Naeem Inayatullah (Ithaca College)

1. Much has to do with time/place. David and I were finishing up our dissertations when Wendt was doing his agent-structure thing. Ashley, Shapiro, and Walker were the big guns on the “margins” — especially Ashley. I recall liking his attacks on neo-realism but liking less his writing with Rob in ISQ. David and I were formulating our work without much help from any the continental philosophers. Instead we were taking Headly Bull seriously; trying to think about the so called international society. Bull’s work at least took the third world into account. We missed out on all the pomo stuff and we missed out on the feminist stuff. We were very much grounded in issues of economic development and trying to figure out how to make our grounding in classical political economy listen-able to IR/IPE.
2. I really haven’t read Deleuze. I have tried but it didn’t stick. Even the secondary stuff seemed impossible to read for me. I do like what Robert Young has to say about Deleuze and Guattari in the last chapter of his book Colonial Desire.
But here I feel your anger. I have no plans to read Foucault, or Derrida, or Agamben, or Schmitt, or any of it. (Although sometimes I feel like need to, just to stay in touch – not with the literature but with the younger scholars who are raised on this stuff.) I like Lacan because I think his work fits well with Nandy.
If I had to justify my non-reading of the posty stuff, I would do so like this: (1) I feel like I did my time, paid my respects to dead white Europeans — Smith, Hegel, Marx. I might be well done with that. I read what I needed. (2) I feel like so much of what goes on is sooooo fadish. And this fadishness fits with the graduate production machine where we require them to produce “new” stuff – product differentiation. (3) But the deeper reason for the fadishness is, I believe, because it deflects from the Memmi, Fanon, and Nandy stuff. The point of IR as a discipline is to AVOID the real. And the post-colonial stuff is just too real.
I have two loyalties: classical political economy and its derivatives and all that third world stuff. And, above all I have loyalty to people who I think are making us look at things we usually avoid.
In sum, I am in. Let’s do this.


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