CALL FOR PAPERS
Two Hundred Years since the Congress of Vienna: The State of International Relations as a Discipline and Alternative World Views
Department of International Relations
Kadir Has University
22-24 October 2015
Napoleon: “But I am a soldier. I need honour and glory. I cannot
reappear among my people devoid of prestige. I must remain great,
admired, covered with glory."
Mettenich: "But when will this condition of things cease, in
which defeat and victory are alike reasons for continuing these dismal
wars? If victorious, you insist upon the fruits of your victory; if
defeated, you are determined to rise again."
Napoleon: “Alas. Then we shall meet at the gates of Vienna”.
(Napoleon’s written exchange with Metternich asking for Austrian neutrality in European wars – Summer of 1813)
2015 is a truly exceptional year from the perspective of International Relations history. It marks the 200th anniversary of the Congress of Vienna, the 70th of Yalta and Potsdam Conferences, as well as the founding of the United Nations, the 40th anniversary of the Helsinki Final Act and the 20th anniversary of the Dayton Accords.
The Congress of Vienna, whose final act of June 1815 was the most
comprehensive treaty the Great Powers had signed leading to the
reorganization of Europe after the Napoleonic Wars. With the principal
objectives being the prevention of the emergence of new imperialisms
such as the Napoleonic one and to put a check on political revolutions
in Europe via the maintenance of the balance of power and the status
quo, it proved successful for a while but ultimately failed to prevent
the rise of Imperial Germany or the political revolutions of the 19th
century that led to the emergence of nation-states in Europe and
Central and South America at the expense of many of the European
Empires. Nevertheless, its legacy proved influential as it provided for
the emergence of a security culture in Europe with the Concert of Europe
basically holding for most of the 19th Century.
130 years later, Yalta and Potsdam aimed to address the realities of
the emergent post war order in Europe of 1945 – a similar setting, as a
larger-than-Europe effort had neutralized a European crisis – while, the
United Nations focused on the need to accommodate the victors of the
war on a global scale and create a multifaceted and sustainable global
30 years later, The Helsinki Final Act of 1975 paved the way for
erasing dividing lines between East and West and contributed to the end
of the Cold War. Since then forty years have passed and we find
ourselves in the midst of a Helsinki + 40 process whose objective is to
contribute to an inclusive security community and strengthening
co-operation within the OSCE.
Finally, this year also marks the 20th year anniversary of
the Dayton Accords of 1995 which brought an end to the Bosnian war
under the aegis of the International Community which touted its own
efforts to rebuild crisis ridden countries in the Post Cold Era in a new
spirit of international cooperation.