March 2013, Polity
This illuminating book by Brad Evans provides a critical evaluation of the wide ranging terrors which are deemed threatening to advanced liberal societies. Moving beyond the assumption that liberalism is integral to the realisation of perpetual peace, human progress, and political emancipation on a planetary scale, it exposes how liberal security regimes are shaped by a complex life-centric rationality which directly undermines any claims to universal justice and co-habitation. Through an incisive and philosophically enriched critique of the contemporary liberal practices of making life more secure, Evans forces us to confront the question of what it means to live politically as we navigate through the dangerous uncertainty of the 21st Century.
1 Imaginaries of Threat 1
2 Liberal Security 42
3 Potentialities 70
4 On Divine Power 98
5 A New Leviathan 135
6 The Event Horizon 165
Select Bibliography 230
Brad Evans is senior lecturer in international relations at the University of Bristol.
- A critical, cutting-edge reassessment of the relationship between security and liberal democracy
- Examines the processes of ‘securitisation’ which are central to contemporary societies
- Advances a sophisticated argument about the normalisation of terror
- A major contribution to political theory, which will be of interest to students and scholars in a wide range of disciplines
"Makes an important macro-theoretical contribution to the
micro-level ethnographies of security conducted in
"In this brilliant book, Brad Evans offers a forceful, cogent, and eye-opening analysis of the complex forces shaping the new normal of terror and security, and provides the theoretical and political tools to challenge it. Liberal Terror should be required reading for everyone concerned about both the changing nature and fate of politics today."
Henry Giroux, Professor of Global Media Networks, McMaster University
"Liberal interventionism is driven by imaginaries of fear and
uncertainty. With its desperate quest to control ungoverned space
and eliminate autonomy in order to secure the global bio-sphere,
this interventionism now engulfs us all. Brad Evans has written a
superb and vital critique which is highly original and compelling.
It demands our attention."
Mark Duffield, University of Bristol
"A tour de force. Page after page, the rhetorical motions of the
text are disruptive, insightful and compelling. A
counter-effectuation of the prevailing, neo-liberal political
conceits in both academic and governmental spaces, its
contributions to security analysis, critical methods, and political
thinking in general will have lasting effects."
Michael J. Shapiro, University of Hawaii, Manoa
Simon Critchley, New School for Social Research