Alexander Wendt International Relations Theory

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Alexander Wendt's Social Theory of International Politics proposes a theory that places great importance on the role of identity, shared ideas and norms in defining state behaviour. He theorises a structural and idealist worldview which contrasts with the individualism and materialism that underpins much of the mainstream international relations theories. As I explore the gist of Wendt's book, I will attempt to summarise the key findings, contributions to International Relations and to a certain extent, the limitations of Wendt's theory. Wendt is critical to both liberal and realist approaches that emphasises materialist and individualistic motivations for state actions while discounting identity, norms and shared values. As put forth by Wendt,…show more content…
Wendt's, Anarchy is what States Make of it: The Social Construction of Power Politics' main argument, ‘A world in which identities and interests are learned and sustained by inter-subjectively grounded practice, by what states think and do, is one in which “anarchy is what states make of it”'. Wendt has much refined his argument since this book but the assertion on how international relations are conducted is not a given but socially constructed remains fundamental.} Hence positive identification with like-minded states will eventually lead to perceiving security threats as a collective concern for all states rather than a private issue for each state. Depending on how well developed the collective self is, it will produce security practices that are in varying degrees altruistic or prosocial\footnote{(ibid.:…show more content…
I believe that Wendt has commited \textit{the act of essentialisation} and taken for granted linguistic in his theory of social construction. I am in the opinion that constructivists cannot fully interpret the social construction of meanings without taking into consideration linguistic issues. This is of particular importance for constructivists because ‘language is essentially constitutive of institutional reality’\footnote{(see Searle 1995:59). This philospher is popular with Adler 1997; Ruggie 1998; Guzzini 2000} Wendt depoliticises the construction of identities because he takes corporate identity as a methodological starting point Yet, the social construction of reality is not limited to speech acts and language games. Although these are some of the most critical components that construct social reality, I believe they are insufficient in the construction of social facts and maintaining them through
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