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Nationalism

Militarized Modernity and Gendered Citizenship in South Korea

Citation:

Moon, Seungsook. 2005. Militarized Modernity and Gendered Citizenship in South Korea. Durham, NC: Duke University Press.

Author: Seungsook Moon

Annotation:

This pathbreaking study presents a feminist analysis of the politics of membership in the South Korean nation over the past four decades. Seungsook Moon examines the ambitious effort by which South Korea transformed itself into a modern industrial and militarized nation. She demonstrates that the pursuit of modernity in South Korea involved the construction of the anticommunist national identity and a massive effort to mold the populace into useful, docile members of the state. This process, which she terms “militarized modernity,” treated men and women differently. Men were mobilized for mandatory military service and then, as conscripts, utilized as workers and researchers in the industrializing economy. Women were consigned to lesser factory jobs, and their roles as members of the modern nation were defined largely in terms of biological reproduction and household management.
Moon situates militarized modernity in the historical context of colonialism and nationalism in the twentieth century. She follows the course of militarized modernity in South Korea from its development in the early 1960s through its peak in the 1970s and its decline after rule by military dictatorship ceased in 1987. She highlights the crucial role of the Cold War in South Korea’s militarization and the continuities in the disciplinary tactics used by the Japanese colonial rulers and the postcolonial military regimes. Moon reveals how, in the years since 1987, various social movements—particularly the women’s and labor movements—began the still-ongoing process of revitalizing South Korean civil society and forging citizenship as a new form of membership in the democratizing nation. (Summary from Duke University Press)

Topics: Citizenship, Coloniality/Post-Coloniality, Gender, Femininity/ies, Masculinity/ies, Governance, Post-Conflict Governance, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Militarization, Nationalism Regions: Asia, East Asia Countries: South Korea

Year: 2005

Gender and Nationalism

Syllabus: 
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Year course was taught: 
2020

'People Want to See Tears’: Military Heroes and the ‘Constant Penelope’ of the UK’s Military Wives Choir

Citation:

Cree, Alice. 2020. “'People Want to See Tears’: Military Heroes and the ‘Constant Penelope’ of the UK’s Military Wives Choir.” Gender, Place & Culture 27 (2): 218–38. 

Author: Alice Cree

Abstract:

This article offers a feminist analysis of the UK’s Military Wives Choir as a vehicle for depicting the subject of the ‘Penelope’ military wife. The Penelope subject is characterised by patriotic feminine stoicism, and is a figure through which the masculine military hero is created and reflected. This paper will use the example of the Military Wives Choir to the argue that the making of the Penelope military wife subject in the national imagination is an important means through which women married to servicemen are rendered useful for the military. Drawing on primary fieldwork with the Plymouth branch of the choir alongside an analysis of secondary material such as song lyrics and Gareth Malone’s BBC television programme The Choir: Military Wives, my discussion will centre on three themes; lyrics & music, history & time of the state, and violence & representation. By discussing the making of the Penelope subject through these lenses, this paper will contend that there are clear, yet often nuanced, forms of violence at work in the representation of the choir. And yet, as this article will conclude, in order to shed a more textured light on this violence what is needed is a critical and in-depth engagement with the lived experiences of the women of the choir.

Keywords: critical military studies, feminist geopolitics, military wives, military wives choir, gender

Topics: Feminisms, Gender, Women, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Militaries, Nationalism, Violence Regions: Europe, Northern Europe Countries: United Kingdom

Year: 2020

Securing the Nation through the Politics of Sexual Violence: Tracing Resonances between Delhi and Cologne

Citation:

Holzberg, Billy, and Priya Raghavan. 2020. “Securing the Nation through the Politics of Sexual Violence: Tracing Resonances between Delhi and Cologne.” International Affairs 96 (5): 1189–208.

Authors: Billy Holzberg, Priya Raghavan

Abstract:

Postcolonial and black feminist scholars have long cautioned against the dangerous proximity between the politics of sexual violence and the advancement of nationalist and imperial projects. In this article, we uncover what it is in particular about efforts to address sexual violence that makes them so amenable to exclusionary nationalist projects, by attending to the political aftermaths of the rape of Jyoti Singh in Delhi in 2012, and the cases of mass sexual abuse that took place during New Year's Eve in Cologne in 2015. Tracing the nationalist discourses and policies precipitated in their wake, we demonstrate how across both contexts, the response to sexual violence was ultimately to augment the securitizing power and remit of the state—albeit through different mechanisms, and while producing different subjects of/for surveillance, control and regulation. We highlight how in both cases it is through contemporary resonances of a persistent (post)colonial echo—which enmeshes the normative female body with the idea of the nation—that sexual abuse becomes an issue of national security and the politics of sexual violence becomes tethered to exclusionary nationalisms. Revealing the more general, shared, rationalities that bind the nation to the normative female body while attending to the located political reverberations that make this entanglement so affectively potent in the distinct contexts of India and Germany helps distinguish and amplify transnational and intersectional feminist approaches to sexual violence that do not so readily accommodate nationalist ambitions.

Topics: Coloniality/Post-Coloniality, Feminisms, Gender, Women, Intersectionality, Nationalism, Security, Sexual Violence, Rape, Sexual Exploitation and Abuse, SV against Women Regions: Asia, South Asia, Europe, Central Europe Countries: Germany, India

Year: 2020

Islamist Women’s Feminist Subjectivities in (R)Evolution: The Egyptian Muslim Sisterhood in the Aftermath of the Arab Uprisings

Citation:

Biagini, Erika. 2020. “Islamist Women’s Feminist Subjectivities in (R)Evolution: The Egyptian Muslim Sisterhood in the Aftermath of the Arab Uprisings.” International Feminist Journal of Politics 22 (3): 382–402.

Author: Erika Biagini

Abstract:

This article draws attention to a young generation of Islamist women activists and to how these women have reacted to the patriarchal tendencies of the Muslim Brotherhood (MB) movement following the January 25, 2011 revolution in Egypt. Although women’s support was central to the ability of Islamists to win power, after the uprising Islamists failed to grant women significant political rights and autonomy. While the existing literature on gender and nationalism demonstrates that practical gains for women are frequently sidelined by their movements in a post-revolutionary era, there is increasing recognition of the need to examine the relationship between feminism and nationalism in relation to the particular context in which this evolves. This article substantiates this claim with new evidence. Based on a feminist ethnographic study of the Muslim Sisterhood, the female members of the Egyptian MB movement, conducted in Cairo between 2013 and 2018, the article demonstrates that a new gender politics has emerged among Islamist women activists as a result of their engagement in revolutionary struggle. This gender politics has explicit feminist overtones, which have become evident as women begin to challenge men’s position of privilege within the sphere of the family.

Keywords: Egypt, Muslim Brotherhood, Arab Uprisings, Islamist women, feminism, activism, Subjectivity

Topics: Feminisms, Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Patriarchy, Nationalism, Political Participation, Rights, Women's Rights Regions: Africa, MENA, North Africa, Middle East Countries: Egypt

Year: 2020

Feminism in Cyprus: Women’s Agency, Gender, and Peace in the Shadow of Nationalism

Citation:

Kamenou, Nayia. 2020. “Feminism in Cyprus: Women’s Agency, Gender, and Peace in the Shadow of Nationalism.” International Feminist Journal of Politics 22 (3): 359–81.

Author: Nayia Kamenou

Abstract:

This article explores the ways in which feminist and women’s agency is articulated in the Cypriot context through the paradigms of nationalism, peace, and conflict. It does so to broaden our understanding of gendered and peace agency in troubled and divided societies, in which complex and conflicting discourses meet. Analyzing data from interviews with feminist and women’s groups’ representatives, it examines how nationalism and women’s approaches to gender, politics, peace, and conflict enable or restrict feminist and women’s agency. It finds that a strategic essentialist approach has initiated a reconfiguration of gender(ed) power relations, women’s agency, and peacebuilding processes. It argues that when this approach is combined with feminist theory and praxis and the employment of transnational peace paradigms, the possibilities for feminist and women’s agency increase, as long as feminist scholarship and grassroots activism inform each other through dialogue. Therefore, it highlights the nuanced and complex dialectic between essentialist and anti-essentialist feminist gender discourses. Moreover, it challenges theories that posit a rigidly hierarchical relation between local and transnational gendered and peace agency paradigms, by demonstrating their malleability and reciprocity. Thus, it contributes to the debate about the modalities and possibilities of feminist sociopolitical intervention in nationalism- and conflict-ridden contexts.
 

Keywords: Cyprus, feminism, gender, nationalism and peace, women's agency

Topics: Conflict, Feminisms, Gender, Gendered Discourses, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Nationalism, Peace Processes, Peacebuilding Regions: Europe, Southern Europe Countries: Cyprus

Year: 2020

Displacement, Memory and Home(Less) Identities: Turkish Cypriot Women’s Narratives

Citation:

Aliefendioğlu, Hanife, and Pembe Behçetoğulları. 2019. “Displacement, Memory and Home(Less) Identities: Turkish Cypriot Women’s Narratives.” Gender, Place & Culture 26 (10): 1472–92.

Authors: Hanife Aliefendioğlu, Pembe Behçetoğulları

Abstract:

This study is an analysis of the narratives of Turkish Cypriot women in the north of Cyprus who were displaced during the ethnic conflict between the 1950s and 1974. We have conducted 21 interviews with Turkish Cypriot women who were living in different parts of Northern Cyprus. We used oral history, both as a method and as an epistemological stance to re-phrase the near past of Cyprus and the Cyprus issue from the perspective of gender/women’s studies. The study follows the traces of modernity, patriarchy, and nationalism in women’s narratives, about the place, home, belonging and homelessness. The narratives describe Turkish Cypriot women’s experiences of being a woman in conflict and displacement (‘göçmen olmak’ in daily talk in Turkish) making a home out of a house and undertaking daily routines for their families. The study also reveals that ethnic conflict and displacement have empowered women to a certain degree.

Keywords: Cyprus conflict, displacement, home, Turkish Cypriot women, women's narratives

Topics: Conflict, Displacement & Migration, Ethnicity, Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Patriarchy, Nationalism Regions: Europe, Southern Europe Countries: Cyprus

Year: 2019

Irreconcilable Differences: Political Culture and Gender Violence during the Chilean Transition to Democracy

Citation:

Hiner, Hillary, and María José Azócar. 2015. “Irreconcilable Differences: Political Culture and Gender Violence during the Chilean Transition to Democracy.” Latin American Perspectives 42 (3): 52-72.

Authors: Hillary Hiner, María José Azócar

Abstract:

ENGLISH ABSTRACT:
The politics of national reconciliation during the transitional period of the 1990s in Chile constructed a hegemonic framework that affected discourses in other domains in multilayered ways. In order to achieve consensus among its various factions, the Concertación used "reconciliation" discourse to portray the nation as a family, and potentially divisive issues were framed in the most apolitical, ahistorical, and technical way. In this context, gender violence was construed as a matter of family and individual liberties, and the objective of the first family violence law was maintaining the family intact. The framework of reconciliation and its association with Christian forgiveness and family unity promoted the use of conciliation rather than sentencing as the primary means of settling domestic violence disputes and made it difficult for those affected by gender violence to achieve justice. However, the foundational discourses of the 1990s served an important purpose in opening up discursive spaces on gender violence that could be further refined. 
 
SPANISH ABSTRACT:
Las políticas de reconciliación nacional durante el periodo de transición de los 1990 en Chile armaron un marco hegémonico que afectó el discurso en otros campos de múltiples maneras. Para lograr el consenso entre sus diferentes facciones, la Concertación usó el discurso de la "reconciliación" para describir la nación como una familia y los temas que pudieran suscitar discrepancias fueron enmarcados de la manera más apolítica, ahistórica y técnica. En este contexto, la violencia de género fue interpretada como una cuestión de libertades individuales y de la familia, y el objetivo de la primera ley sobre violencia familiar fue mantener a la familia unida. El marco de reconciliación y su asociación con el perdón cristiano y la unidad familiar promovieron el uso de la conciliación en lugar de la sanción penal como el medio principal para resolver las disputas de violencia doméstica. Esto hizo difícil que aquellas personas afectadas por la violencia de género recibieran justicia. Sin embargo, los discursos fundacionales de los 1990 sirvieron para abrir más espacios de discusión sobre la violencia de género, y ésto es algo que podría ser profundizado.

Keywords: gender violence, reconciliation, justice, memory, Chile

Topics: Domestic Violence, Gender, Gender-Based Violence, Justice, TRCs, Nationalism, Religion, Violence Regions: Americas, South America Countries: Chile

Year: 2015

Gender, Nation, and Situated Intersectionality: The Case of Catalan Pro-Independence Feminism

Citation:

Rodó-Zárate, Maria. 2020. “Gender, Nation, and Situated Intersectionality: The Case of Catalan Pro-Independence Feminism.” Politics & Gender 16 (2): 608–36.

Author: Maria Rodó-Zárate

Abstract:

Debates on nation, self-determination, and nationalism tend to ignore the gender dimension, women’s experiences, and feminist proposals on such issues. In turn, feminist discussions on the intersection of oppressions generally avoid the national identity of stateless nations as a source of oppression. In this article, I relate feminism and nationalism through an intersectional framework in the context of the Catalan pro-independence movement. Since the 1970s, Catalan feminists have been developing theories and practices that relate gender and nationality from an intersectional perspective, which may challenge hegemonic genealogies of intersectionality and general assumptions about the relation between nationalism and gender. Focusing on developments made by feminist activists from past and present times, I argue that women are key agents in national construction and that situated intersectional frameworks may provide new insights into relations among axes of inequalities beyond the Anglocentric perspective.

Keywords: intersectionality, Catalonia, nationalism, feminism

Topics: Feminisms, Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, Intersectionality, Nationalism Regions: Europe, Southern Europe Countries: Spain

Year: 2020

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

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