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Title: Russian discourses of intervention, 2011-2014 : constructing the Western Other
Author: Zhekova, Kalina
ISNI:       0000 0004 7657 0130
Awarding Body: University of Leeds
Current Institution: University of Leeds
Date of Award: 2018
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Previous studies have discussed contemporary Russian foreign policy as driven by power politics, taking an instrumentalist view of its rhetoric as a set of tools utilised by political elites to justify policy preferences. This is contained in the argument that Russia's insistence on non-interference and its language on civilian protection are, at the very least, contradictory. By contrast, the thesis argues that these seeming contradictions are symptomatic of partial engagements with Russia's discursive context. It demonstrates that there is more continuity than discrepancy in the way Russian policies on conflicts involving (the possibility of) intervention are discursively constituted. The study traces Russian meaning-making practices on the interrelationship between the West as its Other and foreign policy responses in the context of three conflicts of international significance - the Libyan, Syrian and Ukrainian crises investigated between 2011 and 2014. Within this time period, Russian policy is consistently situated within what is termed the 'Non-interference' basic discourse. It constructed the Western Other as engaged in a repeated and expanding pattern of interference in internal conflicts aimed at regime change - implemented in Libya, attempted in Syria (before September 2014) and arguably, successfully executed in Ukraine, which constituted a range of Russian political action in response. Rather than driven solely by geopolitical interests, Russian foreign policy is shown as made possible by the 'Non-interference' discourse, centred on the continuous resistance to the representational motivations behind the policies of the Western Other.
Supervisor: Ralph, Jason ; Davies, Graeme Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available