Skip to main content

Trevor McCrisken

mccrisken profile

Associate Professor, US Politics and International Studies

PAIS Director of External Affairs - responsible for International Collaborations and Exchanges; Undergraduate Recruitment & Admissions; Widening Participation & Outreach

Tel: +44 (0)24765 74693
Room: E1.23
Advice and Feedback Hours:

Tuesdays 11am-12pm*

Wednesdays 10-11am*

*During term time aside from Reading Weeks

More about Trevor's...





Trevor McCrisken's research interests are in United States foreign policy and US politics and culture.

He received his BA in American Studies (Politics) from the University of Kent with a year at the University of Maryland, College Park. He then completed an MA in International Affairs at American University, Washington, DC and received his DPhil from the University of Sussex. He has held previous posts at the University of Oxford, Lancaster University, and UWE Bristol. He was a Visiting Fellow at the Rothermere American Institute at Oxford from 2001-2003 and an Associate Fellow from 2003-2009. He joined the department at Warwick in September 2003. He has also been Chair of the British American Security Information Council (BASIC) since November 2007 and a North America Region Head with Oxford Analytica since 2002.

Research interests

Trevor McCrisken's research interests are in United States foreign policy and US politics and culture.

· The US "war on terror"; use of drones and targeted killing.
· Use of US military force and the ‘Vietnam syndrome’.
· Belief in American exceptionalism and its influence on US politics and foreign policy.
· US policy toward Afghanistan, Iraq, Iran and the Middle East.
· Political and historical content of Hollywood films and television.
· US presidential and electoral politics.
· Nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation.
· Politics of race, ethnicity and gender in the US.

Trevor's main research currently focuses on President Donald Trump's attempts to redefine US foreign policy following the Obama presidency, his approach and use of rhetoric, and its impact particularly on counter-terrorism policy. His recent publications include "Eyes and Ears in the Sky: Drones, Journalism and Mass Surveillance" in Johan Lidberg & Denis Muller, In The Name of Security: Secrecy, Surveillance and Journalism (Anthem, 2018), "Obama's Drone War" in the journal Survival (April/May 2013), and two articles in the journal International Affairs "Ten Years On: Obama's War on Terrorism in Rhetoric and Practice" and "Justifying Sacrifice: Barack Obama and the Selling and Ending of the War in Afghanistan".

You can see and hear Trevor talking about his research on the US drone programme in podcasts with CIGI (Centre for International Governance Innovation) in Waterloo, Canada and the International Spy Museum in Washington, DC, USA.

Trevor's work on the political and historical representations of foreign and security policy has seen him collaborate recently with PAIS colleague Chris Moran with whom he's just published the article: "James Bond, Ian Fleming and Intelligence: Breaking down the boundary between the 'real' and the 'imagined'", Intelligence and National Security, Vol. 33 (Published on-line May 9, 2018). He was also on the Advisory Board of the AHRC funded "Landscapes of Secrecy" project on the history of the CIA based within PAIS and participated in the project's conference in Nottingham at which he gave a presentation on "The CIA and Television". He recently published an article based on this research in the journal History: "The Housewife, the Vigilante, and the Cigarette-Smoking Man: The CIA and Television, 1975-2001".

Trevor is currently working with PAIS colleague Erzsébet Strausz on a project using the "cut-up" method to disrupt and reassemble the narratives and meanings given to drone attacks against suspected terrorists. The technique, inspired by the work of Brion Gysin, William Burroughs and David Bowie, has been used fairly extensively in literature, poetry, and songwriting but is an innovative approach to research in International Security.

Cut Up

Trevor has been an advising partner of the University of Vienna based project "Integrating Feminist International Relations and Feminist State Theory – The case of gender and military privatization" led by Saskia Stachowitsch.

Teaching and supervision

Trevor is Module Director for two undergraduate modules: PO207 Politics of the USA and PO379 US Foreign Policy. He is available for PhD supervision in the areas of research interest listed above.

Positions held