Marshall D. Shulman Book Prize

2013 Citation Recipient

Ted Hopf

The Marshall D. Shulman Book Prize, established in 1987 and sponsored by the Harriman Institute at Columbia University, is awarded annually for an outstanding monograph dealing with the international relations, foreign policy, or foreign-policy decision-making of any of the states of the former Soviet Union or Eastern Europe published in the previous calendar year. The prize is dedicated to the encouragement of high-quality studies of the international behavior of the countries of the former Communist Bloc.

Winner: Ted Hopf
Title: Reconstructing the Cold War: The Early Years, 1945-1958 (Oxford University Press)

Using a form of Constructivism, which emphasizes the role that identity plays in a state’s foreign relations, Ted Hopf explores Soviet foreign policy in the early years of the Cold War. He contrasts what he calls “the discourse of danger” in Stalin’s last years with a “discourse of difference” in the five years after Stalin’s death. He argues that the ideas motivating post-Stalin policy toward China and Eastern Europe were already present in Soviet society, lodged in institutional homes that enabled them to survive the repression of the late Stalin years. Hopf calls his theoretical approach “societal constructivism.” He argues that state identities are formed not so much in the interaction with other states as in the discourses in domestic society. This ambitious book explores, with great originality, the relationship between societal change and foreign policy in the Soviet Union during the Cold War. It challenges us to think in new ways about the Cold War and about international relations more generally.

Honorable Mention: Rinna Kullaa
Title: Non-alignment and Its Origins in Cold War Europe: Yugoslavia, Finland, and the Soviet Challenge (I.B. Tauris)

On the basis of careful archival work in Finland, Russia, and former Yugoslavia, Rinna Kullaa explores the ways in which Finland and Yugoslavia avoided absorption into the Soviet bloc in the early years of the Cold War. After its expulsion from the Cominform in 1948, Yugoslavia had to search for a new approach to foreign policy that would guarantee its independence. It was attracted to the Finnish policy of neutralism as a way of managing relations with the Soviet Union. Finland and Yugoslavia became partners in their pursuit of neutralism as a political strategy. By 1959, however, pressure from the Soviet Union and Soviet interference in Finnish politics had convinced Yugoslavia that it needed to develop relations with countries outside Europe if it was to remain outside the Soviet bloc. That is how it came to play an important role in the formation of the Non-Aligned Movement. Kullaa provides a very shrewd and illuminating analysis not only of a vital aspect of Cold War Europe but also of the emergence of non-alignment as a powerful force in world politics.