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Gendered Discourses

Syrian Refugees in Germany: Gendered Narratives of Border Crossings

Isis Nusair

September 27, 2018

Campus Center, Room 3550B, UMass Boston

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This event is being cosponsored by the UMass Boston CLA Dean's Office; Department of History; Department of Political Science; Department of Women's, Gender and Sexuality Studies; Honors College; the Sociology Club; and the William Joiner Institute for the Study of War and Social Consequences.

'Gender and Climate Change': From Impacts to Discourses

Citation:

MacGregor, Sherilyn. 2010. “‘Gender and Climate Change’: From Impacts to Discourses.” Journal of the Indian Ocean Region 6 (2): 223–38.

Author: Sherilyn MacGregor

Abstract:

Whereas the concepts of class, poverty and race make regular appearances in social scientific analyses of global climate change, the same cannot be said for gender. A survey of the academic literature suggests that there is a lack of research into the many gender dimensions of climate change. The small amount of gender-sensitive work that exists has been carried out by gender, environment and development (GED) researchers working for the UN and non-governmental organisations who focus almost exclusively on the material impacts of climate change on vulnerable women in the Global South. In this paper I make two arguments about the current state of research on gender and climate change. First, I argue that although the GED research makes many important contributions to our understanding of the politics of climate change, it also contributes to an unnecessarily narrow understanding of gender, a fixation on ‘impacts’ that are material and measurable, and the view of women in the developing world, particularly those living in countries of the Indian Ocean Region, as victims of ecological crisis. Second, in response to these shortcomings, I argue for the development of a deeper gender analysis where materialist- informed empirical research on women is complemented by critical feminist theorising of the discursive constructions and categories that shape climate politics today.

Keywords: gender, climate change, climate politics, feminist constructivism, discourse

Topics: Development, Economies, Poverty, Environment, Climate Change, Gender, Gender Analysis, Gendered Discourses, International Organizations, NGOs

Year: 2010

The Power of Mixed Messages: Women, Peace, and Security Language in National Action Plans from Africa

Citation:

Hudson, Heidi. 2017. “The Power of Mixed Messages: Women, Peace, and Security Language in National Action Plans from Africa.” Africa Spectrum 52 (3): 3-29.

Author: Heidi Hudson

Abstract:

Against the backdrop of global and continental women, peace, and security discourses, this contribution analyses the gender and women-focused language of national action plans from four African countries (Kenya, Liberia, Nigeria, and Uganda), which were drafted with a view to United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325. I argue that national action plans have the potential to transcend the soft-consensus language of Security Council resolutions because they create new spaces for feminist engagement with policy and practice. The analysis reveals three discursive themes – namely, the making of “womenandchildren,” women civilising war, and making women responsible for preventing gender-based violence. The themes relate to the construction of, respectively, gender(ed) identities, security, and violence. To varying degrees, the plans reflect a combination of predominantly liberal-feminist language interspersed with some examples of critical insight. I conclude that the ambiguous nature of the messages sent out by these plans serves as a reminder that discourses are fragmented and therefore offer an opening for nuanced contextual analyses and implementation.

Keywords: Kenya, Liberia, Nigeria, Uganda, peace and conflict research, women, women's politics, action programmes/action plans, UN Security Council Resolution (2000-10-31)

Topics: Gender, Women, Gendered Discourses, Gender-Based Violence, peace and security, Peacebuilding, UN Security Council Resolutions on WPS, UNSCR 1325 Regions: Africa, East Africa, West Africa Countries: Kenya, Liberia, Nigeria, Uganda

Year: 2017

Effects of Rural-Urban Return Migration on Women's Family Planning and Reproductive Health Attitudes and Behavior in Rural China

Citation:

Chen, Jiajian, Hongyan Liu, and Zhenming Xie. 2010. “Effects of Rural-Urban Return Migration on Women’s Family Planning and Reproductive Health Attitudes and Behavior in Rural China.” Studies in Family Planning 41 (1): 31-44.

Authors: Jiajian Chen , Hongyan Liu, Zhenming Xie

Abstract:

This study examines the effects of rural-urban return migration on women's family planning and reproductive health attitudes and behavior in the sending areas of rural China. Based on data from a survey of rural women aged 16-40 in Sichuan and Anhui Provinces in 2000, our study finds that migrant women returning from cities to the countryside, especially those who have been living in a large city, are more likely than nonmigrant women to adopt positive family planning and reproductive health attitudes and behavior in their rural communities of origin. We find, moreover, that living in a rural community where the prevalence of such return migrant women is higher is positively associated with new fertility and gender attitudes and with knowledge of self-controllable contraceptives. The findings of significant rural-urban return-migration effects have important policy implications for shaping family planning and reproductive health attitudes and behaviors in rural China.

Topics: Displacement & Migration, Migration, Gender, Women, Gendered Discourses, Health, Reproductive Health Regions: Asia, East Asia Countries: China

Year: 2010

Feminist Visions of Development: Gender Analysis and Policy

Citation:

Pearson, Ruth, and Cecile Jackson, eds. 1998. Feminist Visions of Development: Gender Analysis and Policy. Florence, KY, USA: Routledge.

Authors: Ruth Pearson, Cecile Jackson

Annotation:

Summary:
Key issues in gender studies and development todat are explored in detail, from rural and urban poverty to population and family planning, resulting from the 1995 UN Conference on Women (Summary from WorldCat). 
 
Table of Contents:
1. Interrogating development: feminism, gender and policy
Ruth Pearson and Cecile Jackson
 
2. Who needs [sex] when you can have [gender]? conflicting discourses on gender at Beijing
Sally Baden and Anne Marie Goetz
 
3. Rescuing gender from the poverty trap
Cecile Jackson
 
4. Analysing women's movements
Maxine Molyneux
 
5. Jumping to conclusions?: struggles over meaning and method in the study of household economics
Naila Kabeer
 
6. Famine and transformation in gender relations
Jocelyn Kynch
 
7. Gender, power and contestation: 'rethinking bargaining with patriarchy'
Deniz Kandiyoti
 
8. Talking to the boys: gender and economic growth models
Diane Elson
 
9. 'Nimble fingers' revisited: reflections on women and Third World industrialization in the late twentieth century
Ruth Pearson
 
10. Female and male grain marketing systems: analytical and policy issues for West Africa and India
Barbara Harriss-White
 
11. Gender analysis of family planning: beyond the 'feminist vs. population control' debate
Ines Smyth
 
12. Silver bullet or passing fancy?: girls' schooling and population policy
Patricia Jeffery and Roger Jeffery
 
13. Questionable links: approaches to gender in environmental research and policy
Cathy Green, Susan Joekes and Melissa Leach
 

Topics: Development, Economies, Poverty, Gender, Gendered Discourses, Gendered Power Relations, Households Regions: Africa, West Africa, Asia, East Asia, South Asia Countries: China, India

Year: 1998

Sex and World Peace

Citation:

Hudson, Valerie M., Bonnie Ballif-Spanvill, Mary Caprioli, and Chad F. Emmett. 2012. Sex and World Peace. New York: Columbia University Press.

Authors: Valerie M. Hudson, Bonnie Ballif-Spanvill, Mary Caprioli, Chad F. Emmett

Annotation:

Sex and World Peace unsettles a variety of assumptions in political and security discourse, demonstrating that the security of women is a vital factor in the security of the state and its incidence of conflict and war. The authors compare micro-level gender violence and macro-level state peacefulness in global settings, supporting their findings with detailed analyses and color maps. Harnessing an immense amount of data, they call attention to discrepancies between national laws protecting women and the enforcement of those laws, and they note the adverse effects on state security of abnormal sex ratios favoring males, the practice of polygamy, and inequitable realities in family law, among other gendered aggressions. The authors find that the treatment of women informs human interaction at all levels of society. Their research challenges conventional definitions of security and democracy and shows that the treatment of gender, played out on the world stage, informs the true clash of civilizations. In terms of resolving these injustices, the authors examine top-down and bottom-up approaches to healing wounds of violence against women, as well as ways to rectify inequalities in family law and the lack of parity in decision-making councils. Emphasizing the importance of an R2PW, or state responsibility to protect women, they mount a solid campaign against women's systemic insecurity, which effectively unravels the security of all. (Summary from Columbia University Press).

Topics: Armed Conflict, Combatants, Conflict Prevention, Domestic Violence, Gender, Gendered Discourses, Gender Balance, Gender-Based Violence, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, peace and security, Governance, Constitutions, Quotas, Political Participation, Rights, Reproductive Rights, Women's Rights, Sexual Violence, Violence, Weapons /Arms

Year: 2012

Re-Thinking Hegemonic Masculinities in Conflict-Affected Contexts

Citation:

Myrttinen, Henri, Lana Khattab and Jana Naujoks. 2017. “Re-Thinking Hegemonic Masculinities in Conflict-Affected Contexts.” Critical Military Studies 3 (2): 103-19.

Authors: Henri Myrttinen, Lana Khattab, Jana Naujoks

Abstract:

Masculinities in conflict-affected and peacebuilding contexts have generally speaking been under-researched. Much of the existing research focuses relatively narrowly on men and their ‘violences’, especially that of combatants. Conceptually, much of the policy debate has revolved around either men’s ‘innate’ propensity to violence or relatively simplistic uses of frameworks such as hegemonic, military/militarized, or ‘hyper’-masculinities. These discourses have often been reinforced and reproduced without relating them to their respective local historical, political, and socio-economic contexts. In academic circles, the discussion is more advanced and progressive, but this has yet to filter through to on-the-ground work. Considering the overwhelming role men play in producing and reproducing conflict-related and other forms of violence, a better understanding of the links between masculinities and violence – as well as non-violence – should be central to examining gender, conflict, and peace. Nonetheless, currently a large part of masculinities are side-lined in research, such as those of non-combatants or displaced persons, the associated challenges of ‘thwarted masculinities’, or the positive agency of peacebuilders. Non-heterosexual masculinities also are largely invisible. Based on recent multi-country field research, we aim to highlight some of the under-researched issues revolving around conflict-affected masculinities while also discussing some conceptual challenges arising as a result. Our two key arguments are that the notion of ‘hegemonic masculinities’ in conflict-affected situations needs to be re-examined and re-articulated in more nuanced ways, and that the scope of studying masculinities in these situations needs to be broadened to go beyond merely examining the violences of men.

Keywords: masculinities, conflict, peacebuilding

Topics: Armed Conflict, Combatants, Gender, Men, Masculinity/ies, Gendered Discourses, conflict, peace and security, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Nonviolence, Peacebuilding, Violence

Year: 2017

War as Feminized Labour in the Global Political Economy of Neoimperialism

Citation:

Meger, Sara. 2016. “War as Feminized Labour in the Global Political Economy of Neoimperialism.” Postcolonial Studies 19 (4): 378-92.

Author: Sara Meger

Abstract:

This article examines the structures of international relations that facilitate political violence in postcolonial states. It explores the intersections of patriarchy and imperialism in the contemporary political economy to understand how armed conflict and political violence in postcolonial states form an integral element of the global economy of accumulation in deeply gendered ways. By focusing on the structural level of analysis, this article argues that the siting of armed conflict in postcolonial contexts serves to maintain neo-colonial relations of exploitation between the West and non-West, and is made both possible and effective through the gendering of political identities and types of work performed in the global economy. I argue here that armed conflict is a form of feminized labour in the global economy. Despite the fact that performing violence is a physically masculine form of labour, the outsourcing of armed conflict as labour in the political economy is ‘feminized’ in that it represents the flexibilization of labour and informalization of market participation. So while at the same time that this work is fulfilling hegemonic ideals of militarized masculinity within the domestic context, at the international level it actually demonstrates the ‘weakness’ or ‘otherness’ of the ‘failed’/ feminized state in which this violence occurs, and legitimizes and hence re-entrenches the hegemonic relations between the core and periphery on the basis of problematizing the ‘weak’ state’s masculinity. It is through the discursive construction of the non- Western world as the site of contemporary political violence that mainstream international relations reproduces an orientalist approach to both understanding and addressing the ‘war puzzle’.

 

Keywords: political economy, neo-colonialism, war, gender, feminized labour, feminist international relations, postcolonial theory

Topics: Armed Conflict, Economies, Gender, Gendered Discourses, Gendered Power Relations, Patriarchy, conflict, Livelihoods, Post-Conflict

Year: 2016

Living Archives and Cyprus: Militarized Masculinities and Decolonial Emerging World Horizons

Citation:

Agathangelou, Anna M. 2017. “Living Archives and Cyprus: Militarized Masculinities and Decolonial Emerging World Horizons”. Critical Military Studies 3 (2): 206-11.

Author: Anna M. Agathangelou

Abstract:

Huddled within the most influential theorisations and praxes of war and violence are imaginations of collating masculinities, texts and their embodiments. Interpreting and reading my mother as a non-dominant body, and her stories about war, violence, and Cyprus as re-iterative corporeal insights and practices challenging such toxic masculinities, I argue that such performances and embodiments (what I call living archives), albeit with multiple tensions, re-orient us to emerging decolonial horizons. In doing so, I directly challenge and unsuture the complacent IR historiographies of security and war and the ways they insist on composing and writing by bringing together certain archives (i.e., images of violent places and state documents) and silencing those which systematically and consistently point to modernity’s violent frameworks including their production of violent masculinities on which extinguishment and futures lie. Such an insistence colludes with certain toxic regimes of representation expecting certain subjects, sovereigns, and institutions to order and reiterate (produce) colonial and violent racialized masculine (and racialized feminized) practices between ourselves and the world. Living archives are also those invented signs, imaginations, and excesses that press materiality and its impasses (i.e., in the form of capture, blackness, non-genders, etc. and resolution of signs and fictions), exposing the limits of modernity’s fictioning, and against any resolution and labor that produces violence all the while sublating it.

Keywords: militarized masculinities, international relations grammars, Cyprus, living archives, the colonial, imperial wars, decolonial struggles

Topics: Armed Conflict, Coloniality/Post-Coloniality, Combatants, Male Combatants, DDR, Gender, Gendered Discourses, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, Masculinism, Livelihoods, Militarized livelihoods, Post-Conflict, Race, Violence Regions: Europe, Southern Europe Countries: Cyprus

Year: 2017

A Toolkit for Women: The Mis(sed) Management of Gender in Resource Industries

Citation:

Laplonge, Dean. 2016. “A Toolkit for Women: The Mis(sed) Management of Gender in Resource Industries.” Journal of Management Development 35 (6): 802–13.

Author: Dean Laplonge

Abstract:

Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to show the extent to which work on how to manage gender in resource industries fails to draw on the body of knowledge which explores gender in the workplace.
 
Design/methodology/approach – This paper explores the efficacy of a recently published toolkit within the context of the current debate about gender in resource industries (such as mining, and oil and gas).
 
Findings – The Australian Human Rights Commission’s toolkit speaks to this debate, but fails to analyse existing strategies to deal with the “gender problem”; it simply repeats them as successful examples of what to do. The authors of the toolkit also fail to ask a question which is fundamental to the success of any intervention into gender: what is the definition of “gender” on which the work is based?
 
Originality/value – The debate about gender in resource industries fails to take into consideration contemporary ideas about gender as they have appeared in academic research and human practice.

Topics: Extractive Industries, Gender, Women, Men, Gender Roles, Gender Analysis, Gendered Discourses Regions: Oceania Countries: Australia

Year: 2016

Pages

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