Feminism : An Effective Challenge

2207 Words Nov 24th, 2014 9 Pages
Feminism presents an effective challenge to orthodox approaches to international relations by criticising the absence of women in international relations in a number of key areas: the negative effect these policies have had on women, the emphasis on war and the dominance of masculinity. The main criticism of orthodox approaches is that they take a positivist approach to international relations; viewing the world as if there are set facts and truths. Feminist critical theory takes a post-positivist stance, rejecting realist and liberal theories of the world. Feminists criticise ‘the extent to which international politics is such a thoroughly masculinised sphere of activity that women 's voices are considered inauthentic’ (Tickner 1992, p. 7). The field of international relations is dominated by men and values masculinity, therefore women’s voices and experiences are excluded. Feminists challenge the narrow definition of security, the importance of war and masculinity and the myth of protection. The actual changes made to international relations have been limited, but feminist criticisms brings up essential questions that need to be addressed about changing the field of international relations. The solution to making an effective change in the field of international relations is not simple and involves more than just ‘injecting women’s experiences’ (Tickner 1992, p. 15) into it, as it is a deep rooted issue to do with gender. A radical change of how gender is viewed and a…
Open Document