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Eastern Europe

Navigating to Subsistence: The Gendered Struggles in the Postwar Everyday and Their Implications for Peace

Citation:

Stavrevska, Elena B. 2020. “Navigating to Subsistence: The Gendered Struggles in the Postwar Everyday and Their Implications for Peace.” Politics & Gender 16 (3). doi:10.1017/S1743923X20000355

Author: Elena B. Stavrevska

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Summary:
In developing a feminist analysis of postwar political economic practices and institutions, my contribution builds on previous Critical Perspectives forums in following Cynthia Enloe’s call (2015, 438) to make sense of people’s gendered political lives while embracing their “messiness” and Rahel Kunz’s (2017) argument for placing life stories at the center of analysis. It focuses on the everyday life of female petty traders involved in the coping economy in Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH), including those working at the (in)famous Arizona market in Brčko. By taking postwar gendered everyday experiences seriously, my contribution highlights the need for a gender-just, holistic approach to designing postwar reparative justice measures, labor market interventions, and integration of coping economic practices.

Topics: Economies, Feminisms, Feminist Political Economy, Gender, Women, Justice, Reparations, Post-Conflict Regions: Europe, Balkans, Eastern Europe Countries: Bosnia & Herzegovina

Year: 2020

The Forgotten Lives: Connecting Gender, Security, and Everyday Livelihoods in Ukraine’s Conflict

Citation:

O’Sullivan, Mila. 2020. “The Forgotten Lives: Connecting Gender, Security, and Everyday Livelihoods in Ukraine’s Conflict.” Politics & Gender 16 (3). doi:10.1017/S1743923X20000343

Author: Mila O'Sullivan

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Summary:
Recent debates within Women, Peace and Security (WPS) scholarship (e.g., Bergeron, Cohn, and Duncanson 2017; Elias 2015; True 2015) have underlined the need to position the WPS agenda in the context of broader feminist security analysis as defined by early feminist international relations scholars (e.g., Tickner 1992). More precisely, this requires integrating feminist security studies (FSS) and feminist political economy (FPE). At the center of these largely theoretical reflections is a concern that gender-responsive peace-building efforts have too often been undermined by postwar neoliberal economic processes. This essay provides an empirical contribution to this debate, taking the case study of Ukraine as an atypical example of how WPS has been adopted and implemented for the first time during an active conflict. The integration of FPE and FSS proves especially relevant for a country in conflict, where economic austerity policies come along with increased military expenditure. The essay illustrates that the bridging of security and economy is entirely absent in Ukraine's WPS agenda, which has largely prioritized military security while failing to connect it to the austerity policies and the gendered structural inequalities deepened by the ongoing conflict.

Topics: Conflict, Economies, War Economies, Feminisms, Feminist Political Economy, Gender, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, Peacebuilding, Security, UN Security Council Resolutions on WPS Regions: Europe, Eastern Europe Countries: Ukraine

Year: 2020

Macroeconomic Interventions and the Politics of Postwar Justice

Citation:

Lai, Daniela. 2020. “Macroeconomic Interventions and the Politics of Postwar Justice.” Politics & Gender 16 (3). doi:10.1017/S1743923X20000331

Author: Daniela Lai

Annotation:

Summary:
This essay connects feminist political economy and critical/feminist transitional justice through the analysis of macroeconomic interventions in postwar Bosnia and Herzegovina. Previous contributions to Critical Perspectives have argued for the need to establish a dialogue and bring down divides between feminist security studies and political economy in feminist International Relations (Elias 2015; Chisolm and Stachowitsch 2017) and to look at the spaces where security and political economy intersect as a productive line of research (Sjoberg 2015). To build these connections, feminist scholars have stressed the importance of multidimensional concepts and questioned their unidimensional use whenever relevant. Security is certainly one of the concepts benefiting from a feminist critique that has opened up its meaning, with reference to its referent objects as well as its multiple dimensions (e.g., to include women's economic security alongside physical security; see Chisolm and Stachowitsch 2017; True 2015). Another concept that has been productively reframed as multidimensional by feminist scholars is violence (Bergeron, Cohn, and Duncanson 2017; Elias and Rai 2015; True 2012).

Topics: Feminisms, Feminist Political Economy, Justice, Transitional Justice, Political Economies, Post-Conflict, Security, Violence Regions: Europe, Balkans, Eastern Europe Countries: Bosnia & Herzegovina

Year: 2020

Gender Mainstreaming of the Security Sector in Bosnia and Herzegovina: From the Policy Papers to Reality

Citation:

Tomić, Ankica. 2015. “Gender Mainstreaming of the Security Sector in Bosnia and Herzegovina: From the Policy Papers to Reality.” Connections 14 (3): 87-102.

Author: Ankica Tomić

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Summary:
"Gender mainstreaming of the security sector in Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) twenty years ago was perceived as a “foreign” syntagma and proved very difficult to translate into the three official languages (Bosnian, Croatian and Serbian). The challenge was not only translation but also the transposition of that concept into reality. The link between the concept of gender mainstreaming and security sector tasks and responsibilities was a new topic for BiH society as well as globally. As a post-conflict country, in the last twenty years Bosnia and Herzegovina has gone through reforms in different areas such as police, intelligence, justice, etc. Those reforms were intensified in the period from 2003 until 2008 in the framework of the BiH integration process into the European Union and NATO. At that time, neither the BiH political elite nor representatives of the international community were aware of the benefits of the integration of the gender concept in those nor in other reforms in the country. It was women’s organizations that started familiarizing the BiH public with the importance of including and applying the concept of gender in security sector reforms, namely to implement United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325 on Women, Peace and Security (UNSCR 1325). They first gained financial support from the United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM) and other UN organizations in order to implement different programs and projects. Those efforts, commitments, and the influence of these women’s organizations led to the government at all levels in Bosnia and Herzegovina establishing in 2003 official gender mechanisms such as the Gender Center of Government of Federation, the Gender Center of Government of Republic Srpska and, in 2004, the Gender Equality Agency at the national level. Their establishment came at a crucial moment for the institutionalization of gender mainstreaming in all areas of public and private life in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Only a few years after those gender mechanisms were established they were applied in the drafting of two strategic documents, the Gender Action Plan (GAP) for the period 2006-2013 and an Action Plan for the implementation of UNSCR 1325 in Bosnia and Herzegovina (AP 1325) for a period of three years (2010- 2013). Those two documents were not imposed or drafted externally, which was the case with many other documents in Bosnia and Herzegovina from that period. They were produced by the representatives of BiH institutions together with the representatives of NGOs according to local priorities and needs, an important precondition for local ownership and sustainability of the whole process. Because of this, many were hopeful that enacting these documents would have a real and positive effect on the lives of men, women, and children throughout the country. In this article I first give a brief overview of the situation in Bosnia and Herzegovina before those national policy documents were adopted and of the post-adoption period. Second, my intention is to analyze the reasons why the adoption of AP 1325 was perceived as a big success in the country as well as the region and at a global level. Third, because I was personally involved in the implementation of the first AP 1325 on behalf of the Ministry of Security and in the drafting of the second AP 1325, my focus will be on the achievements of the Ministry of Security in the implementation process of AP 1325 as well as my personal experience with gender mainstreaming of the security sector in BiH. Finally, in my conclusion I examine the main lessons learned, current challenges, and present my personal view of how the envisaged goals from the documents can bring meaningful and real change to the daily lives of all people in Bosnia and Herzegovina" (Tomić 2015, 87 -89).

Topics: Civil Society, Gender, Governance, Post-Conflict Governance, NGOs, Post-Conflict, Security Sector Reform, UN Security Council Resolutions on WPS, UNSCR 1325 Regions: Europe, Balkans, Eastern Europe Countries: Bosnia & Herzegovina

Year: 2015

Working through Warfare in Ukraine: Rethinking Militarization in a Ukrainian Theme Café

Citation:

Uehling, Greta Lynn. 2020. “Working through Warfare in Ukraine: Rethinking Militarization in a Ukrainian Theme Café.” International Feminist Journal of Politics 22 (3): 335–58.

Author: Greta Lynn Uehling

Abstract:

The conflict between Ukraine and Russia in the Donbas region has led both countries to strengthen their respective militaries. The literature on militarization emphasizes the subtle and largely unconscious ways in which militarization spreads through society. Drawing on ethnographic fieldwork conducted between 2015 and 2017, I argue that attention to the intersubjective aspects of the process exposes the self-conscious working through of military realities. I make this argument using the case study of a restaurant run by demobilized fighters, Café Patriot. Specifically, I show how the café’s proprietors aimed to provide an anti-depressive atmosphere for fighters, and to provoke critical thinking among non-combatant patrons. The café challenged theorizing on militarization by effacing the separation between military and civilian as predicted, but doing so in the interest of reminding people of militarization rather than blinding them to it. These findings highlight veterans’ constructive efforts to re-inhabit a fractured world, and contrast with portrayals in critical studies of militarized masculinity. In sum, the café represented an effort to intervene in the process of militarization using, strangely enough, the trappings of militarization. At stake is the definition of militarization as an insidious process.

Keywords: militarization, masculinity, gender, emotions, veterans, feminism

Topics: Gender, Masculinity/ies, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Militarization Regions: Europe, Eastern Europe Countries: Ukraine

Year: 2020

Do Welfare State Taxes and Transfers Reduce Gender Income Inequality? Evidence from Eight European Countries

Citation:

Avraam, Silvia and Daria Popova. 2020. “Do Welfare State Taxes and Transfers Reduce Gender Income Inequality? Evidence from Eight European Countries.” Working Paper EM 09/20, EuroMod at the Institute for Social and Economic Research, Essex.

Authors: Silvia Avraam, Daria Popova

Abstract:

We complement the institutional literature on gender and the welfare state by examining how taxes and transfers affect the incomes of men and women. Using microsimulation and intra-household income splitting rules, we measure the differences in the level and composition of individual disposable incomes of men and women in eight European countries covering various welfare regime types. We quantify the extent to which taxes and transfers are able to close the gender gap in earnings, as well as which policy instruments contribute most to reducing the gap. We find that with the exception of old- age pensions, taxes and transfers – both contributory and means-tested – significantly reduce gender income inequality but cannot compensate for high gender earnings gaps. The equalizing effect of benefits is higher than that of taxes but varies significantly not only across countries but also across groups with different demographic characteristics. 

Keywords: gender inequality, income distribution, welfare state, social policy, Europe

Topics: Gender, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, Households Regions: Europe, Central Europe, Eastern Europe, Nordic states, Northern Europe, Southern Europe, Western Europe Countries: Belgium, Czech Republic, Finland, France, Germany, Romania, Spain, United Kingdom

Year: 2020

Lesbian Activism in the (Post-)Yugoslav Space: Sisterhood and Unity

Citation:

Bilić, Bojan, and Marija Radoman, eds. 2019. Lesbian Activism in the (Post-)Yugoslav Space: Sisterhood and Unity. London: Palgrave Macmillan.

Authors: Bojan Bilić, Marija Radoman

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Summary:
This book intertwines academic and activist voices to engage with more than three decades of lesbian activism in the Yugoslav space. The empirically rich contributions uncover a range of lesbian initiatives and the fundamental, but rarely acknowledged, role that lesbian alliances have played in articulating a feminist response to the upsurge of nationalism, widespread violence against women, and high levels of lesbophobia and homophobia in all of the post-Yugoslav states. By offering a distinctly intergenerational and transnational perspective, this collection does not only shed new light on a severely marginalised group of people, but constitutes a pioneering effort in accounting for the intricacies – solidarities, joys, and tensions – of lesbian activist organising in a post-conflict and post-socialist environment. With a plethora of authorial standpoints and innovative methodological approaches, the volume challenges the systematic absence of (post-)Yugoslav lesbian activist enterprises from recent social science scholarship. (Summary from Palgrave Macmillian)

Table of Contents:
1.Introduction: Recovering/Rethinking (Post-)Yugoslav Lesbian Activisms
Bojan Bilić

2.Yearning for Space, Pleasure, and Knowledge: Autonomous Lesbian and Queer Feminist Organising in Ljubljana
Teja Oblak and Maja Pan

3.Cartographies of Fear and Freedom: Lesbian Activists in the First Belgrade and Zagreb Pride Parades
Sanja Kajinić

4.Sisterhood Beyond Borders: Transnational Aspects of Post-Yugoslav Lesbian Activism
Irene Dioli

5.Breaking the Silence: Lesbian Activism in Macedonia
Irena Cvetkovic

6.Searching for a Lesbian Voice: Non-Heterosexual Women’s Activism in Montenegro
Marina Vuković and Paula Petričević

7.(In)Visible Presences: PitchWise Festival as a Space of Lesbian Belonging in Bosnia and Herzegovina
Adelita Selmić and Bojan Bilić

8.Conclusion: Discovering the Lesbian in Us—On Our Ongoing, Never-Ending Struggles
Marija Radoman

9.Epilogue: Collecting Fragments—Towards (Post-)Yugoslav Activist Archives
Bojan Bilić

Topics: Feminisms, Gender, Women, Governance, LGBTQ, Nationalism, Post-Conflict, Post-Conflict Reconstruction, Rights Regions: Europe, Balkans, Central Europe, Eastern Europe Countries: Bosnia & Herzegovina, Croatia, Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia, Slovenia, Yugoslavia (former)

Year: 2019

Old Ties and New Binds: LGBT Rights, Homonationalisms, Europeanization and Post-War Legacies in Serbia

Citation:

Gabbard, Sonnet D’Amour. 2017. “Old Ties and New Binds: LGBT Rights, Homonationalisms, Europeanization and Post-War Legacies in Serbia.” PhD diss., The Ohio State University.

Author: Sonnet D’Amour Gabbard

Abstract:

My dissertation examines the historic links between the anti-war activists in Serbia with the current efforts and work for LGBT justice and rights. As an interdisciplinary scholar, my work integrates a variety of epistemologies across disciplines by putting anti-war and LGBT activists' experience in Serbia into conversation with one another to address unique vulnerabilities. Drawing from transnational feminist and queer critiques of governance, (homo)nationalism, and transnational sexuality studies, I consider how new nonheterosexual identity politics—with roots in anti-war activism—have surfaced in Serbia since the Kosovo War. I argue that it is at the intersection of anti-war and LGBT organizing that new and conflicting identity politics have emerged, in part as a reaction to a pro-war hyper-nationalism and neoliberal globalization.

Keywords: LGBT, Balkans, sexuality studies, feminism, transnational, global studies, international relations, development, Serbia, Yugoslavia, post-conflict, Transgender, lesbian, gay, pride parade, gentrification, Slavic studies, queer

Topics: Civil Society, Feminisms, Governance, Globalization, Justice, LGBTQ, Nationalism, Post-Conflict, Post-Conflict Reconstruction, Rights, Sexuality Regions: Europe, Balkans, Eastern Europe Countries: Serbia

Year: 2017

Problem of Financing Women Entrepreneurs: Experience of Women Entrepreneurs in Post-Conflict Bosnia and Herzegovina

Citation:

Golic, Zorica. 2019. "Problem of Financing Women Entrepreneurs: Experience of Women Entrepreneurs in Post-Conflict Bosnia and Herzegovina." In Women Entrepreneurs and Strategic Decision Making in the Global Economy, edited by Florica Tomos, Naresh Kumar, Nick Clifton, and Denis Hyams-Ssekasi, 278-304. Hershy: IGI Global.

Author: Zorica Golic

Abstract:

The purpose of this chapter is to explore the problem of financing women entrepreneurs from the perspective of BiH women entrepreneurs. Using an interpretive research methodology and based on face-to-face semi-structured in-depth interviews with 12 women entrepreneurs, the authors examined their perceptions and identified the key barriers to accessing financial means as they were experienced and faced by women entrepreneurs from Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH). The results presented in this chapter indicate that in BiH there is a problem of social inadmissibility of women entrepreneurs, as well as open discrimination by banking officers. If these are accompanied by high interest rates on loans, extensive and costly documentation necessary for applying for a loan, and the inability to provide collateral, it leads to financial exclusion and limited access to finance. Making progress on alleviating or tackling the problem of financing women entrepreneurs is a long-term commitment from governments, non-governmental organizations, financial institutions, and investors.

Topics: Economies, Gender, Women, Governance, Livelihoods, NGOs, Post-Conflict Regions: Europe, Balkans, Eastern Europe Countries: Bosnia & Herzegovina

Year: 2019

Gender and Politics in Northern Ireland and Kosovo

Citation:

Potter, Michael. 2020. "Gender and Politics in Northern Ireland and Kosovo." In Inclusion in Post-Conflict Legislatures, 99-126. Cham: Palgrave Macmillan, Cham.

Author: Michael Potter

Abstract:

This chapter explores the dimensions of gender and politics in Kosovo and Northern Ireland. The dynamics of the two conflicts and their transitions are explored in the context of how they impact on women’s empowerment, particularly in the political sphere. The concept of ‘gender’ as an analytical category is discussed and the literature of women and conflict explored. The roles of women and men in the conflicts of Northern Ireland and Kosovo are then analysed, highlighting differences and similarities, for example, the more overt use of sexual violence in Kosovo and the presence of women combatants in Northern Ireland. The gendered nature of the transition from conflict and post-conflict representation is then discussed.

Topics: Combatants, Female Combatants, Conflict, Gender, Post-Conflict, Sexual Violence Regions: Europe, Balkans, Eastern Europe, Northern Europe Countries: Kosovo, United Kingdom

Year: 2020

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