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Southern Europe

The Pains of the Sea

"Syrian and Iraqi immigrants are trying to cross the sea to reach Turkey. A mother must choose between the life of her child and her own life in the sea."

Source: http://www.splitfilmfestival.hr/the-pains-of-the-sea-mohammad-reza-masoudi/

Mare Nostrum

"The young Margo calls to mind her painful past, her arrival in Italy on rubber boat, the violence and deprivation she suffered since she was a child, the dear ones she lost in her faraway native land, but also the occasions of renaissance and love in her new country. An evocative play of visual pictures that surfaces from the same water and the same beach that a long time ago welcomed her bringing hope

Clashes, Collaborations and Convergences: Evolving Relations of Turkish and Kurdish Women’s Rights Activists

Citation:

Al-Ali, Nadje, and Latif Taṣ. 2019. "Clashes, Collaborations and Convergences: Evolving Relations of Turkish and Kurdish Women’s Rights Activists." Journal of Balkan and Near Eastern Studies 21 (3): 304-18.

Authors: Nadje Al-Ali, Latif Taṣ

Abstract:

This article discusses the various ways the Kurdish women’s movement has impacted feminism in the Turkish context. Against the background of the problematic historical relationship between Turkish and Kurdish women’s rights activists, the article explores the shift in perceptions of, attitudes towards and relations of feminists in Turkey with the Kurdish women’s movement. The article shows that a ‘new generation of feminists’ in Turkey appreciates and is inspired by the Kurdish women’s movement, and rejects the Kemalist and nationalist undertones of earlier generations. Without wanting to belittle on-going nationalism and the rise of women’s cadres linked to the authoritarian Turkish regime, the article analyses the various ways the intersectional long-term struggle of Kurdish women is being perceived, recognized and critically engaged with by many Turkish feminist activists.

Topics: Ethnicity, Feminisms, Gender, Women, Nationalism, Political Participation, Rights, Women's Rights Regions: MENA, Asia, Europe, Southern Europe Countries: Turkey

Year: 2019

Reconsidering Nationalism and Feminism: The Kurdish Political Movement in Turkey

Citation:

Al‐Ali, Nadje, and Latif Tas. 2018. "Reconsidering Nationalism and Feminism: The Kurdish Political Movement in Turkey." Nations and Nationalism 24 (2): 453-73.

Authors: Nadje Al-Ali, Latif Tas

Abstract:

Feminist scholars have documented with reference to multiple empirical contexts that feminist claims within nationalist movements are often side‐lined, constructed as ‘inauthentic’ and frequently discredited for imitating supposedly western notions of gender‐based equality. Despite these historical precedents, some feminist scholars have pointed to the positive aspects of nationalist movements, which frequently open up spaces for gender‐based claims. Our research is based on the recognition that we cannot discuss and evaluate the fraught relationship in the abstract but that we need to look at the specific historical and empirical contexts and articulations of nationalism and feminism. The specific case study we draw from is the relationship between the Kurdish women's movement and the wider Kurdish political movement in Turkey. We are exploring the ways that the Kurdish movement in Turkey has politicised Kurdish women's rights activists and examine how Kurdish women activists have reacted to patriarchal tendencies within the Kurdish movement.

Keywords: ethnic nationalism, feminism, Kurdish women's movement, middle east, PKK, Turkey

Topics: Ethnicity, Feminisms, Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Patriarchy, Gender Equality/Inequality, Nationalism, Political Participation, Rights, Human Rights, Women's Rights Regions: MENA, Asia, Europe, Southern Europe Countries: Turkey

Year: 2018

“War Is like a Blanket”: Feminist Convergences in Kurdish and Turkish Women’s Rights Activism for Peace

Citation:

Al-Ali, Nadje, and Latif Tas. 2017. "'War Is like a Blanket': Feminist Convergences in Kurdish and Turkish Women’s Rights Activism for Peace." Journal of Middle East Women's Studies 13 (3): 354-75.

Authors: Nadje Al-Ali, Latif Tas

Abstract:

Despite the recent outbreak of violence and conflict, peace continues to be high on the agenda of the Kurdish political movement and many progressive Turkish intellectuals and activists. Based on qualitative research we conducted in Diyarbakır, Istanbul, London, and Berlin in 2015–16, we show that Kurdish activists have struggled to make the eradication of gender-based inequalities and violence central to the wider Kurdish peace movement, while Turkish women’s rights activists have increasingly recognized that the war against the Kurds, “like a blanket,” often papers over gender injustices. Both Kurdish and Turkish activists stress the necessity of understanding that a just and sustainable peace must include gender equality and that gender justice cannot be achieved in times of war. Thus feminist convergences in Kurdish and Turkish activism present peace and women’s rights as inseparable and generate the potential to challenge nationalist state power and the militarization of society.

Keywords: peace, Turkish Kurdish conflict, Kurdish political movement, women's rights movement, Turkey

Topics: Armed Conflict, Ethnicity, Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, Justice, Nationalism, Peacebuilding, Post-Conflict Regions: MENA, Asia, Europe, Southern Europe Countries: Turkey

Year: 2017

Who Carries the Water: Feminist Reflections on Anatolian Hydroelectric Power Plants, Rivers, and Resistance

Citation:

Belkis, Fatma, and İz Öztat. 2018. “Who Carries the Water: Feminist Reflections on Anatolian Hydroelectric Power Plants, Rivers, and Resistance.” Journal of Middle East Women’s Studies 14 (3): 368–73.

Authors: Fatma Belkis, İz Öztat

Annotation:

Summary:
"Following the Gezi Uprising in 2013, we felt the need to learn from grassroots struggles, ongoing since 1998, against the construction of small hydroelectric power plants (SHPs) on rivers in numerous valleys of Anatolia. The attempt by the Justice and Development Party (AKP) government to destroy Gezi Park and the occupation that followed made clear the widespread impact of construction-led growth policies in urban and rural contexts. The anti-SHP movement’s slogan is “Rivers will flow free,” which resonated with us as a radical desire for the right to life of all beings. The slogan voices a demand for the agency of rivers and challenges state and corporate decisions to control their courses with pipes, dams, and dredging.
 
"The grassroots struggle against SHPs coincides with legislation that allows the leasing of water-use rights in rivers to private energy companies for at least fortynine years. Following the privatization “the AKP government launched an aggressive programme” whose goal was building “2,000 small (and large) hydropower plants by 2023, the centennial of the Turkish Republic”(Erensu and Karaman 2017, 14). Governments, corporations, and banks frame SHPs as renewable energy production solutions that facilitate “development,” but in Turkey, as in many other places, their implementation involves removing the water from its bed and running it through pipes to feed multiple turbines, which deprives all living creatures in the ecosystem of their life source.
 
"Our collaborative installation work Who Carries the Water (Belkıs and Öztat 2015) took form as we visited valleys where residents resist the process of dispossession that ensues with the construction of SHPs" (Belkis and Öztat 2018, 368-9).

Topics: Development, Economies, Economic Inequality, Environment, Feminisms, Gender, Infrastructure, Water & Sanitation, Livelihoods, Privatization Regions: MENA, Asia, Europe, Southern Europe

Year: 2018

Gender and Struggles for Equality in Mining Resistance Movements: Performing Critique against Neoliberal Capitalism in Sweden and Greece

Citation:

Sjöstedt Landén, Angelika, and Marianna Fotaki. 2018. "Gender and Struggles for Equality in Mining Resistance Movements: Performing Critique against Neoliberal Capitalism in Sweden and Greece." Social Inclusion 6 (4): 25-35.

Authors: Angelika Sjöstedt Landén, Marianna Fotaki

Abstract:

This article explores the intersections of gender and centre–periphery relations and calls for theoretical and political involvement in gendered struggles against colonial and capitalist forces across different national contexts. The article raises questions about the possibility of resisting inequality and exploitation arising from capitalist expansion and extraction of natural resources in Sweden and Greece, outside of urban contexts. It does so by highlighting women’s role in protest movements in peripheral places and questioning power relations between centre and periphery. The article also argues that making visible women’s struggles and contributions to protest movements brings about vital knowledge for realizing democratic worlds that do not thrive on the destruction of natural resources and the institutionalization of inequalities.

Keywords: activism, capitalism, extractivism, gender, Greece, mining, neoliberalism, protest, women, sweden

Topics: Extractive Industries, Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Intersectionality Regions: Europe, Nordic states, Northern Europe, Southern Europe Countries: Greece, Sweden

Year: 2018

Development and Gendered Mobilities: Narratives from the Women of Mardin, Turkey

Citation:

Akyelken, Nihan. 2013. “Development and Gendered Mobilities: Narratives from the Women of Mardin, Turkey.” Mobilities 8 (3): 424–39.

Author: Nihan Akyelken

Abstract:

This paper addresses gendered mobilities in Mardin in the context of the implications of transport investments for the female labour market. I seek to illustrate that the relationship between infrastructure provision and gendered mobilities is entangled in a wider context which encompasses politics and cultural geographies. Drawing on theories of mobilities, I argue that a lack of understanding of the complementary and contradictory impacts of local context and physical infrastructure investments may undermine social and cultural conditions within communities, resulting in misguided development policies.

Keywords: gender and mobilities, Turkey, Mardin, regional development policy, transport

Topics: Development, Feminisms, Gender, Gender Analysis, Infrastructure, Transportation, Livelihoods Regions: MENA, Asia, Europe, Southern Europe Countries: Turkey

Year: 2013

How to Resist Austerity: The Case of the Gender Budgeting Strategy in Andalusia

Citation:

Puig-Barrachina, Vanessa, Marisol E. Ruiz, María del Mar García-Calvente, Davide Malmusi, Esther Sánchez, Lluís Camprubí, Carles Muntaner, Imma Cortès-Franch, Lucía Artazcoz, and Carme Borrell. 2017. “How to Resist Austerity: The Case of the Gender Budgeting Strategy in Andalusia.” Gender, Work and Organization 24 (1): 34–55. 

Authors: Vanessa Puig-Barrachina, Marisol E. Ruiz, María del Mar García-Calvente, Davide Malmusi, Esther Sánchez, Lluís Camprubí, Carles Muntaner, Imma Cortès-Franch, Lucía Artazcoz, Carme Borrell

Abstract:

While most countries have imposed austerity policies that risk jeopardizing the progress towards gender equality, there are examples of European regions that have maintained or strengthened gender-equality policies in a climate of economic downturn. Following a realist approach and adopting Kingdon’s agenda-setting model as our framework, this explanatory case study examines how, why and under which circumstances the gender budgeting strategy has resisted austerity measures. This strategy represents a key tool for gender mainstreaming in Andalusia, a southern region of Spain. Results have shown that the existence of a strong left-wing government is a necessary context for the maintenance of gender equality policies. The feasibility given by the previous context of institutionalization of this strategy and its low cost, together with political commitment — with a decisive contribution from female leadership — have been the major factors allowing the maintenance of the gender budgeting strategy in Andalusia.

Keywords: gender mainstreaming, public policies assessment, gender budgeting, austerity measures, Andalusia

Topics: Economies, Gender, Gender Budgeting, Gender Mainstreaming, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, Governance Regions: Europe, Southern Europe Countries: Spain

Year: 2017

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