Debating IR

Probing the philosophical underpinnings of the international system and anything else of interest.

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Thursday, March 09, 2006

Shinko Reading

I must confess that I find postmodernism both fascinating and infuriating. I find it difficult to wrap my head around the ideas that it presents.

The postmodern take on the intervention by NATO in Kosovo is centered around the relationship between power and truth. For the Postmodernist, truth and power are linked together very tightly, each essentially supporting the other.

The case of Kosovo involved a violent intervention, that is to say an exercise of power for the purpose of supporting a truth. This truth is that of the West and liberalism.

The use of violence, framed as the moral imperative of humanitarian intervention, was reinforcing the Western notions about the meaning of sovereignty and the appropriate use of violence.

This seems circular, which is exactly the point. The postmodern critique of the Kosovo situation reveals that the underlying logic of the NATO campaign is that the use of violence by the West is legitimate because it is the West using violence.

I think that is essentially what the article says but I'm not entirely sure of it.

1 Comments:

Blogger Kat said...

The postmodern critique of the Kosovo situation reveals that the underlying logic of the NATO campaign is that the use of violence by the West is legitimate because it is the West using violence.

I think the underlying logic was that the West had to use violence to prevent a similar split from occuring within its own countries, but this also seems pretty accurate.

1:25 PM  

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