The aim of this article is to investigate what perceptions towards European Union, Austria and Russia exist in terms of Lithuanian identity. This question arises from a chosen case of Michail Golovatov’s release and intense discussions within Lithuanian media about this issue in summer of 2011. Although it seems that incident and later diplomatic conflict is directly related with Austria and judicial arguments, but Austria and its actions provoked broad considerations what Lithuania’s relations with European Union, its member states and even Russia are. First, article analyses theoretical significance of identity and its relation with foreign policy. Second, methodological tools of discourse analysis are formulated in order to analyse selected texts which compose the discourse of the case. Third, according to the meanings found interpretations explaining how Lithuanian identity is constructed through perceptions towards EU, Austria and Russia are presented.
This paper discusses theoretical debates regarding small states and their foreign policy and also argues that research should include more analysis of small states’ identities and the dominant meanings related to being a small state. Using poststructuralistic theoretical perspective and discourse analysis, two empirical cases – Lithuania and New Zealand – are analysed with attention paid to the meanings of smallness and the ways these meanings are constructed. Empirical analysis follows with suggestions for how future research of small states could be improved.