Evaluating the Normative and Structural Explanations of Democratic Peace Theory

https://doi.org/10.22146/globalsouth.28817

Yunizar Adiputera(1*)

(1) Program on Humanitarian Action, Universitas Gadjah Mada
(*) Corresponding Author

Abstract


Originating from the work of Immanuel Kant, Democratic Peace Theory proposes that democracies rarely, if ever, fight war against other democracies. While inquiries to the existence of such phenomena through sophisticated statistical approach remain important, it is equally important to further develop the understanding in the causal explanations behind it. There are two dominant strands of explanations for Democratic Peace, one locates the causes on the structure of democratic government, and the other locates them on the prevailing norms/cultures within a democratic society. The structural explanations claim that it is the institutions within democratic governments, such as the presence of regular election, checks and balances (from parliament), and transparency that hinder their leaders to initiate wars against other democracies. The norm/cultural explanations argue that democracies develop liberal ideology, norms of bounded competition, and reciprocity, which guide them in conducting peaceful foreign relations with other democracies. Despite the compelling logics brought by these two types of explanations, there remains a gap between their theoretical assumptions and practical realities of inter-state relations. Furthermore, some of these explanations need to be further specified in order to allow for more operational investigations to them.



Keywords


democratic peace; causal explanations; norms; institutions

Full Text:

PDF


References

Babst, D. (1972) A Force for Peace. Industrial Research, 14, 55–58.

Braumoeller, B. F. (1997) Deadly doves: Liberal nationalism and the democratic peace in the Soviet successor states. International Studies Quarterly, 41(3), 375–402.

Clinton, B. (1994, January 25) State of the Union Address. Washington Post. Retrieved from http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/politics/special/states/docs/sou94.htm

Dixon, W. J. (1994) Democracy and the Peaceful Settlement of International Conflict. The American Political Science Review, 88(1), 14–32. doi:10.2307/2944879

Downes, A. B., & Lilley, M. L. (2010) Overt Peace, Covert War?: Covert Intervention and the Democratic Peace. Security Studies, 19(2), 266–306.

Doyle, M. W. (1983a) Kant, Liberal Legacies, and Foreign Affairs. Philosophy & Public Affairs, 12(3), 205–235.

Doyle, M. W. (1983b) Kant, Liberal Legacies, and Foreign Affairs, Part 2. Philosophy & Public Affairs, 12(4), 323–353.

Fearon, J. D. (1994) Domestic political audiences and the escalation of international disputes. American Political Science Review, 577–592.

Fearon, J. D.. (1997) Signaling Foreign Policy Interests Tying Hands versus Sinking Costs. Journal of Conflict Resolution, 41(1), 68–90.

Hayes, J. (2011) Review Article: the Democratic Peace and the new Evolution of an old Idea. European Journal of International Relations. doi:10.1177/1354066111405859

James, P., Solberg, E., & Wolfson, M. (1999) An identified systemic model of the democracy-peace nexus. Defence and Peace Economics, 10(1), 1–37.

Kant, I. (2006) Toward perpetual peace and other writings on politics, peace, and history. Yale University Press. Retrieved from http://books.google.com/books?hl=en&lr=&id=ERFJVLqqROIC&oi=fnd&pg=PR7&dq=toward+perpetual+peace&ots=hmgCMH7Tvt&sig=4IUZO-7i8khiYJfcwVdS1BKZeYI

Leng, R. J. (1993) Reciprocating influence strategies in interstate crisis bargaining. Journal of Conflict Resolution, 37(1), 3–41.

Maoz, Z., & Russett, B. (1993) Normative and structural causes of democratic peace, 1946-1986. American Political Science Review, 624–638.

Mearsheimer, J. J. (1990) Back to the future: instability in Europe after the Cold War. International Security, 15(1), 5–56.

Owen, J. M. (1994) How Liberalism Produces Democratic Peace. International Security, 19(2), 87–125. doi:10.2307/2539197

Paris, R. (2004) The Origins of Peacebuilding. In At War’s End: Building Peace After Civil Conflict. Cambridge University Press.

Reiter, D., & Tillman, E. R. (2002) Public, legislative, and executive constraints on the democratic initiation of conflict. Journal of Politics, 64(3), 810–826.

Schultz, K. A. (1999) Do democratic institutions constrain or inform? Contrasting two institutional perspectives on democracy and war. International Organization, 53(2), 233–266.

Small, M., & Singer, J. D. (1976) The war-proneness of democratic regimes, 1816-1965. Jerusalem Journal of International Relations, 1(4), 50–69.

Wilson, W. (1917, April 2) Address to a Joint Session of Congress Requesting a Declaration of War Against Germany. The American Presidency Project. Retrieved March 18, 2013, from http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/ws/?pid=65366



DOI: https://doi.org/10.22146/globalsouth.28817

Article Metrics

Abstract views : 3969 | views : 2918

Refbacks

  • There are currently no refbacks.


Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

View My Stats