Actor in International Politics Essay

2588 Words Oct 14th, 2011 11 Pages

The problem of actors is one of the central, and at the same time one of the most controversial in the study of international politics and relations. Indeed, one of the main criteria of international relations is the presence of regular interactions between the social communities geographically separated by political boundaries.

In international relations, actors are those whose activity goes beyond one state and, therefore, participate in cross-border relations and communications. In other words, in one way or another, any argument about international relations assumes directly a reference to the State with sovereignty as its most important attribute. Take the United States for an example, it is an actor
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However, this raises the following questions: first, what kinds of social communities, which interact in the global arena, may be considered typical of international actors; secondly, what is the hierarchy between the types of international actors, or, in other words, which of them can be regarded as the most influential, authoritative and ambitious? Both of these issues are, to varying degrees, the subject of scientific debates, theoretical disputes. In the next section, I will compare typologies of international actors to unpack the differences among the competing approaches.

There are many typologies of international actors, depending on the goals and objectives of the analysis undertaken. However, at present the main discussions are not so much on the typology of actors, but which of them are the most important as political entities. There are differences in the interpretation of this issue between the competing approaches. For example, realists insist that the main actors remain sovereign states, and consider them as rationally acting homogeneous politic entities, unitary entities that conduct uniform policy towards other states – the participants of international relations. A. Wolfers wrote that “the space in world politics is completely captured by States, each of the them has control over the territory, people and

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