Gender in International Relations: Feminist Perspectives of J. Ann Tickner
J. Ann Tickner’s feminism carved out significant space for gender as a variable of analysis in IR scholarship and its now robust subfields. This article outlines the goal of feminist IR is two-fold: to recognise gender where it exists in IR, and to move beyond gendered ideas into collaborative scholarship. By raising issues such as domestic violence, rape and prostitution Tickner gives a human-rights dimension to her narratives. She also forays into issues ignored by conventional IR, such as democratisation, women’s and international organisations, norms and human rights.
According to feminism, the discipline of international relations (IR) a decade ago had, and indeed still has, connotations similar to ‘maleness’. This maleness is not based strictly on individual personalities, but on a ‘hegemonic masculinity’ that expresses what masculine men should be in opposition to femininities, which are less valued. Women are not a strong factor in the discipline, and knowledge gained from women’s experiences also remains at the periphery of the discipline’s analysis. It is clear to Professor J. Ann Tickner that there are gendered perceptions in IR, hidden by purported ‘gender neutrality’ and ‘objectivity’. In other words, although women and gender are both important parts of the daily operation and scholarship of IR, this presence is neither debated nor analysed by most theorists. The goal then of feminist IR is two-fold: to recognise gender where it exists in IR, and to move beyond gendered ideas into collaborative scholarship. In this way, feminist IR theory challenges other strands of IR theory on a number of levels, contributing to the major theoretical debates in the discipline and raising new areas of analysis. Based on J. Ann Tickner’s perspectives on feminism, this
Gender in International Relations: Feminist Perspectives of J. Ann Tickner Indian Journal of Gender Studies June 2014 21: 179-197, doi:10.1177/0971521514525085