Menu Close

Trevor McCrisken

Associate Professor, US Politics and Foreign Policy, University of Warwick

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

· US counterterrorism; 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· Political and historical content of Hollywood films and television.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 new co-authored book with Jon Herbert and Andrew Wroe is now available from Palgrave: The Ordinary Presidency of Donald J. Trump (2019)

Trevor's main research currently focuses on the narratives being constructed around the use of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs), commonly known as drones. He is also researching 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 transatlantic security. His recent publications include "'Peace Through Strength': Europe and NATO Deterrence beyond the US Nuclear Posture Review" with Maxwell Downman in International Affairs (March 2019), and "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).

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. His article on "Obama's Drone War" was published in the journal Survival in April/May 2013.

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 recently published the articles: "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) and "The Secret Life of Ian Fleming: Spies, Lies and Social Ties", Contemporary British History (Published on-line December 7, 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 open access article based on this research in the journal History (Vol. 100, Issue 340, April 2015): "The Housewife, the Vigilante, and the Cigarette-Smoking Man: The CIA and Television, 1975-2001".

Trevor is currently working with former PAIS colleague Erzsébet Strausz at Central European University in Budapest 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.


  • –present
    Associate Professor, US Politics and International Studies, University of Warwick