Feminism, International Theory, and International Relations of Gender Inequality

  • Citation: Brown, Sarah. "Feminism, international theory, and international relations of gender inequality." Millennium 17.3 (1988): 461-475.
    • Topics:
    • IR Theories
    • Keywords:
    • international relations
    • feminist theory
    • feminist politics
    • world politics
    • radical feminist

At a time when feminist scholarship is beginning to be brought to bear upon the study of international relations, and when international theory seems to be applying itself to issues of gender, the aim of this paper seems doubly iconoclastic. It is to anticipate and pre-empt the reconciliation between feminist scholarship and the discipline of international relations. To do this, I want to insist first that the proper object and purpose of the study of international relations is the identification and explanation of social stratification and of inequality as structured at the level of global relations. The explanation of international relations conceived in this way has been marginalized, and is constrained as a result of the way in which the discipline has developed. Second, I want to adopt an approach to the study of gender which stands in a position of explicit and critical opposition – not only to that which is currently being taken up within the discipline of international relations, but also to that which Is currently ascendant within feminist thought.

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