Printer-friendly versionSend by emailPDF version

Gender Hierarchies

Women on the Frontline: Rebel Group Ideology and Women’s Participation in Violent Rebellion

Citation:

Wood, Reed M., and Jakana L. Thomas. 2017. “Women on the Frontline: Rebel Group Ideology and Women’s Participation in Violent Rebellion.” Journal of Peace Research 54 (1): 31–46.

Authors: Reed M. Wood, Jakana L. Thomas

Abstract:

Despite the frequent participation of women in armed groups, few studies have sought to explain the variation in their roles across different rebellions. Herein, we investigate this variation. We argue that the political ideology a group adopts plays a central role in determining the extent of women’s participation, particularly their deployment in combat roles. Specifically, we link variations in women’s roles in armed groups to differences in beliefs about gender hierarchies and gender-based divisions of labor inherent in the specific ideologies the groups adopt. We evaluate hypotheses drawn from these arguments using a novel cross-sectional dataset on female combatants in a global sample of rebel organizations active between 1979 and 2009. We find that the presence of a Marxist-oriented ‘leftist’ ideology increases the prevalence of female fighters while Islamist ideologies exert the opposite effect. However, we find little evidence that nationalism exerts an independent influence on women’s combat roles. We also note a general inverse relationship between group religiosity and the prevalence of female fighters. Our analysis demonstrates that political ideology plays a central role in determining whether and to what extent resistance movements incorporate female fighters into their armed wings.

Keywords: female combatants, rebel ideology, rebellion

Topics: Armed Conflict, Combatants, Female Combatants, Gender, Women, Gender Roles, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Hierarchies, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Non-State Armed Groups, Rights, Religion

Year: 2017

Women’s Land Rights in Africa: Does Implementation Match Policy?

Citation:

Sulle, Emmanuel, Sue Mbaya, Barbara Codispoti, Josephine Atananga, Bernard Moseti, and Leah Mugehera. 2019. “Women’s Land Rights in Africa: Does Implementation Match Policy?” Paper presented at Conference on Land Policy in Africa, 2019: Winning the fight against Corruption in the Land Sector: Sustainable Pathway for Africa’s Transformation, Abidjan, November 25-29.

Authors: Emmanuel Sulle, Sue Mbaya, Barbara Codispoti, Josephine Atananga, Bernard Moseti, Leah Mugehera

Abstract:

This paper assesses the performance of selected countries in implementing the provisions of women’s land rights instruments such as African Union Framework and Guidelines on Land Policy in Africa and the Voluntary Guidelines on Responsible Governance of Tenure among others. Field research was carried out in seven African countries whereby, in each country a national researcher in collaboration with the collaborating nongovernmental organisation selected three heterogeneous locations which capture the range of situations under which rural women use land. Based on field research results complemented with desk review, the study finds that while statutory laws to protect women land rights are in place in all studied countries, with some differences and, in some cases with existing loopholes, adherence to these laws at the community level remain inadequate. This is particularly evident in terms of equality of rights to inherit land among men and women. Women experience constant threat from clansmen and relatives of their husbands. As also documented elsewhere, in many African communities (although not all), most land-holding systems are male lineage based, with men playing an important decision-making role. Malawi represents a specific case in this regard, as most land-holdings are based on matrilineal systems, but this still is not an automatic guarantee of women having more decision-making power on land. Based on these findings the paper confirms that while impressive steps to address women’s land rights issues have been taken in recent African policies, law enforceability is yet to receive sufficient political backing, due to widespread patriarchal values, limited financial and human resources and last but not least informal rules of the games that are the same drivers of widespread corruption. Patronage, ‘clientage’, illegality and opacity of land transactions find fertile ground in a patriarchal system. Understanding the status, causes and consequences of the de facto ‘unenforceability’ of constitutional and legal provisions in favour of women might shed a light on much broader challenges like those addressed in this conference. Holistic implementation and reforms that 1) address existing loopholes in land laws and regulation, 2) align other sectoral policies, laws and regulations, and 3) use transformative actions to revert patriarchal values in order to bridge the gender gap in property rights, but also to help creating a fairer environment to contribute combating corruption.

Topics: Corruption, Gender, Gendered Power Relations, Patriarchy, Gender Hierarchies, Land Tenure, Governance, Constitutions, NGOs, Rights, Land Rights, Property Rights Regions: Africa, Central Africa, East Africa, Southern Africa, West Africa Countries: Cameroon, Ethiopia, Kenya, Malawi, Mozambique, South Africa, Togo

Year: 2019

Rice Cookers, Social Media, and Unruly Women: Disentangling Electricity’s Gendered Implications in Rural Nepal

Citation:

Matinga, Margaret N., Bigsna Gill, and Tanja Winther. 2019. “Rice Cookers, Social Media, and Unruly Women: Disentangling Electricity’s Gendered Implications in Rural Nepal.” Frontiers in Energy Research 6 (January).

 

Authors: Margaret N. Matinga, Bigsna Gill, Tanja Winther

Abstract:

Rice cookers, social media, and television sets are commonly used in rural Nepal. In this paper we explore how gender norms condition the uptake of these artifacts, and the gendered implications of their uses. We draw on material from a household survey, in-depth interviews, focus group discussions, and key informant interviews, collected in 2017 in Dhading and Tanahun districts in rural Nepal. The results show that each of the three artifacts initiate distinct, gendered dynamics in terms of uptake, uses, and effects. Women’s use of electric rice cookers aligns with their gendered identity as cooks, helping them improve their gendered work and do not trigger resistance from men. In contrast, the use of mobile phones, social media, and television, prompt complex gender outcomes, resistances, and negotiations. Young people use social media to initiate self-negotiated marriages, shunning arranged marriages thus increasing their agency. It was reported that these self-negotiated marriages tend to be earlier (ages 12–14) than before, as young girls drop out of school to marry their chosen partners, thus threatening their empowerment. Access to television and internet has increased awareness about family planning methods, but persistent gender hierarchies hinder women from freely deciding on and accessing these methods. Women and youth pursuing new opportunities that challenge gender norms are sometimes labeled as unfaithful and unruly by others in the villages. The paper highlights the need to understand subversive responses to social and cultural changes mediated by electricity so that policy and practice can support the desired social transformations.

Keywords: gender relations, energy poverty, electric potential, women's empowerment, energy justice

Topics: Age, Youth, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Hierarchies, Media, Households, Infrastructure, Energy Regions: Asia, South Asia Countries: Nepal

Year: 2019

Militarized Nationalism as a Platform for Feminist Mobilization? The Case of the Exiled Burmese Women's Movement

Citation:

Olivius, Elisabeth, and Jenny Hedström. 2019. "Militarized Nationalism as a Platform for Feminist Mobilization? The Case of the Exiled Burmese Women's Movement." Women's Studies International Forum 76.

Authors: Elisabeth Olivius, Jenny Hedström

Abstract:

Feminist scholars have convincingly demonstrated how militarism and nationalism rely on the (re)production of gendered hierarchies. As a result, feminism is often assumed to be at odds with these political projects. In this article, we demonstrate that this is not always and not necessarily the case: in contrast, militarized nationalism may even constitute fertile ground for the mobilization of feminist organization and activism. We make this argument drawing on an in-depth case study of the emergence and evolution of an exiled Burmese women's movement from within armed ethno-nationalist struggles in the borderlands of Myanmar. Drawing on interviews with women activists, we examine when and how militarized nationalism can provide a space from which feminist agendas can be articulated and successfully pursued. This case demonstrates that militarized nationalism does not only have the potential to mobilize women's participation, but can provide a platform for feminist organization and activism that transcends, challenges, and eventually reshapes militarized nationalist projects in ways that advance women's rights and equality. These findings call into question generalized assumptions about the conflictual relationship between feminism, militarism and nationalism, and contributes to advance feminist debates about women's mobilization in contexts of armed conflicts and nationalist struggles.

Keywords: feminism, militarism, nationalism, women's activism, Myanmar, armed conflict

Topics: Armed Conflict, Feminisms, Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Hierarchies, Gender Equality/Inequality, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Militarization, Nationalism, Rights, Women's Rights Regions: Asia, Southeast Asia Countries: Myanmar

Year: 2019

Laws in Conflict: Legacies of War, Gender, and Legal Pluralism in Chechnya

Citation:

Lazarev, Egor. 2019. "Laws in Conflict: Legacies of War, Gender, and Legal Pluralism in Chechnya." World Politics 71 (4): 667-709.

Author: Egor Lazarev

Abstract:

How do legacies of conflict affect choices between state and nonstate legal institutions? This article studies this question in Chechnya, where state law coexists with Sharia and customary law. The author focuses on the effect of conflict-induced disruption of gender hierarchies because the dominant interpretations of religious and customary norms are discriminatory against women. The author finds that women in Chechnya are more likely than men to rely on state law and that this gender gap in legal preferences and behavior is especially large in more-victimized communities. The author infers from this finding that the conflict created the conditions for women in Chechnya to pursue their interests through state law—albeit not without resistance. Women’s legal mobilization has generated a backlash from the Chechen government, which has attempted to reinstate a patriarchal order. The author concludes that conflict may induce legal mobilization among the weak and that gender may become a central cleavage during state-building processes in postconflict environments.

Topics: Conflict, Gendered Power Relations, Patriarchy, Gender Hierarchies, Justice, Post-Conflict, Religion Regions: Asia, Europe Countries: Russian Federation

Year: 2019

Conclusion: Emphasized Femininity/Hegemonic Masculinity and Constructivism/Essentialism

Citation:

Maleta, Yulia. 2019. “Conclusion: Emphasized Femininity/Hegemonic Masculinity and Constructivism/Essentialism.” In Feminism, Republicanism, Egalitarianism, Environmentalism: Bill of Rights and Gendered Sustainable Initiatives. New York: Routledge.

Author: Yulia Maleta

Annotation:

Summary:
This book has addressed a gap on the interplay of emphasized femininity/hegemonic masculinity and constructivism/essentialism within the eNSM and its eSMOs. Utilising my interviews with Australian women members of renewables organisational governance (IeNGOs, grassroots organisations, academic institutions and the Greens party), I applied a constructivist approach to emphasized femininity, arguing that women-led sustainable-social change strategies, strengthened through participants’ agentic technical-scientific performative competencies (and multiple skills set: intellectual, social, empathetic and physical), challenges the patriarchal control of global politics and rigid structures of hierarchy and bureaucracy. More women in sustainable technological leadership, should contribute to global peace as well as desired gender justice outcomes.

Topics: Civil Society, Environment, Gender, Women, Masculinity/ies, Femininity/ies, Gendered Power Relations, Patriarchy, Gender Hierarchies, NGOs Regions: Oceania Countries: Australia

Year: 2019

Rethinking Silence, Gender, and Power in Insecure Sites: Implications for Feminist Security Studies in a Postcolonial World

Citation:

Parpart, Jane. 2020. "Rethinking Silence, Gender, and Power in Insecure Sites: Implications for Feminist Security Studies in a Postcolonial World." Review of International Studies 46 (3): 315-24.

Author: Jane Parpart

Abstract:

My current interest in silence, gender, and power owes much to discussions with Marysia Zalewski over the years. Much of my work has focused on masculinity, gender relations, and gender hierarchies with a focus on security and development in conflict zones. More recently, I have begun to explore silence not as a sign of disempowerment, but as a powerful force that can be used in many ways. This approach enables a more multi-levelled understanding of silence and voice and their many interactions. It has much to tell the Global North, where we prize voice and often underestimate the power of silence.

Keywords: silence, gender, insecurity

Topics: Development, Conflict, Gender, Masculinity/ies, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Hierarchies, Security

Year: 2020

Explaining Divergent Outcomes of the Arab Spring: The Significance of Gender and Women's Mobilizations

Citation:

Moghadam, Valentine M. 2018. "Explaining Divergent Outcomes of the Arab Spring: The Significance of Gender and Women's Mobilizations." Politics, Groups, and Identities 6 (4): 666-81.

Author: Valentine Moghadam

Abstract:

The Arab Spring has been extensively analyzed but the presence or absence of violent protests and the divergent outcomes of the uprising that encompassed the Arab region have not been explained in terms of the salience of gender and women’s mobilizations. I argue that women’s legal status, social positions, and collective action prior to the Arab Spring helped shape the nature of the 2011 mass protests as well as the political and social outcomes of individual countries. I compare and contrast two sets of cases: Egypt, Morocco, and Tunisia, which saw non-violent protests and relatively less repression on the part of the state; and Bahrain, Libya, Syria, and Yemen, where states responded to the protests, whether violent or non-violent, with force and repression, and where women and their rights have been among the principal victims. I also show why women fared worse in Egypt than in Morocco and Tunisia.

Keywords: Arab Spring, women's rights, women's mobilizations, outcomes, violence, democratization

Topics: Democracy / Democratization, Conflict, Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Hierarchies, Nonviolence, Rights, Women's Rights, Violence Regions: Africa, MENA, North Africa, Asia, Middle East Countries: Bahrain, Egypt, Libya, Morocco, Syria, Tunisia, Yemen

Year: 2018

The Role of Gender in Political Violence

Citation:

McDermott, Rose. 2020. “The Role of Gender in Political Violence.” Current Opinion in Behavioral Science 34: 1-5. doi: 10.1016/j.cobeha.2019.09.003.

Author: Rose McDermott

Abstract:

Gender plays a prominent role in many aspects of political violence. First, it contributes to its occurrence. Second, sexual violence causes enormous suffering during conflict. Last, sustainable peacekeeping depends on female inclusion and participation. The prominence of gender in political violence rests on the dominance of men over women in many aspects of political, social and economic life. Inequities in family law and perversions in the marriage market, especially polygyny, contribute to the perpetuation of male dominance hierarchies in ways that increase the likelihood and costs of political violence for everyone.
 

Topics: Conflict, Gender, Women, Men, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Hierarchies, Gender Equality/Inequality, Political Participation, Peacekeeping, Sexual Violence, Violence

Year: 2020

Conflict, Peace, and the Evolution of Women's Empowerment

Citation:

Webster, Kaitlyn, Chong Chen, and Kyle Beardsley. 2019. “Conflict, Peace, and the Evolution of Women's Empowerment.” International Organization 73 (2): 255-89.
 

Authors: Kaitlyn Webster, Chong Chen, Kyle Beardsley

Abstract:

How do periods of conflict and peace shape women’s empowerment around the world? While existing studies have demonstrated that gender inequalities contribute to the propensity for armed conflict, we consider how the anticipation and realization of armed conflict shape women’s opportunities for influence in society. Some scholars have pointed to the role that militarization and threat play in entrenching male dominance, while others have argued that periods of warfare can upend existing gender hierarchical orders. We posit mechanisms by which the preparation for and experiences during war affect change in women’s empowerment. We develop and test observable implications using cross-national data from 1900 to 2015. We find that, at least in the short and medium term, warfare can disrupt social institutions and lead to an increase in women’s empowerment via mechanisms related to role shifts across society and political shifts catalyzed by war. Reforming institutions and main- streaming gender during peace processes stand to have important legacies for gender power relations in postconflict societies, though much more may be needed for more permanent change.
 

Topics: Armed Conflict, Conflict, Gender, Women, Men, Gender Mainstreaming, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Hierarchies, Gender Equality/Inequality, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Militarization, Post-Conflict, Political Participation, Peace Processes, Violence

Year: 2019

Pages

© 2020 CONSORTIUM ON GENDER, SECURITY & HUMAN RIGHTSLEGAL STATEMENT All photographs used on this site, and any materials posted on it, are the property of their respective owners, and are used by permission. Photographs: The images used on the site may not be downloaded, used, or reproduced in any way without the permission of the owner of the image. Materials: Visitors to the site are welcome to peruse the materials posted for their own research or for educational purposes. These materials, whether the property of the Consortium or of another, may only be reproduced with the permission of the owner of the material. This website contains copyrighted materials. The Consortium believes that any use of copyrighted material on this site is both permissive and in accordance with the Fair Use doctrine of 17 U.S.C. § 107. If, however, you believe that your intellectual property rights have been violated, please contact the Consortium at info@genderandsecurity.org.

Subscribe to RSS - Gender Hierarchies