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Language practice, policy and standard communication on American exit "Kyoto Protocol" as an example

Author: XieZuoZuo
Tutor: QinYaQing
School: Foreign Service Institute
Course: International relations
Keywords: Discursive Practice Strategy Authority Alliance Discursive Framing Focus Shift
CLC: P467
Type: PhD thesis
Year: 2012
Downloads: 141
Quote: 0
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Abstract


This study focuses on the agents’ choice of strategies in the process of normdiffusion. Introducing the concept of “strategy” into the analytical framework of thestudy, the author analyzes the case of the United States’ withdraw from the KyotoProtocol, and investigates how the opponents of international climate normssuccessfully influenced the norm diffusion process through the strategies of authorityalliance, discursive framing and focus shifting.Chapter One introduces the general framework of the dissertation. The researchquestion comes from the author’s confusion: given that the Kyoto Protocol matchs thenational norms structure and widely accepted by the international community, whydid the United States withdraw from it? The existing literature does not pay sufficientattention to agent’s agency. The concept of strategy introduced in this dissertation canprovide a new angle for the analysis of the research question.Chapter Two reviews the contemporary literature and demonstrates theinsufficiency of the existing theories for the resolution of the research question. Thecontribution of the dissertation would be that it reveals the effects of the strategiesadopted by agents in norm diffusion.Chapter Three addresses the theoretical framework. Based on their discursiveeffects, the strategies are classified into three categories: authority alliance, discursiveframing, and focus shift.Chapter Four illustrates the international and domestic backgrounds againstwhich the United States withdrew from the Kyoto Protocol. It also demonstrates thatthe Kyoto Protocol is not only widely accepted by the international community, butalso supported by most of the American citizens.Chapter Five subsequently analyzes in detail how the opponents of theinternational climate norms, by using the three strategies identified in this dissertation,successfully influenced the norm diffusion process in the United States and keep thecountry out of this international convention even until today.This dissertation shows that the strategies adopted by the agents play a rathersignificant role in the process of norm diffusion. It is submitted that future studiesshould focus more on the activism of agents.

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