turn back. In the age of total war, a “destroy or be destroyed” spirit promises nothing good for anyone, and no development in the story grounds for a miracle solution. Morgenthau appears to be weary and desperate. His audience might be enchanted by the horrible logic, but definitely not empowered to effect change, to stop the crusading heroes. The second tragedy, Mearsheimer’s story, portrays a scene of great powers condemned to fear and competition: only strength ensures safety, survival mandates aggressive behavior and God helps those who help themselves. The ultimate goal for everyone is the status of world hegemon. According to Mearsheimer, peace is not likely to break out in this world and compromises in security matters are usually bad ideas. Another great power war is quite possible even though none of the actors is actively looking for it and many have nuclear weapons. Mearsheimer assures his readers that things are, nevertheless, as they should be: since there is no escaping the tragic situation, pessimism should guide state policies. As to the narrative merits of Politics among Nations and The Tragedy of Great Power Politics, both provide clear roles, stable characters, predictable progression and a definitive denouement. Once the stage is set, the audience knows what to expect from the actors. There are very few, if any, loose ends, detours and puzzles. Although Morgenthau speaks for community-building diplomacy and a world state that would overcome the problem of state sovereignty, nothing in the history he recounts speaks for the likelihood of this kind of a radical reorientation. Although Mearsheimer does not claim that war is inevitable, the movement of the billiard balls always seeking to maximize relative power makes it in practice more than probable. The stories are pessimistic, but there is a certain grandeur to the moves of the main actors and the apocalyptic culmination: no one wavers or has second thoughts, and projects are followed to their logical conclusion, not halfway. There is formal pleasure to derive from the consistently gloomy story. The downsides in the realm of international relations, of course, are the violent means resorted to, the inflexibility of the heroes and the sad ending. In the nuclear era, an apocalyptic ending to the story can actually mean the end of humanity and the planet. Weapons of total war in the hands of absolutely determined adversaries in a self-help system might finish our storytelling altogether. Even in the case of a lesser catastrophe, the suffering of the many basically innocent actors who go down with the stubborn heroes results in pleasure for nobody. The four romances/epics – Fukuyama’s The End of History, Russett and Oneal’s Triangulating Peace, Wallerstein’s World-Systems Analysis and Galtung’s

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Peace: Research, Education, Action – all describe progression toward a better world: (most probably) victorious struggles of brave heroes against the forces of evil. In Fukuyama’s story, the hero is liberal democracy: democracy and capitalism have beaten the systemic opponents of hereditary monarchy, fascism and communism, and will get no real challenge from the still-remaining authoritarian or totalitarian regimes or the Islamic world. The scariest monsters at the moment are the ones within liberal democracy: the thymotic passions to be greater than others have only partial outlets in an economic and political system that has been perfected to the utmost. Pure boredom might direct the last man toward aggressive religion or nationalism – but probably will not: he seems to be content. The battles in history were fierce, but today, liberal democracies pose little threat to one another. Triangulating Peace adds a third hero to the list: democracy and free trade work together with international organizations to reduce the danger of war. The victory of the three Kantian variables is statistically spectacular: the likelihood of a dispute in a state dyad drops by 71% if all the influences are increased simultaneously. Russett and Oneal tell the story of virtuous cycles: good things go together, causal relations between most variables are strong in both directions and the system as a whole is becoming more peaceful. The older, more terrible logic of force still needs to be occasionally resorted to in dealings with autocratic states, but the community of democratic, amicably interacting heroes is growing. One of the heroes of the liberal romances/epics, the capitalist world-economy, is the monster in Wallerstein’s story. Luckily, we are witnessing its downfall, a systemic crisis that will become more chaotic and violent. The capitalist worldeconomy has exhausted its logical possibilities; accumulation of capital is becoming more and more difficult with rising costs of production and falling sales prices, and capitalists are turning to financial speculation. Although there is no certainty about the outcome of the struggle, there is hope that the spirit of Porto Alegre will win over the spirit of Davos. We are on the side of the oppressed and the excluded, and we have a possibility to create something better. Galtung’s romance/epic features the peace researcher in a formidable battle against the cunning enemy of violence. Violence manifests itself in direct, structural and cultural forms; its victims die from bullet wounds, malnutrition and curable diseases, or are prevented from realizing their full human potential, for example, due to their ethnic background. Like different diseases demand different treatments, violence needs to be encountered by various means both by the general practitioners and the appropriate specialists: in some cases, associative therapies are in order, while other cases demand the severance of exploitative ties and conflict creation. Galtung assures his readers that peace is possible and that research can contribute toward the goal. The narrative merits of the IR romances/epics are partly the same as the ones of tragedies, namely, they provide clear roles, stable characters, predictable progression and a definitive denouement. In contrast to tragedies, the mood is optimistic and the ending envisioned is happy. While the liberal romances already include the final scene, the heroes of Wallerstein and Galtung are not quite there

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yet. However, the authors are certain that a better future is possible and that we have the means to make it true. The readers of romances/epics do not have to doubt the motives of the heroes or wonder about the nature of the villain: good causes can be told apart from evil ones, and actors do not suddenly turn out to be something completely different from what we were led to believe in the beginning of the story. We have enough evidence for taking sides, and we can contribute to the positive outcome. As to the downsides in the realm of international relations, again, there are the importance of violence for the story and the difficulty of changing course. Heroes overly confident in their cause have the tendency of forgetting critical self-reflection and using excessive force. When innocent victims need to be saved and a better system established, there often is no time for meticulous analyses of the appropriate means. The black-and-white depictions rule out compromises and discourage the search for completely new perspectives to the problems. The three comedies – Gandhi’s Hind Swaraj, Wendt’s Social Theory of International Politics and Linklater’s The Transformation of Political Community – all imagine a brighter tomorrow without violent struggle being the necessary means to get there. Gandhi’s story promises us that perfect love and permanent peace are attainable through nonviolence (ahimsa), and through nonviolence only. Satyagraha – truth/soul/love force – demands courage, but is matchless as a method. Once you embrace truth and defy death, you are free from all fear and have no enemies. Gandhi claims that what is true of families and communities is true of nations. Although some of the Englishmen and capitalists behave abominably, they are not the enemies of the Indian people. People are responsible for their own fate; they should aim at self-reliance and self-rule in all contexts. Enlightened anarchy is better than the soulless machine of a state. The world can be converted, not forced, into nonviolence. Wendt’s comedy is not quite as optimistic as Gandhi’s, yet he too believes that the history of international politics will be unidirectional: any structural changes will be progressive. States have already moved from a Hobbesian culture of enmity to a Lockean culture of mutual recognition and sovereignty. Moreover, the West is tentatively moving toward yet another logic of anarchy, that of a Kantian system of cooperation and collective security. In a Kantian culture, nonviolence is in the self-interest of actors, not simply a beautiful ideal. Wars are becoming less frequent; the pressure to become friends is increasingly strong. Although change is difficult, we have already witnessed plenty of it – a reason for optimism indeed. Linklater recounts the tale of a triple transformation under way in political communities: moral boundaries are widening, there is greater respect for cultural differences and commitments to the reduction of material inequalities are getting stronger. In other words, there are advances in universality, sensitivity to particular needs and ensuring preconditions for participation in (eventually universal) communication communities. Like Wendt, Linklater identifies greatest progress in the West: the post-Westphalian member-states of the European Union have gone beyond pluralism and solidarism in their institutional arrangements: they have destabilized the position of the sovereign state and internationalized the

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struggle against tyranny and unjust exclusion. Linklater is optimistic, but refuses to settle for a fixed and final version of the future. The narrative merits of the IR comedies consist essentially of their optimistic mood, happy ending and nonviolent means: international relations are neither doomed to disaster nor in need of reorganization through violent conflict. In comparison to tragedies and romances/epics, actors in comedies have ambiguous roles and inconsistent characters. Gandhi, Wendt and Linklater do not designate anybody specifically to be the enemy: Gandhi denies the existence of outside enemies altogether, for Wendt the role of enemy belongs to all actors in a Hobbesian culture and Linklater sees states both as the main hindrance to the development of a universal communication culture and as inspiring models for developing the idea of citizenship of a cosmopolitan variety. Like nobody in particular is the enemy, everybody is a potential hero: fallible and imperfect, yet basically decent. The surprising twists and turns of comedies do not provide spectacular scenes, larger-than-life experiences to the audience – it is through silly mistakes, practical realizations and numerous retries that the story progresses – but they keep the characters alive and allow for novel solutions. In the context of international relations, the audience might not mind the downsides of the comic plot: the unspectacular events, the fumbling characters, the general going around in circles or the slow progress toward the final celebration. However trivial the story, the nonviolent happy ending might make up for the triviality. The three ironic/satirical stories – Enloe’s Bananas, Beaches and Bases, Campbell’s Writing Security and Barkawi’s Globalization and War – all portray an international scene where violent practices show no signs of dying out quickly. Enloe’s story casts light upon women in violent places and subjugated roles: women on and around military bases, in the tourism industry, in nationalist projects, in diplomatic offices, in agribusiness establishments and garment factories and as domestic workers. These places and roles are not of marginal importance to international politics, but instead essential for its smooth functioning. Moreover, keeping women’s labor cheap and patriarchal, militaristic structures in place requires active efforts and affords benefits for certain quarters while disfavoring others; there is nothing natural or automatic in the routines we are accustomed to. Bananas, Beaches and Bases demonstrates how patriarchy is ingeniously adaptable and all of us are complicit in creating the violent world. Campbell’s story illustrates how difference, danger and otherness constitute (US) national identity and foreign policies build boundaries among states. States have no pre-discursive identities and danger is not an objective condition; instead, both are in need of constant articulation. Danger seems to have become the new god of the modern world of states, and our techniques of excluding dangerous groups are often violent. New challenges do not easily escape old logics: old registers of security can accommodate new domains; ambiguity is disciplined in ways familiar since the creation of the international system and the simultaneous creation of the state. Again, we all participate in the mundane practices of making foreign. Barkawi’s story delineates violent spirals of international relations where the strong use horrendous firepower and the weak resort to means of terror.

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Colonial attitudes are still very much with us; many conflicts are intensifying due to increasingly universalistic formulations; and parties fighting different wars are unlikely to find mutually acceptable solutions. War and globalization go together: violent state intervention has been needed in the running of the so-called free markets from the very beginning, and war provides an occasion for the circulation of people, goods and ideas around the planet. Lately, the War on Terror has brought together previously unconnected causes on both the side of “the civilized world” and “the terrorists.” The ability to incorporate surprising events, inconsistent characters, ambiguous roles and novel perspectives into the plot is a narrative merit not only of comedies, but also ironic/satirical stories. However, the ironic/satirical surprises and incongruities are less pleasant than the comic ones. The absence of true heroes and distinctive, evil enemies makes it difficult to plan purposeful projects: if more or less everybody is culpable of upholding the dysfunctional practices, breaking the vicious circle seems next to impossible. The ironic/satirical stories that resist victimization deny the reader even the possibility of feeling sympathy or pity visa` -vis the desolate characters. In addition to states, all three ironic/satirical IR stories analyzed here feature other major actors: women, discourses, the multiple agents of globalization and war. The action is scattered on a very large stage which means that recognizing individual important events demands major efforts. The analytical perspective offered is not a widely applied one; the audience might have to struggle to get used to it. And again, in the context of plotting international relations, the violence that is part of the story is a narrative downside, as is the sad ending. Ironic/satirical stories fare relatively poorly in providing positive meaning to human existence and formulating constructive suggestions. Their mood is generally skeptical or pessimistic. Disrupting established truths and questioning standard practices is an important motivation of the ironic/satirical exercise, not helping the present system function more smoothly. Whereas the general narrative appeal – the basic merits and downsides – of (IR) plots can be comparatively studied, the actual reception depends on the specific audience and the specific moment. Grandeur and unequivocal denouements can be appreciated just as much as inventive heroes and surprising twists and turns. The inconsistency of characters and numerous loose ends can be deemed either a merit or a downside of a story. Violent means can be judged either efficient or inappropriate. In the context of IR theorizing, the reader might pay attention to the consequences of particular choices as regards interstate behavior specifically. But again, no choice is automatic or intrinsically superior. Tragedies may function as strong warnings against hubris in the nuclear age (Morgenthau) or arguments for the continued relevance of power politics (Mearsheimer). Romances/epics may strengthen one’s faith in the excellence of the present system (Fukuyama), promise a yet better tomorrow (Russett and Oneal), envision the downfall of the present oppressive system (Wallerstein) or give directions for action toward a more peaceful world (Galtung). Comedies may encourage unlimited optimism and absolute nonviolence (Gandhi), moderate optimism and rump materialism (Wendt) or rejoicing in the triple moral and political transformation under way

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(Linklater). Ironic/satirical stories may direct attention to previously neglected actors and disregarded workings of power (Enloe), articulations of difference pertinent to the interstate sphere (Campbell) or the interconnectedness of globalization and war (Barkawi). There is something to be said for each story; not one of them can be dismissed offhand as not contributing to the field in any way. The choice of the explanatory story effects the questions we are directed to ask and the answers we most probably come up with. It highlights certain actors on the international scene and leaves others in the shadows. It determines the general interpretative mood and our attitude toward the role of research. Both conflicts and cooperation among world politics actors can be placed in any of the four basic plots. The interpretations of conflict and cooperation, however, will depend on the plot. Conflicts readily offer roles for romantic heroes (the winners), tragic heroes (the losers) and comic heroes (the fumblers), or can be depicted ironically/ satirically as devoid of heroes altogether (as everybody gone astray). Cooperation can be understood as the epic victory of benevolent forces, as a tragic/ironic/ satirical illusion or as a comically imperfect truce. Once a specific narrative is accepted, it begins to gather force: new evidence is interpreted in the framework it provides and alternative interpretations are overshadowed. Also, the more often you choose a particular plot, the more likely you are to employ it in the future. The choice is constrained not so much by the reality or the facts, as by narrative force and tradition, and a desire to be consistent. All positions can be backed up by facts and may turn into self-fulfilling prophecies. Sensitivity to the traditions of storytelling is a definite asset to an IR scholar. Approaching research contributions as competing narratives helps us understand both individual works and theoretical schools better; it gives new readings of debates we thought we knew. The neorealists and neoliberal institutionalists, for example, not only disagree about whether to emphasize relative or absolute gains, but also advocate different basic plots as general interpretative frameworks, namely tragedy and romance. Being able to systematically compare the competing bids might also be of assistance in imagining new explanatory stories. In addition to operating with age-old narrative conventions, every new story will be unique, a fresh variation of the particular plot or a different kind of hybrid version. While we cannot rise above stories in our accounts of world politics and it is probably futile to try to come up with a new master story that will explain everything in a completely satisfying manner – steering clear of all the downsides, combining all the merits – we can and should work with the knowledge we have about convincing and appealing narratives. Contemplating explanations from the point of view of not only the facts but also the narrative force and plotspecific expectations will improve our theorizing. New events and actors will demand new interpretations; new perspectives on events in the past will emerge; and the futures we desire will require convincing blueprints. Understanding the workings of generic plots will hopefully also help us deal with their limitations and exploit their possibilities to the full in stories yet to come.

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Index

Note: Page numbers in bold represent table. Africa 44 Alker, Hayward 6–7, 11, 14 anarchy 85–6 Aristotle, Poetics 4, 8 Austen, Jane, Pride and Prejudice 72–3 Bakhtin, Mikhail 10 Barkawi, Tarak, Globalization and War 119–27 Barthes, Roland 4 Benjamin, Walter 4 Berke, Bradley 6 Brown, Chris 16 Burke, Kenneth 5, 9–11 Campbell, David, Writing Security 112–119 change 85–90, 94, 96 character see role China 32, 43 critical theory 17, 71, 92 class 57, 59, 79; proletariat 57–9 closure see ending Colletta, Lisa 110 comedy see plot community 93–4; international community 30, 36 competition 14, 28–9, 30–2, 34 conclusion see ending conflict 29, 62, 123 constructivism 83, 86, 89–90 cosmopolitan 93; cosmopolitan citizenship 94 culture 85–6, 88; multicultural 94, 96–7 democracy 40, 48–9, 51, 121; liberal democracy 41–6; transnational democracy 94

denouement see ending dialogue 93, 97 diplomacy 23–4, 26–7, 34 drama 14; dramatic 5; theater 14 Eastern Europe 43–4 economy 48–9, 51; capitalism 42, 55–60; communism 43; firm 57; markets 55, 121, 124; trade 48–9, 51, 121; world economy 55, 58 ending 5, 9, 12, 13, 17, 27, 34, 60; happy 36, 38, 45–6, 51, 61, 70, 72, 88, 90, 99, 104, 109; sad 20, 101, 108, 110, 118–119 England 76–82, 121–2 Enloe, Cynthia, Bananas, Beaches and Bases 102–10, 116–117, 126 epic see plot ethic see moral Europe 94–5, 97; European Union 95 fact 7–8 fascism 43 feminism 93, 99, 102–6, 109 fiction 7–8 Foucault, Michel 110 fragmentation 92 Frost, Mervyn 15 Frye, Northrop 5, 10–1 future 41, 60–1; humankind 27, 39, 69, 74; international relations 47, 51; society 46 Fukuyama, Francis, The End of History 40–6, 59, 65–7, 79, 121, 125 Galloway Young, Katherine 5 Galtung, John, Peace: Research, Education, Action 61–9, 125 Gandhi, Mahatma, Hind Swaraj 74–82, 90, 96, 125

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Index

gender 104–5, 107, 117 genre see plot globalization 120–2; economic globalization 124 Habermas, J¨urgen 93 Hall, Ian 16–17 Hegel, Georg Wilhelm Friedrich 41 hegemony 32–4 history 4, 6–7, 15, 40–1, 85, 90; historian 15; end of history 41; patriarchal history 103; posthistorical 41 Hobbes, Thomas 10–1, 85, 87–8, 90, 113 Homer, Odyssey 37, 39 human: condition 14–15; experience 5; humanity 40, 44, 67, 69, 74, 76, 93, 98; life 5–6; nature 22, 29, 62; purpose of life 4, 53; tragedy of human existence 16, 21 Huntington, Samuel 51 Hutcheon, Linda 110 international 105–7; organizations 36, 47–9, 51; society 24, 27, 30, 94, 97; system 53, 55–7, 59–60, 85, 91 international relations: as field of activity 15, 22–6, 29, 33–6, 46–7, 49, 51, 82–3, 90, 103–6, 109, 111, 119; as field of study 6–7, 12–16, 36, 39, 68, 83, 87, 92, 94, 99–100, 110, 116, 118, 134; tragedy of international relations 16, 27–8, 32 India 76–82, 121–2, 126 irony see plot Islam 44, 51, 123, 126 Ivie, Robert L. 17 Kant, Immanuel, Perpetual Peace 47–53, 85, 87–8, 90, 92, 94 Knutsen, Torbjørn 15 Koj`eve, Alexandre 41, 45 Lebow, Richard Ned 7–8, 16, 21 Legend of Saint George and the Dragon 37–9 liberalism 15, 32, 39, 87, 99; liberal romance 59, 64–8 Linklater, Andrew, The Transformation of Political Community 40, 83, 91–9, 125 Locke, John 85, 88, 90 Lyotard, Jean-François 111

man see human Marx, Karl 92, 94; Marxism 15, 43–4, 59, 68 marginalization 116–117 Mayall, James 16 Mearsheimer, John, Tragedy of Great Power Politics 28–36, 66, 79, 88 medical science 64–5 modern 77–8, 93–4, 98–9; civilization 77–8, 81; world system 55 mood 12, 13; optimistic 36, 46–7, 49, 51, 53, 60, 69, 73–5, 82, 90, 94, 96, 109; pessimistic 27, 32, 101, 108, 120, 127 moral 5, 25, 77, 92–6; community 93, 95–6; ethic 15; international moral 24–7 Morgenthau, Hans 15, 21, 31, 35; Politics among Nations 21–6, 66, 79 myth 6; heroic combat myth 9; mythical archetype 6; mythic identification 6; phases of myth 11; tragic myth 6 narrative 4–7, 12–14, 111, 134; causal 7; chaotic 111; comic 15, 70–1, 73, 82–4, 88, 90, 94, 99; event 5; form 5–6; ironic 99, 110, 118, 127; romantic 5, 15, 17, 36, 74, 108; purpose 4–8; satirical 15, 99, 101, 110, 118–119, 127; scheme 5; story of Christ 11, 14; tragic 15, 17–18, 99, 110 nation see state Nietzsche, Friedrich 44–6 Oneal, John, Triangulating Peace 46–53, 59, 65–7, 79, 121, 125 pacifism 77–8, 80–2 passion 44–6 patriarchy 104, 107–8 Payne, Robert A. 15, 17 peace 22–4, 63–5, 102, 121, 125; international peace 24, 26, 49–50; peace research 36, 60–2, 64–9, 99 plot 6, 8–9, 12–13, 134; comedy 9–13, 70–1, 73, 75, 82, 88, 90, 99; epic 4, 8–9, 13, 36, 108; fairytale 11, 36, 44–6, 59–60, 69; generic 10, 12; genre 6, 10; means 13; romance 4, 13, 15, 36, 39, 46, 54, 59, 61; irony/satire 9–10, 13, 16, 61, 70, 118, 127; tragedy 4, 8, 10–1, 13, 16, 32–3, 35; types 4, 10–1 poetry 4; poetic elements 6–7

Index Polkinghorne, Donald E. 5 policy 31–2, 62, 68; foreign policy 26, 32, 45, 68, 112–118; policy choice 36 politics 6, 75, 79; gender politics 104–5; political actor 107; political community 95, 98; political ideologies 36 Pope, Alexander, The Rape of the Lock 100–1 postcolonialism 99–100, 119 postmodernism 93, 111, 118 poststructuralism 99–100, 110–11, 118 post-Westphalian 94–6, 99 power 22, 28, 29, 103–4, 115; competition 28–9, 31–3; great 30–4; imbalance 63–4; material 31, 83; national 22, 30–3, 125; patriarchal 108 Rabelais, François 10 realism 14, 18, 21, 29, 32, 34, 36, 40–1, 46, 66; realist tragedy 18, 21, 29 religion 36, 75, 77 resistance 77 revolution 79 Ricoeur, Paul 5 Roe, Paul 14 romance see plot role 5, 9, 12, 13, 33, 44, 52, 87, 108, 124; comic 9–10, 71, 82, 96, 99; enemy 87, 123; friend 85–9; hero 5, 8–11, 27, 40, 59, 65–7, 69, 134; monster 44, 67; romantic 36, 38–9, 65, 69; scapegoat 5; tragic 8–11; victim 44, 107–8; villain 5 Russett, Bruce, Triangulating Peace 46–53, 59, 65–7, 79, 121, 125 satire see plot Schugart, Helene A. 111 security 103, 113; collective security 88–9, 97; competition 30; dilemma 14, 71 Shakespeare, William: Midsummer Night’s Dream 72–3; Twelfth Night 71–3; King Lear 19–20, 27 Shilliam, Robert 15 Sleeping Beauty 38–9 social science 4, 15; social forces 36; justice 65, 68 society 4, 11, 36; international society 24, 27, 30, 94, 97

145

Sophocles, Oedipus 19–20, 27 Soviet Union 24–5, 43 state 14, 18, 23–4, 28–33, 57–8, 79, 82, 85–8, 90, 92, 94, 112, 117, 124; actor 44, 49, 53, 57, 66–7, 87; autocratic 51–2; citizenship 92–3, 96; cooperation 50, 52, 96–7; modern state 93, 94, 98; power 22; sovereignty 23, 95–8; structure 85–6; survival 28, 30; world state 22–3 story see narrative strategy: national 30–1; power 31; survival 31 Suganami, Hidemi 7, 15 Swift, Jonathan, A Modest Proposal 101, 109–10 terrorism 123, 125 Third World 43 Thucydides, Melian dialogue 14 trade see economy tragedy see plot transformation see change truth 74–5, 77–8 United States 24, 32, 49–50; identity 111, 114–116 universal 4; universalism 23, 93, 98; universality 97 utopia 5, 11 violence 36, 62, 64–5, 74, 82, 118, 123, 125; cultural 63; direct 63, 67–9; nonviolence 80–2, 88, 97; structural 63–5, 67–9 Wallerstein, Immanuel, World-Systems Analysis 53–60, 66, 86 war 14, 23, 29, 32, 35, 49, 66, 88, 120–1, 123, 125–6; Cold War 30; nuclear war 25–6, 53; nuclear weapon 31, 34–5, 53 Wendt, Alexander, Social Theory of International Politics 82–91, 97, 112, 125 West 49, 51, 93, 122–3, 125–6 White, Hayden 4, 7, 9 Ziegler, Heide 111