Document Type



Doctor of Philosophy


International Relations

Advisor's Name

Francois Debrix

Advisor's Title

Committee Chair

Advisor's Name

Harry Gould

Advisor's Name

Ronald W. Cox

Advisor's Name

Gail Hollander


Globalization, Global Governance, Neoliberalism, Latin America, Michel Foucault, Governmentality

Date of Defense



This dissertation analyzes processes of globalization, through a critical examination of the dynamics of neoliberalism in the Americas. It employs and also develops a Foucauldian governmentality analytical framework, demonstrating how such a framework contributes to our understanding of world politics. This dissertation also develops the concept of a liberal political imaginary—consisting of the market, society, and the state—and utilizes this as an analytical framework for understanding the globalization of neoliberal forms of governance. The research suggests that discourses and practices of globalization, global civil society, and global governance represent a fundamental transformation in the way that contemporary social and political reality is understood, and that this has significant consequences for the kinds of political practices and relations that are possible. Moreover, the research suggests the globalization of a neoliberal form of competitive subjectivity that can be applied to a broad range of actors—from individuals to nation-states and international organizations—is reshaping contemporary world politics. The dissertation concludes by suggesting how Foucauldian IR can move forward by incorporating studies of contemporary transformations in capitalism into their analyses.