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Genealogy as critique in International Relations: Beyond the hermeneutics of baseless suspicion
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Economic History.
Number of Authors: 12018 (English)In: Journal of International Political Theory, ISSN 1755-0882, E-ISSN 1755-1722, Vol. 14, no 1, p. 41-59Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This article engages genealogy as a form of critique in International Relations. It demonstrates that Foucault's genealogy has had an important, albeit hitherto unexamined, impact on how critique is understood in post-structuralist International Relations. Specifically, the article argues that a genealogical disposition tends to inscribe violence as foundational to the human condition, and genealogically informed empirical applications in International Relations risk reproducing this gesture. In the first part, the article returns to the first generation of post-structuralist International Relations and also examines examples of contemporary scholarship using frameworks of governmentality and biopolitics. The second part of the article traces the problem of ontologically inscribing violence back to Foucault's genealogical phase. Drawing on the work of John Milbank, the article then contrasts a genealogical ontology of violence with one that refuses violence as foundational. The article ends by arguing that empirical scholarship drawing on governmentality and biopolitics should be careful not to read the genealogical ontology of violence into their analyses of global political life.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2018. Vol. 14, no 1, p. 41-59
Keywords [en]
Foucault, genealogy, Milbank, ontology, post-structuralism, violence
National Category
Political Science
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-152707DOI: 10.1177/1755088217707225ISI: 000419303800003OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-152707DiVA, id: diva2:1186414
Available from: 2018-02-28 Created: 2018-02-28 Last updated: 2018-02-28Bibliographically approved

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