Counter-Hegemony and Foreign Policy

The Dialectics of Marginalized and Global Forces in Jamaica

By Randolph B. Persaud
Foreword by Robert W. Cox

Subjects: International Relations
Series: SUNY series in Global Politics
Paperback : 9780791449202, 304 pages, March 2001
Hardcover : 9780791449196, 304 pages, March 2001

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Table of contents




1. Introduction: The New Historical Materialism


Why Jamaica 1962-1980?
Historicism and the New Historical Materialism
The Organization of the Study


2. Approaches to Third World Foreign Policy


The Will to Classify
Groping for Categories
The Small/Weak State School
"Small" or "Weak" State
Power and Capability
Core Generalizations
Situation Role Analaysis
The Dependence/Compliance-Dependency Approach


3. A Social Forces Approach to Foreign Policy


Historical Structure as a Framework
Passive Revolution
The Concept of Forms of State
The Concept of Social Force
Counter-Hegemony and Hegemony
World Order Pressures
The Argument: A First Cut


4. Ideology, Culture, and National Interest


The National Interest versus Ideology
Hegemony, Counter-Hegemony, and World Order
Implications for Foreign Policy Analysis


5. The Making of Modern Jamaica and the Emergence of Exceptionalism


Social Forces in the Struggle Over Hegemony
Plantation Economy and Society: The Making of the Longue Duree
Postwar Transformations
The Consequences of Rapid Industrialization
The Modern Social Structure
The Hegemonic Bloc and the Ideology of Exceptionalism on the Eve of the 1970s
Exceptionalism: The Ideology of the Hegemonic Bloc


6. Counter-Hegemonic Forces


The Poor in the Making of History
The Rastafarians
Cultural Nationalism and Anti-Imperialism
A Society of Deep Cleavages


7. Facilitating Passive Revolution


The JLP's "Exceptionalist" Foreign Policy
The JLP's Version of Jamaica's Uniqueness
Multilateral Policy
A Fractured Hegemony and PNP Recuperation


8. From "Exceptionalism" to Democratic Socialism


A Requiem for Exceptionalism
The 1972 General Elections
A Democratic Socialist Foreign Policy
The Multilateral Strategy


9. Promise and Defeat: Hegemony as Structual Power


The 1976 Election and the Realignment of Social Forces
The Economy: From Decline to Crisis
Bilateral Policies
The Opposition Groups


10. Onwards with Critical Theory


Counter-Hegemony in Theory and Practice
Some New Directions




SUNY series in Global Politics


Argues that marginalized states and peoples are capable of initiating their own foreign policy agendas.


It is not uncommon for scholars and policy makers to assume that small and dependent states must follow the lead of great or middle powers. But is this always the case? Drawing on the increasingly influential Gramscian approach to international relations, this book shows the ways in which marginalized social forces in Jamaica were mobilized against the hegemonic practices emanating from the global political economy. Persaud emphasizes the counter-hegemonic cultural activities of these forces, as well as the attempt of the Jamaican government to form a global "trade union of the poor."

Randolph B. Persaud is Assistant Professor in the School of International Service at American University.


"An interesting and provocative argument that local-level counter-hegemonic movements can shape national foreign policy and ultimately challenge global hegemonic structures." — Beverley Mullings, Syracuse University

"The theoretical sophistication of the book is impressive. This is one of the few attempts to link political and social dynamics at the local level with the unfolding of international political forces." — Pedro A. Caban, author of Constructing a Colonial People: Puerto Rico and the United States, 1898–1932