University of Cambridge > Talks.cam > POLIS Staff and PhD Student Colloquium > Defining Dependence- The Hydrocarbon Society and the Dangers of Foreign Oil

Defining Dependence- The Hydrocarbon Society and the Dangers of Foreign Oil

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If you have a question about this talk, please contact Elif Cetin.

Please join us for a discussion of Sebastian's recent work. Hard copies of the paper will be available from the CIS office in Mill Lane in the week before the Colloquium. Alternatively e-mail Elif Cetin at ec409@cam.ac.uk for a copy.

To say that U.S. dependence on foreign oil is dangerous and threatens America’s national security would be considered a truism in most quarters. The paper examines this claim by enquiring into the material and cultural conditions of existence of U.S dependence on foreign oil and the ways in which this problem has been defined in American foreign policy discourse: how do we get from the simple fact of U.S. oil imports to the notion of ‘dependence’ and all the dangers and threats commonly associated with this condition? What does it mean to say that the U.S. is dependent on foreign oil? And what have been the manifest political consequences of this mode of representation? Approaching these issues from an interpretative point of view, this paper argues that foreign oil dependence is a cultural construction best understood within the wider framework of the U.S. ‘hydrocarbon society’.

This talk is part of the POLIS Staff and PhD Student Colloquium series.

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