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The British Study of Politics in the Twentieth Century$
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Jack Hayward, Brian Barry, and Archie Brown

Print publication date: 2003

Print ISBN-13: 9780197262948

Published to British Academy Scholarship Online: January 2012

DOI: 10.5871/bacad/9780197262948.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM BRITISH ACADEMY SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.britishacademy.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright British Academy, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in BASO for personal use.date: 03 July 2022

: A British School of International Relations

: A British School of International Relations

(p.395) 13: A British School of International Relations
The British Study of Politics in the Twentieth Century

Tim Dunne

British Academy

After considering the vexed question of whether it is possible to speak of a collective identity shared by scholars working in Britain, this chapter examines the debate surrounding the birth of international relations in the aftermath of the First World War. It discusses the arguments mobilized by E. H. Carr against the so-called idealists. This leads into a discussion of the evolution of a distinctive voice in British international relations that sought to overcome the realist–idealist dualism which defined what has become known as the first ‘great debate’. The conclusion briefly considers how far contemporary thinking on international relations builds on this attempt to set out an agenda that was both different from politics as traditionally conceived, and different from international relations as pursued in the United States.

Keywords:   American politics, Britain, First World War, E. H. Carr, realist–idealist dualism, world politics, Atlantic scholars

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