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Swedish Feminist Foreign Policy in the Making : Ethics, Politics, and Gender

Aggestam, Karin LU and Bergman-Rosamond, Annika LU (2016) In Ethics and International Affairs 30(3). p.323-334
Abstract

In 2015, the world's first self-defined feminist government was formed in Sweden with the explicit ambition of pursuing a feminist foreign policy. This essay seeks to unpack and highlight some of the substance and plausible future directions of a feminist foreign policy. The overarching ambition is three-fold: (1) to probe the normative contents of feminist foreign policy in theory and in practice; (2) to identify a number of potential challenges and ethical dilemmas that are detrimental to gender-sensitive global politics; and (3) to advance a research agenda that can deepen the normative and ethical notions of a feminist foreign policy. Sweden's feminist foreign policy is still in the making. Its conduct is mostly incremental and... (More)

In 2015, the world's first self-defined feminist government was formed in Sweden with the explicit ambition of pursuing a feminist foreign policy. This essay seeks to unpack and highlight some of the substance and plausible future directions of a feminist foreign policy. The overarching ambition is three-fold: (1) to probe the normative contents of feminist foreign policy in theory and in practice; (2) to identify a number of potential challenges and ethical dilemmas that are detrimental to gender-sensitive global politics; and (3) to advance a research agenda that can deepen the normative and ethical notions of a feminist foreign policy. Sweden's feminist foreign policy is still in the making. Its conduct is mostly incremental and focused on international agenda setting and normative entrepreneurship, which is guided by an ethically informed framework of cosmopolitanism and human rights. Yet, this essay argues that this reorientation is distinct for two reasons: First, by adopting the F-word it elevates politics from a broadly consensual orientation of gender mainstreaming towards more controversial politics, which explicitly seeks to renegotiate and challenge power hierarchies and gendered institutions that hitherto defined global institutions and foreign and security policies. Second, it contains a normative reorientation of foreign policy, which is guided by an ethically informed framework based on broad cosmopolitan norms of global justice and peace. The article concludes by advancing a research agenda that draws upon feminist IR theory and enhances the ethical and transformative contents of the English School by making it more gender-sensitive and appropriate for the study of feminist foreign policy.

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author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
in
Ethics and International Affairs
volume
30
issue
3
pages
12 pages
publisher
Cambridge University Press
external identifiers
  • scopus:85014520926
  • wos:000384302200003
ISSN
0892-6794
DOI
10.1017/S0892679416000241
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
fe0be8ba-d0a4-4f40-9afd-bc1b65ada895
date added to LUP
2017-03-16 10:11:45
date last changed
2017-09-18 11:32:47
@article{fe0be8ba-d0a4-4f40-9afd-bc1b65ada895,
  abstract     = {<p>In 2015, the world's first self-defined feminist government was formed in Sweden with the explicit ambition of pursuing a feminist foreign policy. This essay seeks to unpack and highlight some of the substance and plausible future directions of a feminist foreign policy. The overarching ambition is three-fold: (1) to probe the normative contents of feminist foreign policy in theory and in practice; (2) to identify a number of potential challenges and ethical dilemmas that are detrimental to gender-sensitive global politics; and (3) to advance a research agenda that can deepen the normative and ethical notions of a feminist foreign policy. Sweden's feminist foreign policy is still in the making. Its conduct is mostly incremental and focused on international agenda setting and normative entrepreneurship, which is guided by an ethically informed framework of cosmopolitanism and human rights. Yet, this essay argues that this reorientation is distinct for two reasons: First, by adopting the F-word it elevates politics from a broadly consensual orientation of gender mainstreaming towards more controversial politics, which explicitly seeks to renegotiate and challenge power hierarchies and gendered institutions that hitherto defined global institutions and foreign and security policies. Second, it contains a normative reorientation of foreign policy, which is guided by an ethically informed framework based on broad cosmopolitan norms of global justice and peace. The article concludes by advancing a research agenda that draws upon feminist IR theory and enhances the ethical and transformative contents of the English School by making it more gender-sensitive and appropriate for the study of feminist foreign policy.</p>},
  author       = {Aggestam, Karin and Bergman-Rosamond, Annika},
  issn         = {0892-6794},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {3},
  pages        = {323--334},
  publisher    = {Cambridge University Press},
  series       = {Ethics and International Affairs},
  title        = {Swedish Feminist Foreign Policy in the Making : Ethics, Politics, and Gender},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/S0892679416000241},
  volume       = {30},
  year         = {2016},
}