Adversarial Discourses, Analogous Objectives Afghan: Women’s Control


Khattak, Saba Gul. 2004. “Adversarial Discourses, Analogous Objectives Afghan Women’s Control.” Cultural Dynamics 16 (2-3): 213–36. doi:10.1177/0921374004047749.


Author: Saba Gul Khattak


Afghan women have been the symbolic target of competing discourses and political strategies. The US-led bombing of Afghanistan used the rhetoric of women’s emancipation as a major reason for the attack without pursuing real ‘liberation’. The misogynist Taliban discourse, as it was promulgated in the Pakistan-based refugee camps and heavily funded by the western world, marked a severe deterioration in Afghan women’s rights. After the US-led military intervention of 2001, the Karzai government’s unfounded claims vis-‡-vis women’s betterment have not been realized. Afghan women, a clear majority of the Afghan population, are not at the centre of the government’s concerns or those of the international community. Engaging these problematics, this article claims that conventional politics, informed by statist and masculinist ideologies and practices, are incapable of ensuring Afghan women’s emancipation.

Keywords: Afghanistan, military, masculinity, violence, United States, women

Topics: Armed Conflict, "New Wars", Combatants, Male Combatants, Democracy / Democratization, Gender, Women, Gender Roles, Gender Analysis, Gendered Discourses Regions: Asia, Central Asia Countries: Afghanistan, United States of America

Year: 2004

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