Normative contestation and the responsibility to protect

Nackers, Kimberly (2012). Normative contestation and the responsibility to protect PhD Thesis, , The University of Queensland.

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Author Nackers, Kimberly
Thesis Title Normative contestation and the responsibility to protect
Formatted title
Normative Contestation and the Responsibility to Protect
Institution The University of Queensland
Publication date 2012
Thesis type PhD Thesis
Supervisor Andrew Phillips
Phil Orchard
Alex Bellamy
Total pages 189
Total black and white pages 189
Language eng
Subjects 160607 International Relations
Formatted abstract
This thesis addresses a deficiency in constructivist literature, which has thoroughly examined nuanced acceptance of norms while rarely explaining nuanced obstruction. Nuanced obstruction refers to the provision of rhetorical support for a norm by a state, while it simultaneously participates in a strategic undermining of the norm’s practical application. This thesis makes an original contribution to the field, primarily through offering an account of how states engage in nuanced obstruction, which, I argue, occurs through the state’s strategic use of frames and framing processes in order to contest a norm to international audiences. The types of frames and framing processes employed by a state in relation to a norm determines the development of the discourse at the international level, which ultimately decides the legitimacy of these frames. While framing has been developed in the field of sociology and thoroughly discussed in relation to domestic audiences in constructivist literature, it has been underdeveloped in relation to international audiences - an oversight that is remedied in this thesis. Secondarily, I examine the conditions under which other states are likely to accept or refuse these frames. I examine these issues in relation to the Responsibility to Protect (R2P), particularly the invocation of it in relation to three cases: the crisis in South Ossetia during the 2008 Russia-Georgia war, during the last stages of the war with the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) in Sri Lanka, and during the 2011 crisis in Libya. This thesis ultimately demonstrates how nuanced obstruction through competing frames contributes to the rhetorical acceptance of norms that are not implemented in practice, which has direct implications for the ability of the norm to compel states to act in accordance with it.
Keyword Responsibility to protect (R2P)
Nuanced obstruction

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Created: Tue, 25 Jun 2013, 13:15:50 EST by Kimberly Nackers on behalf of Scholarly Communication and Digitisation Service