Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS:
Title: Struggles for freedom : Afghanistan and US foreign policy, 1979-2009
Author: Hammond, Andrew
ISNI:       0000 0001 1453 3842
Awarding Body: University of Warwick
Current Institution: University of Warwick
Date of Award: 2014
Availability of Full Text:
Access from EThOS:
Full text unavailable from EThOS. Restricted access.
Access from Institution:
Struggles for Freedom: Afghanistan and US Foreign Policy, 1979-2009 looks at discourses of freedom in US foreign policy towards Afghanistan. It considers the politics that surround the keyword ‘freedom’ in US foreign policy discourse by comparing and contrasting discourses employed during the Cold War and the Global War on Terrorism. For example, during the former Afghanistan was symbolically linked to ‘freedom’ in US political discourse and the insurgents were characterized as ‘freedom fighters’; while during the latter Afghanistan was cast and portrayed as a threat to ‘freedom’, and many of the same insurgents were now characterized as ‘enemies of freedom’. At heart this thesis ask the question: how do we go from the first discourse to the second, while holding the keyword through which US foreign policy is narrated constant? What is the nature of this ‘paradox of freedom’? The overarching research question that drives and guides this study, then, is: what role does ‘freedom’ play in US foreign policy towards Afghanistan between 1979-2009? This study provides an original contribution to knowledge in that it is the first attempt to theorise and conceptualise the role that ‘freedom’ plays in US foreign policy discourse through an innovative within-case, over-time, most-similar comparative case study. It does so, moreover, through engaging with a substantial and original evidentiary base, whether in the form of extensive archival research or dozens of elite interviews. That is, freedom is not just conceptualised and theorised, but also historicized. This thesis, then, also makes a further contribution in that it synthesizes insights from a number of literatures and research strengths from a number of disciplines to provide a genuinely inter-disciplinary, problem-driven contribution. This study argues that operating outside any particular policies done in its name, ‘freedom’ plays in an important role in the co-constitution of American national identity, in enabling and legitimating certain courses of foreign policy action, in the construction of hierarchical international social relations, and in the reproduction of American common-sense. Freedom, then, is in many ways the ‘golden thread’ of US foreign policy discourse, in that it connects the past with the present, and the present with the future.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Economic and Social Research Council ; Arts & Humanities Research Council ; University of Warwick
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: JK Political institutions (United States)