Primacy and Its Discontents: American Power and International Stability

Primacy and Its Discontents: American Power and International Stability

by Michael E. Brown
     
 

ISBN-10: 0262524554

ISBN-13: 9780262524551

Pub. Date: 02/28/2009

Publisher: MIT Press

The unprecedented military, economic, and political power of the United
States has led some observers to declare that we live in a unipolar world in which
America enjoys primacy or even hegemony. At the same time public opinion polls abroad reveal high levels of anti-Americanism, and many foreign governments criticize U.S. policies. Primacy and Its

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Overview

The unprecedented military, economic, and political power of the United
States has led some observers to declare that we live in a unipolar world in which
America enjoys primacy or even hegemony. At the same time public opinion polls abroad reveal high levels of anti-Americanism, and many foreign governments criticize U.S. policies. Primacy and Its Discontents explores the sources of American primacy, including the uses of U.S. military power, and the likely duration of unipolarity. It offers theoretical arguments for why the rest of the world will -- or will not -- align against the United States. Several chapters argue that the United States is not immune to the long-standing tendency of states to balance against power, while others contend that wise U.S. policies, the growing role of international institutions, and the spread of liberal democracy can limit anti-American balancing. The final chapters debate whether countries are already engaging in "soft balancing" against the United States. The contributors offer alternative prescriptions for U.S. foreign policy, ranging from vigorous efforts to maintain American primacy to acceptance of a multipolar world of several great powers.

Contributors: Gerard Alexander, Stephen
Brooks, John G. Ikenberry, Christopher Layne, Keir Lieber, John Owen IV, Robert
Pape, T. V. Paul, Barry Posen, Kenneth Waltz, William Wohlforth

The MIT Press

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780262524551
Publisher:
MIT Press
Publication date:
02/28/2009
Series:
International Security Readers
Pages:
416
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 8.90(h) x 1.00(d)
Age Range:
18 Years

Table of Contents

Foreword Graham Allison Allison, Graham

Preface Sean M. Lynn-Jones Lynn-Jones, Sean M.

Pt. I The Sources and Prospects of American Primacy

The Stability of a Unipolar World William C. Wohlforth Wohlforth, William C. 3

Command of the Commons: The Military Foundation of U.S. Hegemony Barry R. Posen Posen, Barry R. 40

Pt. II Primacy and Balancing in Theory and Practice

The Unipolar Illusion: Why New Great Powers Will Rise Christopher Layne Layne, Christopher 85

The Unipolar Illusion Revisited: The Coming End of American Hegemony Christopher Layne Layne, Christopher 132

Structural Realism after the Cold War Kenneth N. Waltz Waltz, Kenneth N. 137

Institutions, Strategic Restraint, and the Persistence of American Postwar Order G. John Ikenberry Ikenberry, G. John 174

Transnational Liberalism and U.S. Primacy John M. Owen IV Owen, John M., IV 210

Pt. III New Responses to American Primacy

Soft Balancing against the United States Robert A. Pape Pape, Robert A. 249

Soft Balancing in the Age of U.S. Primacy T. V. Paul Paul, T. V. 288

Hard Times for Soft Balancing Stephen G. Brooks Brooks, Stephen G. William C. Wohlforth Wohlforth, William C. 314

Waiting for Balancing: Why the World Is Not Pushing Back Keir A. Lieber Lieber, Keir A. Gerard Alexander Alexander, Gerard 351

Suggestions for Further Reading 382

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