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The Tragic Vision of Politics
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  • Cited by 141
  • Cited by
    This book has been cited by the following publications. This list is generated based on data provided by CrossRef.

    Chebankova, Elena 2017. Russia’s idea of the multipolar world order: origins and main dimensions. Post-Soviet Affairs, Vol. 33, Issue. 3, p. 217.

    Rösch, Felix 2017. Unlearning modernity: A realist method for critical international relations?. Journal of International Political Theory, Vol. 13, Issue. 1, p. 81.

    Moses, Jeremy 2017. Peace without perfection: The intersections of realist and pacifist thought. Cooperation and Conflict, p. 001083671772853.

    Beardsworth, Richard 2017. Towards a critical concept of the statesperson. Journal of International Political Theory, Vol. 13, Issue. 1, p. 100.

    Pashakhanlou, Arash Heydarian 2017. Realism and Fear in International Relations. p. 1.

    Jackson, Patrick Thaddeus 2017. Progressivism and US Foreign Policy between the World Wars. p. 295.

    Wedderburn, Alister 2017. Tragedy, genealogy and theories of International Relations. European Journal of International Relations, p. 135406611668913.

    Fels, Enrico 2017. Shifting Power in Asia-Pacific?. p. 85.

    Zhang, Biao 2017. Hans Morgenthau, Realist Theory of International Leadership, and the Future of Global Order. Chinese Political Science Review,

    Krell, Gert and Schlotter, Peter 2017. Handbuch Internationale Beziehungen. p. 21.

    Müller, Harald 2017. Richard Ned Lebow: A Pioneer in International Relations Theory, History, Political Philosophy and Psychology. Vol. 2, Issue. , p. 55.

    Stullerova, Kamila 2017. Embracing ontological doubt: The role of ‘reality’ in political realism. Journal of International Political Theory, Vol. 13, Issue. 1, p. 59.

    Luke, Timothy W 2017. Caught between vulgar and effete realists: Critical theory, classical realism and mythographies of power. Journal of International Political Theory, Vol. 13, Issue. 1, p. 18.

    Van Rythoven, Eric 2017. Fear in the crowd or fear of the crowd? The dystopian politics of fear in international relations. Critical Studies on Security, p. 1.

    Guzzini, Stefano 2017. Richard Ned Lebow: A Pioneer in International Relations Theory, History, Political Philosophy and Psychology. Vol. 2, Issue. , p. 35.

    Masala, Carlo 2017. Handbuch Internationale Beziehungen. p. 141.

    Bell, Duncan 2017. Political realism and international relations. Philosophy Compass, Vol. 12, Issue. 2, p. e12403.

    Wendt, Christian 2017. Richard Ned Lebow: A Pioneer in International Relations Theory, History, Political Philosophy and Psychology. Vol. 2, Issue. , p. 67.

    Behr, Hartmut and Williams, Michael C 2017. Interlocuting classical realism and critical theory: Negotiating ‘divides’ in international relations theory. Journal of International Political Theory, Vol. 13, Issue. 1, p. 3.

    Purdon, Mark 2017. Neoclassical realism and international climate change politics: moral imperative and political constraint in international climate finance. Journal of International Relations and Development, Vol. 20, Issue. 2, p. 263.

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    The Tragic Vision of Politics
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Book description

Is it possible to preserve national security through ethical policies? Richard Ned Lebow seeks to show that ethics are actually essential to the national interest. Recapturing the wisdom of classical realism through a close reading of the texts of Thucydides, Clausewitz and Hans Morgenthau, Lebow argues that, unlike many modern realists, classic realists saw close links between domestic and international politics, and between interests and ethics. Lebow uses this analysis to offer a powerful critique of post-Cold War American foreign policy. He also develops an ontological foundation for ethics and makes the case for an alternate ontology for social science based on Greek tragedy's understanding of life and politics. This is a topical and accessible book, written by a leading scholar in the field.


‘This is an important book. Brilliantly conceived and argued, Lebow analyzes in the original the texts of three ‘classical’ realists - Thucydides, Clausewitz and Morgenthau - to argue for a more humanistic and compassionate American foreign policy. Ethical behavior and justice, he argues, are not incompatible with Realpolitik. Fragmentation and compartmentalization have built a firewall between the humanities and social sciences. Lebow calls for a balance, a synthesis. He may, in his own words, be like a ‘salmon swimming upstream’, but in his case, the journey is worth the effort.’

Holger H. Herwig - University of Calgary

'In this ambitious and always stimulating work Richard Ned Lebow avows that contemporary scholars and practitioners of international politics ignore the tragic sensibilities and 'wisdom of classical realism' at their-and our-peril … this is a fascinating work teeming with ideas and displaying an astonishing command of the literature across a wide range of what have unfortunately been marked out as disciplinary boundaries in the modern academy. Lebow's ability to range beyond them is undeniably impressive.'

Mitchell Rologas Source: International Affairs

' ... a book worthy of reading. ... succeeds in creating a structured text that enables him to deal with different thoughts in different layers without breaking its logic. Thanks to it's richness and multidisciplinarity, Richard Ned Lebow's book will certainly attract a large audience. The text will help students get in touch with the classical realists for the first time in a course on international relations, as well their teachers. ... the deeper insights into the books meta-theme which are identity, ethics and norm compliance in foreign policy will inspire and provoke scholars and should also be noted by practitioners.'

Source: Journal of International Relations and Development

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