Engendering International Relations: What Difference Does Second-Generation Feminism Make?

Author/s (editor/s):

Jacqui True

Publication year:


Publication type:

Working paper

Find this publication at:
IR Working Paper 2002/1 (PDF, 1.42MB)

Jacqui True, ‘Engendering International Relations: What Difference Does Second-Generation Feminism Make?’ IR Working Paper 2002/1, Canberra: Department of International Relations, Research School of Pacific and Asian Studies, The Australian National University, May 2002.

A first-generation of feminist scholarship on international relations challenged the implicitly gendered foundations of mainstream IR, including its masculine conceptual bias and state-centricity and the reliance on positivist ways of knowing. These feminist theoretical challenges cleared the path for new thinking and for the development of distinctly gendered approaches to international relations. A second-generation of feminist IR scholarship is now emerging, in which empirical research is strengthening and expanding on those earlier theoretical advances. Here, I explore these second-generation efforts to combine gendered theory with close empirical study of global/local processes. These efforts offer a number of lessons for how we might conduct our future scholarship. By showing—not telling—how gender is relevant to global politics, the insights from these studies can build upon one another in impressive ways. As such, they promise to speak to major concerns of feminist and ‘mainstream’ IR scholars alike.

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