Pub. date: 2011 | Online Pub. Date: October 04, 2011 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412994163 | Print ISBN: 9781412959636 | Online ISBN: 9781412994163| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Liberalism in International Relations
Michael Doyle & Stefano Recchia
This entry presents an overview of recent trends and developments in liberal international relations theory—both empirical and normative. An effort is made to highlight the link between contemporary liberal scholarship on international relations and the thought of classical liberal figures such as John Locke, Adam Smith, Immanuel Kant, Giuseppe Mazzini, and John Stuart Mill. The first part of the essay introduces key liberal principles and ideas and identifies three different traditions of liberal thought on international relations. Thereafter, we discuss classical and contemporary theories on the relationship between liberal democracy and international peace, followed by an overview of related, recent scholarship on global governance and international cooperation among democracies. The final part of the essay briefly discusses two alternative liberal approaches to the ethics of military intervention and shows, in particular, how liberal theorists, while they all share a fundamental attachment to representative governance and human rights, can fundamentally differ ...