Who's Securing Whom? The Need for International Relations to Embrace Human Security

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Abstract:

Following the peaceful conclusion of the Cold War, many 'wideners' emerged in the Security Studies literature of the 1990s arguing that the subject now needed to embrace a more varied range of perceived threats to humankind, taking it well beyond the traditional focus on military threats emanating from other states. The apparent 'New World Order' seemed, to many statesmen, academics and members of the general public, to herald a new era of international politics. With the threat of global nuclear Armageddon diminished, previously marginalised issues could emerge from the shadow of superpower rivalry and register on the international political agenda. Ontological questions largely ignored by the realists, who dominated the study and practise of international relations (IR) between 1940 and 1990, began to be asked. Who is being secured? Who is doing the securing? What is it to be secure? ...

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: November 1, 2005

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  • The St Antony's International Review (STAIR) is the only peer-reviewed journal of international affairs at the University of Oxford. Set up by graduate students of St Antony's College in 2005, the Review has carved out a distinctive niche as a cross-disciplinary outlet for research on the most pressing contemporary global issues, providing a forum in which emerging scholars can publish their work alongside established academics and policymakers. Past contributors include Robert O. Keohane, James N. Rosenau, and Alfred Stepan.
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