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Unmasking the Gaze: Unpacking Colonial Understandings of Gender Programming in Zaatari Refugee Camp in Jordan

Citation:

Abdelrahman, Hadiya. 2020. "Unmasking the Gaze: Unpacking Colonial Understandings of Gender Programming in Zaatari Refugee Camp in Jordan." PhD diss., Fordham University.

Author: Hadiya Abdelrahman

Abstract:

There have been emerging bodies of literature and research that are addressing the colonial roots of humanitarian aid. Research and literature that center humanitarianism in that history aim to disrupt the neutral and impartial framework that informs general understandings of it. In this thesis, I hope to disrupt the notion of its impartiality by contextualizing humanitarian aid, specifically around gender programming, in Zaatari Camp in Jordan through a colonial lens that further perpetuates inequality. By engaging with existing literature around colonial roots of humanitarianism and the colonial gaze around the brown (re: Muslim/Arab) bodies, I will further problematize Zaatari Camp as a space that serves as a continuum of both the roots and gaze of the colonial imagination.

Topics: Coloniality/Post-Coloniality, Gender, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, Humanitarian Assistance, Race Regions: MENA, Asia, Middle East Countries: Jordan

Year: 2020

Seeing Sex, Gender, and Sexuality in International Security

Citation:

Sjoberg, Laura. 2015. “Seeing Sex, Gender, and Sexuality in International Security.” International Journal: Canada’s Journal of Global Policy Analysis 70 (3): 434–53.

Author: Laura Sjoberg

Abstract:

This essay examines the roles that sex, gender, and sexuality can play in the study of international security. It makes the argument that ‘‘hard’’ security pressing questions like wars, genocides, and terrorist attacks and issues of gender, sex, and sexuality are linked. It begins by providing information about the recent and ongoing conflict in Libya as a case study. Then, it explores some of the questions that feminist and queer scholars have asked about international security in turn: where are the ‘‘women’’ in global politics? Where is ‘‘gender’’ and what does it matter? How do gender dynamics influence war and conflict? Do issues of sex and sexuality matter to war and conflict? If so, how? What tools are available to study these questions and produce answers in any given political situation?

Keywords: sex, gender, sexuality, security, war, Libya

Topics: Conflict, Feminisms, Gender, Women, Security, Sexuality Regions: Africa, MENA, North Africa Countries: Libya

Year: 2015

Sexual Violence in the Border Zone: The EU, the Women, Peace and Security Agenda and Carceral Humanitarianism in Libya

Citation:

Kirby, Paul. 2020. “Sexual Violence in the Border Zone: The EU, the Women, Peace and Security Agenda and Carceral Humanitarianism in Libya.” International Affairs 96 (5): 1209–26.

Author: Paul Kirby

Abstract:

The last decades have seen a striking increase in international policy seeking to protect against conflict-related sexual violence. Norms of protection are, however, unevenly applied in practice. In this article, I address one such situation: the significant and growing evidence of widespread sexual violence at detention sites in Libya where migrants are imprisoned after interception on the Mediterranean Sea. Drawing on policy documents, human rights reports, interviews with advocates and officials, and an analysis of debates in the EU Parliament and UNHCR's humanitarian evacuation scheme in Libya, I examine how abuses have been framed, and with what effects. I argue that decisions about protection are shaped not only by raced and gendered categorizations but also by a demarcation of bodies in the border zone, where vulnerability is to some degree acknowledged, but agency and responsibility also disavowed by politicians, diplomats and practitioners. The wrong of sexual violence is thus both explicitly recognized but also re-articulated in ways that lessen the obligations of the same states and regional organizations that otherwise champion the Women, Peace and Security (WPS) agenda. The combination of mass pullback and detention for many migrants with evacuation for a vulnerable few is an example of carceral humanitarianism, where ‘rescue’ often translates into confinement and abuse for unwelcome populations. My analysis highlights the importance of the positionality of migrants in the Libyan border zone for the form of recognition they are afforded, and the significant limits to the implementation of the EU's gender-responsive humanitarian policies in practice.

Topics: Displacement & Migration, Migration, Gender, Humanitarian Assistance, Race, Rights, Human Rights, Sexual Violence, UN Security Council Resolutions on WPS Regions: Africa, MENA, North Africa Countries: Libya

Year: 2020

Gender and Jihad: Women from the Caucasus in the Syrian Conflict

Citation:

Kvakhadze, Aleksandre. 2020. “Gender and Jihad: Women from the Caucasus in the Syrian Conflict.” Perspectives on Terrorism 14 (2): 69-79.

Author: Aleksandre Kvakhadze

Abstract:

According to media reports, hundreds of women from the North Caucasian republics, Georgia and Azerbaijan have migrated to jihadi-controlled territories. This article has a threefold aim: to discuss the motivational features of female volunteers from the Caucasus region, to describe their functional role, and to explain their limited involvement in the hostilities. The findings indicate that the motivation for most women volunteers from the Caucasus has involved family relationships; further, rather than participating in combat, they have served in various supportive positions.

Topics: Armed Conflict, Combatants, Conflict, Gender, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Religion, Terrorism Regions: MENA, Asia, Middle East, Europe, South Caucasus Countries: Azerbaijan, Georgia, Syria

Year: 2020

Islamist Women’s Feminist Subjectivities in (R)Evolution: The Egyptian Muslim Sisterhood in the Aftermath of the Arab Uprisings

Citation:

Biagini, Erika. 2020. “Islamist Women’s Feminist Subjectivities in (R)Evolution: The Egyptian Muslim Sisterhood in the Aftermath of the Arab Uprisings.” International Feminist Journal of Politics 22 (3): 382–402.

Author: Erika Biagini

Abstract:

This article draws attention to a young generation of Islamist women activists and to how these women have reacted to the patriarchal tendencies of the Muslim Brotherhood (MB) movement following the January 25, 2011 revolution in Egypt. Although women’s support was central to the ability of Islamists to win power, after the uprising Islamists failed to grant women significant political rights and autonomy. While the existing literature on gender and nationalism demonstrates that practical gains for women are frequently sidelined by their movements in a post-revolutionary era, there is increasing recognition of the need to examine the relationship between feminism and nationalism in relation to the particular context in which this evolves. This article substantiates this claim with new evidence. Based on a feminist ethnographic study of the Muslim Sisterhood, the female members of the Egyptian MB movement, conducted in Cairo between 2013 and 2018, the article demonstrates that a new gender politics has emerged among Islamist women activists as a result of their engagement in revolutionary struggle. This gender politics has explicit feminist overtones, which have become evident as women begin to challenge men’s position of privilege within the sphere of the family.

Keywords: Egypt, Muslim Brotherhood, Arab Uprisings, Islamist women, feminism, activism, Subjectivity

Topics: Feminisms, Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Patriarchy, Nationalism, Political Participation, Rights, Women's Rights Regions: Africa, MENA, North Africa, Middle East Countries: Egypt

Year: 2020

Marriage under Occupation: Israel’s Spousal Visa Restrictions in the West Bank

Citation:

Griffiths, Mark, and Mikko Joronen. 2019. “Marriage under Occupation: Israel’s Spousal Visa Restrictions in the West Bank.” Gender, Place & Culture 26 (2): 153–72. 

Authors: Mark Griffiths, Mikko Joronen

Abstract:

In the West Bank, hundreds of non-Palestinian women who are married to Palestinian men have recently been issued shortened visas with tightened restrictions. This means they are often prevented from working, their mobilities are severely reduced and they are placed in extremely precarious bureaucratic and procedural positions. The research in this article draws from fieldwork interviews with women affected by such restrictions to show how politically induced precarities produce gendered effects towards specific ends of the occupation of Palestine. We thus frame a discussion of the women’s experiences of visa regulations through precarity before giving an account of the profound effects on women’s roles in family and political life. We then broaden the focus to consider Israel’s occupation of Palestine and the demographic implications of the gendered effects of visa precarity. In doing so we make the argument that Israel’s spousal visa regulations contribute to the (re)production of uneven gender relations and the demographic objective of emptying out the West Bank.

Keywords: demography, gender, palestine, marriage, precarity, visa administration

Topics: Armed Conflict, Occupation, Citizenship, Gender, Gender Roles, Women, Gendered Power Relations Regions: MENA, Asia, Middle East Countries: Israel, Palestine / Occupied Palestinian Territories

Year: 2019

Enacting Intersectional Multilayered Citizenship: Kurdish Women’s Politics

Citation:

Erel, Umut, and Necla Acik. 2020. “Enacting Intersectional Multilayered Citizenship: Kurdish Women’s Politics.” Gender, Place & Culture 27 (4): 479–501.

Authors: Umut Erel, Necla Acik

Abstract:

Focusing on the institutional aspects of the Kurdish women’s movement in Turkey since the 1990s the article shows how it established a consciousness within the Kurdish national movement that gender equality is a cornerstone of democracy and ethnic rights. We frame this through theories of enacting intersectional multilayered citizenship and identify three key interventions: autonomous women’s assemblies, women’s quotas in pro-Kurdish rights parties and the cochair system where all elected positions within the pro- Kurdish parties are jointly occupied by a male and female. These have achieved a better representation of women in formal politics, rendered gender equality and sexual violence legitimate subjects of politics and contributed to establishing an aspiration for a more dialogic political ethos. While the women’s movement’s close affiliation with the Kurdish national movement has been highly effective, it also in part circumscribes gender roles to fit its agendas.

Keywords: gender politics, Kurds, Kurdish national movement, Co-chair system, middle east, women's movement, women's quota, women's political representation

Topics: Citizenship, Ethnicity, Gender, Gender Roles, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, Governance, Quotas, Political Participation, Rights, Women's Rights Regions: MENA, Asia, Europe, Southern Europe Countries: Turkey

Year: 2020

"We Want to be Remembered as Strong Women, Not as Shepherds": Women Anfal Survivors in Kurdistan-Iraq Struggling for Agency and Acknowledgement

Citation:

Mlodoch, Karin. 2012. “We Want to be Remembered as Strong Women, Not as Shepherds”: Women Anfal Survivors in Kurdistan-Iraq Struggling for Agency and Acknowledgement.” Journal of Middle East Women's Studies 8 (1): 63-91.

Author: Karin Mlodoch

Abstract:

This article focuses on Kurdish women in Iraq who survived the Iraqi army’s Anfal operations against the Kurdish areas in 1988. It investigates Iraqi Kurdish women’s psychosocial situation and strategies for coping with violence and loss in the aftermath of the Anfal operations. These strategies are largely shaped by social and economic factors and gender relations and in the traditional patriarchal context of rural Kurdish society. The article further explores the transformation of the women’s situation and narratives through the recent political changes in Iraq and shows the conflict between their memories, narratives, and agency, on one hand, and the hegemonic discourse on victimhood in Kurdistan-Iraq today, on the other, as well as the interweaving of their individual coping strategies and the institutional processes for dealing with the past in Kurdistan and Iraq. Thus the paper contributes to socially and politically contextualized and gender-sensitive trauma research, as well as to the larger political and sociological debate on reconciliation processes after war and conflict.

Topics: Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Patriarchy, Health, Trauma, Post-Conflict, Violence Regions: MENA, Asia, Middle East Countries: Iraq

Year: 2012

From Homoerotics of Exile to Homopolitics of Diaspora: Cyberspace, the War on Terror, and the Hypervisible Iranian Queer

Citation:

Shakhsari, Sima. 2012. “From Homoerotics of Exile to Homopolitics of Diaspora: Cyberspace, the War on Terror, and the Hypervisible Iranian Queer.” Journal of Middle East Women's Studies 8 (3): 14-40.

Author: Sima Shakhsari

Abstract:

In this essay, I argue that during the post-September 11th “war on terror,” the Iranian homosexual became transferred from the position of the abject to the representable subject in transnational political realms. This shift involves Iranian opposition groups, transnational media, the “gay international” (in the words of Joseph A. Massad), and some Iranian diasporic queers who willingly insert themselves into national imaginations of the opposition in diasporic reterritorializations. This hypervisibility is enabled by massive mobilizations of universalized sexual identities on the Internet, discourses of protectorship, valorizations of mobility in cyberspace and diasporic imaginations, and the political and economic opportunities for neoliberal entrepreneurship and expertise during the war on terror. In this process, the normative Iranian homosexual is produced as a victim of backward homophobic Iranian-ness, awaiting representation and liberation by new media technologies, while the Iranian citizen is disciplined through cybergovernmentality as a heterosexual subject who is expected to reject tradition, tolerate or defend homosexuals, and avoid perversion.

Topics: Conflict, Ethnicity, Media, LGBTQ, Sexuality Regions: MENA, Asia, Middle East Countries: Iraq

Year: 2012

Sister Citizens: Women in Syrian Rebel Governance

Citation:

Gilbert, Victoria. 2020. “Sister Citizens: Women in Syrian Rebel Governance.” Politics & Gender, 1–28. doi:10.1017/S1743923X20000136.

Author: Victoria Gilbert

Abstract:

In the rich literature on women and conflict, many scholars have assumed that the outbreak of civil war suppresses women’s political involvement. However, during Syria’s civil war, there was significant subnational and temporal variation in the involvement of women in the institutions established by armed groups and civilians in rebel-held areas. Why were some Syrian women able to secure a place for themselves in insurgent governance? How were they able to influence the form of local institutions to secure a role for women? Bringing together the scholarship on social movements and rebel governance, this article argues that two factors determine whether women were able to mobilize politically during conflict: the organizational capacity of women and the strength and ideology of locally active armed groups. The article leverages data on local organizations and institutions in Syria, Syrian news sources, and correspondence with several women’s organizations operating in Syria in 2017. By doing so, this article strives to bring attention to the role of gender in the expanding literature on rebel governance. It also highlights the significance of armed groups’ ideologies, an aspect often dismissed in the literature in favor of a focus on material factors.

Keywords: gender, rebel, rebel governance, insurgent governance, civil war, conflict, institutions, Syria, conflict processes, comparative politics, women, middle east, institutional design

Topics: Armed Conflict, Civil Wars, Conflict, Gender, Women, Governance, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Non-State Armed Groups, Political Participation Regions: MENA, Asia, Middle East Countries: Syria

Year: 2020

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