Monday, December 25, 2006

Theoretical paradise – empirically lost? Arguing with Habermas

Jürgen Habermas' thinking gained influence within the German International Relations (IR) community in the early 1990s. At the core of the so-called ‘ZIB-debate’ was the controversy whether rationalist theory can explain interstate cooperation. Constructivists accused rationalists of ignoring communication, language and reason, thereby leaving a logical gap in their analyses of interstate cooperation. This gap exists between the plausible motivation for states to cooperate and their actual achievement of cooperation. Rationalist approaches assume that actors face problematic, interdependent situations, in which they can only optimise their preferences by collaboration. Such situations involve a plausible motivation for actors to cooperate but they are not a sufficient condition to ensure that cooperation will actually happen. What is missing is a theoretical link between a general motivation to cooperate and its realisation, given that rationalist theory, following realism, regularly assumes a dangerous anarchical environment with its daunting security dilemma. These circumstances make cooperation risky and should normally work as a show-stopper for nation-states to collaborate.


Review of International Studies (2005), 31: 167-179 Cambridge University Press

6 comments:

Konst. Kokarev said...

Sorry, but link "Validity, claims ..." doesn't work. Is it possible to get this paper another way?

Ali Rizvi said...

which paper you are talking about?

Konst. Kokarev said...

I mean "Validity claims, Unconditionality, Universality and Modernism in Habermas: A reappraisal".

Konst. Kokarev said...

"Öffentlicher Raum und politische Öffentlichkeit" also doesn't exist.
I'm not criticizing - I find your blog very useful and I want it to be batter.

Ali Rizvi said...

Why do not you joine me as a co-blogger if you are interested to make it better. I only have very limited time and I try to do my best within that time.

cheers
Ali

Ali Rizvi said...

Hi Konstantin,

If you want to read "Validity claims, Unconditionality, Universality and Modernism in Habermas: A reappraisal", I can email it to you. The original site where I had uploaded it does not exist anymore.

Ali

 
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