Printer-friendly versionSend by emailPDF version

Non-State Armed Groups

Gendered Preferences: How Women’s Inclusion in Society Shapes Negotiation Occurrence in Intrastate Conflicts

Citation:

Nagel, Robert Ulrich. 2020. “Gendered Preferences: How Women’s Inclusion in Society Shapes Negotiation Occurrence in Intrastate Conflicts.” Journal of Peace Research (April): 1-16.

Author: Robert Ulrich Nagel

Abstract:

To what extent do gender relations in society influence the likelihood of negotiations during intrastate disputes? A substantial body of literature recognizes gendered inequalities as integral to understanding conflict, yet they have received little attention in systematic studies of conflict management. I argue that patriarchal gender relations that reflect a preference for masculinity over femininity influence states’ propensity to negotiate with rebels. I draw on the concept of practices to explain how gender relations shape government preferences for negotiations. Specifically, I contend that practices of excluding women from fully participating in public life institutionalize violence as the preferred way of managing conflict. The implication is that countries with more patriarchal gender relations are less likely to engage in negotiations during intrastate conflicts. I test this argument on all civil conflict dyads between 1975 and 2014. The analyses show that countries that marginalize women’s participation in public life are significantly less likely to engage in negotiations. The results provide strong support for my theoretical argument and offer systematic evidence in support of core claims of the feminist peace theory.

Keywords: conflict, negotiation, gender inequality

Topics: Conflict, Feminisms, Gender, Femininity/ies, Masculinity/ies, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, Patriarchy, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Non-State Armed Groups, Peace Processes

Year: 2020

Militarized Peace: Understanding Post-Conflict Violence in the Wake of the Peace Deal in Colombia

Citation:

Meger, Sara, and Julia Sachseder. 2020. “Militarized Peace: Understanding Post-Conflict Violence in the Wake of the Peace Deal in Colombia.” Globalizations 17 (6): 953–73.

Authors: Sara Meger, Julia Sachseder

Abstract:

After more than 50 years of war, in 2016, the Colombian government signed a historic peace accord with the country’s largest rebel group, the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC). Although the cessation of hostilities between the rebel group and the government is a monumental step, violence remains rife in the country. By drawing attention to the correlation between neoliberal economic development in the country and militarism, this paper sheds light on several structural issues that have been left potentially unresolved by the peace negotiations, each with the potential to ignite further violence. We introduce the concept of militaristic neoliberalism to argue that there is a fundamental link between Colombia’s neoliberal development and a culture of militarism, which relies on gendered and racialized constructions of ‘self’ and ‘other’, that exacerbate structural inequalities and severely hampers prospects for achieving peace for many of Colombia’s citizens post-conflict.

Keywords: Colombia, peace accord, paramilitaries, political economy, feminist theory, militaristic neoliberalism

Topics: Gender, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Militarism, Non-State Armed Groups, Peacebuilding, Post-Conflict, Race, Violence Regions: Americas, South America Countries: Colombia

Year: 2020

Girl Soldiering in Rebel Groups, 1989–2013: Introducing a New Dataset

Citation:

Haer, Roos, and Tobias Böhmelt. 2018. “Girl Soldiering in Rebel Groups, 1989–2013: Introducing a New Dataset.” Journal of Peace Research 55 (3): 395–403. 

Authors: Roos Haer, Tobias Böhmelt

Abstract:

Most existing work assumes that child soldiers are under-aged males. Girl soldiers have largely been neglected so far, although they frequently have important roles in rebel groups. One reason for this shortcoming has been the lack of comprehensive and systematic data on female child soldiers over a larger time period. To address this gap, the following article introduces the Girl Child Soldier Dataset (G-CSDS), which provides – based on academic, IGO, NGO, government, and media sources – information on the number of girl soldiers and their functions (supporters or combatants) in rebel groups between 1989 and 2013. The dataset can be easily combined with other data based on the Uppsala Conflict Data Program (UCDP), and we demonstrate its usefulness with descriptive statistics and a regression analysis that is informed by previous research on women’s participation in armed groups. Among other interesting findings, the corresponding results suggest that there are crucial differences between girl combatants and those active in more supportive roles. We conclude that the G-CSDS provides a central platform of easily accessible information that will be useful to scholars and practitioners working on civil conflict, human rights, armed groups, or demobilization, disarmament, and reintegration (DDR) programs.

Keywords: dataset, girl fighters, girl soldiers, rebel groups

Topics: Combatants, Child Soldiers, Gender, Girls, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Non-State Armed Groups

Year: 2018

A Revolution in the Binary? Gender and the Oxymoron of Revolutionary War in Cuba and Nicaragua

Citation:

Volo, Lorraine Bayard de. 2012. “A Revolution in the Binary? Gender and the Oxymoron of Revolutionary War in Cuba and Nicaragua.” Signs 37 (2): 413-39.

Author: Lorraine Bayard de Volo

Annotation:

The urgency posed by the U.S. “War on Terror” prompted a renewed surge in feminist analyses of war and security, with far-reaching implications for gendered approaches to political violence. The primary focus has been on the United States and its allies. Considerably less attention has been given to smaller nations of the global South, including revolutionary states that resist U.S. neoimperialism. Through the cases of Cuba and Nicaragua, this essay addresses this gap in the literature by training a gender lens on the ways in which the revolutions in smaller nations—first as guerrilla armies, then as revolutionary states—hailed a revolutionary public and discursively engaged with other states by means of certain gendered logics. Gendered analysis of such revolutionary logic is a relatively unexamined means to understand a fuller range of wars and security events. In turn, a focus on armed insurrection and security events of revolution also generates insight into gender relations and efforts at gender equality.

Topics: Gender, Gender Analysis, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Non-State Armed Groups, Security Regions: Americas, Caribbean countries, Central America Countries: Cuba, Nicaragua

Year: 2012

Sister Citizens: Women in Syrian Rebel Governance

Citation:

Gilbert, Victoria. 2020. “Sister Citizens: Women in Syrian Rebel Governance.” Politics & Gender, 1–28. doi:10.1017/S1743923X20000136.

Author: Victoria Gilbert

Abstract:

In the rich literature on women and conflict, many scholars have assumed that the outbreak of civil war suppresses women’s political involvement. However, during Syria’s civil war, there was significant subnational and temporal variation in the involvement of women in the institutions established by armed groups and civilians in rebel-held areas. Why were some Syrian women able to secure a place for themselves in insurgent governance? How were they able to influence the form of local institutions to secure a role for women? Bringing together the scholarship on social movements and rebel governance, this article argues that two factors determine whether women were able to mobilize politically during conflict: the organizational capacity of women and the strength and ideology of locally active armed groups. The article leverages data on local organizations and institutions in Syria, Syrian news sources, and correspondence with several women’s organizations operating in Syria in 2017. By doing so, this article strives to bring attention to the role of gender in the expanding literature on rebel governance. It also highlights the significance of armed groups’ ideologies, an aspect often dismissed in the literature in favor of a focus on material factors.

Keywords: gender, rebel, rebel governance, insurgent governance, civil war, conflict, institutions, Syria, conflict processes, comparative politics, women, middle east, institutional design

Topics: Armed Conflict, Civil Wars, Conflict, Gender, Women, Governance, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Non-State Armed Groups, Political Participation Regions: MENA, Asia, Middle East Countries: Syria

Year: 2020

Women on the Frontline: Rebel Group Ideology and Women’s Participation in Violent Rebellion

Citation:

Wood, Reed M., and Jakana L. Thomas. 2017. “Women on the Frontline: Rebel Group Ideology and Women’s Participation in Violent Rebellion.” Journal of Peace Research 54 (1): 31–46.

Authors: Reed M. Wood, Jakana L. Thomas

Abstract:

Despite the frequent participation of women in armed groups, few studies have sought to explain the variation in their roles across different rebellions. Herein, we investigate this variation. We argue that the political ideology a group adopts plays a central role in determining the extent of women’s participation, particularly their deployment in combat roles. Specifically, we link variations in women’s roles in armed groups to differences in beliefs about gender hierarchies and gender-based divisions of labor inherent in the specific ideologies the groups adopt. We evaluate hypotheses drawn from these arguments using a novel cross-sectional dataset on female combatants in a global sample of rebel organizations active between 1979 and 2009. We find that the presence of a Marxist-oriented ‘leftist’ ideology increases the prevalence of female fighters while Islamist ideologies exert the opposite effect. However, we find little evidence that nationalism exerts an independent influence on women’s combat roles. We also note a general inverse relationship between group religiosity and the prevalence of female fighters. Our analysis demonstrates that political ideology plays a central role in determining whether and to what extent resistance movements incorporate female fighters into their armed wings.

Keywords: female combatants, rebel ideology, rebellion

Topics: Armed Conflict, Combatants, Female Combatants, Gender, Women, Gender Roles, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Hierarchies, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Non-State Armed Groups, Rights, Religion

Year: 2017

Depicting Victims, Heroines, and Pawns in the Syrian Uprising

Citation:

Szanto, Edith. 2016. “Depicting Victims, Heroines, and Pawns in the Syrian Uprising.” Journal of Middle East Women’s Studies 12 (3): 306–22.

Author: Edith Szanto

Abstract:

During the onslaught of the Islamic caliphate on Kobanî, Syria, media outlets across the globe broadcast pictures of brave and often unveiled Kurdish women fighting the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIS), a quintessentially male force of destruction. The images of women fighting Islamist male aggressors aroused outrage, admiration, and pity among observers. But had all Kurdish fighters been male or had women fought for ISIS, viewers might have reacted differently. To examine some of the most widely disseminated gendered pictures and videos of the Syrian uprising in the media, this article draws on Mohja Kahf’s three categories, which typify how Muslim women, Arab women, or both are perceived by the Anglophone reading and viewing public: the first is victims; the second, escapees; and the third, pawns of patriarchy and male power. While this typology helps in examining gendered images of the Syrian uprising, it also obscures the socioeconomic realities on the ground.

Keywords: female fighters, media, Syrian uprising

Topics: Armed Conflict, Combatants, Female Combatants, Male Combatants, Gender, Gendered Power Relations, Patriarchy, Media, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Non-State Armed Groups Regions: MENA, Asia, Middle East Countries: Syria

Year: 2016

Why Women Rebel: Greed, Grievance, and Women in Armed Rebel Groups

Citation:

Henshaw, Alexis Leanna. 2016. “Why Women Rebel: Greed, Grievance, and Women in Armed Rebel Groups.” Journal of Global Security Studies 1 (3): 204–19.

Author: Alexis Leanna Henshaw

Abstract:

Many scholars have sought to understand what drives recruitment in armed rebel groups. While theories focused on grievance and selective incentives have been the subject of a robust body of scholarship, large-N work in this area tends to focus primarily on male recruits, and often utilizes measures that fail to account for the differing motivations of male and female rebels. Moreover, existing studies of the motives of female rebels have been regionally focused or concentrated on a single case—calling into question whether the findings are consistent across the global population of females in armed rebel groups. Drawing on a data set measuring women’s participation in seventy-two active rebel groups since 1990, this work seeks to test hypotheses drawn from prior research to explain why women rebel. These tests indicate that some trends noted by previous researchers have explanatory power. Particularly, economic and ethnic or religious grievances are motivating factors that drive women to take up arms. At the same time, though, these findings cast doubt on the salience of other motivating factors, such as selective incentives and a desire for political participation.

Keywords: insurgency, civil wars, gender

Topics: Armed Conflict, Combatants, Female Combatants, Gender, Women, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Non-State Armed Groups

Year: 2016

Women, Gender, and the Evolving Tactics of Boko Haram

Citation:

Zenn, Jacob, and Elizabeth Pearson. 2014. "Women, Gender, and the Evolving Tactics of Boko Haram." Journal of Terrorism Research 5 (1): 46-57.

Authors: Jacob Zenn, Elizabeth Pearson

Abstract:

This article addresses an under-researched aspect of Boko Haram’s activities: gender-based violence (GBV) and its targeting of women. It argues that 2013 marked a significant evolution in Boko Haram’s tactics, with a series of kidnappings, in which one of the main features was the instrumental use of women. This was in response to corresponding tactics by the Nigerian security forces. Additionally the analysis provides evidence of a shift by Boko Haram to include women in its operations, in response to increased pressure on male operatives. It also considers the gendered rationale for instrumentalizing women within the framework of Boko Haram’s ideology and culture, arguing for a greater appreciation of how gender factors in the group’s violence.

Keywords: Boko Haram, terrorism, radicalisation, kidnapping, tactics, gender, women

Topics: Armed Conflict, Gender, Gender Roles, Gender-Based Violence, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Non-State Armed Groups, Terrorism, Violence Regions: Africa, West Africa Countries: Nigeria

Year: 2014

Violence, Toleration, or Inclusion? Exploring Variation in the Experiences of LGBT Combatants in Colombia

Citation:

Thylin, Theresia. 2020. "Violence, Toleration, or Inclusion? Exploring Variation in the Experiences of LGBT Combatants in Colombia." Sexualities 23 (3): 445-64.

Author: Theresia Thylin

Abstract:

While scholars have started to pay increased attention to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) persons serving in state security forces, little is known of the experiences of LGBT combatants operating in non-state armed groups in conflict settings. This article explores the experiences of LGBT persons from three different armed groups in Colombia. While LGBT combatants are often in a highly vulnerable position, this article reveals large differences between armed groups, as well as important exceptions within groups that contribute to LGBT combatants’ varied experiences. In conclusion, I argue that understanding these variations in LGBT combatants’ experiences has important policy and programme implications and provides opportunities for more inclusive peacebuilding processes in Colombia and beyond.

Keywords: armed conflict, Colombia, combatants, FARC, LGBT

Topics: Armed Conflict, Combatants, Gender, LGBTQ, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Non-State Armed Groups, Peacebuilding, Sexuality Regions: Americas, South America Countries: Colombia

Year: 2020

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 - Non-State Armed Groups