Building on constructivist approaches to international relations this book develops a narrative theory of identity, action and foreign policy, which is then applied to account for the evolution of Finnish foreign policy. The book adopts an innovative approach by showing how foreign policy orientations need to be seen as grounded in overlapping and competing sets of identity narratives that reappear in different forms through history. By emphasising the dynamism implicit within identity narratives the book not only challenges traditional rationalist materialist approaches to foreign policy analysis, but also the current tendency to depict the story of Finnish foreign policy, identity and history as one of a gradual move towards a Western location. Rather the book emphasises elements of multiplicity and contingency, whilst re-establishing foreign policy as a highly political process concerned with power and the right to define reality and national subjectivity.
Publisher: Verlag Peter Lang
Number of pages: 328
Weight: 470 g
Dimensions: 150 x 220 mm
Edition: New edition
"Browning's book is a long awaited contribution to the literature on small states and foreign policy analysis. The Finnish case offers an interesting perspective that should not remain just the property of Finnish, Nordic and Baltic experts but should be read by all interested in small states, foreign policy analysis and European affairs in general. Browning skilfully develops a theory on the relationship between national identity and foreign policy that is adaptable to other cases. Small states can also be smart and this book can certainly be described as a smart contribution to international relations." (Marko Lehti, Tampere Peace Research Institute)
"The book offers more than just a sophisticated, well-researched and country-specific application of a narrative approach to foreign policy. In fact, it offers a model applicable also to a host of other countries and works, more generally, as a critical inroad into foreign policy analysis." (Pertti Joenniemi, Danish Institute for International Studies)