Introduction: Security Council Resolution 1325: Assessing the Impact on Women, Peace and Security


Willett, Susan. 2010. “Introduction: Security Council Resolution 1325: Assessing the Impact on Women, Peace and Security.” International Peacekeeping 17 (2): 142–58. doi:10.1080/13533311003625043.

Author: Susan Willett


October 2010 marks the tenth anniversary of UN Security Council resolution 1325, on ‘Women, Peace and Security’. Hailed as a major milestone in the struggle for gender equality in all aspects of peacemaking, peacekeeping and post-conflict recovery, the implementation of 1325 has floundered over the intervening years. Gender discourse has been submerged by the dominant UN epistemology of hegemonic masculinity, militarism and war. This essay contextualizes the struggle for resolution 1325, and provides an overview of the major challenges that still need to be addressed if UN attempts to establish a durable peace in conflict zones are to conform to the 1325 mandate.

Topics: Gender, Women, Masculinity/ies, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, International Organizations, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Militarism, Peacebuilding, Peacekeeping, Peace Processes, Post-Conflict, Post-Conflict Reconstruction, Security, UN Security Council Resolutions on WPS, UNSCR 1325

Year: 2010

Where Have All the Women (and Men) Gone? Reflections on Gender and the Second Palestinian Intifada


Johnson, Penny, and Eileen Kuttab. 2001. “Where Have All the Women (and Men) Gone? Reflections on Gender and the Second Palestinian Intifada.” Feminist Review, no. 69, 21–43. doi:10.1080/014177800110070102.

Authors: Penny Johnson, Eileen Kuttab


The authors ground their reflections on gender and the complex realities of the second Palestinian intifada against Israeli occupation in the political processes unleashed by the signing of the Israeli–Palestinian rule, noting that the profound inequalities between Israel and Palestine during the interim period produced inequalities among Palestinians. The apartheid logic of the Oslo period – made explicit in Israel's policies of separation, seige and confinement of the Palestinian population during the intifada and before it – is shown to shape the forms, sites and levels of resistance which are highly restricted by gender and age. In addition, the authors argue that the Palestinian Authority and leadership have solved the contradictions and crisis of Palestinian nationalism in this period through a form of rule that the authors term 'authoritarian populism', that tends to disallow democractic politics and participation. The seeming absence of women and civil society from the highly unequal and violent confrontations is contrasted with the first Palestinian intifada (1987–91), that occurred in a context of more than a decade of democratic activism and the growth of mass-based organizations, including the Palestinian women's movement. The authors explore three linked crises in gender roles emerging from the conditions of the second intifada: a crisis in masculinity, a crisis in paternity and a crisis in maternity.

Keywords: national liberation, nationalism, military occupation, maternity, masculinity

Topics: Age, Armed Conflict, Occupation, Civil Society, Democracy / Democratization, Gender, Masculinity/ies, Gender Roles, Governance, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Militarism, Nationalism, NGOs Regions: MENA, Asia, Middle East Countries: Israel, Palestine / Occupied Palestinian Territories

Year: 2001

The Crime of Aggression and Humanitarian Intervention on Behalf of Women


Schaack, Beth. 2011. “The Crime of Aggression and Humanitarian Intervention on Behalf of Women.” International Criminal Law Review 11 (3): 477–93.

Author: Beth Schaack


This article is part of a larger project to analyse the rarely-considered gender aspects of the crime of aggression and to explore whether or not the amendments adding the crime of aggression to the Statute of the International Criminal Court (ICC) represent an advancement for women. This piece focuses on the potential for the new provisions to chill bona fide exercises of humanitarian intervention given that (1) the crime is expansively drafted to potentially cover all uses of sovereign force, (2) delegates rejected efforts by the United States to include an express exception for military operations launched to prevent the commission of other crimes within the jurisdiction of the ICC, and (3) other proposals that would have prevented humanitarian interventions from being considered ‘acts of aggression’ were not fully explored or implemented. The article acknowledges that feminist theory may never fully come to terms with a notion of humanitarian intervention given the doctrine’s valorisation of militarism, especially in light of the fact that women are so often excluded from decisions about uses of force. It nonetheless argues that if we want to hold out the possibility of humanitarian intervention being deployed in defense of women, elements of the new provisions (such as the terms ‘manifest’, ‘character’, ‘gravity’, and ‘consequences’) should be interpreted to exclude situations involving the nascent responsibility to protect doctrine.

Topics: Feminisms, Gender, Women, Humanitarian Assistance, International Law, International Criminal Law, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Militarism

Year: 2011

War, Religion, and Gender Ideology: The Politics of Peace Symbols in the 1990 Nicaraguan Elections


Dolan, Maureen. 1990. "War, Religion, and Gender Ideology: The Politics of Peace Symbols in the 1990 Nicaraguan Elections." Critical Sociology 17 (2): 103-9.

Author: Maureen Dolan


Analyses of the Sandinista defeat in the Nicaraguan elections of 1990 have focused both on the external pressures on the revolutionary state (warfarea and subsequent economic factors unfavorable for the national economy) and on factors internal to the revolutionary process (separation of FSLN from the grassroots organizations, hierarchical party structures, and related factors). However, little space has been devoted to an analysis of the gender politics of the election, either in terms of women's response as subjects differently affected by the war or in terms of the impact of the ideological struggle over the social construction of women and mothers in the electoral process.

This paper will examine how the complex personal and political component of the lived experience of prolonged warfare became articulated in the gender politics of the electoral campaign. I will argue tht the international process of militarization that characterized the contra war shaped the context for the construction of gender politics in the 1990 election campaign. I will further argue that the gender metaphors of the political discourse, as utilized in the ideological construction of the presidential candidates as peace candidates, constitute a key site in which the electoral campaigns of the Sandinistas and the UNO coalition defined their strategy. Ultimately, the construction of Danial Ortega as "gallo enavejado" – the macho fighting cock armed for battle – was less convincing as an image for achieving peace in Nicaragua than Violeta Chamorro, ideologically constructed by the UNO campaign as the "Virgin Mary" – the conciliatory maternal figure with religious and quasi-magical power for ending war.

Keywords: Political campaigns, militarism, political parties, ideology, education

Topics: Gender, Women, Health, Reproductive Health, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Militarism, Political Participation, Religion Regions: Americas, Central America Countries: Nicaragua

Year: 1990

Security Disarmed: Critical Perspectives on Gender, Race, and Militarization


Sutton, Barbara, Sandra Morgen, and Julie Novkov. 2008. Security Disarmed: Critical Perspectives on Gender, Race, and Militarization. Piscataway, NJ: Rutgers University Press.

Authors: Barbara Sutton, Sandra Morgen, Julie Novkov


From the history of state terrorism in Latin America, to state- and group-perpetrated plunder and genocide in Africa, to war and armed conflicts in the Middle East, militarization--the heightened role of organized aggression in society--continues to painfully shape the lives of millions of people around the world.

In Security Disarmed, scholars, policy planners, and activists come together to think critically about the human cost of violence and viable alternatives to armed conflict. Arranged in four parts--alternative paradigms of security, cross-national militarization, militarism in the United States, and pedagogical and cultural concerns--the book critically challenges militarization and voices an alternative encompassing vision of human security by analyzing the relationships among gender, race, and militarization. This collection of essays evaluates and resists the worldwide crisis of militarization--including but going beyond American military engagements in the twenty-first century. (Amazon)

Topics: Armed Conflict, Gender, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Militarism, Militarization, Race, Security, Human Security, Violence

Year: 2008

Sexual Violence and Armed Conflict


Leatherman, Janie. 2011. Sexual Violence and Armed Conflict. Cambridge: Polity.

Author: Janie Leatherman


This book offers a comprehensive analysis of the causes, consequences and responses to sexual violence in contemporary armed conflict. It explores the function and effect of wartime sexual violence and examines the conditions that make women  and girls most vulnerable to these acts both before, during and after conflict. To understand the motivations of the men (and occasionally women) who perpetrate this violence, the book analyzes the role played by systemic and situational factors such as patriarchy and militarized masculinity. Difficult questions of accountability are tackled; in particular, the case of child soldiers, who often suffer a double victimization when forced to commit sexual atrocities. The book concludes by looking at strategies of prevention and protection as well as new programs being set up on the ground to support the rehabilitation of survivors and their communities. Sexual violence in war has long been a taboo subject but, as this book shows, new and courageous steps are at last being taken at both local and international level - to end what has been called the “greatest silence in history.” (Summary from Amazon) 

Topics: Armed Conflict, Combatants, Child Soldiers, Gender, Women, Girls, Masculinity/ies, Gendered Power Relations, Patriarchy, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Militarism, Militarization, Post-Conflict, Sexual Violence

Year: 2011

Opposing Militarism: Soliders' Mothers in Russia


Zawilski, Valerie. 2010. “Opposing Militarism: Soliders’ Mothers in Russia.” In The Gender Imperative: Human Security Vs State Security, edited by Betty A. Reardon and Asha Hans, 255–86. New York: Routledge.

Author: Valerie Zawilski

Topics: Armed Conflict, Feminisms, Gender, Women, Men, Gendered Power Relations, Patriarchy, Gender Equality/Inequality, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Militarism, Security, Human Security Regions: Asia, Europe Countries: Russian Federation

Year: 2010

Khaki in the Family: Gender Discourses and Militarism in Nigeria


Mama, Amina. 1998. “Khaki in the Family: Gender Discourses and Militarism in Nigeria.” African Studies Review 41 (2): 1-17. doi:10.2307/524824.

Author: Amina Mama


The Nigerian military state has used gender politics for its own ends, exploiting opportunities afforded by international concern with women. The highly publicized program for rural women enabled the regime of Babangida to gain international credibility. The Abacha regime did not seek or win international support, but sought to upstage the gender politics of their predecessors locally by mounting more broadly populist programs which promised benefits to "the family" and further reinscribed women within highly limited reproductive roles. Because Nigerian civil society has been so reluctant to engage with gender, the military have been able to appropriate the terrain they refer to as "women development" for their own ends. Through a series of high profile programs, they have neutralized the potentially subversive and inherently antimilitarist notion of women's liberation, and propagated a gender politics which normalizes military rule.

Topics: Gender, Women, Gendered Discourses, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Militarism Regions: Africa, West Africa Countries: Nigeria

Year: 1998

"Furies" and "Die-hards": Women and Irish Republicanism in the Early Twentieth Century


Ryan, Louise. 1999. "'Furies' and 'Die-hards': Women and Irish Republicanism in the Early Twentieth Century." Gender and History 11 (2): 256-75. 

Author: Louise Ryan


"This paper explores aspects of women’s contribution to the armed Repub-lican campaign in Ireland and analyses, in particular, representations of thesewomen who transgressed and negotiated gender roles in a militarist con-text.From smuggling guns and carrying despatches to actual participationin armed conflict, women played significant and varied roles in the militantcampaign for Irish independence.‘From the onset of the 1916 Easter Risingthrough the struggle for independence and the civil war, women assumeda prominent role in putting Ireland’s case for freedom before the world’" (Ryan 1999, 256).

Topics: Armed Conflict, Coloniality/Post-Coloniality, Combatants, Female Combatants, Gender, Women, Masculinity/ies, Gender Roles, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Militarism, Nationalism, Political Participation Regions: Europe, Western Europe Countries: Ireland

Year: 1999

Gender, Militarism, and Globalization: Soldiers for Hire and Hegemonic Masculinity


Via, Sandra. 2010. “Gender, Militarism, and Globalization: Soldiers for Hire and Hegemonic Masculinity.” In Gender, War, and Militarism: Feminist Perspectives, edited by Laura Sjoberg and Sandra Via, 42–56. Santa Barbara: ABC-CLIO, LLC.

Author: Sandra Via


“In the study of gender, war and militarism, the increasing globalization of politics, in theory and in practice cannot be ignored. The gendered nature of militarism has been recognized in soldier training (Goldstein 2001), states’ understandings of the relationship between citizenship and military service (Elshtain 1987), stories of war criminals (Sjoberg and Gentry 2007), and stories of war heroes (Sjoberg, chapter 16, this volume). This chapter is interested in exploring those dynamics as they relate to globalization and the changing nature of militarism. As such, it uses as a starting point feminist work that frames gendered militarism in terms of the idealized or hegemonic masculinity in a given state or at a given time. Building on this analysis, this chapter argues that the atemporal and globalizing forces in current politics hybridize hegemonic masculinities, creating dissonance and conflict between gendered militarisms. It examines the interplay of economic globalization and globalized militarisms in contemporary international and intrastate conflicts, pointing out the complex evolution of the relationships between gender, war and militarism in an increasingly globalized world. It examines the neoliberal ideology that permeates many of the processes of political globalization, and the ways in which those processes reify the dominance of certain ideas about gender and conflict.
In these explorations, this chapter focuses on a particular aspect of militarism: the rise of private military corporations (PMCs), particularly the private security giant formerly known as Blackwater (first, Blackwater USA, then Blackwater World, now Xe). Focusing on Blackwater’s role as a contractor for the U.S. military and the Iraqi government in the ongoing conflict in Iraq and for the U.S. government in New Orleans, this chapter argues that, at the height of its involvement in Iraq, Blackwater and its contractors epitomized the hegemonic masculinities found in gendered militarisms, and their operations relied on the subordination of a feminized, racialized other. The chapter explores how Blackwater’s operations were based in hypermasculine ideas about security, both in Iraq and in New Orleans. It concludes by tracing the company’s purposeful change of face from its cowboy masculinity identity as “Blackwater” to its emphasis on a protective masculinity in its new identity as “Xe” (Via 2010, 42-3).

Topics: Armed Conflict, Combatants, Feminisms, Gender, Masculinity/ies, Masculinism, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Militarism

Year: 2010


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