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Militarization

Working through Warfare in Ukraine: Rethinking Militarization in a Ukrainian Theme Café

Citation:

Uehling, Greta Lynn. 2020. “Working through Warfare in Ukraine: Rethinking Militarization in a Ukrainian Theme Café.” International Feminist Journal of Politics 22 (3): 335–58.

Author: Greta Lynn Uehling

Abstract:

The conflict between Ukraine and Russia in the Donbas region has led both countries to strengthen their respective militaries. The literature on militarization emphasizes the subtle and largely unconscious ways in which militarization spreads through society. Drawing on ethnographic fieldwork conducted between 2015 and 2017, I argue that attention to the intersubjective aspects of the process exposes the self-conscious working through of military realities. I make this argument using the case study of a restaurant run by demobilized fighters, Café Patriot. Specifically, I show how the café’s proprietors aimed to provide an anti-depressive atmosphere for fighters, and to provoke critical thinking among non-combatant patrons. The café challenged theorizing on militarization by effacing the separation between military and civilian as predicted, but doing so in the interest of reminding people of militarization rather than blinding them to it. These findings highlight veterans’ constructive efforts to re-inhabit a fractured world, and contrast with portrayals in critical studies of militarized masculinity. In sum, the café represented an effort to intervene in the process of militarization using, strangely enough, the trappings of militarization. At stake is the definition of militarization as an insidious process.

Keywords: militarization, masculinity, gender, emotions, veterans, feminism

Topics: Gender, Masculinity/ies, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Militarization Regions: Europe, Eastern Europe Countries: Ukraine

Year: 2020

Racialized Geographies and the ‘War on Drugs’: Gender Violence, Militarization, and Criminalization of Indigenous Peoples

Citation:

Hernández Castillo, Rosalva Aída. 2019. “Racialized Geographies and the ‘War on Drugs’: Gender Violence, Militarization, and Criminalization of Indigenous Peoples.” The Journal of Latin American and Caribbean Anthropology 24 (3): 635–52.

Author: Rosalva Aída Hernández Castillo

Abstract:

SPANISH ABSTRACT:
En este artículo reflexiono sobre el impacto que está teniendo la llamada “guerra contra el narco” en los cuerpos y territorios de los pueblos indígenas de México. Tomando como ventana analítica las historias de vida de mujeres víctimas de violencia sexual en regiones militarizadas y paramilitarizadas, así como las historias de exclusión de mujeres indígenas presas en el marco de la lucha contra el narcotráfico, me interesa establecer un vínculo entre la ocupación mediante la violación de los cuerpos de las mujeres indígenas, su control y encarcelamiento, con la ocupación de sus territorios y el despojo de sus recursos naturales. Se trata de procesos que se dan demanera simultánea y que responden a las lógicas neocoloniales del capitalismo en cuya reproducción han sido fundamentales las desigualdades de género y raza.
 
ENGLISH ABSTRACT:
This article examines the effects of the “war on drugs” on the bodies and territories of indigenous peoples of Mexico. This article uses the life histories of women victims of sexual violence in militarized and paramilitarized regions as the analytical framework to inspect, histories of exclusion of indigenous women incarcerated in the context of the war on drugs. This research argues that there are deeply entangled inter-connections between occupation of indigenous women’s bodies through the violation, control, and incarceration and the occupation of indigenous territories and dispossession of their natural resources. These processes take place simultaneously and respond to the neocolonial logics of capitalism, within which gender and race inequalities are essential for their reproduction. 

Keywords: gender, human rights, law, Indigenous people

Topics: Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, Indigenous, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Militarization, Paramilitaries, Race, Sexual Violence, SV against Women Regions: Americas, North America Countries: Mexico

Year: 2019

Rethinking Rape: The Role of Women in Wartime Violence

Citation:

Loken, Meredith. 2017. “Rethinking Rape: The Role of Women in Wartime Violence.” Security Studies 26 (1): 60–92.

Author: Meredith Loken

Abstract:

There is widespread variation in scope, scale, and forms of rape across and within conflicts. One explanation focuses on the integration of women in armed groups. Scholars and international organizations posit that the inclusion of women in armed groups discourages wartime rape. They advocate women’s increased participation to combat rape and other forms of civilian violence. Using an original dataset of women’s involvement as combatants in civil wars from 1980 to 2009, I argue that the participation of female fighters has no significant impact in constraining an armed group’s propensity to rape. Female combatants do not lessen rape because organizational factors, primarily culture, drive violence in armed factions and encourage conformity irrespective of individual characteristics. Advocating further militarization of women in an attempt to reduce conflict-related rape may be an ineffective policy prescription.

Topics: Armed Conflict, Combatants, Female Combatants, Gender-Based Violence, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Militarization, Sexual Violence, Rape, Violence

Year: 2017

Conflict, Religion and Gender Hegemonies – The Implications for Global Citizenship Education: A Response to Islah Jad’s article

Citation:

Arnot, Madeline. 2011. “Conflict, Religion and Gender Hegemonies – The Implications for Global Citizenship Education: A Response to Islah Jad’s article.” Ethnicities 11 (3): 373-77.

Author: Madeleine Arnot

Annotation:

Summary:
"Islah Jad’s account of the Palestinian women’s movement has historical specificity as a result of Palestine’s political history as a transitional/provisional state that has experienced devastating interventions by Israel into its allocated territory, and exceptional levels of international attention. Yet Jad’s account of the Palestinian women’s movement also resonates in an uncannily familiar way with other histo-ries of the women’s movements internationally. In Gramscian terms, there are a variety of forms of hegemonic power and different counter-hegemonic strategies that can affect women’s movements. In this account, male hegemony (inflected by social class, ethnicity and sexuality) plays a crucial role in the interfaces between international hegemony over economic development, and religious hegemony. When women are symbolically constructed as the epitome of the nation, there is more at stake in the liberation of women than just gender politics. Gender is the lens through which we can understand the battles over citizenship, national identity and power (c.f. Fennell and Arnot, 2007).
 
We are at a critical moment in social science particularly in the North, where we are being called upon to rethink our categories, assumptions, interpretations and agendas to let in the realities of different worlds. Challenging the assumptions of ‘methodological nationalism’ (Beck, 2000), southern feminists from Africa and India have argued that the framing of gender theory in northern contexts has often imposed inappropriate gender categorizations, concepts of motherhood and sexual embodiments, whilst neglecting the different communal cultures, family structures and gender identities found in southern cultures (Fennell and Arnot, 2008).
 
One aspect of this hegemonic gender theory has been the denial of the role of spirituality and religion; indeed, Jad argues that northern forms of the women’s movement are secular (if not atheist!). Within Jad’s article lies a fundamental issue – how can northern gender theorists understand the role of religious conflict between nations and the religious shaping of the women’s movement within national struggles? I think it is fair to say that gender studies has constructed religions as obstacles to the achievement of gender equality not least because of their enforcement or reinforcement of male superiority and power. As a result, it is hard to envisage religion as anything but an impediment to the advancement of female citizenship.
 
In this response, I highlight three relevant themes: 1. gender and education in transitional states; 2. the universalism and secularization of human rights; and 3.national gender identities, religion and militarization" (Arnot 2011, 373).

Topics: Citizenship, Class, Development, Conflict, Education, Ethnicity, Feminisms, Gender, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Militarization, Nationalism, Rights, Human Rights, Religion, Sexuality Regions: Asia, Middle East Countries: Palestine / Occupied Palestinian Territories

Year: 2011

Wounds: Militarized Nursing, Feminist Curiosity, and Unending War

Citation:

Enloe, Cynthia. 2019. "Wounds: Militarized Nursing, Feminist Curiosity, and Unending War." International Relations 33 (3): 393-412.

Author: Cynthia Enloe

Abstract:

Taking wartime nurses – and post-war nursing – seriously makes one think more politically about the wounds endured in wartime and what counts as a wartime ‘wound’. Thinking about wounds and the wounded, in turn, reveals how war-waging officials, and militarizers more generally, have tried in the past, and today still try, to shrink citizens’ awareness of militarism’s negative consequences. Nursing, nurses, wounds, and the wounded each continues to be gendered, influencing the workings of both masculinities and femininities in past and current wartimes and post-war politics. Feminist analysts have expanded the ‘political’ and multiplied ‘political thinkers’. Failing to absorb these feminist theoretical insights fosters the trivialization of nurses and other caretakers of the wartime wounded and their diverse political thinking. It is a failing with serious implications. Overlooking nurses and others who provide wartime care, combined with a lack of curiosity about wounds, perpetuates militarization and war.
 

Keywords: masculinities, militarization, nurses, post-war, war, women, wounds

Topics: Armed Conflict, Feminisms, Gender, Masculinity/ies, Femininity/ies, Health, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Militarism, Militarization, Livelihoods, Post-Conflict

Year: 2019

The Political Economy of Conflict and Violence against Women: Towards Feminist Framings from the South

Citation:

Samuel, Kumudini, Claire Slatter, and Vagisha Gunasekara, eds. 2019. The Political Economy of Conflict and Violence against Women: Towards Feminist Framings from the South. Zed Books.

Authors: Kumudini Samuel, Claire Slatter, Vagisha Gunasekara

Annotation:

Summary:
The Political Economy of Conflict and Violence against Women shows how political, economic, social and ideological processes intersect to shape conflict related gender-based violence against women. Through feminist interrogations of the politics of economies, struggles for political power and the gender order, this collection reveals how sexual orders and regimes are linked to spaces of production. Crucially it argues that these spaces are themselves firmly anchored in overlapping patriarchies which are sustained and reproduced during and after war through violence that is physical as well as structural.
 
Through an analysis of legal regimes and structures of social arrangements, this book frames militarization as a political economic dynamic, developing a radical critique of liberal peace building and peace making that does not challenge patriarchy, or modes of production and accumulation. 
 
This book brings together the work of a group of feminists from the global South. The authors are diverse in their backgrounds, experience, and academic and disciplinary orientations. They work in different political, economic, social and cultural contexts and some have approached writing about the political economies of violence against women in their own countries as much (or more) from lived experience and experiential insights as from formal or scholarly research, which we consider entirely valid and in keeping with feminist epistemology. (Summary from DAWN)
 
Table of Contents:
Introduction: Framing a South Feminist Analysis of War, Conflict and Violence against Women: The Value of a Political Economy Lens 
Kumudini Samuel and Vagisha Gunasekara
 
The Construction of the ‘Responsible Woman’: Structural Violence in Sri Lanka’s Post-war Development Strategy
Vagisha Gunasekara and Vijay K. Nagaraj
 
Ending Violence against Women in Papua New Guinea’s Highlands Region: The Role of the State, Local Civil Society and Extractive Industries by Elizabeth
 
Box 6.1 Lessons from the Bougainville Experience
Michelle Kopi
 
Rural Women in Colombia: From Victims to Actors
Cecilia López Montaño and MaríA-Claudia Holstine
 
Contesting Territoriality: Patriarchy, Accumulation and Dispossession. “Entrenched Peripherality”: Women, Political Economy and the Myth of Peacebuilding in North East India
Roshmi Goswami
 
Re-Imagining Subversion: Agency and Women’s Peace Activism in Northern Uganda
Yaliwe Clarke and Constance O’Brien
 
The Prism of Marginalisation: Political Economy of Violence against Women in Sudan and South Sudan
Fahima Hashim

 

Topics: Conflict, Feminisms, Gender, Women, Gender-Based Violence, Gendered Power Relations, Patriarchy, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Militarization, Political Economies, Peacebuilding, Violence

Year: 2019

Scottish Soldier-Heroes and Patriotic War Heroines: The Gendered Politics of World War I Commemoration

Citation:

Danilova, Nataliya, and Emma Dolan. 2020. "Scottish Soldier-Heroes and Patriotic War Heroines: The Gendered Politics of World War I Commemoration." Gender, Place & Culture 27 (2): 239-60.

Authors: Nataliya Danilova, Emma Dolan

Abstract:

This paper explores the (re)production of embodied gendered and racialised identities as part of commemorations devised by the Scottish government to mark the Centenary of WWI, 2014–18. In particular, we demonstrate how the Centenary has re-established Scotland’s key contribution to British military power instead of providing a platform for a broader discussion of British wars and Scotland’s role therein. Our analysis posits that this reframing was achieved through the (re)production of a gendered polarisation between white ‘dead’ soldier-heroes, ‘local lads’ and bearers of a ‘proud Scottish military tradition’; and women as embodiments of patriotic motherhood. We further explore the deployment of specific discursive and performative means to transform Dr Elsie Inglis, the only woman whose contribution was singled out by WW100 Scotland, into a patriotic war heroine. This was achieved by the militarisation of her work; the obscuring of identity, class- and race-based hierarchies within women’s war-work; and, finally, through the subversion of feminist ideas and practices in Inglis’ work for the Scottish Women’s Hospitals. Lastly, we reflect on the gendered legacy of the Centenary, emphasising the necessity for critical engagement with Britain’s wars and Scotland’s role therein.
 

Keywords: Britain, commemoration, gender, militarisation, performance

Topics: Class, Feminisms, Gender, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Militarization, Race Regions: Europe, Northern Europe Countries: United Kingdom

Year: 2020

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

Feminism in the Humanitarian Machine. Introduction to the Special Section on ‘The Politics of Intervention Against (Conflict-Related) Sexual and Gender-based Violence’

Citation:

Veit, Alex. 2019. "Feminism in the Humanitarian Machine. Introduction to the Special Section on ‘The Politics of Intervention Against (Conflict-Related) Sexual and Gender-based Violence.’" Journal of Intervention and Statebuilding 13 (4): 401-17.

Author: Alex Veit

Abstract:

The prevention and mitigation of sexual and gender-based violence in (post-) conflict societies has become an important humanitarian activity. This introductory article examines the analytical discourses on these interventions, the institutionalization of SGBV expertise in international politics, and the emancipatory potential of anti-SGBV practices. It argues that the confluence of feminist professional activism and militarized humanitarian interventionism produced specific international activities against SGBV. As part of the institutionalization of gender themes in international politics, feminist emancipatory claims have been taken up by humanitarian organizations. The normal operating state of the humanitarian machine, however, undercuts its potential contribution to social transformation towards larger gender equality in (post-) conflict societies.

Keywords: conflict-related sexual violence, humanitarian intervention, post-conflict, liberalism, feminism, governance

Topics: Conflict, Feminisms, Gender-Based Violence, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, Governance, Humanitarian Assistance, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Militarization, Post-Conflict, Sexual Violence

Year: 2019

Jinn, Floods, and Resistant Ecological Imaginaries in Kashmir

Citation:

Bhan, Mona. 2018. “Jinn, Floods, and Resistant Ecological Imaginaries in Kashmir.” Economic and Political Weekly 53 (47): 67-75.

Author: Mona Bhan

Annotation:

Summary:
How Kashmiri women experience and narrate questions of resource sovereignty and dispossession within the context of Kashmir's long-drawn-out military occupation, and India's investments in mega hydroelectric dams on Kashmir's rivers have been discussed. The devastating floods in 2014 led Kashmiris to increasingly challenge perceptions of nature or natural disasters as apolitical. Dams are an integral part of border-making processes, and gender, space, and borders are continually co-produced through militarised infrastructures. Women's resistant imaginaries, which combine political and ecological metaphors, and rely on conceptions of jinn and other non- human agency, offer a way to rethink Kashmir beyond its securitised geographies. (Summary from Economic & Political Weekly)

Topics: Armed Conflict, Occupation, Resource Conflict, Environment, Environmental Disasters, Gender, Women, Infrastructure, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Militarization Regions: Asia, South Asia Countries: India

Year: 2018

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