J. Ann Tickner, Laura Sjoberg

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review


In this chapter we trace the history of the development of feminist IR. After offering a brief review of feminist theories more generally, this chapter will offer a typology of different IR feminist theories which build on, but go beyond, a variety of IR approaches, such as liberalism, constructivism, critical theory, postcolonialism and postructuralism. It will also suggest some feminist reformulations of some of the key concepts in IR, focusing in particular on feminist redefinitions and reanalysis of security. We have chosen to focus on security because it has been central to the discipline since its founding in the early twentieth century. It has also been a central issue for feminists who write about international relations. We will introduce some “second generation” feminist scholarship, which applies the theoretical insights of earlier feminist IR to empirical situations in global politics, with a particular emphasis on security. We will illustrate our feminist analysis of security through an examination of the sanctions regime against Iraq in the 1990s. We propose that feminist IR offers some insights on the case that other theories do not. We conclude by suggesting the contributions of feminist IR to the discipline specifically and to global politics more generally.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationInternational Relations Theories
Subtitle of host publicationDiscipline and Diversity
EditorsTim Dunne, Milja Kurki, Steve Smith
Place of PublicationOxford
PublisherOxford University Press
Number of pages18
ISBN (Print)9780199298334
Publication statusPublished - 2007


  • gender
  • feminism
  • feminist IR
  • international relations theory

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