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Conflict Formations in Contemporary International Society

Dieter Senghaas
Journal of Peace Research
Vol. 10, No. 3, Special Issue: Peace Research in the Federal Republic of Germany (1973), pp. 163-184
Published by: Sage Publications, Ltd.
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/422770
Page Count: 22
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Conflict Formations in Contemporary International Society
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Abstract

The paper analyzes conflict formations now prevailing in contemporary international society. The study begins with the assertion that the development of capitalism and anticapitalist movements in international politics has led to the globalization of international politics and to the emergence of an international society. This society is here conceived as an antagonistic totality made up particularly of the following conflict formations: intercapitalist, West-East, North-South, inter-socialist, inner-Third World, and formations of structural violence where international and national conflict formations intersect. The paper includes a short discussion on some fundamental principles of peace and social justice in international society. It concludes with some preliminary remarks on the foundation of a structural theory of international society. The author stresses that a further analysis of international society will have to look closely into the production relations and the exchange relations emerging from them on a world scale. The theorem of unequal and combined development is given particular importance. The author contends that on this basis, causes and regularities of conflict formation dynamics can be better understood than by the highly abstract approaches of the last ten to fifteen years, particularly those of the conventional systems analysis.

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