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Defensive realism and the Concert of Europe

Rendall, Matthew

Authors

Matthew Rendall



Abstract

Why do great powers expand? Offensive realist John Mearsheimer claims that states wage an eternal struggle for power, and that those strong enough to seek regional hegemony nearly always do. Mearsheimer's evidence, however, displays a selection bias. Examining four crises between 1814 and 1840, I show that the balance of power restrained Russia, Prussia and France. Yet all three also exercised self-restraint; Russia, in particular, passed up chances to bid for hegemony in 1815 and to topple Ottoman Turkey in 1829. Defensive realism gives a better account of the Concert of Europe, because it combines structural realism with non-realist theories of state preferences.

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date Jan 1, 2006
Journal Review of International Studies
Print ISSN 0260-2105
Electronic ISSN 0260-2105
Publisher Cambridge University Press (CUP)
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 32
Issue 3
APA6 Citation Rendall, M. (2006). Defensive realism and the Concert of Europe. Review of International Studies, 32(3), doi:10.1017/S0260210506007145
DOI https://doi.org/10.1017/S0260210506007145
Keywords Europe, Great powers, hegemony, 1814, 1840, Russia, Ottoman Turkey,Concert of Europe
Publisher URL http://journals.cambridge.org/action/displayAbstract?fromPage=online&aid=461173&fileId=S0260210506007145
Copyright Statement Copyright information regarding this work can be found at the following address: http://eprints.nottingh.../end_user_agreement.pdf

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Copyright Statement
Copyright information regarding this work can be found at the following address: http://eprints.nottingham.ac.uk/end_user_agreement.pdf





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