Liberalism It has championed limited government and scientific rationality, believing individuals should be free from arbitrary state

power, persecution and superstition. It has advocated political freedom, democracy and constitutionally guaranteed rights, and privileged the liberty of the individual and equality before the law. Liberalism has also argued for individual competition in civil society and claimed that market capitalism best promotes the welfare of all by most efficiently allocating scarce resources within society. To the extent that its ideas have been realized in recent democratic

Marxism espite its weaknesses, !arxism contributes to the theory of international relations in at least four respects. "irst, historical materialism with its emphasis on production, property relations and class is an important counter#weight to realist theories which assume that the struggle for power and security determines the structure of world politics. This leads to two further points which are that !arxism has long been centrally concerned with capitalist globalization and international inequalities and that, for !arxism, the global spread of capitalism is the backdrop to the development of modern societies and the organization of their international relations. $ fourth theme, which first appeared in !arx%s critique of liberal political economy, is that explanations of the social world are never as ob&ective and innocent as they may seem. $pplied to international politics, the argument is that the analysis of basic and unchanging realities can all too easily ignore relations of power and inequality not between states but between individuals. ominant strands of !arxist thought have taken the view that one of the main functions of scholarship is to understand the principal forms of domination and to imagine a world order which is committed to reducing material inequalities. This critical orientation to world politics can no longer be simply '!arxist% in the largely superseded sense of using the paradigm of production to analyse class inequalities. (ut it can nevertheless remain true to the 'spirit of !arxism% by combining the empirical analysis of the dominant forms of power and inequality with a moral vision of a more &ust world order. This critical approach can extend beyond the analysis of capitalist globalization and rising international inequalities to the ways in which states conduct national security politics. )ne of the failings of !arxism as a source of critical international theory is its ingrained tendency to focus on the former at the expense of the latter field of inquiry. Later

)ne of these contributions has been to heighten our awareness of the link between knowledge and politics. Postmodernism +ostmodernism makes several contributions to the study of international relations. but critical international theory analyses the changing ways in which the boundaries of community are formed. &ustice and equality across the globe. it provides a sustained ethical analysis of the practices of inclusion and exclusion. like all theories. it means that the sovereign state. Critical theory There can be little doubt that critical international theory has made a ma&or contribution to the study of international relations. are informed by prior interests and convictions. maintained and transformed. Thirdly. "irst. a more comprehensive account of contemporary world politics must also include an analysis of those transversal actors and movements that operate outside and across state boundaries. !ost notably. whether they are acknowledged or not. as the primary mode of sub&ectivity in international relations. *ritical international theory re&ects the idea of the theorist as ob&ective bystander. Traditional theories tend to take the state for granted. must be examined closely to expose its practices of capture and exclusion. . through the textual strategy of deconstruction it seeks to problematize all claims to epistemological and political totalization.econdly. *ritical international theory%s aim of achieving an alternative theory and practice of international relations rests on the possibility of overcoming the exclusionary dynamics associated with modern system of sovereign states and establishing a cosmopolitan set of arrangements that will better promote freedom. It is thus an attempt radically to rethink the normative foundations of global politics. It not only provides a sociological account. $ second contribution critical international theory makes is to rethink accounts of the modern state and political community.chapters discuss whether other strands of critical international theory have succeeded in overcoming this limitation. This holds especially significant implications for the sovereign state. and theories of international relations. postmodernism seeks to rethink the concept of the political . !oreover. the theorist is enmeshed in social and political life. through its genealogical method it seeks to expose the intimate connection between claims to knowledge and claims to political power and authority. Instead.

Feminism The three forms of feminism discussed in this chapter . (y challenging the idea that the character and location of the political must be determined by the sovereign state. "eminists argue that conventional International /elations theories distort our knowledge of both 'relations% and the ongoing transformations of the 'international%. !oreover.imilarly. . 'soft% politics and the absence of women. analytical feminism and normative feminism . In sum. the ob&ectivist approach of much International /elations theory produces relatively superficial knowledge and tends to reproduce the dichotomies which have come to demarcate the field. all suggest that the theory and practice of international relations has suffered from its neglect of feminist perspectives. and ob&ectivity as the lack of 1feminized2 sub&ectivity. ignore the political activities and activism of women0 whether they are mobilizing for war. approaches to international relations that fail to take gender seriously overlook critical aspects of world order and abandon a crucial opening for effecting change. as a result. +rugl 145552 shows how transnational rules and regimes of gender in international organizations such as the IL) and global solidarity networks have been powerful forces in determining the plight of these workers around the world. These dichotomies are gendered0 they define power as power#over 'others%. These International /elations theories overlook the political significance of gendered divisions of public and private institutionalized within and by the state and state#system and.eptember --. autonomy as reaction rather than relational. postmodern. These contributions seems more important than ever after the events of . 3lisabeth +rugl 145552 exemplifies this feminist constructivist approach in her study of home#workers in the global political economy 1see also Locher and +rugl 455-6 7ardam 45582. postmodernism seeks to broaden the political imagination and the range of political possibilities for transforming international relations. feminist perspectives deepen the neo#9ramscian . empirical feminism. not merely of states but of key social constituencies. "eminist International /elations contributes to expanding and strengthening existing theories and analyses including liberal.without invoking assumptions of sovereignty and reterritorialization. critical theory. "or example. International /elations feminists advance constructivist International /elations approaches by uncovering the processes through which identities and interests. constructivist and green theories of international relations. are shaped at the global level. protesting state abrogation of their rights or organizing for the international recognition of women%s human rights. international politics as the negation of domestic.

@0 4A. analytical and normative .2 has argued that no distinctive feminist methodology exists because each methodology can contribute to feminist goals this should not lead us to conclude that there is no distinctive feminist International /elations perspective.tern and True forthcoming2. =onetheless. critical theory and constructivist approaches. It this self#reflexivity rather than any substantive approach or theory that makes feminist International /elations distinctive.6 Ling 455-6 True 455<2. Integrating feminist perspectives with postmodern. )nce we recognize the close connections between gender. It results in a senseless theoretical approach with no raison d’ętre. and definitely not cede key areas of study to scholars working in the realist and neo#liberal institutionalist paradigms. in line with feminism%s reconstructive purposes. This chapter began by asking what is distinctive about a feministperspective on international relations. feminist scholars must be prepared to bring their theoretical and empirical strengths to bear on the study of a full range of political economy 1I+32 stress placed on culture and ideology as an integral part of the global political economy 1*hin -::. The collective contribution of the diverse range of feminist International /elations inquiry . /emoving women from analysis of gender relations and bracketing out the normative perspective that gave rise to feminism in the first place is tantamount to throwing the baby out with the bathwater. represents an important strategy for engaging with other International /elations scholars. 3fforts to forge a unitary neo#feminist approach 1*aprioli 45582 or non#feminist gender standpoint 1*arpenter 45542 seek to mainstream empirical gender analysis without this self#reflexive methodology. empirical. it is an exercise that can have important payoffs in terms of generating new insights into the processes associated with local and global transformations. while advancing the tools of gender analysis. . >et an even more daunting task involves finding ways to alert proponents of mainstream International /elations to the illuminating effects that can come from viewing social and political processes from a gender perspective. To do this successfully. ideas. . it calls for theory#driven empirical studies and more empirically grounded normative theory that reflexively explores and defends feminist approaches to international relations. this becomes a relatively straightforward exercise. identities and norms and aspects of international politics and economics. $lthough ?arding 1-:. is most significantly methodological 1$ckerly. but rather. This agenda need not take a rationalist form. Through ongoing collective self#reflection feminists in and outside the field of International /elations are continually adding to our empirical and normative knowledge.

International /elations as a discipline is currently in a state where the mainstream has been shown to have ma&or blindspots with respect to social and political change. it tries both to explain a certain range of phenomena and problems in global politics and provide a set of normative claims about the . Green Theory The central point of this chapter has concerned the particular way in which most 9reens re&ect the states#system.urely. however. *learly. This involves decentralization not only of political organization. 9reen politics should clearly be regarded as a critical rather than problem#solving theory. most tragically those of '. It is not surprising then that International /elations analysts are often caught off#guard by events in world politics.economic practices undermine the sustainability of human societies. the sites of global power and transformation are not &ust the domain of political and economic elites6 such sites also exist in the invisible. a re#thinking of the basic assumptions of this discipline remains urgent if scholars want to understand global politics in the twenty#first century. . 9lobal ecology complements this by suggesting in rich detail how contemporary political. It is one. and how those power structures need to be challenged to create sustainable societies. in many instances. The Introduction to the book 1*hapter -2 outlined some of the central questions and distinctions concerning theoretical traditions in International /elations. they need to take into account domestic social processes and non#elite sub&ects. "eminist scholarship of the sort reviewed in this chapter offers a way out of the darkness. arguing primarily for decentralizing political communities below the nation#state. "eminist perspectives help us to recognize power shifts within nation#states that have ramifications for world order. If scholars want to gain fresh insights into the dynamics of world order. "eminist perspectives reveal that. observing and interpreting such power shifts as they arise in a variety of global and local venues constitute core functions of International /elations scholarship. Their focus on 'reclaiming the commons% supports the decentralization argument in 9+T. This conceptual blindness frequently leads to empirical blindness. which aims to be both explanatory and normative .eptember --%. underappreciated nooks and crannies of societies. but economic and social organization as well. rather than for new forms of global political authority. They also argue for abandoning traditional sovereign systems and practices in favour of more mixed locations of authority. /ealist and liberal expectations about the nature of states and international relations are both disrupted when a feminist perspective is brought to bear.

oran -::A2. . purely instrumentally. (ut this turns out to be the method of immanent critique of "rankfurt .The purpose of enquiry is thus explicitly normative . "inally. the central ob&ect of analysis and scope of enquiry is the way in which contemporary human societies are ecologically unsustainable. /egarding International /elations specifically. critical theory and poststructuralism. in particular among the writers in what I have called the 'global ecology% school to powerCknowledge questions 1but cf. and because human society ultimately depends on the successful function of the biosphere as a whole for its own survival. Briters within this tradition have to date spent less time engaging in constitutive. it shares the re&ection of a hard and fast factCvalue distinction with feminism. with an ecological focus. 3ckersley 145580 . to understand how global political structures can be reformed to prevent such destruction and provide for a sustainable human relationship to the planet and the rest of its inhabitants. the normative imperative is the original impulse in 9reen politics . Its conception of theory is clearly incompatible with positivist conceptions which have such a clear distinction. "irst. 9reen politics has a number of features in common with many other critical approaches. /egarding other International /elations traditions. 9reens focus on the way in which prevailing political structures and processes contribute to this destruction. it shares a critique of the states#system with critical theory and others.uch a destructive mode of existence is deplored both because of the independent ethical value held to reside in organisms and ecosystems.-52 proposes 'critical political ecology% as a method for 9reen politics. although it adopts a position which re&ects the idea of global power . the explanation of environmental destruction comes later.theoretical activity .. 9reens share with many other perspectives a re&ection of any claimed separation of International /elations from other disciplines. Like idealism 1see *hapter 4 in this volume2. the homogenizing forces in contemporary world politics and the preservation of difference and diversity with poststructuralism and feminism. there is no clearly identifiable '9reen% methodology. although there is attention. not least because of its historical connection to the treating of 'nature% 1including humans2 as ob&ects. while 9reens are hostile to positivism. Thirdly. !ethodologically. . "or 9reens.chool critical theory.econdly.reflecting on the nature of their theorizing per se.sorts of global political changes necessary to respond to such problems. it shares an interest in resisting the concentration of power. by making clear attempts to integrate normative and explanatory concerns.suggests. the possibility of the emergence of a distinct 9reen perspective in International /elations has seen the breaking down of disciplinary boundaries. $s *hapter .

in contrast in particular to poststructuralism. This is linked to poststructuralism%s re&ection of foundationalism. who argues that the closest connections which 9reen theory has to other approaches in International /elations are to feminism. 9reen theory therefore clearly has its own distinctive perspective.0 *hapter @. 1"or an account with many similarities to that of Linklater in relation to environmental politics. there is a clear focus on political economy.chool#type critical theory and feminism than with poststructuralism. it shares to an extent an element of modernist theorizing. critical theorists and feminists.toett -:::2.2. a form of thinking still prevalent in realism. see 3steva and +rakash -::@. ?owever. makes much of attempts by ?abermas in particular 1she contrasts ?abermas to !arcuse2 to reclaim science for radical political purposes. "or a critique of such universalist thinking along the lines of the 'global ecology% writers discussed above. =evertheless. in the sense that 9reens are clearly trying to understand the world in order to make it possible to improve it. which marks a clear difference from 9reen politics which necessarily relies on fairly strong foundational claims. there is a much stronger sense in 9reen politics that community only makes sense at the very local level .2 Bhile for critical theorists such as Linklater 1-::. and the structural inequality inherent in modern capitalist economies also focused on by !arxists and dependency theorists. suggesting that it necessarily ends up &ustifying human domination of nature. The focus . if not potentially totalitarian 13steva and +rakash -::@2. but also with !arxists. "inally. 9reens would not think it useful therefore to think for example in terms of 'levels of analysis%.structures emerging in correspondence with some idea of a 'global community% in favour of decentralizing power away from nation#states to more local levels. and in particular a clearer sense that their explanations or interpretations of the world are connected to a clear political pro&ect. see Low and 9leeson -::. the idea of a 'global community% is for 9reens nonsensical. I would ultimately concur with !antle 1-:::2. the idea of community at the global level is about balancing unity and diversity rather than one which wishes to create a homogeneous global identity. this makes it more compatible with "rankfurt . as it arbitrarily divides up arenas of political action which should be seen as fundamentally interconnected. this argument should not be pushed too far. of both the epistemological and ethical variety. there is a shared sense that the purpose of theory is to promote emancipation 1LaferriDre -::E6 LaferriDre and . as these both have a clear emancipatory normative goal. ?owever. "or ?ovden 1-:::2. $llied to this normative re&ection of the states#system is a re&ection of a clear empirical split between domestic and international politics shared in particular with pluralists such as Fohn (urton. for example 1-::40 *hapter A2. 3ckersley. as there are also tensions with the way in which critical theory tries to reconstruct 3nlightenment rationality.

nature relations and the adoption of an ecocentric ethic with regard to those relations. the particular perspective on the destructive side of development and the focus on decentralization away from the nation#state are all unique to 9reen politics. This chapter has illustrated how the purpose of 9reen theory within International /elations is to provide an explanation of the ecological crisis facing humanity. to focus on that crisis as possibly the most important issue for human societies to deal with. . and to provide a normative basis for dealing with it. the focus on limits to growth.on humanity.

Sign up to vote on this title
UsefulNot useful