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Social Sci LibreTexts

3: The English School

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  • The English school provides the basis for the study of international and world history in terms of the social structures of international orders. Unlike many theories that claim a certain sector of the subject of International Relations, the English school provides a holistic approach to the subject, attempting to see the world as a whole. English school theory is built around establishing distinctions between three key concepts: international system, international society and world society. By doing so it opens up a new space in IR theory and offers a middle ground between the opposing theories of realism and liberalism.