Vernacular securities and their study: A qualitative analysis and research agenda

Lee Jarvis, Michael Lister

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

90 Citations (Scopus)


This article draws on primary focus group research to explore the differing ways in which UK publics conceptualise and discuss security. The article begins by situating our research within two relevant contemporary scholarly literatures: The first concerns efforts to centre the ‘ordinary’ human as security’s referent; the second, constructivist explorations of security’s discursive (re)production. A second section then introduces six distinct understandings of security that emerged in our empirical research. These organised the term around notions of survival, belonging, hospitality, equality, freedom and insecurity. The article concludes by exploring this heterogeneity and its significance for the study of security more broadly, outlining a number of potential future research avenues in this area.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)158-179
Number of pages22
JournalInternational Relations
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2013


  • constructivism
  • critical security studies
  • human security
  • insecurity
  • security
  • vernacular security

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