Why Leaders Lie: The Truth about Lying in International Politics

(Oxford University Press, 2011)

Book Forum
June 9, 2011 4:00 PM to 5:30 PM EDT

Hayek Auditorium

Featuring the author John J. Mearsheimer, R. Wendell Harrison Distinguished Service Professor of Political Science, University of Chicago; with comments by A. Trevor Thrall, George Mason University; and Ted Galen Carpenter, Cato Institute; moderated by Justin Logan, Cato Institute.

How frequent is lying in international politics? Which types of leaders lie the most, and to whom do leaders most frequently lie: other states, or their own people? Is all deception lying, or should we think of lying as distinct from other sorts of subterfuge, like spinning and concealment? Moreover, is lying a useful tool of statecraft? What happens when lying goes wrong? Best-selling author and leading international relations scholar John Mearsheimer takes on these questions in his new book, Why Leaders Lie: The Truth about Lying in International Politics. Please join the author and two discussants for an examination of this fascinating and under-studied topic.