Topologies of security: inquiring in/security across postcolonial and postsocialist scenes

Andrew Dwyer, Andreas Langenohl, Philipp Lottholz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Postcolonial and postsocialist thought has critiqued Critical Security Studies (CSS) on its Eurocentric orientation in terms of its concepts, categories, and concerns of security. In this introductory text, we discuss a concept in tension – topology/scene – to deepen a dialogue between postcolonial and postsocialist scholarship alongside insights from Science and Technology Studies (STS). Drawing on various contributions, we demonstrate how topology/scene enables critical reflections on how the ‘networked’, material approaches to security exemplified by STS can be put into a productive conversation with critiques grounded in postcolonial and postsocialist theory and praxis. Topologies and scenes of security are thus offered as a method to reflect, interrogate, and question existing relationalities of in/security as well as the power of different materials, discourses, organisations, and people in various times and places. We seek to move beyond the scalar hierarchies of ‘local’ and ‘global’ to question and investigate uneven power relations. Along with contributions in this special issue, it is possible to point towards the potential to situate inquiry across thus-far ‘peripheral’ places and societal milieus to offer insights into the experiences and understandings of in/security which have been rendered invisible or marginal.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-13
Number of pages13
JournalCritical Studies on Security
Issue number1
Early online date9 May 2023
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 9 May 2023

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