Printer-friendly versionSend by emailPDF version

"New Wars"

Women and 'New Wars' in El Salvador

Citation:

Applebaum, Anna, and Briana Mawby. 2018. “Women and ‘New Wars’ in El Salvador.” Stability: International Journal of Security & Development 7 (1): 1-15.

Authors: Anna Applebaum, Briana Mawby

Abstract:

The most violent countries in the world are increasingly countries considered ‘at peace’. From Honduras to Mexico to South Africa, armed violence, often by gangs, has led to high levels of casualties. Disruption of daily life due to armed violence is similar to the challenges experienced during wartime, though often without the markers or recognition associated with war. With gang violence primarily viewed as a domestic criminal issue, external support for conflict mitigation and humanitarian assistance is often low. Yet the disruptive impact of such high rates of violence is significant, and the humanitarian impact is severe. New theoretical frameworks are needed to better problematize extreme armed violence in ‘peacetime’ states. This article seeks to bring an understanding of the severity of armed violence in states such as El Salvador into engagement with the critical and theoretical foundations of the women, peace and security (WPS) field. Gendered dynamics shape gang violence in El Salvador, and a gender lens helps reimagine its impact. Aligning critical theory with the lived experience of this subset of armed conflict allows new directions for engagement and, in particular, offers the opportunity to re-examine long-standing assumptions of what initiates, maintains, and challenges armed violence by non-state actors in communities considered ‘at peace.’ This article seeks to encourage greater debate and scholarship to inform our understandings of armed conflict and gender in communities affected by gang violence, such as those in El Salvador. In these communities, the level of violence often replicates the experiences of war, and thus a WPS lens is a critical tool for analysis. 

Topics: Armed Conflict, "New Wars", Gender, Humanitarian Assistance, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Non-state Armed Groups, UN Security Council Resolutions on WPS, Violence Regions: Americas, Central America Countries: El Salvador

Year: 2018

Gender and the Security Sector: Towards a More Secure Future

Citation:

Arostegui, Julie L. 2015. "Gender and the Security Sector: Towards a More Secure Future." Connections 14 (3): 7-30.

Author: Julie L. Arostegui

Annotation:

Summary: 
In recent decades, the nature of war has changed dramatically. Internal conflicts are being waged by opposing armed groups, often divided along ideological or ethnic lines that increasingly target civilians and wreak havoc on society with severe physical, psychological, social, political, and economic consequences. With the changed nature of conflict has come an increasing demand to consider its varied effects on women and girls, men and boys, and to address their specific needs before, during, and after conflict. There is also an increasing awareness of the importance of including women in peace and security processes. Women are 50 percent of the population and a critical part of society and, without them, real and sustainable peace cannot be achieved. They are not merely victims of conflict; they also play active roles as combatants, peace builders, politicians, and activists, and are often in the strongest position to bring about peace in their communities. Women around the world have emerged as voices of peace, mobilizing across communities and using their social roles and networks to mediate and mitigate violence. They have demanded attention to the complex issues of peace and peace building, and the needs of the communities involved, rather than to just cease-fires and power sharing. The international community has responded with a framework for addressing women, peace, and security, which includes United Nations (UN) Security Council resolutions and binding international law. Regional bodies such as the European Union, NATO, and the African Union have also developed strong frameworks around gender equality and women’s rights in order to build sustainable peace, driven by advocacy by women’s groups and the experiences of conflict. With these changes has also come a paradigm shift in the concept of security from one of state security to human security. Whereas traditionally security involved the protection of borders and state sovereignty, the modern concept of security addresses the security of individuals and communities. It broadens both the nature of security threats such as poverty, discrimination, gender-based violence, lack of democracy and marginalization, and the actors involved, including non-state actors and civil society. It means creating societies that can withstand instability and conflict. It is more than the absence of armed conflict; it is an environment where individuals can thrive.2 A security sector that is based in human security takes into account the differing needs of men, women, boys, and girls, and ensures that the full and equal participation of women addresses the needs of all of the population and helps to establish a more peaceful and secure society. Integrating a gender perspective into the security sector is essential: 1) to abide by universally accepted human rights principles; 2) because when both men and women are involved in decision-making processes, there are better outcomes; and 3) using gender perspectives and mainstreaming increases operational effectiveness" (Arostegui 2015, 7-8).

Topics: Armed Conflict, "New Wars", Civil Society, Democracy / Democratization, Economies, Poverty, Gender, Gender-Based Violence, Gender Mainstreaming, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, International Law, International Organizations, Peace and Security, Rights, Human Rights, Women's Rights, Security, Human Security, Security Sector Reform, UN Security Council Resolutions on WPS

Year: 2015

Mothers, Warriors and Lords: Gender(ed) Cartographies of the US War on Drugs in Latin America

Citation:

Telles, Ana Clara. 2019. “Mothers, Warriors and Lords: Gender(ed) Cartographies of the US War on Drugs in Latin America.” Contexto Internacional 41 (1): 15-38.

Author: Ana Clara Telles

Abstract:

This paper aims to offer a feminist, Latin-American reading on the gender representations that constitute the discourse on the US war on drugs in Latin America. Drawing upon the feminist literature on international security, this article explores some of the nuances of the US war-on-drugs discourse when it comes to gender. It argues that, although a gendered discourse has been constantly present in US official discourse, it has visibly changed in character as the USA’s antidrug policies became increasingly internationalized, militarized, and oriented by a ‘supply-side approach.’ Once deployed through the feminization of drug consumption as a moral degradation of the nation’s social body, US war-on-drugs discourse perceptibly changed to encompass a process of hyper-masculinization of the figure of the US drug warrior, supported by subordinate masculinities and femininities represented by the subaltern, feminized Latin American drug warriors, and the ruthless, hyper-aggressive drug lords. Ultimately, the gender(ed) cartographies of the USA’s war-on-drugs discourse work as conditions of possibility for framing the war on drugs as the only ‘solution’ to the ‘drug problem’ and reaffirm the incessant search for sovereignty that has as its ultimate goal the total control, domination and vigilance of human interaction with psychoactive substances: attributes of a hegemonic state masculinity par excellence. Through gendered (in)security performances, the state defends not only its ‘physical’ borders from external threats, but also its own frontiers of possibility.

Keywords: war on drugs, gender studies, gender representations, Latin America, illicit drugs

Topics: Armed Conflict, "New Wars", Feminisms, Gender, Masculinity/ies, Femininity/ies, Gendered Discourses, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Militarization, Trafficking, Drug Trafficking Regions: Americas, Central America, South America

Year: 2019

Sexual Violence and Armed Conflict: Complex Dynamics of Re-Victimization

Citation:

Leatherman, Janie. 2007. "Sexual Violence and Armed Conflict: Complex Dynamics of Re-Victimization." International Journal of Peace Studies 12 (1): 53-71.

Author: Janie Leatherman

Abstract:

This article first examines two types of causes of sexual violence in armed conflict: systemic, or more distant causes, and more proximate, or situational causes, including the role of "runaway norms." In the second part, the article draws from a phase model of conflict to understand the new wars and the types of sexual violence that they entail in different stages of conflict. One of the important contributions of this model is to highlight the multiple situations and ways women and the girl child especially (and sometimes others in society, including men and boys, though this is typically underreported) are at risk of sexual violence. It also shows how that risk leads to re-victimization throughout the cycle of conflict for many sexual assault survivors. In addition, it helps elucidate the complexity of "victimhood," as many victims are also forced to commit atrocities. The conclusions draw the relevance of these insights for thinking about policymaking to prevent sexual violence in armed conflicts, to identity perpetrators versus victims, and assist the survivors during and in the aftermath of conflict (see Ward and Marsh 2006).

Topics: Armed Conflict, "New Wars", Gender, Sexual Violence

Year: 2007

Ecofeminism

Citation:

Mies, Maria, and Vandana Shiva. 2014. Ecofeminism. London: Zed Books.

Authors: Maria Mies, Vandana Shiva

Annotation:

Summary:
This groundbreaking work remains as relevant today as when it was when first published. Maria Mies and Vandana Shiva argue that ecological destruction and industrial catastrophes constitute a direct threat to everyday life, the maintenance of which has been made the particular responsibility of women. In both industrialized societies and the developing countries, new wars, violent ethnic chauvinisms and the malfunctioning of the economy pose urgent questions. Is there a relationship between patriarchal oppression and the destruction of nature in the name of profit and progress? How can women counter the violence inherent in these processes? Should they look to a link between the women's movement and other social movements? These two world-renowned feminist environmental activists offer a thought-provoking analysis of these and many other issues from a unique North-South perspective. (Summary from WorldCat)

Topics: Armed Conflict, "New Wars", Economies, Environment, Feminisms, Ecofeminism, Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Patriarchy, Violence

Year: 2014

Gender and the Privatization of Security: Neoliberal Transformation of the Militarized Gender Order

Citation:

Eichler, Maya. 2013. “Gender and the Privatization of Security: Neoliberal Transformation of the Militarized Gender Order.” Critical Studies on Security 1 (3): 311-25.

Author: Maya Eichler

Abstract:

The increasing reliance on private military and security companies (PMSCs) in contemporary military conflict marks a historic shift in the state’s organization of military violence. This transformation has gendered underpinnings and entails gender-specific outcomes, at the same time as it reveals a gendered continuum between public and private military and security organizations. As the US example illustrates, security privatization was facilitated by the broader neoliberal transformation of the militarized gender order and itself has had negative implications for gender equality in the military and security sphere. Based on original research, this article argues that PMSCs are deeply gendered organizations whose employment practices tends to intensify the gendered division of labour that is characteristic of public militaries. While business and operational needs may allow for temporary disruptions of gender norms, masculinism remains not only vital but is reinvigorated by privatization. Political goals such as gender equality are sidelined in a sector premised on de-regulation and free markets. In contrast to problem-solving approaches that view gender as a problem of accountability or operational effectiveness in regards to PMSCs, this article shows that gender is deeply implicated in the expansion and organization of private force at the turn of the twenty-first century.

Keywords: private security, privatization of military security, PMSCs, gender, feminist security studies, neoliberalism, militarization, United States

Topics: Armed Conflict, "New Wars", Economies, Gender, Gender Roles, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, Masculinism, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Private Military & Security, Militarization, Privatization, Violence Regions: Americas, North America Countries: United States of America

Year: 2013

Women, War and Peace: War Redefined

Embodying Algorithmic War: Gender, Race, and the Posthuman in Drone Warfare

Citation:

Wilcox, Lauren. 2017. “Embodying Algorithmic War: Gender, Race, and the Posthuman in Drone Warfare.” Security Dialogue 48 (1): 11-28.

Author: Lauren Wilcox

Abstract:

Through a discussion of drone warfare, and in particular the massacre of 23 people in the Uruzgan province in Afghanistan in 2010, I argue that drone warfare is both embodied and embodying. Drawing from posthuman feminist theorists such as Donna Haraway and N Katherine Hayles, I understand the turn toward data and machine intelligence not as an other-than-human process of decisionmaking that deprives humans of sovereignty, but as a form of embodiment that reworks and undermines essentialist notions of culture and nature, biology and technology. Through the intermediation of algorithmic, visual, and affective modes of embodiment, drone warfare reproduces gendered and racialized bodies that enable a necropolitics of massacre. Finally, the category of gender demonstrates a flaw in the supposed perfectibility of the algorithm in removing issues of identity or prejudice from security practices, as well as the perceptions of drone assemblages as comprising sublime technologies of perfect analysis and vision. Gender as both a mode of embodiment and a category of analysis is not removed by algorithmic war, but rather is put into the service of the violence it enables.

Keywords: Affect, drones, embodiment, gender, visuality

Topics: Armed Conflict, "New Wars", Feminisms, Gender, Race, Violence, Weapons /Arms Regions: Asia, South Asia Countries: Afghanistan

Year: 2017

Toward a Feminist Political Economy of Wartime Sexual Violence: The Case of the Democratic Republic of Congo

Citation:

Meger, Sara. 2015. “Toward a Feminist Political Economy of Wartime Sexual Violence: The Case of the Democratic Republic of Congo.” International Feminist Journal of Politics 17 (3): 416–34. doi:10.1080/14616742.2014.941253.

Author: Sara Meger

Abstract:

Sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV) has been a prominent feature in the conflict in the eastern regions of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), which is a weapon of war, an instrument of terror and perpetrated opportunistically by armed men from all factions of the conflict. While most feminist analyses identify the link between gender and SGBV, they have tended to privilege individual or cultural accounts of gender construction. This article develops a feminist political economy analysis of SGBV in the ongoing conflict that looks at the relationship between gender as an international structure and the processes of the international political economy that precipitate this violence in Congo's ongoing war. This article theorizes an important and overlooked relationship between the structures of gender hierarchy and international political economy that may provide insights into the widespread use of SGBV in the conflict in eastern DRC, which this article contends constitutes part of the “global assembly line” of capitalist production.

Keywords: political economy, sexual violence, new wars, masculinity

Topics: Armed Conflict, "New Wars", Economies, Gender, Women, Masculinity/ies, Gender-Based Violence, Political Economies, Sexual Violence, SV against women Regions: Africa, Central Africa Countries: Democratic Republic of the Congo

Year: 2015

Is Manhood a Causal Factor in the Shifting Nature of War?

Citation:

Duriesmith, David. 2014. “Is Manhood a Causal Factor in the Shifting Nature of War?” International Feminist Journal of Politics 16 (2): 236–54. doi:10.1080/14616742.2013.773718.

Author: David Duriesmith

Abstract:

Existing accounts of new war have not actively engaged with feminist analysis. Protest masculinity is suggested as an alternative explanatory framework to conventional explanations of violence in new war. To explore the intersection between masculinity and new wars the example of Sierra Leone's Revolutionary United Front has been investigated. The article concludes that masculinity is an essential cause to the creation of new war and to the form that new war takes once it has originated.

Keywords: new wars, protect masculinity, Revolutionary United Front, Sierra Leone

Topics: Armed Conflict, "New Wars", Combatants, Male Combatants, Gender, Men, Masculinity/ies Regions: Africa, West Africa Countries: Sierra Leone

Year: 2014

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 - "New Wars"