This edited collection explores the fruitfulness of applying an interpretive approach to the study of global security. The interpretive approach concentrates on unpacking the meanings and beliefs of various policy actors, and, crucially, explains those beliefs by locating them in historical traditions and as responses to dilemmas. Interpretivists thereby seek to highlight the contingency, diversity, and contestability of the narratives, expertise, and beliefs that inform political action. The interpretive approach is widespread in the study of governance and public policy, but arguably it has not yet had much impact on security studies. The book therefore deploys the interpretive approach to explore contemporary issues in international security, combining theoretical engagement with good empirical coverage through a novel set of case studies.
Bringing together a fresh mix of world renowned and up-and-coming scholars from across the fields of security studies, political theory and international relations, the chapters explore the beliefs, traditions, and dilemmas that have informed security practice on the one hand, and the academic study of security on the other, as well as the connections between them. All contributors look to situate their work against a broader historical background and long-standing traditions, allowing them to take a critical yet historically informed approach to the material.
1. Interpreting Global Security – Mark Bevir, Oliver Daddow and Ian Hall 2. The Rise of Security Governance – Mark Bevir and Ian Hall 3. An Interplay of Traditions: The ‘Return of Uncertainty’ and Its Taming in Post-9/11 US Security Thinking – Sabine Selchow 4. Interpreting George W. Bush’s Foreign Policy – Daniel Zoughbie 5. From Value Protection to Value Promotion: Interpreting British Security Policy – Oliver Daddow and Jamie Gaskarth 6. Negotiating the Global Security Dilemma: Interpreting Russia’s Security Agenda – Aglaya Snetkov 7. Interpreting Missile Defence: A Comparative Study of European Reactions – Jocelyn Mawdsley 8. Framing the Sovereignty-Intervention Dilemma: The Strange Omission of the Genocide Convention – Adrian Gallagher 9. Writing the Threat of Terrorism in Western Europe and the European Union: An Interpretive Approach – Christopher Baker-Beall 10. Security Politics and Public Discourse: A Morgenthauian Approach – Hartmut Behr