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Une reconstruction éliasienne de la théorie d'Alexander Wendt : pour une approche relationniste de la politique internationale

Abstract : This thesis proposes a critical deconstruction of Alexander Wendt's theory. We underline the genealogy of his thought in the contexts of social theory and international relations theory.Thus, we can say that the Wendtian theory does not solve the agency-structure problem, but actually emphasizes the very terminological problem of this debate. In particular, Wendt's will to synthesize two co-determinist approaches – critical realism and constructivism – shows the deadlock of such a thinking mode. A semantic reformulation of the debate becomes a necessity, therefore the development of concepts such as process, relations, habitus and figurations coming from Eliasian thought.
A reconstruction is then offered, wich is based on relationism or process sociology as developped by Norbert Elias. A relationist approach allows us to underline the process character of any social reality in order to avoid reifications so common in traditional social thinking. Besides, to explain and understand international politics, we need to work on the longue durée in order to study the evolution (often slow) of social processes. Finally, with Elias, we integrate a psychological dimension to the understanding of international politics through the concept of habitus wich is, at the same time, social and psychological. In other words, there is a need to open a discussion on the role of emotions, affects and their self-control in the relations of violence on the international scene. The overall goal is to humanize, socialize and historicize theories of international relations.
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Submitted on : Friday, February 1, 2008 - 9:41:18 AM
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  • HAL Id : tel-00231927, version 1


Aurélie Lacassagne. Une reconstruction éliasienne de la théorie d'Alexander Wendt : pour une approche relationniste de la politique internationale. Science politique. Université Montesquieu - Bordeaux IV; Institut d'études politiques de Bordeaux, 2008. Français. ⟨tel-00231927⟩



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