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Deterrence and Perception

Robert Jervis

Title:
Deterrence and Perception
Author(s):
Jervis, Robert
Date:
Type:
Articles
Department(s):
Political Science
Volume:
7
Persistent URL:
Book/Journal Title:
International Security
Abstract:
In the most elemental sense, deterrence depends on perceptions. But unless people are totally blind, we need not be concerned with the logical point that, if one actor's behavior is to influence another, it must be perceived. Rather what is important is that actors' perceptions often diverge both from "objective reality" (or later scholars' perceptions of it, which is as good a measure as we can have) and from the perceptions of other actors. These differences, furthermore, both randomly and systematically influence deterrence. Unless statesmen understand the ways in which their opposite numbers see the world, their deterrence policies are likely to misfire; unless scholars understand the patterns of perceptions involved, they will misinterpret the behavior.
Subject(s):
Political science
International relations
Publisher DOI:
https://doi.org/10.2307/2538549
Item views
220
Metadata:
text | xml
Suggested Citation:
Robert Jervis, , Deterrence and Perception, Columbia University Academic Commons, .

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