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Title: Hans J. Morgenthau, the "marginal man" in international relations : a "Weltanschauungsanalyse"
Authors: Rosch, Felix Johannes
Issue Date: 2011
Publisher: Newcastle University
Abstract: This thesis about the German-American political scientist Hans J. Morgenthau investigates in the development of his Weltanschauung. It grew out of a discomfort with structuralist and post-structuralist interpretations of Morgenthau’s thought which are distorted, curtate, and/or selective. This Weltanschauungsanalyse contributes to the understanding of Morgenthau and his oeuvre in three distinctive ways and negotiates hitherto existing shortcomings. First, it provides a panoptic rather than selective reading by considering all of Morgenthau’s major published and unpublished writings. It is, second, unifying rather than segregative in the sense that it reflects all aspects of Morgenthau’s thought and sets it into relation with each other. Finally, it is inclusive rather than exclusive meaning that the contexts in which Morgenthau developed his Weltanschauung are considered. This Weltanschauungsanalyse accentuates three dimensions in Morgenthau’s thought which are of relevance for contemporary theorising in International Relations. First, Morgenthau promoted a normative concept of power which is not to be confounded with violence, but to be considered as a group-dynamic element enabling to actively create a socio-political life world. Second, Morgenthau was one of the first IR-scholars to emphasise the conditionality of knowledge and political order, which makes his Weltanschauung a rich source for arguing that socio-political life is constructed and reason is limited as it enables to question “grand theories”. Finally, studying Morgenthau’s Weltanschauung concedes an important societal role to scholarship in the sense of dissidence. It is a sceptical appraisal of the socio-political status quo while being committed to a humanist normativity. To achieve this contribution to the current discourse on Morgenthau and elucidate his relevance for contemporary International Relations, this thesis applies Pierre Bourdieu’s concepts of field and habitus. It proceeds by, first, elaborating the field of Continental iv European intellectuals of the late 19th and early 20th centuries in which Morgenthau’s thought was formed. Based upon its findings it is possible to dissect Morgenthau’s Weltanschauung into its constitutive parts: ontology, epistemology, and political agency. Material for this analysis was procured in the Library of Congress, the Bodleian Library, the Hoover Institution, the Bibliothèque Sainte-Geneviève, and the Archive for Christian-Democratic Policy of the Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung.
Description: PhD thesis
Appears in Collections:School of Geography, Politics and Sociology

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