Skip to main content

Popular Culture, the Body and World Politics

Aistrope, Tim (2019) Popular Culture, the Body and World Politics. European Journal of International Relations, 26 (1). ISSN 1354-0661. E-ISSN 1460-3713. (doi:10.1177/1354066119851849) (KAR id:73649)

PDF Author's Accepted Manuscript
Language: English
Download (369kB) Preview
[thumbnail of EJT851849.pdf]
This file may not be suitable for users of assistive technology.
Request an accessible format
Official URL:


Popular culture is widely understood to intersect with and shape our understanding of world politics. Numerous studies have highlighted the way language and imagery from literature, drama, film, television, and other sites of cultural production make their way into political discourses on geopolitics, terrorism, immigration, globalisation, and arms control, to name a few. Conversely, world events, especially international crises, provide rich materials for popular culture across mediums and genres. This interchange has often been understood by International Relations (IR) scholars through the theory of intertextuality, which highlights the way the meaning and authority of any text is established by drawing on, or positioning against, other texts from the surrounding culture. This article develops an account of intertextuality that takes seriously the embodied dimensions of popular culture and political discourse. Revisiting the work of work of Julia Kristeva, I argue that a framework that binds together bodies, discourses, and social practices, offers a promising avenue for IR scholars grappling with the embodied aspects of intertextuality. The article explores the implications and potential of this conceptualisation through a case analysis of the sport/war intertext and spectacular war. In doing so, it demonstrates that the legitimising effects ordinarily understood to accompany intertextuality are intensified when bodily drives, impulses, and affect taken into account.

Item Type: Article
DOI/Identification number: 10.1177/1354066119851849
Uncontrolled keywords: International Relations, popular culture, bodies, legitimacy, sport, terrorism
Subjects: J Political Science > JZ International relations
Divisions: Divisions > Division of Human and Social Sciences > School of Politics and International Relations
Depositing User: Timothy Aistrope
Date Deposited: 26 Apr 2019 14:30 UTC
Last Modified: 29 Sep 2021 10:50 UTC
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
Aistrope, Tim:
  • Depositors only (login required):


Downloads per month over past year