Essay on The World Is Not Black And White

760 Words Apr 29th, 2016 4 Pages
The world is not black and white. There is rarely an absolute and definitive reason why a country ventures onto the lands of an opposing state. There are a number of factors that can come out to play when analyzing a countries imperialist nature. In the article “Explaining Imperialism: The State of the Art as reflected in Three Theories”, Rajan Menon and John R. Oneal interpret the discourse behind imperialism and formulate three theories; the realist theory, the socialist theory of capitalism and the theory of lateral pressure. Although all theories hold some truth, the most applicable theory is that of lateral pressure. This theory can be used to explain why the British attempted to colonize certain oil-rich regions during the early 20th century. The simplest theory behind the existence of imperialism is the “realist theory.” It employs the notion that man has certain “biopsychological drives,” such as the need to dominate that explains a country’s desire to extend its power. “Hans Morgenthaur, Reinhold Neibuhr and Raymond Aaron… have suggested that imperialism stems from an innate human urge.” The realists base their theory on the tendency of great world powers to take advantage of power disparity to assert their dominance. The realist principal that hunger for power drives imperialism is flawed. The theory “rests upon grand generalizations about man, politics and the state.” It dismisses domestic politics and all economic variables. The theory implies that both…

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