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International Realism and the Science of Politics: Thucydides, Machiavelli, and Neorealism

Steven Forde
International Studies Quarterly
Vol. 39, No. 2 (Jun., 1995), pp. 141-160
Published by: Wiley on behalf of The International Studies Association
DOI: 10.2307/2600844
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2600844
Page Count: 20
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International Realism and the Science of Politics: Thucydides, Machiavelli, and Neorealism
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Abstract

Contemporary structural realism, or "neorealism," has become immensely influential in the contemporary study of international relations, due in part to its claims to be more scientific than its predecessors. The realist tradition, however, has always laid claim to a species of scientific rigor. The arguments of the classical realists Thucydides and Machiavelli are used to assess the claims of contemporary realism to be an advance over classical realism, and to investigate the relation between the science of politics and the ethical issues raised by realism in general.

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