The browser you are using is not supported by this website. All versions of Internet Explorer are no longer supported, either by us or Microsoft (read more here:

Please use a modern browser to fully experience our website, such as the newest versions of Edge, Chrome, Firefox or Safari etc.

Photo of Ekatherina Zhukova.

Ekatherina Zhukova

PhD | Senior Lecturer

Photo of Ekatherina Zhukova.

Postcolonial logic and silences in strategic narratives: Sweden’s feminist foreign policy in conflict-affected states


  • Ekatherina Zhukova

Summary, in English

Drawing on a postcolonial perspective and theories of strategic narratives and silences, this article looks at how Sweden’s feminist foreign policy (FFP) was reported in the media of conflict-affected states. It improves our understanding of feminist foreign policy reception by showing that from twenty selected countries, only newspapers in ten states had content on the FFP. It is argued that this modest media coverage was guided by a lack of interest in the FFP expressed in silence as an indirect way of resistance to norm promotion. This lack of interest is conceptualised as a postcolonial disengagement with Sweden’s strategic narratives. The article further demonstrates that in the remaining ten countries the media transmitted Sweden’s strategic narratives without subjecting them to critical scrutiny. This lack of scrutiny is conceptualised as a postcolonial allowance of FFP narratives in conflict-affected states. The conceptualization of norm reception through postcolonial disengagement and allowance advances our understanding of acceptance and rejection of gender equality norms advocated by ethical foreign policies in marginalized states. The article contributes to the emerging work on postcolonial FFP and Women, Peace and Security (WPS) by improving our knowledge on local actors’ agency in countries affected by conflict.


  • Department of Political Science

Publishing year





Global Society

Document type

Journal article


Journal of Interdisciplinary International Relations


  • Globalization Studies
  • Political Science (excluding Public Administration Studies and Globalization Studies)
  • Gender Studies


  • conflict-affected states
  • feminist foreign policy
  • postcolonial logic
  • silences
  • strategic narratives
  • Sweden




  • ISSN: 1360-0826