The Politics of International Economic Relations

Topics: International relations, Capitalism, International political economy Pages: 5 (1506 words) Published: November 17, 2012
The Politics of International Economic Relations
The purpose of the essay is to draw out the conceptual differences of Liberalism, Realism and Marxism. Each author stands for different approach among the three readings. Deundey and Ikenberry are liberals, Gilpin researches for Realism, David Harvey is a typical scholar of Marxism. The perspectives of three authors overlap on three issues but have different view on them. The first issue is what are the main actors involved in economic relations according to liberals, realists and Marxists approaches. The second one is how do three approaches define the nature of hegemony in the articles differently. Finally, what do liberals, realists and Marxists think about the role of state power. At the end of the essay, there will be a conclusion.

What are the main actors involved in economic relations according to liberals, realists and Marxists approaches?

Liberalism is a kind of ideology, philosophy, with freedom thought. The characteristics of liberalism which are pursuit of development, believe that human good nature, and support personal autonomy, in addition also claims to relax and exempt from dictatorship to individual control (Will, 2012). For the liberal economic relations, Deundey and Ikenberry thought the most important factors are hegemonic powers and free trade. Due to realists think hegemonic powers help to set and improve rules, lots of states and companies get rich interests from absorb exports, wield incentives and exchange currency, these states and companies more likely to keep opening their domestic market (Deundey & Ikenberry, 1999). Liberal states use free trade to change or keep their favourable cooperative partners politically and strategically. Furthermore, liberalism use government power to protect individual freedom thought of social and legal restrictions, ensuring the concept of free trade, encourage developing private firms, transparent political system to guarantee the rights of every citizen (Will, 2012). Robert Gilpin pointed out main actors of neo-liberalism including leadership, international cooperation and ideological consensus, which are regime theory (Gilpin, 2001). For instance, the prevailed as the norm for market transition in former communist countries, and established regional trade agreements increasingly, such as EU, NAFTA and APEC.

International relations realism is a kind of theory and practice, it pays attention to the balance of political power and economy force in the national state (Gilpin, 2001). Markets and the policies of nation states determine the realism economic relations. For example, China is one of the largest markets for consumption in the world. Lots of international firms attempt to develop Chinese market. However, these firms need to consider about Chinese government, because the government set rules the firms have to follow. Therefore, the economic relations are influenced by states, anarchy, multinational corporations, NGOs, international firms try to make affect on the nature of regimes.

Marxism is a critical analyse of international political economy, it focuses on class and class struggle, and the nature of capitalism, a typical example of historical materialism. For the Marxism economic relations, The New Imperialism showed that both the territorial and capitalist logics of power, the inner and outer relations of capitalist state are the main actors in economic relations (Harvey, 2003). Actually it is an intersection of economic and geopolitical competition.

How do three approaches define the nature of hegemony in the articles differently?

Hegemony refers to a state with its great advantages of political, military and economic in the world or the individual area control foreign sovereignty to seek for dominant powers (Deundey & Ikenberry, 1999). Liberal theorists emphasis on the transnational relations when a liberal state is hegemonic. Due to the openness of liberal state and the transnational...
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