20 Pages

Introduction: The global governmentalization of security and the securitization of global governance


Governance and security. At times, it would appear that the two have become indistinguishable to the point of almost being synonymous. One might even ask if it is possible today to find an area of governance, from the micro to the global and from the public to the private that is not framed or motivated at least in some way by stated concerns for security. When one looks closely, it is hard not to conclude that our contemporary politics have become ‘saturated by “security”’ (Neocleous 2008: 2) to such an extent that one might wonder if there is anything else, or indeed any politics left other than governance as security. Some of this state of affairs clearly has to do with the fact that the high political value added of ‘greater security’ has come to trump so easily other available political discourses. Every seasoned political tactician and marketeer surely knows that nothing in today’s world seems to advance the urgency and importance of a claim more easily than one grafted to security however tenuous such an operation might appear. Certainly this is part of the wager of those who advocate on behalf of environmental security, development and security, food security, human security, home security, information security, cyber security, border security, homeland security, airport security, maritime security, Arctic security, port security, personal security, financial security, economic security, system security, automobile security, pet security, space security, toy security, and child security. Even when not directly hyphenated by the moniker of ‘security’ most areas of governance in an environment of so-called minimal state intervention are only one rhetorical step away from becoming a security concern.