Appeasement in International Politics

Appeasement in International Politics

by Stephen R. Rock
     
 

A Choice Outstanding Academic Title for 2002 Since the 1930s, appeasement has been labeled as a futile and possibly dangerous policy. In this landmark study, Stephen Rock seeks to restore appeasement to its proper place as a legitimate--and potentially successful--diplomatic strategy. Appeasement was discredited by Neville Chamberlain's disastrous attempt to satisfy…  See more details below

Overview

A Choice Outstanding Academic Title for 2002 Since the 1930s, appeasement has been labeled as a futile and possibly dangerous policy. In this landmark study, Stephen Rock seeks to restore appeasement to its proper place as a legitimate--and potentially successful--diplomatic strategy. Appeasement was discredited by Neville Chamberlain's disastrous attempt to satisfy Adolf Hitler's territorial ambitions and avoid war in 1938. Rock argues, however, that there is very little evidence to support the belief that dissatisfied states and their leaders cannot be appeased or that appeasement undermines a state's credibility in later attempts at deterrence. Rock looks at five case studies from the past 100 years, revealing under what conditions appeasement can achieve its goals. From British appeasement of the United States near the beginning of the twentieth century to American conciliation of North Korea in the early 1990s, Rock concludes that appeasement succeeds or fails depending on the nature of the adversary, the nature of the inducements used on the antagonist, and the existence of other incentives for the adversary to acquiesce. Appeasement in International Politics suggests the type of appeasement strategy most appropriate for various situations. The options range from pure inducements, reciprocity, to a mixture of inducements and threats. In addition to this theoretical framework, Rock's explicit comparison of appeasement and deterrence offers important guidelines for policymakers on when and how to implement a strategy of appeasement. At a time when the strategy of engagement plays an increasingly central--and controversial--role in U.S. foreign policy, Appeasement in International Politics reestablishes the long-discredited use of inducements as an effective means of preventing conflict.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"Named a Choice Outstanding Academic Title for 2002." --

"Rock's case studies and theoretical propositions significantly advance our understanding of the strengths and weaknesses of inducement strategies in the conduct of international affairs." -- American Political Science Review

"Argues that there is little evidence to support the belief that dissatisfied states and their leaders cannot be appeased or that appeasement undermines a state's credibility in later attempts at deterrence." -- Book News

"In this revisionist, thought-provoking, rich, and well-written work, Rock offers an alternative theory about the positive uses of appeasement and inducements in history." -- Choice

"Offers unsurprising but sensible recommendations, including a policy approach of mixing deterrence with engagement." -- Foreign Affairs

"Will be a controversial yet solid and definitive work on the complex and misunderstood idea of 'appeasement' for years to come." -- John D. Stempel

"A thoughtful, careful analysis of a diplomatic strategy that has long been dismissed by scholars and policy makers." -- Journal of Politics

"This well-written book will be studied by political science students and policymakers alike. Highly recommended." -- Library Journal

"This ambitious study offers far and away the best theoretical work on appeasement to date." -- Randall L. Schweller

Library Journal
For over 60 years, the policy of appeasement has been linked to Neville Chamberlain's failed attempt to placate Adolf Hitler and has therefore been discredited as a took in international relations. Rock (political science, Vassar Coll.) revisits appeasement and makes a convincing case for its restoration as a diplomatic strategy. He presents a fully developed theory of appeasement and examines several situations in which it was successful-including U.S. appeasement of Iraq in 1989-90 and of North Korea in the early 1990s (though the labels applied to those policies were not disparaging). With the helpful use of grid tables, Rock identifies the key factors affecting the outcomes of appeasement: the type of adversary, motivations, inducements, and incentives. The case studies are heavily documented and an 18-page bibliography is appended. This well-written book will be studied by political science students and policymakers alike. Highly recommended for academic libraries.-Thomas A. Karel, Franklin & Marshall Coll. Lib., Lancaster, PA
Booknews
Seeks to restore appeasement to its proper place as a legitimate and potentially successful diplomatic strategy. Argues that there is little evidence to support the belief that dissatisfied states and their leaders cannot be appeased or that appeasement undermines a state's credibility in later attempts at deterrence, drawing on five case studies from the past 100 years, from the British appeasement of the US near the beginning of the 20th century to American conciliation of North Korea in the early 1990s. Rock teaches political science at Vassar College. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780813121604
Publisher:
University Press of Kentucky
Publication date:
06/28/2000
Pages:
256
Product dimensions:
6.30(w) x 9.00(h) x 1.10(d)

What People are saying about this

John D. Stempel
Will be a controversial yet solid and definitive work on the complex and misunderstood idea of 'appeasement for years to come.
—John D. Stempel, director Patterson School of Diplomancy and International Commerce, University of Kentucky
Randall L. Schweller
The best theoretical work on appeasement to date.
—l; Randall L. Schweller, Ohio State University

Meet the Author

Stephen R. Rock, professor of political science at Vassar College, is the author of Why Peace Breaks Out: Great Power Rapprochement in Historical Perspective and Faith and Foreign Policy: The Views and Influence of U.S. Christians and Christian Organizations.

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