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Dr Aggie  Hirst
Dr Aggie Hirst

Dr Aggie Hirst

  • Academics
  • Supervisors

Reader in International Relations Theory and Methods

Research subject areas

  • International relations

Contact details


Dr Aggie Hirst is a Reader in International Relations Theory and Methods in the Department of War Studies. Her BA, MA, and doctoral degrees were completed at the University of Manchester. Her ESRC-funded PhD exploring the Straussian/neoconservative promotion of the 2003 invasion of Iraq was completed in 2010. Prior to joining King’s in 2017, Dr Hirst held lectureships at the University of Leeds and City, University of London. Her first book was published with Routledge in 2013. 

Dr Hirst’s research is situated in the fields of international political theory and critical military studies. She is Principal Investigator on a Leverhulme Trust and British Academy funded research project exploring the US military’s use of wargames and simulations for teaching/training purposes. She is currently writing her second book, The Politics of Play: Wargaming with the US Military (forthcoming, Oxford University Press), which explores of the phenomena of play and immersion, arguing that the ‘flow state’ generated by gaming is being used to instil doctrine and cultivate mental and physical muscle memory in service members. She has published articles with International Studies Quarterly (2022), International Political Sociology (2021), Critical Military Studies (2020), and Review of International Studies (2019) on play and the wargaming renaissance. 

Research Interests

  • International Relations/Political Theory

  • Critical Military Studies

  • Critical Methodologies

  • Digital/ Immersive Military Training

  • Wargames, Videogames, and Simulations


Dr Hirst convenes the following modules:


5SSW2060 Global Politics

6SSW0018 Violence in Global Politics



2022 Global Politics: Myths and Mysteries (Oxford; New York: Oxford University Press). (with Diego de Merich, Joe Hoover, and Roberto Roccu).

2013 Leo Strauss and the Invasion of Iraq: Encountering the Abyss (Abingdon; New York: Routledge).

Journal Articles

2022 'Wargames Resurgent: The Hyperrealities of Military Gaming from Recruitment to Rehabilitation', International Studies Quarterly 66(3).

2021 '"Videogames Saved My Life": Everyday Resistance and Ludic Recovery among US Military Veterans', International Political Sociology, 15(4).

2020 'States of Play: Evaluating the Renaissance in US Military Wargaming', Critical Military Studies, 8(1).

2019 'Play in(g) International Theory', Review of International Studies, 45(5).

2015 'Derrida and Political Resistance: The Radical Potential of Deconstruction', Globalizations, 12(1). Also published in Chris Rossdale (ed.) Occupying Subjectivity: Being and Becoming Radical in the 21st Century (Routledge, 2018).

2013 'Violence, Self-Authorship, and the "Death of God": The "Traps" of the Messianic and the Tragic', Millennium: Journal of International Studies, 42(1).

2012 'Leo Strauss and International Relations: The Politics of Modernity's Abyss', International Politics, 49(6).

Book Chapters

2010 'Straussianism and Poststructuralism: Two Sides of the Same Coin?', in Tony Burns and James Connelly (eds.) The Legacy of Leo Strauss (Imprint Academic).

2009 'Intellectuals and US Foreign Policy', in Inderjeet Parmer, Mark Legwidge and Linda B Miller (eds.), New Directions in US Foreign Policy (Routledge, 2009).

Symposia and Reviews

2019 'The Anachronism of Hope: The 'to-come' in Post-Horizonal Times', in ‘Disobeying Marx, Disobeying Derrida—Hopes & Risks: A Forum on Jacques Derrida’s Specters of Marx after 25 Years’, Contexto Internacional (with T. Houseman)

2017 'Review: Conspiracy Theory and American Foreign Policy', Global Discourse, 7(2-3).

2016 'The Legacies and Trajectories of Poststructuralism', European Political Science, 15(4).

Digital Engagement

2019 'Wargaming as an Academic Discipline', PaxSims.

2015 'Pyrrhic Victories: The Endgames of Accelerationist Efficacy' The Disorder of Things (with T. Houseman)

PhD Supervision

Dr Hirst happy to supervise PhD candidates in the following areas:

International Relations/Political Theory; Critical Military Studies; Critical Methodologies; Play; Digital/ Immersive Military Training; Wargames, Videogames, and Simulations