Political Self-Sacrifice: Agency, Body and Emotion in International Relations (Cambridge Studies in International Relations 125)

Political Self-Sacrifice: Agency, Body and Emotion in International Relations (Cambridge Studies in International Relations 125)

By: K. M. Fierke (author)Hardback

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Over the last decade the increasing phenomenon of suicide terrorism has raised questions about how it might be rational for individuals to engage in such acts. This book examines a range of different forms of political self-sacrifice, including hunger strikes, self-burning and non-violent martyrdom, all of which have taken place in resistance to foreign interference. Karin Fierke sets out to study the strategic and emotional dynamics that arise from the image of the suffering body, including political contestation surrounding the identification of the victim as a terrorist or martyr, the meaning of the death as suicide or martyrdom and the extent to which this contributes to the reconstruction of community identity. Political Self-Sacrifice offers a counterpoint to rationalist accounts of international terrorism in terrorist and security studies, and is a novel contribution to the growing literature on the role of emotion and trauma in international politics.

About Author

K. M. Fierke is Professor of International Relations in the School of International Relations at the University of St Andrews. Her books include Changing Games, Changing Strategies: Critical Investigations in Security (1998), Diplomatic Interventions: Conflict and Change in a Globalizing World (2005), Critical Approaches to International Security (2007) and an edited collection with Knud Erik Jorgensen, International Relations: The Next Generation (2001). She has also published widely on topics related to constructivism and security as well as trauma, memory and political violence in a range of internationally recognised journals including International Studies Quarterly, the European Journal for International Relations, International Theory, the Review of International Studies and Millennium.


Introduction; Part I. The Framework: 1. Political self-sacrifice; 2. Agency; 3. Body and emotion; Part II. The Historical Cases: 4. Hunger strikes in Northern Ireland, 1980-1; 5. Martyrdom in Poland, 1984; 6. Self-immolation in Vietnam, 1963; Part III. Comparisons and Conclusions: 7. Martyrdom in the contemporary Middle East and north Africa; 8. The public diplomacy of suffering.

Product Details

  • ISBN13: 9781107029231
  • Format: Hardback
  • Number Of Pages: 302
  • ID: 9781107029231
  • weight: 570
  • ISBN10: 1107029236

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