Sources and Trends of Japanese International Relations Theories

DOI: 10.20542/0131-2227-2020-64-5-73-83
Moscow State Institute of International Relations (MGIMO-University), 76, Vernadskogo Prosp., Moscow, 119454, Russian Federation

Abstract. Japanese theories of international relations (IR) turn into an increasingly important subject of research by Russian political scientists as Russia progressively orientates toward the East. The research task of this article is to approach the understanding of the origins and current landscape of Japanese theoretical thought in IR, explaining its cultural, historical and political condition. Using the historical-genetic method, the author restores the stages of the genesis of the Japanese theoretical understanding of IR, painting a picture of historical continuity that helps to understand the political thinking of today’s Japanese. The author investigates the concepts of the contemporary Japanese theorists – Inoguchi Takashi, Tanaka Akihito, Anno Tadashi, – and other political scientists who determine the main trends of Japanese IR theories, which are the regional comparative studies (primarily Asian studies), specifically Japanese understanding of the soft power concept, political aspects of environmentalism, discourse of differences and a common denominator of Western and non-Western IR theories. Of practical importance is the analysis of the discussion of Japanese international affairs specialists on the transformation of Japan into an “ordinary country”, which has the prospect of rejecting the “peaceful” 9th article of the Japanese constitution and the historically established pacifist identity of the Japanese nation behind it. The author concludes that the most noticeable contribution of Japanese political scientists to world political science is the creative transformation and enrichment of Western concepts with non-Western approaches to world order.

Keywords: theories of international relations, Japan, Russia, traditions, 9th article of the Japanese constitution


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For citation:
Chugrov S. Sources and Trends of Japanese International Relations Theories. World Eonomy and International Relations, 2020, vol. 64, no. 5, pp. 73-83.

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