"Diplomacy, widely recognized as the standard textbook on its subject and already translated into six languages, has been comprehensively updated, reorganized and greatly expanded. There are new chapters on consuls, public diplomacy, special envoys, and how agreements are best followed up, the last featuring a close look at no torture agreements"--Provided by publisher
Both historical and contemporary trends suggest that the meaning of diplomacy varies considerably over time and across space. Diplomacy is defined neither by the types of actors on behalf of which it is undertaken nor by the status of those actors vis-à-vis one another, in the sense of their being, for example, sovereign and equal. There are, however, four common threads underlying these historical variations on diplomacy. The first is an assumption about the necessarily plural character of social relations, namely that people live in groups which regard themselves as separate from, yet needing or wanting relations with, one another. The second is that this plural social fact gives rise to relations that are somehow distinctive to and different from relations within groups. People believe and feel themselves to be under fewer obligations to those whom they regard as others than to those whom they regard as their own. Third, therefore, if these relations are to remain peaceful and productive, they require careful handling by specialists who should be treated neither as one's own nor, at least in the usual sense, as others. Fourth, these specialists develop a measure of solidarity as the managers of relations in worlds distinguished by the plural social fact. Where these four elements are in play, then there emerges a system of relations which can be recognized as having the character of diplomacy.
The course and consequences of major events of modern international diplomacy have shaped and changed the global world in which we live. Joseph M. Siracusa introduces the subject of diplomacy from a historical perspective, providing examples from significant historical phases and episodes to illustrate the art of diplomacy in action
Chiefly for the wrong reasons, diplomacy has recently made some notable incursions into international relations programmes at British universities. For, in the field of money-spinning taught Master's degrees, this subject has been perceived as a crowd puller. Out there, beyond the European Community with its aggravatingly-low fee levels, are, it is calculated, many who will be attracted by an MA with 'diplomatic' in its title. With some ground, it is believed they see that sort of degree as a passport to a position in the much-sought-after diplomatic ranks. Furthermore, in the same regions lie beginning diplomats who could be said to need some vocational underpinning, not to mention those longer-employed in diplomacy who would benefit in mid-career from intellectual refreshment. The British Statue of Education beckons, its own distinctive torch held high aloft. And, to ensure that its light does not go unnoticed, Vice-Chancellors despatch glossy brochures to the British Council and their recruiting officers, hot foot, to distant parts.