The Invisible Structures of Anarchy: Gender, Orders, and Global Politics

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This article recognizes the international system as anarchical but looks to theorize its contours – to see the invisible structures that are overlaid within international anarchy, and then to consider what those structures mean for theorizing anarchy itself. It uses as an example the various (invisible) ways that gender orders global political relations to suggest that anarchy in the international arena is a place of multiple orders rather than of disorder. It therefore begins by theorizing anarchy with orders in global politics, rather than anarchy as necessarily substantively lacking orders. It then argues that gender orders global politics in various ways. It concludes with a framework for theorizing order within anarchy in global politics.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)325-340
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of International Political Theory
Issue number3
Early online date7 Jun 2017
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2017


  • gender
  • international anarchy
  • realism
  • order
  • international relations
  • feminist IR
  • hierarchy

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