In This Review

Crisis Bargaining and the State: The Domestic Politics of International Conflict
Crisis Bargaining and the State: The Domestic Politics of International Conflict
By Susan Peterson
University of Michigan Press, 1996, 208 pp
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One would expect the realist paradigm to work best in crisis situations where grave national interests are at stake and where states are forced to behave as individual actors rationally focused on security. In case studies of the Crimean War and the Fashoda and Berlin crises, the author shows that even in such situations, domestic politics continues to play a role. Not surprisingly, the more diffuse and open the political system, the greater the domestic influence. Some of the author's broader conclusions, such as that specific institutions rather than democracy per se are likely to determine the proclivity for war, are not adequately demonstrated on the basis of the cases studied here.