6. Post-Structuralism: Introduction (2016)

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Universidad Blanquerna (URL)
Grado Relaciones Internacionales - 2º curso
Asignatura Theory of International Relations
Año del apunte 2016
Páginas 2
Fecha de subida 01/04/2016
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Post-Positivism and Post-Structuralism

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Marta Busquets Theory of IR 2016 6. Post-Structuralism and Feminism International Relations “Poststructuralism”. Chapter 11. Baylis, J., Smith, S. & Owens, P (2014) The Globalization of World Politics. An Introduction to International Relations, Sixth Edition, Oxford: Oxford University Press.
6.1. Introduction 6.1.1. POST-POSITIVISM • Rejection of positivism as a way to study International Relations.
• Goes back to the how question.
• Dissatisfaction with predominant theories in the current study of IR • 4th Debate: Positivists vs post-positivists. Explain (quantitative data) or understand (meanings, reasons and beliefs)? • What post-positivists want is to understand why one state wants to have more power than the other with meanings, reasons and beliefs. It is important to understand it, not only explain it.
I.
Theorists are insiders, not outsiders: They create images of reality. The place theorists come from is also crucial to theories, as they are not totally objective.
II. Knowledge cannot be neutral and there is no final truth. Theory is always by someone and for someone.
III. New perspectives of study: Post-structuralism, post-colonialism and feminism.
• Heterogeneity of theories, linked by methodological aspects: Post-Positivists want to deconstruct IR and increasing plurality.
6.1.2. POST-STRUCTURALISM Criticism of social science based on positivist methodology. The only thing that has been achieved in the last century are biased disciplines (Masculine and Western based-disciplines).
I.
There is no objective reality and vision of the world. The visions of the world are biased by nature.
II. There is no object/subject distinction: There is no objective reality, only subjective. It all depends on the social relations that are established among the main actors (intersubjectivity).
III. Language and discourse are more than communication: social activities based on social realities. Text understood as instruments of power, so they will focus on studying the basic facts of the texts (study the colours, the images, the language used, etc). 
 Writing he instead of she shows the masculine point of view of the text.
IV. There’s no value-free social science. They link knowledge and power: Interests at stake (Robert Cox).
Marta Busquets Theory of IR 2016 6.1.3. POST-STRUCTURALISM: A Practical Example This picture makes us discuss the social meaning we give to newspaper. People don’t care about what is happening in Africa, we only care about what this newspaper (considered to be the newspaper of the year) has to tell us.
The aspect of the newspaper is going to tell us a lot about it. We only have to study the language and the discourse of it in order to know what does it want.
What we will know of what is going on in Africa is a social construction of what we will read and understand from the text.
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