1st Edition

Routledge Handbook of Critical International Relations

ISBN 9781138907225
Published March 11, 2019 by Routledge
364 Pages 3 B/W Illustrations

USD $245.00

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Book Description

Critical international relations is both firmly established and rapidly expanding, and this Handbook offers a wide-ranging survey of contemporary research. It affords insights into exciting developments, more challenging issues and less prominent topics, examining debates around questions of imperialism, race, gender, ethics and aesthetics, and offering both an overview of the existing state of critical international politics and an agenda-setting collection that highlights emerging areas and fosters future research. Sections cover: critique and the discipline; relations beyond humanity; art and narrative; war, religion and security; otherness and diplomacy; spaces and times; resistance; and embodiment and intimacy.

An international group of expert scholars, whose contributions are commissioned for the volume, provide chapters that facilitate teaching at advanced undergraduate and postgraduate level, inspire new generations of researchers in the field and promote collaboration, cross-fertilisation and inspiration across sub-fields often treated separately, such as feminism, postcolonialism and poststructuralism. The volume sees these strands as complementary not contradictory, and emphasises their shared political goals, shared theoretical resources and complementary empirical practices.

Each chapter offers specific, focused, in-depth analysis that complements and exemplifies the broader coverage, making this Routledge Handbook of Critical International Relations essential reading for all students and scholars of international relations.

Table of Contents


Part I: Critique and the Discpline

1.Imperialism and the limits of critique

Latha Varadarajan

2.How to criticize without ever becoming a critic

Sergei Prozorov

3.The empty neighbourhood: Race and disciplinary silence

Vineet Thakur and Peter Vale

Part II: Relations Beyond Humanity

4. Can International Relations confront the cosmos?

Audra Mitchell

5. Relating to relational worlds: Critical theory, relational thought and relational cosmology

Milja Kurki

6. Confronting horror: International Relations beyond humanity

François Debrix

Part III: Art and Narrative

7. For Alex: The art of International Relations

Debbie Lisle

8. Ways of Seeing/Ways of Being in Critical IR

Aida A. Hozić

9. Narrative and inquiry in international politics

Elizabeth Dauphinee

Part IV: War, Religion, Security

10. Critical war studies

Shane Brighton

11. Being ‘Critical’ of/about/on ‘Religion’ in International Relations

Erin Wilson

12. Seeing radicalisation? The pedagogy of the Prevent strategy

Erzsébet Strausz and Charlotte Heath-Kelly

Part V: Otherness and Diplomacy

13. The politics of otherness: Illustrating the identity/alterity nexus and othering in IR

Sybille Reinke de Buitrago and Erica Resende

14. Abusive Fidelities: Diplomacy, Translation, and the Genres of Man

Sam Okoth Opondo

15. Why Octavio Paz matters: Lessons for critical International Relations

Siddharth Mallavarapu

Part VI: Spaces and Times

16. Racing to the bottom, squeezing through the cracks: Imagining unbordered space

Catarina Kinnvall

17. Ethics, critique and post-sovereign spaces in International Politics

Dan Bulley

18. Critique and the international: Horizons, traces, finitude.

Tom Lundborg

Part VII: Resistance

19. The permutations of ‘taking’ political action

Andreja Zevnik

20. The carnivalesque and resistance

Tatevik Mnatsakanyan

Part VIII: Intimacy and Embodiment

21. Bodies and embodiment in IR

Lauren Wilcox

22. The intimate and the international: love, sexuality, and queer feminist IR

Megan Daigle

23. Henri Lefebvre and the production of theory: A ghost story

Yvonne Rinkart


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Jenny Edkins is Professor of Politics at The University of Manchester. She taught previously at Aberystwyth University and the Open University. Her monographs include Face Politics (2015), Missing: Persons and Politics (2011), Trauma and the Memory of Politics (2003) and Whose Hunger? Concepts of Famine, Practices of Aid (2000). Her most recent book, Change and the Politics of Certainty, is forthcoming with Manchester University Press. In addition to her academic writing, she explores fiction, autobiography and other literary forms. She is engaged in several collaborative ventures, including the Gregynog Ideas Lab and the highly-regarded Routledge book series Interventions.


"Jenny Edkins, whose research is in the vanguard of Critical International Relations scholarship, has assembled a remarkable and inspirational set of interventions; if you want a snapshot of both enduring and latest debates about what it might mean to be "critical" in the study of international politics then you need look no further than this tour de force." Nick Vaughan-Williams, Professor of International Security, University of Warwick, UK

"This handbook is a rare and timely intervention to convey that IR cannot afford to be ‘business as usual’. At the heart of the critical project in IR is the desire to recover and reclaim the ‘human’ in the (un)making of political life. The chapters in this handbook achieve the same in the nuanced unfolding of their distinctive narratives. Edkins deserves special appreciation for the refreshingly different and perceptive set of authors she has managed to bring together for this volume. A must read for IR students and anyone interested in alternative visions of world politics. " Swati Parashar, Gothenburg University, Sweden

"Placing criticality at center stage, this rousing volume oxygenates International Relations scholarship with its collection of excellent chapters that probe both the limits and the potential of Critical IR. It will be an indispensable resource for all students and scholars of IR who want to think creatively about the world(s) that we study, produce and inhabit." Maria Stern, Gothenburg University, Sweden