Security, Conflict and Cooperation in the Contemporary World

The Reagan Administration, the Cold War, and the Transition to Democracy Promotion

Editors: Pee, Robert, Schmidli, William Michael (Eds.)

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  • Argues that democracy promotion emerged as a central pillar of US foreign policy during the Reagan Administration, with significant implications for post-Cold War international relations
  • Draws on recent declassified US government documents, non-governmental human rights organizations’ records and overseas archives 
  • Chapters cover a range of examples of American democracy promotion, from Eastern Europe to Latin America to Asia
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About this book

This book posits that democracy promotion played a key role in the Reagan administration’s Cold War foreign policy. It analyzes the democracy initiatives launched under Reagan and the role of administration officials, neoconservatives and non-state actors, such as the National Endowment for Democracy (NED), in shaping a new model of democracy promotion, characterized by aid to foreign political movements and the spread of neoliberal economics. The book discusses the ideological, strategic and organizational aspects of U.S. democracy promotion in the 1980s, then analyzes case studies of democracy promotion in the Soviet bloc and in U.S.-allied dictatorships in Latin America and East Asia, and, finally, reflects on the legacy of Reagan’s democracy promotion and its influence on Clinton, Bush and Obama. Based on new research and archival documents, this book shows that the development of democracy promotion under Reagan laid the foundations for US post-Cold War foreign policy.

About the authors

Robert Pee is a Teaching Fellow at the University of Birmingham, UK. He is the author of Democracy Promotion, National Security and Strategy: Foreign Policy under the Reagan Administration. His research focuses on U.S. democracy promotion during the Cold War and the War on Terror.

 

William Michael Schmidli is University Lecturer at the Institute for History at Leiden University, The Netherlands. He is a U.S. foreign relations historian, and his research focuses on the evolving significance of human rights, democracy promotion, and transnational advocacy networks from the Cold War to the present.


Reviews

“A fascinating exploration of ‘democracy promotion’ during the Reagan administration, this volume does not take the term at face value; it avoids falling into the ‘semantic trap’ which assumes a benevolent intent.  Instead, the chapters advance stories of the complexity and inconsistency of practice in a variety of well-chosen cases.  The volume provides a sober antidote to the positive turn in Reagan historiography.  It draws more broadly from the archives and the literature integrating non-US voices, non-state actors and provides a transnational investigation to the ideologically driven agenda, seemingly set in a neutral or natural setting. The studies in this volume provide an excellent appraisal of the ‘soft’ intervention the US inconsistently practices.  The irony, of course, Washington would be deeply offended if these practices were aimed at US elections.” (David Ryan, University College Cork, Ireland)

”Boldly taking the study of U.S. foreign relations into the 1980s, the authors in this pathbreaking collection examine democracy promotion on the premise that it was anything but a “technical” agenda. Instead, each shows in different ways, this signature program of Ronald Reagan’s presidency and sometimes since was freighted with ideological choices and intersected the realities of great power politics. All told, the book is a major contribution.” (Samuel Moyn, Yale University, USA)

 

Table of contents (13 chapters)

Table of contents (13 chapters)
  • Introduction: The Reagan Administration and Democracy Promotion

    Pee, Robert (et al.)

    Pages 1-28

  • “A Positive Track of Human Rights Policy”: Elliott Abrams, the Human Rights Bureau, and the Conceptualization of Democracy Promotion, 1981–1984

    Søndergaard, Rasmus Sinding

    Pages 31-50

  • The Rise of Political Aid: The National Endowment for Democracy and the Reagan Administration’s Cold War Strategy

    Pee, Robert

    Pages 51-73

  • Recreating the Cold War Consensus: Democracy Promotion and the Crisis of American Hegemony

    Schmidli, William Michael

    Pages 75-92

  • The Reagan Administration’s Efforts to Promote Human Rights and Democracy in the Soviet Union

    Peterson, Christian Philip

    Pages 95-114

Buy this book

eBook $89.00
price for Brazil (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-319-96382-2
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: EPUB, PDF
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Hardcover $119.99
price for Brazil
  • ISBN 978-3-319-96381-5
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.

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Bibliographic Information

Bibliographic Information
Book Title
The Reagan Administration, the Cold War, and the Transition to Democracy Promotion
Editors
  • Robert Pee
  • William Michael Schmidli
Series Title
Security, Conflict and Cooperation in the Contemporary World
Copyright
2019
Publisher
Palgrave Macmillan
Copyright Holder
The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s)
eBook ISBN
978-3-319-96382-2
DOI
10.1007/978-3-319-96382-2
Hardcover ISBN
978-3-319-96381-5
Edition Number
1
Number of Pages
XI, 336
Topics