The Anglosphere: A Genealogy Of An Identity In International Relations

by Vucetic, Srdjan

Abstract (Summary)
The Anglosphere refers to a grouping of English-speaking states, whose core is said to consist of Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the United Kingdom and the United States. While it offers no shortage of explanations of international conflict and cooperation across different groupings of states, the field of International Relations (IR) is silent on the subject of the Anglosphere. This dissertation seeks to open up the research agenda by investigating two basic questions: how did the Anglosphere become possible and what effects does it have on international politics? The dissertation considers these questions in parallel, via two complementary analytical tasks. The first task is to provide a genealogy of the Anglosphere as a grouping of states characterized by shared identity. To second is to develop and evaluate a theoretical framework which links state/national identity to foreign policies generative of the Anglosphere. The genealogical account shows how the relations between and among the states of the Anglosphere came to be seen as exempt from the standard rules that govern international conflict and cooperation, such as those on the use of force, appeasement, reciprocity, face-saving, institution-building, defection or punishment. In positing state/national identity as a cause, the theoretical framework developed in this dissertation proposes that identity will have made one state action more likely over others, thus leading to differentiated outcomes in international conflict and cooperation. The empirically testable proposition is twofold: first, the dominant discourse of identity at the state level shapes state action by making some cooperative policies more likely than others. Second, foreign policy debates on the fit between identity and the perceived reality influence the continuity and change of state action. The empirical findings, derived from a set of case studies, support the first proposition; the empirical record is mixed with the second proposition. The contestability of state/national identity seems to increase with the perceived misfit between identity at home and the perceived reality abroad.
Bibliographical Information:


School:The Ohio State University

School Location:USA - Ohio

Source Type:Master's Thesis

Keywords:anglosphere genealogy identity discourse international relations theory cooperation security


Date of Publication:01/01/2008

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