chapter  4
19 Pages

The beginnings of diplomacy

WithAlexander Stagnell

Kant’s reflections on state-to-state relationships have played an important part in the field of International Relations ever since its formation as a sub-field of Political Science during the first half of the twentieth century. Although it is possible to find what can be considered comments on diplomacy and foreign policy scattered across his political oeuvre, the essay Perpetual Peace, first published in 1795, has been, and remains, the primary text of interest to the field. Considering that Perpetual Peace is the most referenced of Kant’s texts within International Relations, it comes as no surprise that his primary contribution to the field can be found in the topic of international law. Although only making use of the concept of diplomacy twice in his text Perpetual Peace: A Philosophical Essay, the diplomatic theme runs through Kant’s attempt to end all wars.