C a W Manning and the Study of International Relations

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Review of International Studies (2001), 27, 91–107 Copyright © British International Studies Association C. A. W. Manning and the study of International Relations HIDEMI SUGANAMI* Abstract. C. A. W. Manning, Professor of International Relations at the LSE (1930–1962), was a key contributor to the formation of the discipline in Britain. He wrote on Jurisprudence, which was his main strength; on the League of Nations, of which he was a keen supporter; on South Africa, concerning which he gained
  Review ofInternational Studies (2001),27,91–107Copyright © British International Studies Association 91 *I am grateful to Tim Dunne,Alan James,Dan Keohane,Andrew Linklater,Debbie Lisle,DavidLong,Brian Porter,and Peter Wilson for their comments on the earlier drafts ofthis article,andwant to thank Mick Cox for suggesting to me that I might write a retrospective on Manning.I amalso indebted to Michael Donelan,who saw from the start that my category of‘institutionalism’wasredundant. 1 C.A.W.Manning, The Nature ofInternational Society ,reissue (London:Macmillan,for the LondonSchool ofEconomics and Political Science,1975),p.ix. 2 Manning, Nature ofInternational Society ,p.xi. 3 Ibid.,p.ix. 4 Ibid.,p.x. C.A.W.Manning and the study of International Relations HIDEMI SUGANAMI* Abstract.C.A.W.Manning,Professor ofInternational Relations at the LSE (1930–1962), was a key contributor to the formation ofthe discipline in Britain.He wrote on Jurisprudence, which was his main strength;on the League ofNations,ofwhich he was a keen supporter;onSouth Africa,concerning which he gained notoriety as the defender ofApartheid;onInternational Relations as an independent academic discipline,which,to him,was due to the sui generis character ofinternational society as a formally anarchical but substantively orderlysocial environment.He was a Rationalist in Martin Wight’s sense,and early constructivist,who saw that the society ofstates as a social construct was subject to interpretation,reinterpretation,and reshaping. Charles Anthony Woodward Manning (1894–1978),MA,BCL,was born andeducated in South Africa,and was a Rhodes Scholar at Brasenose College,Oxford.In 1922,he became a barrister,and until the following year served as PersonalAssistant to the Secretary-General ofthe League ofNations.‘With a privileged,ringside,view’is how he later describes his post at Geneva,where,he says,he noticed‘the difference between the children ofdarkness and the children oflight’. 1 Hissympathies were with the latter.The next several years were spent back in Oxford—as Fellow ofNew College and Lecturer in Law,specializing in Jurisprudence.But,Manning reminisces,‘the yet sufficiently youthful law don volunteered to forgo hispleasant Oxford prospects’ 2 to take up a London chair ofInternational Relations—because,he says,the ‘children oflight’he saw in Geneva were often so poorlyequipped for their understanding ofthings, 3 a problem about which he now felt heought to do something.For over thirty years,he was to teach at the London SchoolofEconomics,first as Cassel Professor ofInternational Relations,and later asMontague Burton Professor.Interestingly,Philip Noel-Baker had been Manning’spredecessor at Geneva;and now,for the second time,Manning became the successorto this the most illustrious ofthe ‘children oflight’. 4 After his retirement in 1962,Manning continued at the LSE to give lectures on‘The Philosophical Aspects ofInternational Relations’.Partly out ofcuriosity,for  by then he was somewhat ofa legendary figure among his former pupils,and partlyout ofgenuine interest in his subject,I attended his lectures in the early 1970s—afew years before his eventual return,in serious ill health,to his native land.Manning,then around 80,was curiously childlike in his pedagogical egotism—aftermore than a decade ofretirement,in addition to three decades ofprofessorship,hewas still worried about how many students would turn up at his first lecture everyyear! Not many,by then,but some ofus who went along found him very engaging.I once heard it said ofManning that he divided his daytime working hours intosegments ofthree:a third was spent on studying philosophy,a third on reading thenewspapers,and a third on teaching undergraduates.Learning,thinking,teachingdominated;writing,it appears,was done in spare moments.Over a long stretch of forty-five years,he published at the most about forty items.Only one ofthem is afull-length—and,I should add,highly idiosyncratic,and in parts rather hard tofollow—monograph,and the rest includes a number ofradio talks and short articlesin relatively obscure places.It is no surprise,then,that although his former pupilsremember him well,Manning hardly remains in the collective consciousness ofthecommunity ofIR scholars and students—even within the UK.Those who know of him are likely also to know that he wrote a book called The Nature ofInternational Society .But neither is the book nor its author familiar to the IR community at largein the way almost everyone there knows,or is supposed to know,about E.H.Carrand The Twenty Years’Crisis ,or Hans Morgenthau and Politics among Nations  —toname but two other founding members ofthe community.Notwithstanding the attention frequently paid oflate to the works ofthe so-called English School ofInternational Relations,Manning is unlikely somehow tobe resurrected from virtual oblivion because,remarkably to my mind,he is said,insome popularizing sources,rather categorically not even to belong to that School. 5 And while ‘constructivism’is now in vogue,virtually no one seems to notice orremember that the distinction between ‘institutional’and ‘brute’facts—from whichthat doctrine stems—was one ofManning’s most central and persistent messages; 6 or that the international society ofsovereign states subject to international law (andmorality),to Manning,was a social construction  par excellence . 7 Still,Manning’s influence on the discipline ofInternational Relations in itsformative period in Britain is indubitable.This was due partly to his teaching andthe intellectual influences he exerted upon his colleagues,and partly to the power he92 Hidemi Suganami  5 See Chris Brown, Understanding International Relations (London:Macmillan,1997),p.52;TimDunne, Inventing International Society:A History ofthe English School  (London:Macmillan,inassociation with St Antony’s College,Oxford,1998),p.12;and Roger Epp,‘The English School onthe Frontiers ofInternational Society:A Hermeneutic Recollection’, Review ofInternational Studies ,24 (1998),pp.47–63,at p.48,note 7.Ifasked to choose between thinking ofManning as being insideor outside ofthe English School,my preference would be the former;but,as I shall explain later,mymost preferred position is to abandon the talk ofa school altogether. 6 Manning in effect made use ofthis distinction already in his ‘Austin To-day:Or “The Province of Jurisprudence”Re-examined’,in W.Ivor Jennings (ed.), Modern Theories ofLaw (London:OxfordUniversity Press,1933),pp.180–226,at p.211.See also Manning, Nature ofInternational Society ,p.xix.Constructivism runs through Manning’s works.See,for example, Nature ofInternational Society ,pp.xv–xvi,2,5–6,27,ch.3.On the construction ofsocial reality,and the distinction between ‘brute’and ‘institutional’facts,see John R.Searle, The Construction ofSocial Reality (Harmondsworth:Penguin,1995). 7 One clear exception to this general neglect is Timothy Dunne,‘The Social Construction of International Society’, European Journal ofInternational Relations ,1 (1995),pp.367–89,at pp.376–7,384.  had in selecting the second generation ofIR teachers in Britain. 8 And,after all,hedid write—over a very long period.In addition to a translation ofa Germantextbook on International Law, Völkerrecht im Grundriss by Julius Hatschek,Manning wrote mainly on five interconnected subjects—Jurisprudence,the LeagueofNations,South Africa,the status ofInternational Relations as an academicdiscipline,and the nature ofinternational society which Manning took to be thediscipline’s central subject–matter,whose sui generis character justified for Manningthe independent status ofIR as a discipline.Once I asked Manning how he came to translate Hatschek’s book,which did notstrike me as the most obvious thing to do,especially when,Manning said,he did notspeak German.Apparently,it was at Hersch Lauterpacht’s suggestion.Now thatBritain had ratified the ‘Optional’Clause ofthe Statute ofthe Permanent Court of International Justice,Lauterpacht thought it important for the British lawyers toknow a little more about the Continental conceptions ofinternational law.Manningshared the view, 9 and got on with the work,he said,because he knew some Dutch!Decades later,when the British International Studies Association was beingproposed,Manning apparently argued instead for a European association:he wasadamant—as he was wont to be on many things he touched on in his lectures—thatintellectual cooperation on matters international must transcend the parochialboundaries ofBritain.Transcending academic boundaries was another thingManning considered important.In his own case,it was insights from Jurisprudenceand,more broadly,Analytical Philosophy that he wished to bring across to theformative discipline ofInternational Relations. 10 Below,I offer an intellectualportrait ofthis recently much neglected founder member ofa discipline,and,to thisend,outline and assess some ofhis more important publications. Jurisprudence This subject was one ofManning’s main and long-lasting intellectual passions.Buthere he published little.There are,as far as I can find,only two items that fall underthis category.One is the eighth (1930) edition ofSir John Salmond’s Jurisprudence .The other is a lecture on John Austin,given at the LSE in 1932,which was publisheda year later in W.Ivor Jennings (ed.), Modern Theories ofLaw .Salmond’s Jurisprudence was a standard English-language work on legal theory,but Manning’s eighth edition,and the book itself,have long been superseded.Manning was proud ofhis piece on Austin—a substantial essay,containing asympathetic reading ofAustin’s legal theory.However,H.L.A.Hart,one ofthemost eminent figures on Jurisprudence in the English-speaking world in the latterpart ofthe twentieth century,effectively dismissed Manning’s essay as ‘an un-orthodox defence’. 11 Such opinions notwithstanding,Manning was to recall in his C.A.W.Manning and the study ofIR 93 8 Among Manning’s colleagues,whom he appointed,and his former pupils are:Hedley Bull,MartinWight,Geoffrey Goodwin,F.S.Northedge,Alan James,Jack Spence,Peter Lyon,Brian Porter,Michael Banks,Geoffrey Stern,John Garnett,and Robert Purnell. 9 Manning, An Outline ofInternational Law (London:G.Bell,1930),p.v. 10 Manning, Nature ofInternational Society ,pp.xii–xiii. 11 John Austin, The Province ofJurisprudence Determined  and The Uses ofthe Study ofJurisprudence ,with an Introduction by H.L.A.Hart (London:Weidenfeld and Nicolson,1954),p.xx.  lecture forty years later:‘Nothing that I have read since then has caused me tomodify the views I expressed on Austin,on law and on sovereignty,in 1932’. 12 Suchwas his intellectual confidence.He thought hard,but rarely changed his mind,itseems.I for one find Manning’s rendition ofAustin on law and sovereignty,thougherudite,quite elusive at certain crucial points. 13 I have,by contrast,found Manning’sown views on sovereignty and international law both quite simple and sound.As ithappens,even though Manning published little on Jurisprudence proper,his worksin other areas,and,in particular,his main writings on IR,are deeply rooted in hisintellectual upbringing as a legal theorist.As he admits himself,his main contentionabout international law and society corresponds to what he read in Austin. 14 Andboth The Nature ofInternational Society ,and Manning’s last major essay,‘TheLegal Framework in a World ofChange’,published in The Aberystwyth Papers ,centrally address the jurisprudential issues surrounding sovereignty and inter-national law.I shall outline Manning’s views on these subjects when I visit his workson the nature ofinternational society. The League ofNations Manning wrote considerably more on the League ofNations.Among his publica-tions are:‘The Proposed Amendments to the Covenant ofthe League ofNations’,alawyerly piece,published in The British Yearbook ofInternational Law (1930); ThePolicies ofthe British Dominions in the League ofNations (1932),published at thetime ofthe Japanese invasion ofManchuria;‘The Future ofthe Collective System’,a lecture he gave at the Geneva Institute ofInternational Relations in August 1935,and presaging much ofwhat Manning subsequently taught about the nature of international society; Sanctions under the Covenant (1936),the Sixth MontagueBurton International Relations Lecture at Nottingham,delivered in the immediateaftermath ofthe German reoccupation ofRheinland;a conclusion to the volume,based on the special lectures delivered by a number ofexperts in 1937 at the LSE,which Manning edited under the title Peaceful Change:An International Problem (1937;reprinted 1972);and an essay entitled ‘The “Failure”ofthe League of Nations’,published in Agenda (1942;reprinted 1970),by which time all the greatpowers ofthe world were at war.From these several sources,the line Manning tookon the League experience emerges.94 Hidemi Suganami  12 Manning,‘The Legal Framework in a World ofChange’,in Brian Porter (ed.), The AberystwythPapers:International Politics 1919–1969 (London:Oxford University Press,1972),pp.301–35,atp.305. 13 On what Austin said about the legal nature ofinternational law,Manning argued as follows:contraryto the widely spread impression that,according to Austin,international law was not ‘law properly socalled’but ‘positive morality’only,Austin had in fact held (1) that international law was not ‘positivelaw’,but (2) that ‘positive morality’was divisible into those items which could be treated as ‘lawproperly so called’and those which could not,and (3) that international law was ‘law properly socalled’.Manning was right with respect to (1) and (2);as to whether he was also right about (3),Ihesitate to be categorical.See Austin, The Providence ofJurisprudence Determined  ,2nd edn.(London:John Murray,1861),pp.121–8.This is the edition Manning used;the corresponding paragraphs arefound in the Hart edition (cited in footnote 11 above) pp.135–42. 14 Manning, Nature ofInternational Society ,p.xxii.
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