Pierre Bourdieu. Contre-feux, Éditions Raisons d’agir, 1998, p.100

‘‘Contre ce régime politique [le néolibéralisme], la lutte politique est possible. Elle peut se donner pour fin d’abord, comme l'action caritative ou caritativo-militante, d’encourager les victimes de l’exploitation, tous les précaires actuels et potentiels, à travailler en commun contre les effets destructeurs de la précarité (en les aidant à vivre, à « tenir » et à se tenir, à sauver leur dignité, à résister à la déstructuration, à la dégradation de l’image de soi, à l’aliénation), et surtout à se mobiliser, à l’échelle internationale, c’est-à-dire au niveau même où s’exercent les effets de la politique de précarisation, pour combattre cette politique et neutraliser la concurrence qu’elle vise à instaurer entre les travailleurs des différents pays’’.

mardi 1 mars 2011

The Invention of International Relations Theory: Realism, the Rockefeller Foundation, and the 1954 Conference on Theory, Edited by Nicolas Guilhot

 The Invention of International Relations Theory
Realism, the Rockefeller Foundation, and the 1954 Conference on Theory
Edited by Nicolas Guilhot
Columbia University Press
January, 2011

Présentation de l'éditeur
The 1954 Conference on Theory, sponsored by the Rockefeller Foundation, featured a who's who of scholars and practitioners debating the foundations of international relations theory. Assembling his own team of experts, all of whom have struggled with this legacy, Nicolas Guilhot revisits a seminal event and its odd rejection of scientific rationalism.

Far from being a spontaneous development, these essays argue, the emergence of a "realist" approach to international politics, later codified at the conference, was deliberately triggered by the Rockefeller Foundation. The organization was an early advocate of scholars who opposed the idea of a "science" of politics, pursuing, for the sake of disciplinary autonomy, a vision of politics as a prerational and existential dimension that could not be "solved" by scientific means. As a result, this nascent theory was more a rejection of behavioral social science than the birth of one of its specialized branches. The archived conversations reproduced here, along with unpublished papers by Hans Morgenthau, Reinhold Niebuhr, and Paul Nitze, speak to this defensive stance. International relations theory is critically linked to the context of postwar liberalism, and the contributors explore how these origins have played out in political thought and American foreign policy.


Introduction: One Discipline, Many Histories, by Nicolas Guilhot

1. Morality, Policy, and Theory: Reflections on the 1954 Conference, by Robert Jervis

2. Tensions Within Realism: 1954 and After, by Jack Snyder

3. The Rockefeller Foundation Conference and the Long Road to a Theory of International Politics, by Brian C. Schmidt

4. The Speech Act of Realism: The Move That Made IR, by Ole Wæver

5. The Realist Gambit: Postwar American Political Science and the Birth of IR Theory, by Nicolas Guilhot

6. Kennan: Realism as Desire, by Anders Stephanson

7. American Hegemony, the Rockefeller Foundation, and the Rise of Academic International Relations in the United States, by Inderjeet Parmar

8. Realism and Neoliberalism: From Reactionary Modernism to Postwar Conservatism, by Philip Mirowski

Appendix 1. Conference on International Politics, May 7–8, 1954

Appendix 2. The Theoretical and Practical Importance of a Theory of International Relations, by Hans J. Morgenthau

Appendix 3. The Moral Issue in International Relations, by Reinhold Niebuhr

Appendix 4. International Relations Theory and Areas of Choice in Foreign Policy, by William T. R. Fox

Appendix 5. The Implications of Theory for Practice in the Conduct of Foreign Affairs, by Paul Nitze

Appendix 6. Theory of International Politics: Its Merits and Advancement, by Arnold Wolfers

List of Contributors


Here are some endorsements:
"An important contribution to an authentic understanding of the origins and evolution of the field of international relations as well as to the history of political science as a whole. It also represents a significant advance in the study of disciplinary and intellectual history." — John G. Gunnell, State University of New York at Albany and University of California, Davis

"Fascinating insights. Scholars of all stripes should read this carefully. It will help them better understand how they think about the world and might even help them refine theories of how states interact with one another." — John J. Mearsheimer, University of Chicago

"An outstanding collection by top-drawer scholars that adds enormously to a growing literature on the evolution of a much misunderstood academic field. What emerges is a story altogether more complex—and far more interesting—than we had been told about a subject whose history has been shrouded in myth, simplification, and plain misrepresentation. A volume that will surely redefine our understanding of the intellectual history of international relations theory, its relationship with power, and the central part played by such giants as Morgenthau, Nitze, Wolfers, Fox, and Niebuhr." — Michael Cox, London School of Economics

"Indispensable. While this volume will be widely read, cited, and assigned within the discipline, it will also be important in American and world intellectual history and in the critical history of ideas about world organization and world politics." — Samuel Moyn, author of The Last Utopia: Human Rights in History

Nicolas Guilhot is senior research associate at the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique and the author of The Democracy Makers: Human Rights and the Politics of Global Order.

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