Joseph Nye describes the phrase 'soft power' as one that arises from the attractiveness of a country's culture, political ideals and policies, whereas hard power - the ability to coerce - grows out of it's military or economic might. In this book, Nye emphasizes the importance of husbanding the military power and nurturing soft power.
Joseph S. Nye, Jr., Dean of the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University, was Chairman of the National Intelligence Council and Assistant Secretary of defence in the Clinton administration. He is the author of several books, including The Paradox of American Power: Why the World's Only Superpower Can't Go It Alone and Bound to Lead: The Changing Nature of American Power. PublicAffairs will publish his political thriller, The Power Game, in Fall 2004.