Gender at the Crossroad of Conflict: Tsunami and Peace in Post-2005 Aceh


Lee-Koo, Katrina. 2012. “Gender at the Crossroad of Conflict: Tsunami and Peace in Post-2005 Aceh.” Feminist Review 101 (1): 59–77. 

Author: Katrina Lee-Koo


After the devastating tsunami hit the northern Sumatran coastline in December 2004, the Indonesian province of Aceh found itself at a crossroad. This crossroad intersected the three-decade-long civil war, the move towards peace and the need for post-disaster recovery. This article analyses the gendered politics embedded in Aceh's navigation through this crossroad. First, it argues that both the conflict and the subsequent peace process were marginalised by the international programmes of post-tsunami recovery. Second, it demonstrates that within this marginalisation, women's investments in both war and peace were further neglected throughout the formal peace process. Third, it highlights how the peace process reflected a narrow, masculinist and public sphere agenda that silenced both women and the gendered issues affecting them. In short, this article seeks to unveil the gendered politics of war and peace in post-tsunami Aceh. It does so with the feminist ambition of demonstrating that sustainable and comprehensive peace in Aceh cannot be secured without recognising and accounting for the impact that the conflict has upon gendered identities.

Keywords: Aceh, gender, women, tsunami, civil war

Topics: Armed Conflict, Civil Wars, Environment, Environmental Disasters, Gender, Women, Masculinity/ies, Peace Processes Regions: Asia, Southeast Asia Countries: Indonesia

Year: 2012

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