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Great power: A great power is a state deemed to rank amongst

the most powerful in a hierarchical state-system. Criteria:


1) First rank of military prowess, having the capacity to maintain their own
security and, potentially, to influence other powers.
2) economically powerful
3) Have global spheres of interests.
4) They adopt a forward foreign policy and have actual, and not merely
potential, impact on international affairs

International Society: The term international society


suggests that relations between and amongst states are conditioned by the
existence of norms and rules that establish the regular patterns of interaction that
characterize a society. This view modifies the realist emphasis on power politics
and international anarchy by suggesting the existence of a society of states rather
than simply a system of states, implying both that international relations are rulegoverned and that these rules help to maintain international order. The chief
institutions that generate cultural cohesion and social integration are international
law, diplomacy and the activities of international organizations. The extent of social
integration may nevertheless depend heavily on the extent of cultural and
ideological similarity between and among states.

THE ANTI-CAPITALIST MOVEMENT:


The birth of the anti-capitalist movement can be traced back to the so-called Battle
of Seattle in November 1999, when some 50,000 activists forced the cancellation of
the opening ceremony of a WTO meeting. Anti-capitalist movement exists on 2
levels:
i)

ii)

Strongly activist-orientated, and consists of a loosely-knit, nonhierarchically organized international coalition of people and social
movements, articulating the concerns of environmental groups, trade
unions, religious groups, student groups, anarchists, revolutionary
socialists, campaigners for the rights of indigenous people, and so on.
Movement is expert-orientated, focused on a number of leading authors
and key works, and involving, through their influence, a much wider range
of people. Leading figures include Noam Chomsky.

Significance: It would be absurd, to write off the anti-capitalist movement as a


failure, simply because of the survival, worldwide, of the capitalist system. The anticapitalist movement therefore provides a vehicle through which the disparate range
of peoples or groups who have been marginalized or disenfranchised as a result of
globalization can gain a political voice. The anti-globalization movement can be
credited with having altered thinking on a wide range of transnational issues. This
can be seen in a heightened awareness of, environmental issues, and especially
global warming, the failings of market-based development and poverty-reduction
strategies.
Criticism: Condemned for its failure to develop a systematic and coherent critique
of neoliberal globalization or failure to outline a viable alternative. This reflects both
the highly diverse nature of the anti-capitalist movement and the fact that its goals
are not commonly incompatible. Most groups and supporters wish merely to remove
the worst excesses of capitalism.

STRUCTURE Vs AGENCY DEBATE: Is


global politics best explained in terms of structures (the context within which
action takes place) or in terms of agency (the ability of human actors to influence
events)? A variety of approaches have a structuralist character. Neorealists explain
the behaviour of states in terms of the structure of the international system, while
Marxists emphasize the crucial impact of international capitalism, sometimes seen
as a world-system by neo- Marxist theorists. One of the attractions of structuralism
is that, by explaining human behaviour in terms of external, or exogenous, factors,
it dispenses with the vagaries of human volition and decision-making, allowing
theories to claim scientific precision. Its disadvantage, though, is that it leads to
determinism, which rules out free will altogether.
Alternative theories that stress agency over structure subscribe to intentionalism or
voluntarism, which assigns decisive explanatory importance to the self-willed
behaviour of human actors. These theories have an inside-out character: they
explain behaviour in terms of the intentions or inclinations of key actors. Examples
include classical realism. Liberals are also inclined towards inside-out theorizing,
in that they stress the extent to which states foreign policy orientation is affected
by their constitutional make-up. Although intentionalism has the advantage that it
reintroduces choice and the role of the human actor, its disadvantage is that it is
reductionist: it reduces social explanation to certain core fact about major actors,
and so understates the structural factors that shape human action.
Critical theorists have tried to go beyond the structure versus agency debate, in
acknowledging that, as no neat or clear distinction can be drawn between conduct
and the context within which it takes place, structure and agency both influence
each other.

Chaos Theory: Chaos theory emerged in the 1970s as a branch of


mathematics that sought an alternative to linear differential equations. Linearity
implies a strong element of predictability. In contrast, chaos theory examines the
behaviour of nonlinear systems, in which there are such a wide range of variable
factors that the effect of a change in any of them may have a disproportionate, and
seemingly random, effect on others.

Do moral obligations extend to the whole of


humanity?
YES:
1. Humans as moral creatures: Individual, rather than any particular political
community, is the principal source of moral value. Most commonly, this is
asserted through the doctrine of HRs.
2. The globalization of moral sensibilities: The narrowing of moral
sensibilities just to people within our own society is increasingly
unsustainable. Transborder information and communication flows, particularly
the impact of television, mean that the strangeness and unfamiliarity of
people and societies on the other side of the globe has reduced substantially.
2004 Indian Ocean tsunami provoked massive outpourings of humanitarian
concern in other parts of the world.

3. Global citizenship: We live in a world of global cause and effect. Purchasing


decisions in one part of the world thus affect job opportunities, working
conditions and poverty levels in other parts of the world. Whether we like it or
not, we are morally culpable, in that our actions have moral implications for
others.

NO:
1. Morality begins at home: Communitarian theorists argue that morality
only makes sense when it is locally-based. People everywhere give moral
priority to those they know best, most obviously their family and close friends
and, beyond that, members of their local community
2. The agency problem: If universal obligations only make sense in a context
of world government, in which global justice is upheld by supranational
bodies, this creates the prospect of global despotism.
3. The virtues of self-help: Doctrines of universal rights and obligations are
invariably used to argue that rich and successful parts of the world should, in
some way, help poor and less fortunate parts of the world. However, it
promotes dependency and undermines self-reliance. Main obligation we owe
other peoples and other societies is to leave them alone. This may result in
short-term moral costs but longer-term ethical benefits, in the form of
societies better able to protect their citizens from suffering and hardship.

Marketization: The extension of market relationships, based on


commercial exchange and material self-interest, across the economy and, possibly,
society.

Social market: An economy that is structured by market principles and


largely free from government interference, operating in a society in which cohesion
is maintained through a comprehensive welfare system and effective welfare
services.

Mercantilism: An economic philosophy, most influential in Europe from


the 15th century to the late 17th century, which emphasizes the states role in
managing international trade and guaranteeing prosperity

Chinese economic model: A variety of factors threaten the


Chinese economic model:
i)
ii)

iii)

Since the mid-2000s there have been signs of wage inflation in China
An over-dependence on export markets creates the need to boost
domestic consumption levels in China, particularly demonstrated by the
global economic recession in 200809. However, increased domestic
consumption may suck in more imports, reducing Chinas currently
strongly positive trade balance
Size of Chinas working-age population is projected to fall sharply in the
coming decades.

iv)

Most serious challenge is fundamental contradiction between the nature


of its economic system and its political system

Knowledge Economy: It is one in which knowledge is supposedly a


key source of competitiveness and productivity, especially through the application
of ICT. Knowledge economies are sometimes portrayed as the economic expression
of the transition from an industrial society to an information society. It differs from a
traditional economy in several ways:
1. As knowledge does not deplete with use, knowledge economies are
concerned with the economics of abundance, not the economics of scarcity
2. They substantially diminish the effect of location (and thereby accelerate
globalization), as knowledge leaks to where demand or rewards are highest,
so disregarding national borders
3. They imply that profitability and high productivity are essentially linked to
up-skilling the workforce, rather than to the acquisition of hard resources.

However, the image of the knowledge economy may be misleading:


1. Modern technological advances linked to ICT may be nothing new: rapid and
advanced technological change has always been a feature of industrial
capitalism
2. Link between the wider use of ICT and productivity growth has been
questioned by some commentators
3. Knowledge-based production is largely confined to the developed North, and
it is difficult to see wider access to ICT as the key development priority in the
South

TRANSNATIONAL CORPORATIONS: TNC, is a company


that controls economic activity in two or more countries. The parent company is
usually incorporated in one state (the home), with subsidiaries in others (the
hosts). Integration across economic sectors and the growing importance of intrafirm trade has allowed TNCs to operate as economies in their own right
Significance: TNCs exert enormous economic power and political influence. Their
economic significance is reflected in the fact that they account for about 50% of
world manufacturing production and over 70% of world trade. They are likely to be
drawn to states or areas that can offer:
i)
ii)
iii)
iv)
v)
vi)

stable political environment,


low levels of taxation
low levels of economic and financial regulation,
available supplies of cheap or well skilled labour,
weak trade unions and limited protection for labour rights
access to markets preferably composed of consumers with high
disposable incomes

Defenders of corporations argue that they bring massive economic benefits and
that their political influence has been much exaggerated. Their two huge economic

benefits are their efficiency and their high level of consumer responsiveness.
Greater efficiency has resulted from their historically unprecedented ability to reap
the benefits from economies of scale and from the development of new productive
methods and the application of new technologies. The consumer responsiveness of
TNCs is demonstrated by their huge investment in research and development and
product innovation.

Economic sovereignty: The absolute authority which the state


exercises over economic life conducted within its borders, involving independent
control of fiscal and monetary policies, and over trade and capital flows.

Postmaterialism: It places esteem and self-actualization above


material or economic needs. Postmaterialism assumes that conditions of material
scarcity breed egoistical and acquisitive values, meaning that politics is dominated
by economic issues. However, in conditions of widespread prosperity, individuals
express more interest in post-material or quality of life issues. These are typically
concerned with morality, political justice and personal fulfilment, and include
feminism, world peace, poverty reduction, racial harmony, environmental protection
and animal rights.

Is state sovereignty now an outdated


concept?
YES:
1. Permeable borders: State borders, have increasingly been penetrated by
external forces. These include international tourism and the movement of
knowledge and information via the Internet. Global financial markets and
transnational capital flows mean that economic sovereignty has become
redundant.
2. Rise of non-state actors: States are no longer the only, or necessarily the
dominant, actors. TNCs wield greater financial power than many states, and
can effectively dictate state policy through their ability to relocate production
and investment at ease in a globalized economy. State security is as likely to
be threatened by global terrorist organizations and NGOs.
3. Collective dilemmas: states are increasingly confronted by collective
dilemmas. Global problems require global solutions like- climate change,
terrorism, transnational crime, pandemic diseases, international migration
and so on
4. International human rights: Respect for state sovereignty has been
eroded by the growing belief that there are standards of conduct to which all
states should conform as far as the treatment of their domestic populations is
concerned.
NO:

1.

Myth of the borderless world: National economies have not simply been
absorbed into a borderless global economy, as much more economic activity
takes place within state borders than it does across state borders. Misleading
to suggest that globalizing trends necessarily disempower states. Instead,
states choose to engage in the global economy and do so for reasons of
national self-interest.
2. States remain dominant: Although states are merely one actor amongst
many on the world stage, they remain the most important actor. States
exercise power in a way and to an extent that no other actor can. Their
control over what happens within their territories is rarely challenged.
3. Pooled sovereignty: Emergence of a framework of global governance have
not brought about an erosion of sovereignty. Rather, they expand the
opportunities available to states, particularly for achieving the benefits of
cooperation. International organizations are bodies that are formed by states,
for states; they are invariably used by states as tools to achieve their own
ends.
4. Enduring attraction of the nation-state. There seems little likelihood that
states will lose their dominance so long as they continue to enjoy the
allegiance of the mass of their citizens. This is ensured by the survival of
nationalism

Fordism/post- Fordism: Fordism refers to the large-scale mass


production. Post-Fordism emerged as the result of the introduction of more flexible
microelectronics based machinery that gave individual workers greater autonomy
and made possible innovations such as subcontracting and batch production.

Social reflexivity: The tendency of individuals and other social actors


to reflect, more or less continuously, on the conditions of their own actions, implying
higher levels of self-awareness, self-knowledge and contemplation.

New Left: A current in leftist thought that rejected both orthodox


communism and social democracy in favour of a new politics of liberation based on
decentralization and participatory democracy.