Hegemons exercise power in the international system not only by manipulating material incentives but also by altering the substantive beliefs of elites in other nations. Socialization—the process through which leaders in these secondary states embrace a set of normative ideals articulated by the hegemon—plays an important role both in establishing an international order and in facilitating the functioning of that order. This article develops the notion of socialization in the international system and examines three hypotheses about the conditions under which it occurs and can function effectively as a source of power. The first hypothesis is that socialization occurs primarily after wars and political crises, periods marked by international turmoil and restructuring as well as by the fragmentation of ruling coalitions and legitimacy crises at the domestic level. The second is that elite (as opposed to mass) receptivity to the norms articulated by the hegemon is essential to the socialization process. The third hypothesis is that when socialization does occur, it comes about primarily in the wake of the coercive exercise of power. Material inducement triggers the socialization process, but socialization nevertheless leads to outcomes that are not explicable simply in terms of the manipulation of material incentives. These hypotheses are explored in the historical case studies of U.S. diplomacy after World Wars I and II and the British colonial experience in India and Egypt.
Liberal international order—both its ideas and real-world political formations—is not embodied in a fixed set of principles or practices. Open markets, international institutions, cooperative security, democratic community, progressive change, collective problem solving, the rule of law—these are aspects of the liberal vision that have made appearances in various combinations and changing ways over the last century. I argue that it is possible to identify three versions or models of liberal international order—versions 1.0, 2.0, and 3.0. The first is associated with the ideas of Woodrow Wilson, the second is the Cold War liberal internationalism of the post-1945 decades, and the third version is a sort of post-hegemonic liberal internationalism that has only partially appeared and whose full shape and logic is still uncertain. I develop a set of dimensions that allow for identifying different logics of liberal international order and identify variables that will shape the movement from liberal internationalism 2.0 to 3.0.
Debates about the future of relations among the advanced industrial countries after the Cold War hinge on theories about the sources of international political order. Realism advances the most defined—and pessimistic—answers drawing on theories of anarchy, balance, and hegemony. But these theories are not able to explain the origins and continuing stability of relations among the United States and its European and Asian partners. This article develops a theory of liberal international order that captures its major structures, institutions, and practices. Distinctive features mark postwar liberal order—co-binding security institutions, penetrated American hegemony, semi-sovereign great powers, economic openness, and civic identity. It is these multifaceted and interlocking features of Western liberal order that give it a durability and significance.
Like two gigantic waves, the oil shocks crested over the advanced industrial world during the 1970s. The relatively stable postwar petroleum regime, managed by the large oil firms and protected by American diplomatic and military strength, collapsed. In seven years crude oil prices, adjusted for inflation, increased more than 500 percent. A multitude of national security, economic, and political challenges confronted the advanced industrial states. But unlike war, where the threat is observable and lines of conflict quickly become apparent, the oil shocks cast up problems that were more insidious—problems of energy security, economic adjustment, and industrial competitiveness. These international dilemmas could be defined in various ways, and a host of policy responses could be brought to bear upon them.
As these essays show, there is a lively debate over the future of world order. Sergey Chugrow offers a dark portrait of the breakdown of what he calls Western hegemony, driven in part by Russia's grievances and aggression in Ukraine. He points to a future where international order will have a mix of realist geopolitics and post-modern diversity. Keisuke Iida sees the debate over liberal international order as a return to older debates about the viability of hegemonic order and the role of regions and non-Western values in a post-hegemonic global system. Peter Haas sees the debate over liberal international order as a window onto various new forms of global governance. Behind these important observations is Amitav Acharya's vision of a post-American global order marked by diverse regional sub-systems; a world that is globalized, diversified, and localized. These developments lead Acharya to announce the ‘end’ of the American-led liberal international order.
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