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Perception and Misperception in International Politics / Edition 1
     

Perception and Misperception in International Politics / Edition 1

by Robert Jervis
 

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ISBN-10: 0691100497

ISBN-13: 9780691100494

Pub. Date: 11/01/1976

Publisher: Princeton University Press

This book demonstrates that decision-makers' perceptions of the world and of other actors diverge from reality in patterns that we can detect and for reasons that we can comprehend. Drawing on a wide range of historical cases, Robert Jervis shows how this knowledge can be used not only to explain specific decisions but also to account for patterns of interaction and

Overview

This book demonstrates that decision-makers' perceptions of the world and of other actors diverge from reality in patterns that we can detect and for reasons that we can comprehend. Drawing on a wide range of historical cases, Robert Jervis shows how this knowledge can be used not only to explain specific decisions but also to account for patterns of interaction and to improve our understanding of international relations.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780691100494
Publisher:
Princeton University Press
Publication date:
11/01/1976
Series:
Center for International Affairs, Harvard University Series
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
464
Product dimensions:
6.11(w) x 9.21(h) x 1.08(d)

Table of Contents

PREFACE TO THE SECOND EDITION xiii
ACKNOWLEDGMENTS xci
INTRODUCTION 3
I The Setting
1
Perception and the Level of Analysis Problem 13
Do Perceptions Matter? 13
The International Environment 18
Compulsion in Extreme Circumstances? 19
Domestic Determinants 21
The Bureaucracy 24
Perceptions, Reality, and a Two-Step Model 28
2
External Stimuli, Internal Processes, and Intentions 32
Introduction 32
External versus Internal Sources of Behavior 35
Intentions 48
Inaccurate Predictions about One's Own Behavior 54
3
Deterrence, the Spiral Model, and Intentions of the Adversary 58
Two Views of International Relations and the Cold War 58
Deterrence 58
The Spiral Model 62
Psychological Dynamics 67
Self-Fulfilling Prophecies and Problems with Incrementalism 76
Self-Defeating Power 78
Prescriptions 82
Universal Generalizations? 84
Evidence against the Spiral Model 84
Evidence against Deterrence 90
Deterrence and World War II; Spiral Model and World War I 94
When Will Force and Threats Work? The Decision-Maker's Choice 96
When Will Force and Threats Work? Hypotheses 100
Perceptions of Intention and Analyses of What ls at Stake 102
Other Explanations for the Differences between the Spiral and Deterrence Theories 107
Differences in Values 108
Claims for a Dominant Strategy 109
Dangers of Applying Gradualism to an Aggressive Adversary 110
Suggestions 111
II Processes of Perception
4
Cognitive Consistency and the Interaction between Theory and Data 117
Consistency: Rational and Irrational 117
Rational Consistency 119
Cognitive-Affective Balance 120
Source-Message Interaction 122
Implications 124
Irrational Consistency-Avoidance of Value Trade-Offs 128
Assimilation of Information to Pre-existing Beliefs 143
The Impact of Expectations on Perceptions 145
The Necessary Interdependence of Facts and Theories 154
The Interdependence between Facts and Theories in Science 156
The Impact of Categorization 162
Different Theories, Different Perceptions 163
The Emergence of New Theories and Images 165
Cognitive Distortion and Implications for Decision-Making 172
Failure to Recognize the Influence of Pre-Existing Beliefs 181
Excessive and Premature Cognitive Closure 187
Implications for Decision-Making 191
Confidence, Commitment, and Ambiguity 195
Implications for Decision-Making 201
5
The Impact of the Evoked Set 203
Evoked Set in the Absence of Communication 203
Communication and Estimating the Evoked Set of the Other 205
Misunderstandings within a Government: Differences in Information, Perspectives, and Time Lags 206
Uneven Distribution of Information within Governments 209
Differences in Evoked Set Caused by Differences in Concerns 211
Conclusions 215
6
How Decision-Makers Learn from History 217
Introduction 217
Lessons as Predispositions 222
Alternative Explanations 225
The Learning Process 227
Organizational Learning 238
Events from Which People Learn Most 239
Firsthand Experiences 239
Some Consequences 243
Alternative Explanations 246
Early Experiences and Generational Effects 249
Generational Effects 253
Alternative Explanations 257
Delayed Impact on Policy 260
Events Important to the Person's State or Organization 262
Revolutions 262
The Last War 266
Range of Available Alternative Analogies 270
What Lessons Do People Learn? 271
Impact of Constant Factors 271
Lessons about Specific Actors 274
Reactions to Failure 275
Nothing Fails like Success 278
Alternative Explanations 219
Summary 281
Appendix: The Impact of Domestic Politics and Training on Perceptual Predispositions 283
Learning from Domestic Politics 283
Training 287
7
Attitude Change 288
Introduction 288
Mechanisms of Attitude Preservation and Change 291
Centrality 297
The Rate at Which Discrepant Information Is Received 308
Beliefs Especially Resistant to Discrepant Information 310
III Common Misperceptions
8
Perceptions of Centralization 319
Unity and Planning 319
Plans, Not Accidents and Confusion 321
One Actor, Not Several 323
Special Cases 326
Variables Encouraging the Perception of Unity and Planning 327
Being Misinformed about One's Own Behavior 329
Misinformation about Physical Effects 331
Disobedience by Agents 332
Causes of Disobedience 332
Types of Disobedience 333
Consequences of Lack of Awareness of Agents' Behavior 334
Consequences of Perceptions of Unity and Planning 338
9
Overestimating One's Importance as Influence or Target 343
Introduction 343
Overestimating One's Effectiveness 344
Perceptions of Influence and Turning Points 348
Injury and Perceptions of the Other's Autonomy 349
Belief that the Other Understands that You Are Not a Threat 354
10
The Influence of Desires and Fears on Perceptions 356
Wishful Thinking 356
Experiments: Lack of Incentives for Accuracy 357
Desires or Expectations? 359
Direct Impact of Affect 361
Experimental Manipulation of Affect 361
Judgments of Desirability and Probability 362
Other Experiments 363
Wishful Thinking in International Relations 365
Perceptions of Danger: Vigilance or Defense? 372
Avoidance of Perceptions of Extreme Probabilities 378
Summary 380
11
Cognitive Dissonance and International Relations 382
Cognitive Dissonance Theory 382
Cognitive Dissonance and Inertia 387
The Magnitude of Dissonance 392
The Impact of Spending Resources 393
Incentives and Compulsion 399
Boomerang Effects 404
Summary 406
IV In Lieu of Conclusions
12
Minimizing Misperception 409
Making Assumptions and Predictions Explicit 410
Devil's Advocates 415
Conversions 418
Identities and Missions 418
Awareness of Common Misperceptions 423
BIBLIOGRAPHY 425
INDEX 433

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