Second Week Courses Information

General Course:

Doing IPS: fracturing the social and the political
Prof. Jef Huysmans

This module examines conceptual and methodological tools of doing International Political Sociology (IPS). It proposes an international political sociology that fractures the social and political through focusing on practices of connecting and becoming. Instead of understanding worlds through dialectics of fragmentation and integration and order and its limits, the module develops concepts and methodologies that focus on transversal relations and immanent creativity.

Jef Huysmans is Professor of International Politics at Queen Mary University.

Thematic Courses:

The new government of self and other: algorithms, big data, insecurity
Prof. Claudia Aradau

Recent digital transformations have made (big) data and algorithms central to the study of politics and society. Security professionals have mobilised the promise of digital technologies in a race to catch up with the Silicon Valley model of digital economy. This course will explore how the increasing use of algorithms and big data has transformed the practices of governing self and other. While much of the literature on mass surveillance has focused on the production of the ‘quantified self’, less attention has been paid to how relations between self and other, individual and mass, citizens and non-citizens have been rearticulated for the purposes of governance. These sessions are structured around three key elements in the reconfiguration of self/other relations: knowledge, practice and power. We start by asking ‘What knowledge about self and other is produced with algorithms? How is this knowledge deployed for the purposes of governing?’. We then focus on practices of datafication, their performative effects and possibilities for critical interventions. Finally, we explore what algorithmic power means today.
Claudia Aradau is Professor of International Politics in the Department of War Studies and Co-chair of the Research Centre in International Relations, King’s College London.


Drone Warfare and the History of Lethal Surveillance
Prof. Katharine Hall

As drone strikes become an increasingly central component of US military engagements across the globe, they raise questions about new transformations in the practice and geographies of modern warfare. This course looks at the rise of drone warfare and lethal surveillance by examining the history of the development of drone technology over the course of the 20th century. In doing so, it places contemporary debates about war and security within longer modern histories of liberal violence and scientific development and shows how attention to the history of military technology reframes the questions we ask about the present. More broadly, the courses situates this research within the study of war and security in IPS, explores debates in IR in critical security studies and critical military studies, and connects this scholarship to work on war, violence, and security in the field of political geography. Methodologically, it looks at historical sociological perspectives and critical historical geography approaches to the study of war.

Katharine Hall is Professor at Queen Mary University.


Please, click here for more information about application, fees, guest professors, and planned activities. For help with application and other enquiries, contact us on

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