Women Breaking the Silence: Military Service, Gender, and Antiwar Protest

Citation:

Sasson-Levy, Orna, Yagil Levy, and Edna Lomsky-Feder. 2011. "Women Breaking the Silence: Military Service, Gender, and Antiwar Protest." Gender & Society 25 (6): 740-63.

Authors: Orna Sasson-Levy, Yagil Levy, Edna Lomsky-Feder

Abstract:

This paper analyzes how military service can be a source of women’s antiwar voices, using the Israeli case of “Women Breaking the Silence” (WBS). WBS is a collection of testimonies from Israeli women ex-soldiers who have served in the Occupied Palestinian Territories. The WBS testimonies change the nature of women’s antiwar protest by offering a new, paradoxical source of symbolic legitimacy for women’s antiwar discourse from the gendered marginalized position of “outsiders within” the military. From this contradictory standpoint, the women soldiers offer a critical gendered voice, which focuses on criticism of the combat masculinity and gendered identification with the Palestinian “other.” While they reaffirm the republican ethos that grants political dominance to male soldiers, they also deconstruct the image of hegemonic masculinity as the emblem of the nation and undermine gendered militarized norms.

Keywords: military, state, nationalism, politics, collective behavior, social movements

Topics: Combatants, Female Combatants, Gender, Masculinity/ies, Gender Analysis, Gendered Discourses, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Hierarchies, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Militaries Regions: MENA, Asia, Middle East Countries: Israel, Palestine / Occupied Palestinian Territories

Year: 2011

© 2017 CONSORTIUM ON GENDER, SECURITY & HUMAN RIGHTSLEGAL STATEMENT All photographs used on this site, and any materials posted on it, are the property of their respective owners, and are used by permission. Photographs: The images used on the site may not be downloaded, used, or reproduced in any way without the permission of the owner of the image. Materials: Visitors to the site are welcome to peruse the materials posted for their own research or for educational purposes. These materials, whether the property of the Consortium or of another, may only be reproduced with the permission of the owner of the material. This website contains copyrighted materials. The Consortium believes that any use of copyrighted material on this site is both permissive and in accordance with the Fair Use doctrine of 17 U.S.C. § 107. If, however, you believe that your intellectual property rights have been violated, please contact the Consortium at info@genderandsecurity.org.