Edited by Juanita Elias and Adrienne Roberts
Chapter 6: Gender, IPE and poststructuralism: problematizing the material/discursive divide
Poststructuralism has made inroads into International Political Economy (IPE), yet poststructural interventions have been both disparate and sporadic, with gendered poststructural interventions yet sparser. Accused of abstractionism and the obscuration of ‘material conditions’, poststructuralism in IPE (as elsewhere) has often been mis-characterized and mis-represented by its critics. Examples of poststructural gender work on the global political economy show, however, that poststructural IPE’s gender scholars are rarely complicit in the assumed theory/practice divide on which critics have focused. As these, imaginative and important, gendered approaches increase in number and significance, they offer crucial opportunities for tracing pathways through the lives and practices of the global political economy. This chapter considers how poststructural gender approaches to IPE challenge us to think differently about the world, using examples of poststructuralism’s practitioners and their critics in IPE to show how such approaches are opening space for the emergence of non-traditional IPE agendas.
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