O'Reilly logo

Geopolitics and Expertise: Knowledge and Authority in European Diplomacy by Merje Kuus

Stay ahead with the world's most comprehensive technology and business learning platform.

With Safari, you learn the way you learn best. Get unlimited access to videos, live online training, learning paths, books, tutorials, and more.

Start Free Trial

No credit card required

Chapter Two

Knowledge and Policy in Transnational Fields

Placing Diplomatic Knowledge

Geopolitical reasoning makes claims about places and is made in places. The former aspect of that knowledge production – making claims about places – is studied considerably more than the latter – these claims’ production in places. Geopolitical argumentation is moreover not simply created in some places and then transported to others; it is rather crafted in a process of circulation. It is a technology of knowledge that brings places together in specific, often uneven, ways. Expert claims about world affairs should be studied not only in terms of what they purport to do – as know-how – but also in terms of where they are produced and where they circulate – as know-where (Agnew 2007, 146). The point is not that this happens but that we need to grasp how it works on a daily basis.

Such geographical tracing of knowledge enables a more processual understanding of how geopolitical actors, such as the EU, constitute themselves and others as specific kinds of subjects in particular kinds of places. It erodes the positivist conceptions of knowledge that “implicitly or explicitly assume their own self-evident universality” (ibid., 139). Much of what passes for expert knowledge about world affairs rests on a hefty dose of interpretive projection of knowledge claims from some places to others. In the EU, European standards do not draw evenly from all of Europe; these norms rather rely on arguments drawn ...

With Safari, you learn the way you learn best. Get unlimited access to videos, live online training, learning paths, books, interactive tutorials, and more.

Start Free Trial

No credit card required