Theories of National Interest

  • Joseph Frankel
Part of the Key Concepts in Political Science book series (KCP)


One of the gravest obstacles to a commonly acceptable definition of national interest is the fundamental disagreement between those who conceive it broadly and hence rather vaguely and those who try to pin it down to a number of concrete single interests, elements, factors, functions or dimensions; all these terms are used without clear distinction in a partly differentiated but mainly overlapping manner.


Foreign Policy International System National Interest Power Theory Domestic Politics 
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3/Theories of National Interest

  1. 1.
    Q. by W. J. Mackenzie, Politics and Social Sciences, 1967, p. 359, n. 2.Google Scholar
  2. 3.
    R. J. Rummel, “The Relations Between National Attributes and Foreign Conflict Behaviour”, in J. D. Singer (ed.), Quantitative International Relations, 1968.Google Scholar
  3. 4.
    They began with Charles A. Beard, The Idea of National Interest: An Analytic & Study of American Foreign Policy 1934. See literature in Rosenau, op. cit.Google Scholar
  4. 5.
    Cf. J. S. Hinsley, Sovereignty, 1966Google Scholar
  5. J. Herz, International Politics in the Nuclear. Age, 1959 and 1963Google Scholar
  6. E. Cassirer, The Myth of the State, 1946.Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    Cf. A. Wolfers, “The Pole of Power and the Pole of Indifference”, Discord and Collaboration, 1967Google Scholar
  8. J. W. Burton, International Relations: A General Theory, 1965;Google Scholar
  9. J. Frankel, “Power Politics and Beyond”, Political Studies, June 1966.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Pall Mall Press Ltd. London 1970

Authors and Affiliations

  • Joseph Frankel
    • 1
  1. 1.University of SouthamptonUK

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