The International in Security

Research Centre in International Relations Forum

by Pinar Bilgin, Bilkent University

In what follows, I start out by telling the story of Ottoman Sultan Abdülaziz’s visit to the 1867 Paris World Fair. I chose this story because it allows me to tease out—what I term—‘the international in security’. Studying ‘the international in security’ refers inquiring into the ways in which others’ conceptions of the international shape their insecurities and/or conceptions of security. While security as viewed through the lenses of European great powers and later the United States has shaped the study of security, insecurities as experienced and/or conceptualised in the rest of the world did not always find their way into our studies. Let me begin with the story of the Ottoman Sultan before suggesting the need for inquiring into ‘the international in security’.

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