Military Gender Integration and Foreign Policy in the United States: A Feminist International Relations Perspective


Stachowitsch, Saskia. 2012. “Military Gender Integration and Foreign Policy in the United States: A Feminist International Relations Perspective.” Security Dialogue 43 (4): 305-21.

Author: Saskia Stachowitsch


The article investigates the relevance of foreign policy discourse and practice for military gender relations. The link between women’s status in military institutions and the gendering of foreign policy has so far not been thoroughly addressed in military and gender research or foreign policy analysis. Feminist international relations provides a research strategy to show how foreign policy doctrines and debates are gendered and how they are connected to gender (in)equality in central state institutions such as the military. The article thus applies feminist international relations as a theoretical framework that transcends the constructed dichotomy between national and international levels of analysis. In a case study of the USA from the Clinton to the Obama administrations, patterns of military gender integration are established as a phenomenon incorporating both domestic and international dimensions. Foreign policy discourses and practices in this time period are related to shifts in military gender policies and discourses on gender integration. It is argued that the gender order in military institutions is linked to international politics and state behaviour in the international arena.

Topics: Combatants, Female Combatants, Feminisms, Gender, Women, Gender Roles, Gendered Discourses, Gender Balance, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Private Military & Security, Militaries Regions: Americas, North America Countries: United States of America

Year: 2012

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