Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS:
Title: The passions of power politics : how emotions influence coercive diplomacy
Author: Markwica, Robin
ISNI:       0000 0004 5353 1331
Awarding Body: University of Oxford
Current Institution: University of Oxford
Date of Award: 2014
Availability of Full Text:
Access from EThOS:
Full text unavailable from EThOS. Please try the link below.
Access from Institution:
In coercive diplomacy, actors employ the threat of force to get targets to change their behavior. The goal is to achieve the opponent's compliance without waging war. In practice, however, the strategy often falls short-even when coercers enjoy substantial military superiority. This finding inspires the central question of this thesis: What prompts leaders to reject coercive threats from stronger adversaries, and under what conditions do they yield? I argue that target leaders' affective reactions can help to explain why coercive diplomacy succeeds in some cases but not in others. Combining insights from psychology and social constructivism, this thesis presents a theory of emotional choice to analyze how affect enters into target leaders' decision-making. Specifically, it makes the case that preferences are not only socially but also emotionally constructed. The core of the theoretical framework outlines how five key emotions-fear, anger, hope, pride, and humiliation-help to constitute target leaders' preferences. This represents the first attempt to explore how a spectrum of emotions influences leaders' foreign policy decision-making. To test the analytic utility of emotional choice theory, the thesis examines nine major decisions by Nikita Khrushchev during the Cuban missile crisis in 1962 and ten main decisions by Saddam Hussein in the course of the Gulf conflict in 1990-91. The analysis yields mixed results: In the case of about a third of all decisions, the five key emotions exerted only minor effects or no impact at all. Another third of the decisions were influenced by one or more of these emotions to a degree similar to the impact of other factors. In the case of the final third of decisions, however, some of these emotions became the primary forces shaping the construction of preferences. Overall, emotional choice theory has thus advanced our understanding of the target leaders' decision-making in the missile crisis and the Gulf conflict, offering a more comprehensive explanation of why coercive diplomacy succeeded in one case but not in the other.
Supervisor: Khong, Yuen Foong Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: International studies ; emotions ; coercive diplomacy