Conflict and Peace in the Modern International System

A Study of the Principles of International Order

By Evan Luard

Subjects: International Relations
Paperback : 9780887066979, 318 pages, October 1988
Hardcover : 9780887066962, 318 pages, October 1988

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Table of contents

List of Tables
Introduction: The Motives of States

1. External Wars
2. Frontiers
3. Colonies
4. Civil Wars
5. Arms Control
6. Disarmament
7. Authority
8. Law
9. Opinion
10. Peace

General Conclusions
Appendix I: Conflicts of motives among states
Appendix II: United Nations procedures for crisis situations and their functions
Appendix III: The main types of international procedures, with comparison of their effectiveness
Appendix VI: The special nature of international authority
Appendix V: Principal wars, 1945-86


This book is an important contribution to the understanding of conflict and peace in the modern world, and to the continuous debate about the best methods to avoid and limit wars. This revised edition has the added advantage of having updated information about international and civil conflicts up to the early 1980s. This last point is important as there is not any other book that I know of which offers a comprehensive approach to the topic as well as updated information on the international conflicts that happened during the last few years.

It guides the reader through a complex topic, helping one to understand the reasons for conflict and to realistically assess the possibilities for peace in different contexts. It also provides well argued policy recommendations about the means to be used to reduce the likelihood of armed conlict, its intensity, and duration.

Evan Luard has been a diplomat, an academic, a politician, and the author of numerous books. He is currently a supernumerary Fellow of St. Antony's College, Oxford.


"Conflict and Peace in the Modern International System offers a wealth of information adequately balanced with analytical observations, and thoughtful discussions of controversial issues. The book's thesis is defended on the basis of a solid scholarship and illuminating reasoning, and provides a stimulating alternative to other power oriented, state-centered analyses of the topic. From this viewpoint, the author presents a well argued and realistic study of the actual and potential role of international law, organizations, and public opinion in creating conditions for the peaceful resolution of conflictive situations in the international scene. " -- Aldo C. Vacs, Skidmore College