Research Methods in Critical Security Studies : An Introduction book cover
1st Edition

Research Methods in Critical Security Studies
An Introduction

ISBN 9780415535403
Published November 30, 2012 by Routledge
256 Pages

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Book Description

This new textbook surveys new and emergent methods for doing research in critical security studies, thereby filling a large gap in the literature of this emerging field.

New or critical security studies is growing as a field, but still lacks a clear methodology; the diverse range of the main foci of study (culture, practices, language, or bodies) means that there is little coherence or conversation between these four schools or approaches.

In this ground-breaking collection of fresh and emergent voices, new methods in critical security studies are explored from multiple perspectives, providing practical examples of successful research design and methodologies. Drawing upon their own experiences and projects, thirty-three authors address the following turns over the course of six comprehensive sections:

  • Part I: Research Design
  • Part II: The Ethnographic Turn
  • Part III: The Practice Turn
  • Part IV: The Discursive Turn
  • Part V: The Corporeal Turn
  • Part VI: The Material Turn

This book will be essential reading for upper-level students and researchers in the field of critical security studies, and of much interest to students of sociology, ethnography and IR.



Table of Contents

1. Introduction, Mark B. Salter  Part I: Research Design  Research Design: Introduction, Mark B. Salter  2. Wondering as Research Attitude, Luis Lobo-Guerrero  3. Criticality, Xavier Guillaume  4. Do You Have What it Takes? Accounting For Emotional and Material Capacities, Anne-Marie D’Aoust  5. Attuning To Mess, Vicki Squire  6. Empiricism Without Positivism: King Lear and Critical Security Studies, Andrew W. Neal  7. Engaging Collaborative Writing Critically, Miguel De Larrinaga and Marc G. Doucet  Part II: Ethnographic Turn  The Ethnographic Turn: Introduction, Mark B. Salter  8. Travelling with Ethnography, Wanda Vrasti  9. Reflexive Inquiry, Rahel Kunz  10. Listening to Migrant Stories, Heather L. Johnson  11. Learning by Feeling, Jesse Crane-Seeber  12. How Participant Observation Contributes to the Study Of (In)Security Practices in Conflict Zones, Jean-François Ratelle  13. Dissident Sexualities and the State, Megan Daigle  Part III: Practice Turn  The Practice Turn: Introduction, Mark B. Salter  14. The Practice of Writing, Hannah R. Hughes  15. Researching Anti-Deportation: Socialization as Method, Peter Nyers  16. Act Different, Think Dispositif, Philippe Bonditti  17. Expertise in the Aviation Security Field, Mark B. Salter  18. Testifying While Critical: Notes on Being an Effective Gadfly, Benjamin J. Muller  Part IV: Discursive Turn  The Discursive Turn: Introduction, Can E. Mutlu And Mark B. Salter  19. Archives, Luis Lobo-Guerrero  20. Legislative Practices, Andrew W. Neal  21. Medicine And The Psy Disciplines, Alison Howell  22. Speech Act Theory, Juha A. Vuori  Part V: The Corporeal Turn  The Corporeal Turn: Introduction, Can E. Mutlu  23. Affect at the Airport, Philippe M. Frowd And Christopher C. Leite  24. Emotional Optics, Can E. Mutlu  25. Affective Terrain: Approaching the Field in Aamjiwnaang, Sarah Marie Wiebe  26. Theorizing the Body in IR, Rosemary E. Shinko  27. Reading the Maternal Body as Political Event, Tina Managhan  28. Corporeal Migratio, Tarja Väyrynen  Part VI: The Material Turn  The Material Turn: Introduction, Can E. Mutlu  29. Infrastructure, Claudia Aradau  30. The Internet As Evocative Infrastructure, Nisha Shah  31. The Study Of Drones As Objects Of Security: Targeted Killing As Military Strategy, David Grondin  32. Objects Of Security/Objects Of Research: Analyzing Non-Lethal Weapons, Seantel Anaïs  33. Pictoral Texts, Juha A. Vuori  34. Tracing Human Security Assemblages, Nadine Voelkner


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Mark B. Salter is Professor at the School of Political Studies, University of Ottawa, Canada. He is editor of Mapping Transatlantic Security Relations (Routledge 2010), and author of Rights of Passage: The Passport in International Relations (2003) and Barbarians and Civilization in International Relations (2002).

Can E. Mutlu is a PhD candidate (ABD) at the School of Political Studies at the University of Ottawa, Canada. He is the Communications Director of the International Political Sociology Section of the International Studies Association (IPS-ISA).


"Finally, critical security studies has its own methodological handbook. It is not only extremely broad in scope, applying methods ranging from participant observation to interviews to discourse analysis, and discussing research design, ethnography, empiricism and writing. But it is also refreshingly reflexive in its approach. Its exploration of method is intimately bound to an advancement of theory, and a critical reflection on the role of the researcher in this sensitive – and often secretive –domain. It is indispensable reading for researchers and students alike, and promises to take this important field of research to a new level."– Marieke de Goede, University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands

'This textbook moves critical security studies forward in important ways by restoring "methodology" to the full sense of concept and rescuing it from the narrowness imposed by mainstream social science. -- Roxanne Lynn Doty, Arizona State University, USA


'Wide-ranging and yet systematic, rigorous and yet pluralistic, this volume makes a crucial contribution toward developing innovative methodologies able to terms with the rapidly changing politics of contemporary security. Combining sophisticated conceptual overviews with illustrations of specific research designs in practice, it is a remarkably valuable resource for students and researchers, as well as an inspiring tour d’ horizon of cutting-edge research.' -- Michael C Williams, University of Ottawa, Canada