Unearthing Women's Anti-Mining Activism in the Andes: Pachamama and the “Mad Old Women”


Jenkins, Katy. 2015. “Unearthing Women’s Anti-Mining Activism in the Andes: Pachamama and the ‘Mad Old Women.'" Antipode 47 (2): 442–60.

Author: Katy Jenkins


Women play an important role in social activism challenging the expansion of extractive industries across Latin America. In arguing that this involvement has been largely unrecognised, this paper explores Andean Peruvian and Ecuadorian women's accounts of their activism and the particular gendered narratives that the women deploy in explaining and legitimising this activism. These discussions contribute to understanding the patterning of grassroots activism and making visible the gendered micro-politics of resistance and struggle around natural resource use, as well as to understanding the gendered and strategic ways in which women contest dominant discourses of development.

Topics: Civil Society, Development, Environment, Extractive Industries, Gender, Women, Gender Roles, Nonviolence, Rights, Land Rights, Women's Rights Regions: Americas, South America Countries: Ecuador, Peru

Year: 2015

A movement stalled: outcomes of women’s campaign for equalities and inclusion in the Northern Ireland peace process


Cockburn, Cynthia. 2013. “A movement stalled: outcomes of women’s campaign for equalities and inclusion in the Northern Ireland peace process.” Interface 5 (1): 151-82.

Author: Cynthia Cockburn


The Good Friday Agreement signed in Belfast in April 1998, and the post-conflict constitution embodied in the ensuing Northern Ireland Act, differed in one important respect from most other peace accords. Thanks to the input of civil society, and particularly of the women’s voluntary, trade union and community sectors, the Agreement was not limited to a settlement between the belligerent parties. It envisioned a transformed society, rid of the inequities of a colonial past and reshaped according to principles of inclusion and human rights. The persuasiveness of this agenda lay in its promise to address the poverty, disadvantage and exclusion afflicting the working class of both Catholic and Protestant communities. This article draws on a re-interviewing in 2012 of feminist activists with whom the author engaged in a major project in the 1990s. It evaluates the extent to which the principles and policies for which their movement struggled have been enacted in Northern Ireland governance in the intervening decade and a half.

Keywords: post-conflict, civil society, women, human rights, working class, Catholic, Protestant, feminist activists

Topics: Armed Conflict, Civil Society, Class, Coloniality/Post-Coloniality, Economies, Poverty, Feminisms, Gender, Women, Governance, Post-Conflict Governance, Nonviolence, Peace Processes, Post-Conflict, Post-Conflict Reconstruction, Religion, Rights, Human Rights Regions: Europe, Northern Europe Countries: Ireland

Year: 2013

In the Midst of War: Women’s Contribution to Peace in Colombia


Rojas, Catalina. 2004. In the Midst of War: Women’s Contribution to Peace in Colombia. Cambridge, MA: Hunt Alternatives Fund.

Author: Catalina Rojas


Women have been victims and actors in Colombia’s cycles of violence and peace. In talks organized by President Andrés Pastrana in 1999, women represented both the government and FARC, the major guerrilla group. In 2000, 600 women participated in a women’s public forum that pressed FARC and government leaders to consider women’s concerns. In 2002, women’s groups continued to work towards peace after talks fell apart, reaching a consensus on the issues affecting Colombian women. In spite of the dangers women face as a result of being recognized as political leaders, they remain at the forefront of local efforts for peace.

This publication assesses the importance of a gender perspective in peace negotiations and documents the critical work of women at the local, regional, and national levels to mitigate the effects of continued violence on their communities, mobilize for renewed dialogues, and prepare for the next cycle of peace in Colombia. (Institute for Inclusive Security)

Topics: Armed Conflict, Civil Society, Combatants, Female Combatants, DDR, Gender, Gender Roles, Governance, Post-Conflict Governance, Justice, International Tribunals & Special Courts, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Non-State Armed Groups, NGOs, Nonviolence, Peacebuilding, Peace Processes, Post-Conflict, Post-Conflict Reconstruction, UN Security Council Resolutions on WPS, UNSCR 1325, Violence Regions: Americas, South America Countries: Colombia

Year: 2004

Gender Aspects of Human Security


Moussa, Ghada. 2008. “Gender Aspects of Human Security.” International Social Science Journal 59 (193): 81-100.

Author: Ghada Moussa


The chapter deals with the gender dimensions in human security through focusing on the relationship between gender and human security, first manifested in international declarations and conventions, and subsequently evolving in world women conferences. It aims at analysing the various gender aspects in its relation to different human security dimensions. Gender equality is influenced and affected by many social institutions: the state, the market, the family (kinship) and the community. Human security also takes gender aspects. The author focuses on the dimensions in human security that influence gender equality. These are violence as a threat to human security and negative influences in achieving gender equality, the needs approach, poverty alleviation and considering women as among the most vulnerable groups in the society. Raising the capabilities of women is essential in achieving gender equality, thus security and participation is needed to guarantee equality and to realise gender equality.

Keywords: human security, gender equality, world women conferences, gender based violence, poverty, political participation

Topics: Civil Society, Economies, Economic Inequality, Poverty, Gender, Women, Gender Roles, Femininity/ies, Gendered Discourses, Gender Balance, Gender-Based Violence, Gender Mainstreaming, Gendered Power Relations, Patriarchy, Gender Hierarchies, Gender Equality/Inequality, Governance, Nonviolence, Political Participation, Rights, Human Rights, Women's Rights, Security, Human Security, Sexual Violence, Violence

Year: 2008

Engendering Civil Society: Oil, Women Groups and Resource Conflicts in the Niger Delta Region of Nigeria


Ikelegbe, Augustine. 2005. “Engendering Civil Society: Oil, Women Groups and Resource Conflicts in the Niger Delta Region of Nigeria.” The Journal of Modern African Studies 43 (2): 241–70. doi:10.2307/3876206.

Author: Augustine Ikelegbe


Civil society has been an active mobilisational and agitational force in the resource conflicts of the Niger Delta region in Nigeria. The paper examines the gender segment of civil society and its character, forms and roles in these conflicts. The central argument is that marginality can be a basis of gendered movements and their engagement in struggles for justice, accommodation and fair access to benefits. Utilising secondary data and primary data elicited from oral interviews, the study identifies and categorises women groupings and identifies their roles and engagements in the oil economy. It finds that community women organisations (CWOs), with the support of numerous grass-roots women organisations, are the most active and frequently engaged in the local oil economies, where they have constructed and appropriated traditional women protests as an instrument of engagement. The paper notes the implications of women protest engagements and particularly their exasperation with previous engagements, the depth of their commitments, and the extension of the struggle beyond the threshold of normal social behaviour.


  • Women constitute a large portion of subsistence farmers, fisherwomen and informal sector in Nigeria; marginalized in trickle down of benefits from MNCs (Shell has a female capacity building program), but women are not recognized as owners of land or water resources, underemployed by MNC, and excluded from compensation for acquisition, pollution and devastation of farmlands and fishing waters (242)
  • Women led peaceful mass actions against oil companies; now, NGOs and MNCs are focusing on how women can help peace-building capacity in the region (242)
  • Women’s organizations are primarily on the rise in the informal sector (market associations, cooperatives and informal credit) -- Mobilization, autonomy to challenge status quo, define own interests and set own agendas (245)
  • Women’s groups preceded colonialism, were a part of traditional governance systems; Subordinated by colonial and post-colonial groupings and the addition of colonies of migrants, settlers, workers and artisans (249)
  • Categories of women’s groups: local/traditional governance structures (MNC calls to action; leverage with community – threaten to relocate or protest naked; mutual support system); communities/clans; influence-seeking groups (250)
    • Socioeconomic, pan-ethnic and regional since the 1970s
    • National groups are few and mostly professional
  • Economic downturn has led to more oil and gas exploration for rents and MNC profits, exacerbating pollution, poverty, hunger, unemployment, and anger.
  • Brunt of oil economy: women are largely sedentary farmers and thus suffer most from land degradation and loss, driven from fishing by gas flaring, prostitution rings for oil workers, and men leave to work for oil companies (254)
  • Women have threatened to seal off oil wells; Women and men together shut down Shell production facilities and protested land acquisition. (256)
  • Limitations on female involvement (266-7):
    • Local demands for development, employment and empowerment are greater than national demands for control, derivation and restructuring
    • Women lack the resources for causes that are not cultural or communal although community women’s organizations derive their strength from being culturally-based
    • Women are traditionally the last resort, demonstrating that the local threshold has been reached


“How have women emerged to articulate gender-related issues and mobilize themselves? Through what means and structures are women mobilized to address perceived grievances in the oil economy? Do women have associational voices in the economy of oil at the community, ethnic, pan-ethnic, state and regional levels? What kinds of women civil and community groups exist and at what level? Are women grass-root community organizations making any impact on the oil economy? In particular, what are the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and potentials? Are there linkages, networks or organization frameworks within and beyond the community women groups?” (242)

Topics: Civil Society, Economies, Poverty, Extractive Industries, Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Governance, Justice, Multi-National Corporations, NGOs, Nonviolence, Peacebuilding, Political Participation Regions: Africa, West Africa Countries: Nigeria

Year: 2005

Gender Ideologies and Forms of Contentious Mobilization in the Middle East


Asal, V., R. Legault, O. Szekely, and J. Wilkenfeld. 2013. “Gender Ideologies and Forms of Contentious Mobilization in the Middle East.” Journal of Peace Research 50 (3): 305–18. doi:10.1177/0022343313476528.

Authors: V. Asal, R. Legault, O. Szekely, J. Wilkenfeld


This article explores those factors that shape a political organization's choice of tactics in political mobilization with a particular focus on the influence of gender ideology on the choice of different types of contentious action. To understand why political organizations engaging in contentious politics choose to employ violent tactics, nonviolent tactics, or a mixture of both, current scholarship has tended to focus on factors such as relationship with the government, external support, and religious or leftist ideology. Far less attention has been given to the role of an organization's ideology relating to gender when predicting its behavior. In addition, much of the analysis of contentious activity has analyzed the use of violence or protest separately and rarely examines the choice of a mixed strategy. We employ a time-series multinomial logistic regression analysis to examine the Middle East Minorities at Risk Organizational Behavioral dataset (MAROB), including data over 24 years on 104 ethno-political organizations that have used a range of tactics including protest, violence, and / or a mix of the two, to investigate organizations that state-level variables that lead organizations to choose different strategies. We find that a number of variables can influence a movement's choice to engage in one strategy over another. Gender-inclusive ideology makes an organization more likely to engage in protest and less likely to choose a violent or mixed strategy.

Topics: Gender, Nonviolence, Political Participation, Religion, Violence Regions: MENA, Asia, Middle East

Year: 2013

Men's Perceptions of Women's Rights and Changing Gender Relations in South Africa: Lessons for Working With Men and Boys in HIV and Antiviolence Programs


Dworkin, Shari L., Christopher J. Colvin, Abigail M. Hatcher, and Dean Peacock. 2012. "Men's Perceptions of Women's Rights and Changing Gender Relations in South Africa: Lessons for Working With Men and Boys in HIV and Antiviolence Programs." Gender & Society 26 (1): 97-120.

Authors: Shari L. Dworkin, Christopher J. Colvin, Abigail M. Hatcher, Dean Peacock


Emerging out of increased attention to gender equality within violence and HIV prevention efforts in South African society has been an intensified focus on masculinities. Garnering a deeper understanding of how men respond to shifting gender relations and rights on the ground is of urgent importance, particularly since social constructions of gender are implicated in the HIV/AIDS epidemic. As social scientists collaborating on a rights-based HIV and antiviolence program, we sought to understand masculinities, rights, and gender norms across six high HIV/AIDS seroprevalence provinces in South Africa. Drawing on focus group research, we explore the ways that men who are engaged in HIV and antiviolence programming can often be simultaneously resistant to and embracing of changes in masculinities, women’s rights, and gender relations. We use our findings on men’s responses to changing gender relations to make suggestions for how to better engage men in HIV and antiviolence programs.

Keywords: masculinity, gender equality, women's rights, South Africa, HIV prevention

Topics: Gender, Men, Masculinity/ies, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, Health, HIV/AIDS, Nonviolence, Rights, Women's Rights Regions: Africa, Southern Africa Countries: South Africa

Year: 2012

Uncovering Tensions and Capitalizing on Synergies in HIVAIDS and Antiviolence Programs


Dworkin, Shari L., and Megan S. Dunbar. 2010. “Uncovering Tensions and Capitalizing on Synergies in HIV/AIDS and Antiviolence Programs.” American Journal of Public Health 101 (6): 995–1003. doi:10.2105/AJPH.2009.191106.

Authors: Shari L. Dworkin, Megan S. Dunbar


Research frequently points to the need to empower women to effectively combat the twin epidemics of HIV/AIDS and gender-based violence. Simultaneously, there has been increased attention given to working with men in gender equality efforts. The latter approach intervenes on masculinities as part of the fight against HIV/AIDS and violence. No research has considered these two lines of work side-by-side to address several important questions: What are the points of overlap, and the tensions and contradictions between these two approaches? What are the limitations and unintended consequences of each? We analyzed these two parallel research trends and made suggestions for how to capitalize on the synergies that come from bolstering each position with the strengths of the other.

Topics: Gender, Masculinity/ies, Gender-Based Violence, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, Health, HIV/AIDS, Nonviolence, Violence

Year: 2010

The Men Against Violence Against Women Movement in Namibia


Odendaal, Willem. 2001. “The Men Against Violence Against Women Movement in Namibia.” Development 44 (3): 90-93.

Author: Willem Odendaal


Willem Odendaal illustrates the experience of The Men Against Violence Against Women Campaign in Namibia, initiated by concerned Namibian men to combat violence against women (VAW). The National Conference on Men Against Violence Against Women in Namibia, held in February 2000, brought men from all walks of life in Namibia together to develop strategies of how men in Namibia can sensitize fellow men to the problem of VAW. The Namibian Men for Change (NAMEC) was brought into life after the National Conference. NAMEC functions as an awareness-raising group among young adult men on issues such as masculinity, relationships, parenthood, sexual abuse and the creation of a non-violent culture in Namibia. Despite its lack of financial resources, NAMEC has already achieved a significant degree of awareness raising during its brief period of existence. The organization is currently active in most of Namibia’s regions, where its members visit schools and organize a range of forums for discussions amongst men.

Topics: Gender, Women, Men, Masculinity/ies, Gender-Based Violence, Households, Nonviolence, Sexual Violence Regions: Africa, Southern Africa Countries: Namibia

Year: 2001

Violence, Power, and Participation: Building Citizenship in Contexts of Chronic Violence


Pearce, Jenny. 2007. Violence, Power, and Participation: Building Citizenship in Contexts of Chronic Violence. Brighton: Institute of Development Studies.

Author: Jenny Pearce


This paper is about civil society participation in two contexts of chronic violence: Colombia and Guatemala. It explores the extent to which civil society organisations can build citizenship in such contexts and simultaneously address violence. It argues that civil society organisations can play a vital role in building citizenship and confronting violent actors and acts of violence. However, in order to address chronic, perpetuating violence and interrupt its transmission through time and space, it is important to clarify the relationship between power and violence. Conventional forms of dominating power correlate with violence. Loss of such power or a bid to gain it can lead to violence, particularly where social constructions of masculinity are affirmed by such behaviour. The paper asks whether the promotion of non-dominating forms of power are needed if we are to tackle the damaging effects on human relationships and progress of willingness to inflict direct physical hurt on the Other. Non-dominating forms of power focus on enhancing everyone’s power potential and capacity for action and promoting communication. If non-violence and non-dominating power gradually become the social norm, this might enhance citizenship and participation in ways that tackle other forms of violence, such as structural violence.

Topics: Citizenship, Civil Society, Gender, Masculinity/ies, Gendered Power Relations, Nonviolence, Violence Regions: Americas, Central America, South America Countries: Colombia, Guatemala

Year: 2007


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