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Narratives of Security: Strategy and Identity in the European Context

Ciută, F; (2007) Narratives of Security: Strategy and Identity in the European Context. In: Mole, R, (ed.) Discursive Constructions of Identity in European Politics. (pp. 190-207). Palgrave Macmillan

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Abstract

This paper discusses the complex and not always obvious epistemological choices necessitated by the use of narrative. It argues that the central contribution of narrative to IR is to enrich our understanding of the relationship between structures of meaning and logics of action. Narratives are vehicles of sedimented but immanently transformative logics of action, which constitute coherent and intelligible contexts of interaction. Narrative contextualism shares its hermeneutical concerns with other analytical perspectives in IR, and offers an ethnomethodologically inclined epistemological compass and a normatively receptive understanding of international practice. Narrative signals an intense need for contextualisation in IR, with epistemological, methodological and normative consequences. Epistemologically, narrative engages directly the tension between conceptual logic and contextual praxis that is the nub of any hermeneutics, and calls for attention to context as well as contextualisation of concepts. Normatively, narrative contextualism recognizes the inherent ethical content of any discussion of the merits of particular logics of action in international politics.

Type: Book chapter
Title: Narratives of Security: Strategy and Identity in the European Context
ISBN-13: 978-0-230-51706-6
Additional information: Felix Ciuta is author of Chapter 10 and co-author (with Richard Mole) of chapter 11
Keywords: Constructivism, epistemology, European security, hermeneutics, identity, narrative
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > SSEES
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/12918
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