The feminist turn in foreign policy and diplomacy

Taking a particular feminist view on the male-dominated realm of foreign policy and diplomacy, Dr Nadine Ansorg collaborates on a chapter in the prestigious Routledge Handbook of Feminist Peace Research.

Dr Nadine Ansorg along with Dr Toni Haastrup (University of Stirling) and Dr Katherine Wright (University of Newcastle) have contributed a chapter in the recently published in the “Routledge Handbook of Feminist Peace Research“. The chapter entitled “Feminist Interventions in Foreign Policy and Diplomacy” shows how feminism has been fundamental to the evolution of international politics’ search for peace: from the changes in the makeup of foreign policy actors to include more women, to the implications of the Women, Peace and Security agenda and the nascent adoption of Feminist Foreign Policy by some countries.

“We also highlight persistent blind spots and unintended consequences of the ‘feminist’ turn in foreign policy and diplomatic practice, discussing the challenges to credible ethical state practice, arguing that states located in the Global North are more predisposed to branding their foreign policy as ‘feminist’.” Ansorg explains “The implementation of feminist foreign policy for the distant other, obscures domestic realities, while reinforcing colonial logics. We conclude that while the feminist turn has given more space for feminist interventions, the adoption of an ethical code is crucial when tackling tensions and contradictions between idealism and pragmatism in feminist foreign policy.”

Ansorg first met Haastrup at the School of Politics and International Relations, and since then have collaborated on many publications together.

“We wanted to take a particular feminist view on the very male-dominated realm of foreign policy and diplomacy, and examine how this area has changed in the last two decades.”

Their vision is that policy makers start to critically reflect on their practices of a feminist foreign policy, and also acknowledge and challenge colonial and capitalist logics that are inherent in foreign policy.