Human Insecurity

What is the relationship between global governance and human in/security?

“Sometimes, it’s the forbidden stories, the ones people are afraid to tell in full, the ones that emerge only in fragments, that reveal the truth about a place.”[1]

Through the use of literature from international relations, security studies, political science, and international institutions, this paper will seek to hold contemporary global governance responsible for worldwide human insecurity. The debate will be best situated through an initial summary of major themes including neoliberalism, social constructivism, and human security. Then, this paper will engage in a discussion of contemporary global governance, using structural adjustment programs as a model of its modern security management. This work will then discuss the evolving human security debate and provide an analysis of human insecurity in relation to Foucault’s theories on bio- and capillary power. Through revealing these otherwise endogenic power relationships and using structural adjustment programs as a particular example, it is evident that an asymmetrical security is provided by contemporary global governance with effects that provide human security in the global North and devastating human insecurity in the South.

“Securing” A Definition: The Human Security Debate Past and Present
Human security is a “term that can mean all and nothing; it is as elusive as it is appealing”.[2] Defining it has become a daunting task for human security proponents and critics alike—so much so that the term remains in a sort of theoretical limbo. What human security proponents do agree on though is the evident mismatch between modern security threats and the responses by global governing institutions. In other words, there is a definite and persistent need for a reorganising of our global governing systems, and human security proponents are actively seeking what that reorganisation would look like.

Since human security’s...