Jean Watson Expansion Of International Society

830 Words 4 Pages
Watson attempts to create a historical survey of the states systems that were formed in Europe and then spread to the “civilized” world. This states systems was challenged after World War II by the anti-colonial revolution and the demands of the Third World states for a new international order. Watson tries to move beyond on the mechanistic and sterile concept of international system to the more focused and perhaps more complicated concept of international society. Watson focuses on the global expansion of share values, expectations, and structures that composed European international society.
Watson examines the expansion of the international society in four steps. Part I chronicles the initial expansion of European society beginning around
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According to Watson, the loosening of requirements for membership in international society was the first step towards a global society. In part three of the book, Watson examines the end of European domination after WWII. The significant increase of the number of members of international society plus the creation of new international norms such as anti-racism, anti-colonialism, and widespread support of economic development and equity created a new international society.
One of the great virtues of Watson’s work is the treatment of the earlier systems of states from the Byzantium Empire to the first Arab empire. The difficulty that arises from such a survey is inevitably the discussion and analysis cannot be full or multi-faceted. This limitation means that there is not enough information on these systems for Watson’s piece to be a source for the aforementioned systems and merely forms a part of a very long description and argument in international relations. As the book progressed the relationships between distant periods became too vague to make effective
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Part IV, that examines the implications of the expansion of international society is a good analysis of the present and future of international society. I was especially surprised how much faith in the “underlying strength and adaptability of the international society created by the Europeans” after using several hundred pages describing the dilemmas of international society in today’s fragmented and ideological world. The author seemed to want to end the book on a high note because although he recognizes the faults and opportunities in the system he still believes in the virtuous principles of the international system as a

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