Analysis Of Ken Booth's Security And Emancipation

Great Essays
The article chosen for the following article analysis is Ken Booth’s “Security and Emancipation”. Written in 1991, the article explores a new lens at looking at security, expanding from the traditional approach. It begins by discussing how words are extremely inclusive and constantly changing to the times, stating that past terms, such as sovereignty, superpowers, and war, and their definitions are changing and that “world politics require words which imply a more porous, inclusive, and inter-penetrating world” . The reason he says this is because he explores the idea of it being difficult to find a new name for the stage of world affairs after the Cold War. He expands, stating that this period has changed our perception of security immensely, …show more content…
In Stephen M. Walt’s “The Renaissance of Security Studies”, Walt explores the newfound interest in security studies. Like Booth’s article, it was also written in 1991. That being said, it has a comprehensively different view of what security studies are. Walt defines security studies as “the study of the threat, use, and control of military force” . Walt’s definition of security studies, similar to realism, assumes that there is always a possibility for conflict between states, and that military force is the strongest means at combatting such . Although Booth also explores this theme at the start of his article, his analogy of this traditional approach is rather disparate. Booth assumes that prior to the end of the Cold War, the main concern of security studies was based and focused on inter-state war and the deployment of weapons . Similar to the argument of Walt, Booth states that traditional security has been characterized by the three elements of military threats and counter threats, status quo, and state centrism . Consequently, Booth shifts and differs immensely from Walt, with a much more reasonable and relevant argument. Booth believes that although this was a well-focused part of the study of security, ever since the Cold-War has ended, the modern era has seen the decline in inter-state war, and the fact that will only fight if they or …show more content…
By reading through the traditional approach to security and its flaws, and progressing to human centred approaches, Booth allows the reader to understand how all human related concerns of emancipation are matters of security that should be heavily analysed, just as much, and if not more than the traditional approaches of security. Booth’s arguments about human security and emancipation allows the reader to look beyond the classic argument made by traditional security thinkers that security studies should not become so broad, and realize that there is no problem in doing so. Doing so only allows for issues to be tackled at their core. A concern one might have with Booth’s article is that it does not put enough emphasis on women’s issues. He does mention siding with the women at the Greenham March , but does not place enough emphasis on the rights of women, and their emancipation from a patriarchal society. That being said although the article does not directly refer to it, Booth’s overarching argument does reach out to these issues and many others, give that women in a patriarchal and male dominated society would be freed from constraints through the process and concept of emancipation. Emancipation allows for the security of all, to be treated fairly and equally with the absence of

Related Documents

  • Great Essays

    Both power blocs were also questioned the role of NAM in cold war era. The western countries always tagged NAM as a collaboration of opportunist countries. It was such a big thing that NAM survived in fracas of cold war. The study tried to remove skepticism on Non-alignment and NAM in post cold war arena. It is also suggesting a new way for making the movement effective and relevant in present context.…

    • 3547 Words
    • 15 Pages
    Great Essays
  • Improved Essays

    The security dilemma is the essential part of defensive realism because it is the security dilemma that makes possible the cooperation between states. For offensive realists, the security dilemma makes war inevitable and rational. The realist scholars have different “views” understanding the concept of security dilemma. Early realist scholars believed states had to be aggressive to survive. Thomas Hobbes, being a particularly pessimistic early realist thinker, believed that the strong will…

    • 973 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Great Essays

    Theoretical issues centered around the phenomenon of conflict and war seek to explain an important part of international relations. This is reinforced through Vasquez’s acknowledgement that “Despite claims that interstate war is on the wane, it is still a very serious social problem” (2012, 301). These explanations will be explored through an analysis on the concepts of the security dilemma, deterrence, and alliances. Such issues are not solely rooted in any one IR theory. Therefore, the second half of this paper connects theoretical issues of conflict and war to realism, liberalism, and constructivism.…

    • 1680 Words
    • 7 Pages
    Great Essays
  • Improved Essays

    In fact, a huge number of literature and institutions focusing on IR have appeared since World War One. (Wright, 1995) This was the beginning of disciplinary study of international relations. Since then, IR has been successfully establishing its position in academic society, and its development has been traditionally seen as a “response to events/changes in the real world” (Brown and Ainley 2009: 19). For instance, “liberal institutionalism” appeared as a response to World War One, but soon after it was challenged and replaced by “realism”, which emerged, mainly because the former failed to explain the cause of uninterrupted aggressions by Germany, Italy and Japan. Moreover, the Cold War and the change of world systems at that time, especially the emergence of functional non-state actors such as United Nations questioned the fundamental philosophy of realism which claims that the state is the most significant actor.…

    • 1424 Words
    • 6 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Clausewitz: Purpose Of War

    • 1183 Words
    • 5 Pages

    According to Clausewitz book 1 chapter 1, On War there are a few purpose of war. Where is for political objectives, war is a mere continuation of policy by other means, Utmost use of force, military objectives and utmost exertion of powers. The idea that Clausewitz outlined to explain were useful until today. There are many advantage that military todays can use from a very talented leader like Clausewitz. Political Objective The political object, as the original motive of the war, will be the standard for determining the two purposes of the armed forces, as well as the number of attempts to be made .…

    • 1183 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Superior Essays

    The World’s current security environment is uncertain and complex. Globalization amplifies emerging conflicts that bring national and transnational security challenges to the United States, which require employment of the military as national instrument of power. The United States military supports conflicts ranging from peace to war, and varying in purpose, scale, risk, and combat intensity. The ability of the United States military to advance its national military objectives depends on it employs the force and the effectiveness of the force. In order to efficiently and successfully fulfill the national military objectives, military leaders should consider some major lessons from the past, like maintaining a capable force for a decisive…

    • 2009 Words
    • 9 Pages
    Superior Essays
  • Great Essays

    invasion of Iraq by Stephen Kinzer and Vivek Chibber. I will first explain the basic reasons for the invasion by each author. Kinzer arguing that the main reason is to support U.S. corporations overseas, and Vivek Chibber arguing that America has developed a strategic plan to become the leading power in the World and that invasions such as Iraq are key for the development of such regime change. In addition, I will indicate main similarities and differences among both arguments. Lastly, I will give my opinion and analysis on the reasons why I find Vivek Chibbers’ statement more…

    • 2186 Words
    • 9 Pages
    Great Essays
  • Improved Essays

    “In September 2002, addressing the U.N. General Assembly, President Bush stated: “The Security Council Resolutions will be enforced…or action will be unavoidable.” This was followed by Secretary of State Colin Powell making a forceful and persuasive argument for direct intervention in Iraq due to concerns of Iraqi possession of weapons of mass destruction. The new dictum of ‘joint operations’, which was first expressed on a smaller scale in Operation Desert Storm, fully came into practice by the time of Operation Iraqi Freedom. “The fundamental asymmetry, however, lay(1) in the radically different capabilities of the Iraqi forces and those of the coalition in technology, training, and readiness, and (2) in Iraq’s lack of joint warfare capability against U.S. and British forces that had a degree of ‘jointness’ that had never been approached in any previous…

    • 1703 Words
    • 7 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Superior Essays

    The philosophies of Herman Kahn, an author during the Cold War, remain relevant today. He believed it was necessary for “Americans to accept the consequences [of nuclear warfare], no matter how horrifying” (Symonds 1). With the developing arms race in the Middle East and North Korea the American population must be prepared to launch into nuclear warfare at any moment otherwise “without the willingness to push the button, nuclear war preparations [are] just an elaborate bluff” (Symonds 1). Power and its use has been a controversial topic throughout human existence (Symonds 1-3). If those who hold power are not responsible, the world will remain on the verge of total destruction.…

    • 1571 Words
    • 7 Pages
    Superior Essays
  • Improved Essays

    These various news sources offer the latest information regarding the U.S. involvement against insurgencies around the world. Several books were used in this study, specifically Philip Smith’s Why War? : The Cultural Logic of Iraq, the Gulf War, and Suez, US Special Operations Forces in Action: The Challenge of Unconventional Warfare by Thomas K. Adams, and U.S. Special Forces by Hans Halberstadt, Terry Griswold, D. M Giangreco and Fred J. Pushies. The information collected from these sources was critical in highlighting the U.S. military’s decision to shift from deploying conventional war fighting forces in favor of Special Operations…

    • 1097 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Improved Essays