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Advancing a reflexive international relations

Eagleton-Pierce, Matthew (2011) Advancing a reflexive international relations. Millennium: Journal of International Studies, 39 (3). pp. 805-823. ISSN 0305-8298

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Identification Number: 10.1177/0305829811402709


This article advances a call for greater reflexivity in International Relations (IR) to uncover various intellectual and political biases that may obscure the research process. Inspired by existing reflexive practices in IR and, in particular, Pierre Bourdieu's use of such a method, it argues that reflexivity matters for enhancing ethically grounded research, in terms of not only the choice of subjects to study, but also how specific problems are treated, and hence what kind of results can be expected. However, the argument also goes beyond the appeal to autobiographical reflexivity to embrace other dimensions. This includes attention to institutional forces that shape the agency of the scholar and, in turn, the complex relationship between the academy and the wider political world. In the most ambitious sense, the potential for reflexivity can also be conceived collectively in terms of activist intellectuals who seek to reward reflexive practices through dialogue and political intervention. The social space of international trade politics is taken as an empirical example.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2011 The Author(s)
Divisions: International Relations
Subjects: J Political Science > JZ International relations
Date Deposited: 17 Jun 2011 13:12
Last Modified: 16 May 2024 01:15

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