Revisionism revisited: developing a typology for classifying Russia and other revisionist powers
IR has failed to develop a consistent and coherent conceptualization of revisionism. Conceptual stretching, false comparison, and “status quo biases” pervade the literature. In order to overcome these problems, the article develops a novel typology of revisionism that differentiates revisionist states by the scope of their revisionist aims as well and the means they are willing to use to achieve them. This typology goes beyond recent typologies, which focus on revisionist aims but neglect the important question of means, thereby failing to provide a complete picture of the kind of challenge any particular revisionist poses to peace and stability. The typology is used to classify contemporary Russia, whose challenge comes not from its modest revisionist aims, but from the extreme means it is prepared to use to realize these goals.