Commonsense and the Theory of International Politics
International politics is not a cumulative subject in which the latest book makes all the others obsolete. The assumption underlying these pages is that our understanding of international politics is more likely to be improved by reflecting upon and reworking what we already know about the subject, than by topping up our knowledge with either more detailed research or more contemporary analysis. Each of the chapters deals with a different aspect of international theory. A discerning reader may become aware of certain unifying threads running through and linking all of the chapters. They have all been written out of a conviction that explanation and not prescription is the only proper role of the political scientist; and they all reflect my skepticism about the scientific nature of international politics. John C. Garnett In a refreshing and clear analysis, Dr. Garnett looks at the nature of international theory and the problems associated with its development. Drawing from many disciplines, he examines fundamental questions in a new way, giving a measure of commonsense to a subject which has become complicated and esoteric. His use of analogies and quotations bring his subject alive in a study that will be of interest to those involved in both the social sciences and politics."