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Abstract only
Marion Laurence
Emily Paddon Rhoads

Constructivism differs from some of the other theories explored in this volume because it is not a substantive theory of International Relations (IR), per se . Unlike realism, for example, it does not rest on explicit claims about which actors matter most in international politics, nor does it advance specific predictions about how those actors will behave (Finnemore and Sikkink 2001 : 393). Instead, constructivism is a social theory, an approach to studying international relations that takes seriously the ‘dynamic, contingent, and

in United Nations peace operations and International Relations theory
Open Access (free)
Governing Precarity through Adaptive Design
Mark Duffield

reaching out, discovery and recalibration. Such constructivist assumptions regarding human learning have long operated as place-holders for the arrival of machine-thinking. 12 Running parallel with early computer programming, by the 1980s constructivism was also appearing in the form of progressive pro-poor international development. Michael Edwards (1987) , for example, in his celebrated piece, The Irrelevance of Development Studies , rehearses the late-modern antagonism towards professional knowledge using the post-humanist premise that the

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs

UN peacekeeping is a core pillar of the multilateral peace and security architecture and a multi-billion-dollar undertaking reshaping lives around the world. In spite of this, the engagement between the literatures on UN peacekeeping and International Relations theory has been a slow development. This has changed in recent years, and there is now a growing interest tin examining UN peacekeeping from various theoretical perspectives to yield insights about how international relations are changing and developing. The volume is the first comprehensive overview of multiple theoretical perspectives on UN peacekeeping. There are two main uses of this volume. First, this volume provides the reader with insights into different theoretical lenses and how they can be applied practically to understanding UN peacekeeping better. Second, through case studies in each chapter, the volume provides practical examples of how International Relations theories – such as realism, liberal institutionalism, rational choice institutionalism, sociological institutionalism, feminist institutionalism, constructivism, critical security studies, practice theory, and complexity theory – can be applied to a specific policy issue. Applying these theories enhances our understanding of why UN peacekeeping, as an international institution, has evolved in a particular direction and functions the way that it does. The insights generated in the volume can also help shed light on other international institutions as well as the broader issue of international co-operation.

Power, expertise and the security industry

Constructing cybersecurity adopts a constructivist approach to cybersecurity and problematises the state of contemporary knowledge within this field. Setting out by providing a concise overview of such knowledge, this book subsequently adopts Foucauldian positions on power and security to highlight assumptions and limitations found therein. What follows is a detailed analysis of the discourse produced by various internet security companies, demonstrating the important role that these security professionals play constituting and entrenching this knowledge by virtue of their specific epistemic authority. As a relatively new source within a broader security dispositif, these security professionals have created relationships of mutual recognition and benefit with traditional political and security professionals. The book argues that one important product of these relationships is the continued centrality of the state within issues of cybersecurity and the extension of a strategy of neoliberal governance.

Abstract only
Ingvild Bode

negotiated in practices therefore allows us to link micro and macro processes associated with peacekeeping. While practices have long been a staple concept of social constructivism, it has arguably been only with the introduction of practice theories that IR theory has been able to capture the full analytical promise of this important concept. Further, I argued that the growing recognition of practice theories’ diverse location in social theory and sociology gives them deep analytical purchase, helping us access reasons for both situations of change and of persistent

in United Nations peace operations and International Relations theory
Zoltán Gábor Szűcs

The main aim of the chapter is to put the theoretical framework of the previous chapters to use and provide the ‘big picture’ about the political-ethical experience of living in illiberal regimes. The chapter starts with the operationalization of the neo-Aristotelian regime theory by translating its general characterization of illiberal regimes into five (egalitarian, competitive, authoritarian, oligarchic, and self-preservative) principles of action that will appear in the everyday considerations of people living in illiberal regimes. The goal is to make the ethics of politics as playing hardball (a constitutive experience of living in illiberal regimes) more accessible to the readers. Then the chapter proceeds with the explication of some important metaethical implications of political realism that are also relevant to the problem of playing hardball, notably: value pluralism, the dirty hands problem, moral dilemmas, and political compromise. The next part of the chapter turns to the question of how various normative contexts (among which political regimes stand out as especially important) shape political agency: after explaining why neither abstract individualism nor social constructivism is a good starting point for understanding the political-ethical experience of actual people in normative political theoretical terms, the chapter examines five types of primary normative contexts that shape political agency and will play an important role in the analysis of the political-ethical experience of living in illiberal regimes in the second part of the book: ad hoc and general reasons for action, political rule, membership in various political associations, political regimes, and political offices, and political virtues.

in Political ethics in illiberal regimes
Naomi Head

Introduction The growing significance which has been attributed to language and communication in IR responded to the critical turn in social and political theory. Its impact on IR manifested itself variously in the insights of social constructivism, the application to the world stage of the critical theory of the Frankfurt School, the philosophy

in Justifying violence
Abstract only
Naomi Head

’s work has been adopted in IR. It also poses a number of important questions to the existing theoretical approaches in IR which have been engaged with in the course of the book, namely, the concepts of ‘good international citizenship’ and ‘responsibility to protect’, the constructivism of Johnstone and others who take the role of language seriously, and the critical theoretical

in Justifying violence
Raymond Hinnebusch

identity and sovereignty, nation and state, inflicted on the region, a conundrum better addressed by constructivism . 3 Its insistence that systemic structures are not just material configurations of power and wealth and include the cultural norms that derive from identity , helps to understand how the region’s powerful supra-state identities lead to a unique contestation of the state sovereignty which underlays the stability of other regional states systems. Secondly, this study will argue that the state and sub-state levels are at least as

in The international politics of the Middle East
Alexander Spencer

provided mythoi in order to constitute the facts as figuring a story of a particular kind, just as he must appeal to that same fund of mythoi in the minds of his readers to endow his account of the past with the odor or meaning or significance’ (White 1978: 60). As the empirical chapters on pirates, rebels and PMSCs will show, romantic narratives of these actors have to link themselves to previously existing, culturally embedded narratives in the same way in order to gain acceptance. Narrative analysis and constructivism in IR On its travels the concept of narrative has

in Romantic narratives in international politics