Consider the causes of WWs I and II. What sorts of causes would Realists emphasize, and which ones would Liberalists emphasize – and why? Which of these two leading frameworks do you think is most effective in explaining World War I? And WW II? How would a realist’s explanation of post-war Western Europe’s 75 years of sustained peace since World War II differ from a liberalist theorist’s explanation? Would they be able to agree at all on some of the key factors – and why/why not? Which do you think would be more optimistic about the possibility of avoiding war in the near future between a “declining” United States and a “rising China” – a Realist or a Liberalist? In what ways would Realist and Liberalist analysis of the “challenge posed by China” differ?
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