Radical Disaccord and International Diplomacy

  • Hall GardnerEmail author


This chapter explicates the concept of alternative realism, by emphasizing the importance of diplomacy and negotiation for IR theory, and in considering all possible alternative options. It argued, for example, that Morgenthau’s version of realism is closer to social constructionists and gender/feminism than it is to structural realism (or neorealism) or to neo-conservatism. The chapter additionally critiques traditional and neorealist interpretations of the 1648 Treaty of Westphalia that emphasize “territorial state sovereignty” by arguing that the intergovernmental system established by Westphalia actually legitimizes power-sharing and joint sovereignty—concepts that are more associated with social constructionists and gender theorists/feminists than with neorealists. On the negative side, the Westphalia Treaty also set the stage for later Austro-Prussian conflict that resulted in the Seven Years War and Franco-Prussian/German conflict that resulted in World War I and World War II.

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© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.International and Comparative PoliticsAmerican University of ParisParisFrance

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