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This list relates to the year Academic Year 2015/16 which ended on 31/07/2016
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  1. Recommended reference texts 6 items
    Of general interest, and especially useful for those with little background in International Security, will be the following texts
    1. Security studies: an introduction - Paul Williams 2013 (electronic resource)

      Book 

    2. Contemporary security studies - Alan Collins 2013

      Book 

    3. Understanding global security - Peter Hough 2013

      Book 

    4. International security: the contemporary agenda - Roland Dannreuther 2014 (electronic resource)

      Book 

    5. The evolution of international security studies - Barry Buzan, Lene Hansen 2009

      Book 

    6. International security - Barry Buzan, Lene Hansen 2007 (electronic resource)

      Book 

  2. Periodical references 20 items
  3. Seminar schedule and readings 122 items
    1. Week 1: Theories of International Security: past, present and future 11 items
      The field of Security Studies, or International Security, has a long and rich tradition. If the Cold War translated into theories of international security mostly geared to concepts such as anarchy, polarity and deterrence, the end of the Cold War has signalled the beginning of a wave of ‘ambitious’ theorizing (according to Buzan & Waever). There are many theoretical angles into security today – some of these can considered complementary, some other have been accused of being exclusive and exclusionary.
      1. Key readings 2 items
        1. After the Return to Theory: The Past, Present and Future of Security Studies - Ole Waever, Barry Buzan

          Chapter Essential

      2. Supplementary readings 9 items
        1. Introduction and Chapter 1 'Defining International Security Studies' of The evolution of international security studies - Barry Buzan, Lene Hansen

          Chapter Further

        2. Review Article - David Chandler 06/2008

          Article Further

    2. Week 2: National security between ambiguity and reification: sovereignty, security and the state 11 items
      The paradigm of national security is possibly the most influential in the world of International Security understood as practice by policy-makers. Realists have often assumed the ‘national interest’ and national security to be the ‘guiding stars’ of security (Morgenthau). A critical re-reading of the history of these concepts, however, tells us that their place was never as established and unproblematic as realism claims. National security is not a straightforward category, but rather an ‘ambiguous symbol’.
      1. Key readings 2 items
      2. Supplementary readings 9 items
        1. Man, the state, and war: a theoretical analysis - Kenneth Neal Waltz 2001

          Book Further

        2. Chapter 2 of The tragedy of great power politics - John Mearsheimer

          Chapter Further

    3. Week 3: Security as a Social Construction: the Securitization approach 11 items
      In an attempt to uncover the ambiguous, contested and constructed nature of security, away from the monolithic certainties of Cold War realism, constructivism invented a new research agenda on the basis of the concept of ‘securitization’. Securitization tells us that security is not a fact, but a process. It invites us to consider how ideas float freely (Risse-Kappen) in security too, but also how specific actors have a specific ability to use these ideas and turn them into security issues. For the way it characterises the process of security, however, Securitization does not come without its problems and exclusions.
      1. Key readings 2 items
        1. Securitization and Desecuritization - Ole Waever c1995

          Chapter Essential

      2. Supplementary readings 9 items
        1. Esp. Chapter 1 and 2 of Security: a new framework for analysis - Barry et al. Buzan

          Chapter Further

    4. Week 4: Identity, Culture and Civilisation: Cultural theories of (in)security 11 items
      If ideas matter, when it comes to security, then ideas about ourselves and others must matter greatly. Constructivism opened the door to a wave of theorising which started from the assumption that identities have a fundamental role to play when it comes to defining security – including who we count as enemies or friends. This work was field-defining also in the sense that it signalled a clear rift within the constructivist camp – between ‘radical’ constructivists such as Campbell and Hansen, and ‘soft’ constructivists such as Wendt and Ruggie
      1. Key readings 2 items
        1. Identity and the Politics of Security - M. C. WILLIAMS 01/06/1998

          Article Essential

        2. Writing security: United States foreign policy and the politics of identity - David Campbell 1998

          Book Essential pp.133-168

      2. Supplementary readings 9 items
        1. Taking Identity Seriously - J. B. Mattern 01/09/2000

          Article Further

        2. Constructing National Interests - Jutta Weldes 01/09/1996

          Article Further

    5. Week 5: Critical and emancipatory theories of security and the birth of Critical Security Studies (CSS) 11 items
      Once the veil is lifted on realism’s caricatural view of security, the process of unpacking security really begins. Critical scholars of the Aberystwyth School, led by Ken Booth, go back to the fundamental questions regarding security and provide different answers. To paraphrase Graham Allison, they claim that where you stand on security often depends often on where you sit. Moreover, the aim of security is not survival but emancipation. In critical approaches, security is not only a social construction, but it is a deeply political one. In fact, security is such a politically charged field that even the concept itself, ‘security’, can betray political and ideological commitments. In order to reclaim freedom and justice, according to Neocleous, it may be therefore necessary to fight ‘security’ with anti-security.
      1. Key readings 2 items
        1. Security and emancipation - Ken Booth 10/1991

          Article Essential

        2. Anti-Security: A Declaration' of Anti-Security - Mark Neocleous, George Rigakos c2011

          Chapter Essential

      2. Supplementary readings 9 items
        1. Critical security studies and world politics - Ken Booth 2005

          Book Further

        2. Theory of world security - Ken Booth 2007

          Book Further

    6. Week 7: Security practices in a globalised world: sociological approaches to technologies, commodities, and power networks 12 items
      The so-called Paris School of international security believes that theorising about security means first and foremost looking critically at how security really operates within the globalised international environment. Analysing the ‘really existing’ practices of security requires one to adopt a sociological and ethnographic approach to security – which the field has culpably eschewed for a long time. The reality of contemporary security, and any theories about it, must then start from the globalisation of insecurity, from the assemblages and networks of security ‘professionals’, and from the expanding remit of an increasingly privatised and securitized process of risk management.
      1. Key readings 2 items
        1. International practices - Adler, Emanuel ; Pouliot, Vincent

          Article Essential

      2. Supplementary readings 10 items
        1. The surveillant assemblage - Kevin D. Haggerty, Richard V. Ericson 2000-12-1

          Article Further

    7. Week 8: From threat to risk, from security to resilience 14 items
      The post-cold war security environment is one of extreme complexity. Flows and networks overlap to create processes without subjects, unintended consequences and intractable situations along a spectrum of areas and fields. According to the risk society approach, the security issues we are now faced with can no longer be called threats, but should rather be recognised as risks. Security has therefore become the realm of risk-management. And if we can never be totally certain of our security, the attitude that individuals and societies should cultivate is that of resilience. Resilience has thus become a new buzzword in international security, though its meaning and use is far from uncontested.
      1. Key readings 2 items
      2. Supplementary readings 12 items
        1. Risk and the war on terror - Louise Amoore, Marieke de Goede 2008

          Book Further

        2. Resisting Resilience - Mark Neocleous 2013

          Article Further

        3. Security, Technologies of Risk, and the Political: Guest Editors' Introduction - C. Aradau, L. Lobo-Guerrero, R. Van Munster 01/04/2008

          Article Further

        4. World risk society - Ulrich Beck 1999

          Book Further

    8. Week 9: Security as Life – Biopolitics and Affect 12 items
      The move from the state to human beings as referents object of security has great emancipatory potential, as CSS has testified. However, there are at least two more ways of theorising security that start from life and yet expose the limits of human emancipation. The first is biopolitics, the governing of life and death through apparatuses of security. The second takes a corporeal/affective route into those practices of security implicated in the controlling of human beings as bodies. Both approaches have found ample application in the ‘exceptional’ (Agamben) spaces of the post-9/11 environment.
      1. Key readings 2 items
      2. Supplementary readings 10 items
        1. Beyond biopolitics: theory, violence and horror in world politics - Francois Debrix, Alexander D. Barder 2012

          Book Further

        2. Sovereign Power and the Biopolitics of Human Security - M. De Larrinaga, M. G. Doucet 01/10/2008

          Article Further

        3. Affective atmospheres - Ben Anderson 12/2009

          Article Further

        4. Affective atmospheres - Ben Anderson 12/2009

          Article Further

    9. Week 10: Security and Discourse Analysis 10 items
      How is security defined? Constructivists follow Wittgenstein in claiming that it is our words, both written and spoken, that make our worlds. Hence the importance of discourse and its analysis if we want to gain an insight into how security issues are performatively constructed into being.
      1. Key readings 2 items
      2. Supplementary readings 8 items
        1. Qualitative methods in international relations: a pluralist guide - Audie Klotz, Deepa Prakash 2009

          Book Further

        2. The politics of insecurity: fear, migration, and asylum in the EU - Jef Huysmans 2006

          Book Further

    10. Week 11: Security and Visual Analysis 9 items
      In a world in which visuality plays an increasing role – from the ubiquity of visual artefacts to the importance of the act of seeing for political and social participation – security becomes a visual, and not just a linguistic, practice. Boundaries of enmity and friendship are constructed visually. Issues can be securitized through images, videos and even through cartoons. At the same time, because they are polysemic and particularly open to interpretation (Barthes), images have a specific transformative and disruptive potential. This exists in tension with the drive towards manipulation, exercised by both governments and private actors. In more than one sense, security is a visual battlefield.
      1. Key readings 2 items
      2. Supplementary readings 7 items
        1. Chapter ‘Visual Analysis’ of Critical security studies: an introduction - C. Moore, C. Farrands

          Chapter Further

    11. Week 12: The Material Turn in Security Studies 10 items
      Complex times call for complex theories. Material approaches aim to give us a pair of fresh eyes to look at and theorise about security. These approaches reject the assumption of anthropocentrism, share a certain dissatisfaction with the ‘social constructionist’ paradigm, and refuse to privilege language and the symbolic over the material and inert. The result is an object-analysis of security. Realism comes back in fashion – but it’s a ‘new’ realism, that rejects all a-priori distinctions between subjects and objects, humans and non-humans, ideas and matter and privileges a ‘flat ontology’ in which all these elements interact to produce security complexity.
      1. Key readings 2 items
      2. Supplementary readings 8 items
        1. Hollow land: Israel's architecture of occupation - Eyal Weizman 2007

          Book Further

        2. Terrorist assemblages: homonationalism in queer times - Jasbir K. Puar 2007

          Book Further

        3. The Study of Drones as Objects of Security: Targetted Killing as Military Strategy

          Chapter Further

        4. Out of the mountains: the coming age of the urban guerrilla - David Kilcullen 2015

          Book Further