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Regular version of the site

Article

Суверенность как символическая структура

Политическая наука. 2020. Т. 2. С. 204-220.

Today, the concept of «sovereignty» is one of the most actively used,

both in political theory and in practical politics. Sovereignty as a theoretical concept

can be understood in different ways: as a given principle of international relations

(K. Waltz), as an international institution (R. Keohan), a social construct (A. Wendt), or

a special practice of power (M. Foucault). At the same time, it is not entirely clear to

researchers exactly how the concept of «sovereignty» reflects the empirical reality surrounding

us.

This article is based on the distinction between «sovereignty» as a recognized

principle of international theory (Russian – suverenitet) and «sovereignty» as an element

of a symbolic structure that represents itself in the framework of performative

discourse. This discourse, although a subject to historical transformation, is rooted in

the nature of modern myth. The latter is reinforced with the symbolic nature of modern

man. In the context of this study, «sovereignty» can be understood as a set of performative

and discursive practices that define a symbolic order within community and it’s

interactions with symbolic forms of «sovereignty» beyond the community.

The article is devoted to a discussion of the methodological problems of studying

sovereignty as a symbolic structure. Based on the analysis of the current state of research

in particular, the works of R.B. Walker, I. Bartelson, C. Weber, T. Alberts,

M. Freeden, R.N. Lebow, G. Wydra and several other authors, sovereignty is seen as a

form of performative discursive practice that appeals to the construction and maintenance

of collective identity.