Political Economies

Cleared for Investment? The Intersections of Transnational Capital, Gender, and Race in the Production of Sexual Violence and Internal Displacement in Colombia's Armed Conflict

Citation:

Sachseder, Julia. 2020. “Cleared for investment? The Intersections of Transnational Capital, Gender, and Race in the Production of Sexual Violence and Internal Displacement in Colombia’s Armed Conflict.” International Feminist Journal of Politics 22 (2): 162-86.

Author: Julia Sachseder

Abstract:

ENGLISH ABSTRACT:
Investigating the nexus of transnational capital, gender, and race, I argue that sexual violence and internal displacement tacitly serve the interest of transnational corporations (TNCs). Drawing on extensive ethnographic research in war-torn regions in Colombia, I elucidate how violence is deeply intertwined in the globalization of neoliberal capitalism and operates by exploiting and instrumentalizing constructions of gender and race that are articulated through colonial legacies and further dehumanize the “Other.” The focus on intersectional power relations advances a critical understanding of the political economy of armed conflict. First, it reveals how local and global (economic) actors are entrenched in exacerbating local forms of domination that produce sexual violence and internal displacement through a particular political economy of masculinity and neoliberal forms of expansion and exploitation. Beyond that, both forms of violence are not only the product of colonial, capitalist, and gendered structures and ideas but also serve to re-entrench these power relations between dominant and subaltern groups. I conceptualize this relationship as the “coloniality of violence.” It constitutes a shared space for violent forms of domination and appropriation that facilitates capital accumulation, and it may further foster a relation of structural oppression in “post-conflict” Colombia.
 
GERMAN ABSTRACT:
Mit Blick auf das Verhältnis von transnationalem Kapital, Geschlecht und “race” wird in diesem Artikel erarbeitet, wie sexuelle Gewalt und innere Vertreibung dem Interesse transnationaler Konzerne dienen. Auf Basis umfassender ethnografischer Forschung in einigen vom Krieg betroffenen Regionen Kolumbiens zeige ich den Zusammenhang zwischen politischer Gewalt und der Globalisierung des neoliberalen Kapitalismus auf. Dieser beutet Konstruktionen von Geschlecht und “race” aus, die im Kolonialismus verankert sind. Der Rückgriff und die Instrumentalisierung dieser (post)kolonialen Zuschreibungen helfen dabei, bestimmte Gruppen in Begriffen “der Anderen” zu kategorisieren und sie weitgehend zu dehumanisieren. Der Fokus auf intersektionale Macht- und Herrschaftsverhältnisse trägt somit zu einem kritischen Verständnis der politischen Ökonomie bewaffneter Konflikte bei. Erstens wird aufgezeigt, wie lokale und globale (ökonomische) Akteure soziale Ungleichheiten verstärken und durch eine spezifische politische Ökonomie von Männlichkeit und neoliberale Formen der Expansion und Ausbeutung sexuelle Gewalt und innerer Vertreibung hervorbringen. Darüber hinaus ist politische Gewalt nicht nur das Produkt kolonialer, kapitalistischer und geschlechtsspezifischer Strukturen und Diskurse sondern dient auch dazu, diese gesellschaftlichen Verhältnisse zwischen dominanten und subalternen Gruppen zu verfestigen. Dieses Verhältnis fasse ich mit dem Begriff der “Kolonialität der Gewalt.” Dieser stellt einen gemeinsamen Raum für gewaltvolle Formen der Beherrschung und Aneignung dar, der Kapitalakkumulation erleichtert und strukturelle Unterdrückung in der sogenannten Nachkriegszeit in Kolumbien forciert.
 
SPANISH ABSTRACT:
En mi investigación sobre la interrelación entre capital transnacional y formas de opresión basadas en concepciones de género y raza argumento que la violencia sexual y el desplazamiento interno sirven implícitamente a los intereses de los grandes grupos transnacionales. Partiendo de una investigación etnográfica integral en regiones afectadas por el conflicto armado en Colombia ilustro de qué manera la violencia está asociada a la globalización del capitalismo neoliberal y explico el mecanismo funcional subyacente que consiste en instrumentalizar y explotar construcciones de género y de raza que se manifiestan a través de históricos vínculos coloniales los cuales contribuyen a deshumanizar al “Otro.” El objetivo consiste en alcanzar una comprensión crítica de la economía política en el marco de un conflicto armado a través de un enfoque centrado en la interseccionalidad de las relaciones de poder. De esta manera se revela el arraigo profundo de las actores (económicos) locales y globales en formas locales de dominio, fenómenos que a su vez contribuyen a exacerbar la violencia sexual y el desplazamiento interno en Colombia por medio de una economía política basada en un determinado concepto de masculinidad y en formas neoliberales de expansión y explotación. Así mismo, ambas formas de violencia no solamente se pueden ver como resultado de determinadas estructuras e ideas coloniales, capitalistas y de género sino que sirven también para consolidar tales relaciones de poder entre grupos dominantes y subalternos. Conceptualizo esta relación cómo “colonialidad de violencia” que a su vez constituye un escenario compartido para formas violentas de dominación y apropiación. Considerada en su conjunto la colonialidad de violencia fomenta la acumulación de capital estimulando de esta manera una relación de opresión estructural y violenta en la Colombia del llamado “posconflicto.”

Keywords: gender, race, transnational capital, sexual violence, Colombian armed conflict

Topics: Armed Conflict, Coloniality/Post-Coloniality, Displacement & Migration, IDPs, Economies, Gender, Masculinity/ies, Gendered Power Relations, Intersectionality, Political Economies, Post-Conflict, Race, Sexual Violence, Violence Regions: Americas, South America Countries: Colombia

Year: 2020

Invisible Lives: Gender, Dispossession, and Precarity amongst Syrian Refugee Women in the Middle East

Citation:

Canefe, Nergis. 2018. "Invisible Lives: Gender, Dispossesion, and Precarity amongst Syrian Refugee Women in the Middle East." Refuge 34 (1): 39-49. 

Author: Nergis Canefe

Abstract:

ENGLISH ABSTRACT:
This article attends to the connections between neo-liberal and neo-developmentalist labour regimes, asylum and immigration management, and the exploitation of undocumented, refugee, and migrant women, based on the experiences of Syrian refugee women in Turkey. The concept of precarity is explored as a selectively applied strategy by states to people who lack “status” or who are unable to benefit from “membership rights.” Forced migrants, illegal migrants, and asylum seekers are directly implicated in highly precarious work experiences at the bottom end of labour markets across the Global South, becoming trapped in forced labour and human trafficking arrangements. The article establishes a link between extreme forms of migrant labour exploitation in precarious life worlds and gender-based  profiling of life chances.
 
FRENCH ABSTRACT:
Cet article concerne les connexions entre les régimes de travail néo-libéraux et néo-développementistes, la gestion de l’asile et de l’immigration, et l’exploitation de femmes migrantes, réfugiées, sans papiers, à partir du vécu de réfugiées syriennes en Turquie. Le concept de précarité est exploré en tant que stratégie appliquée de manière sélective par les états aux personnes qui n’ont « pas de statut » ou ne peuvent pas bénéficier de « droits d’appartenance ». Les migrants forcés, les migrants illégaux et les demandeurs d’asile sont directement concernés par des expériences de travail fortement précaire au plus bas des marchés du travail sur l’ensemble des pays du Sud, et deviennent alors prisonnier du travail forcé et du trafic d’êtres humains. L’article établit un lien entre des formes extrêmes d’exploitation des migrants au travail dans des contextes de vie précaires et un profilage des opportunités de vie en fonction du genre.

 

Keywords: political economy of crisis, precarity, forced migration, gender and migration, gender and precarity, Middle Eastern States

Topics: Displacement & Migration, Forced Migration, Refugees, Refugee/IDP Camps, Gender, Women, Livelihoods, Political Economies, Trafficking, Human Trafficking Regions: MENA, Asia, Middle East, Europe, Southern Europe Countries: Syria, Turkey

Year: 2018

Gender Dimensions of DDR – Beyond Victimization and Dehumanization: Tracking the Thematic

Citation:

Hauge, Wenche Iren. 2020. “Gender Dimensions of DDR – Beyond Victimization and Dehumanization: Tracking the Thematic." International Feminist Journal of Politics 22 (2): 206-26.

Author: Wenche Iren Hauge

Abstract:

In much of the early literature on gender dimensions of disarmament, demobilization, and reintegration (DDR) processes – from the 1980s and 1990s – the focus was on women as victims in conflict and DDR processes. This article reviews the literature on gender dimensions of DDR processes, exploring its many different topics – such as discussions of the definition of combatants, the political economy of DDR processes, group identity, cultural contexts, and masculinity – while focusing the discussion on the representation of female and male combatants of armed groups along the victim–actor axis. It furthermore analyzes the consequences of these representations for the way in which DDR processes are structured, and for who is allowed to participate in them. Finally, the article questions the push toward normalization in DDR processes and the neglect of progressive changes in gender relations within armed groups during war.

Keywords: demobilization, reintegration, gender, actors, victims, normalization

Topics: Combatants, Female Combatants, Male Combatants, DDR, Conflict, Gender, Masculinity/ies, Gendered Power Relations, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Political Economies

Year: 2020

Decolonising Gender and Peacebuilding: Feminist Frontiers and Border Thinking in Africa

Citation:

Hudson, Heidi. 2016. “Decolonising Gender and Peacebuilding: Feminist Frontiers and Border Thinking in Africa.” Peacebuilding 4 (2): 194–209.

Author: Heidi Hudson

Abstract:

The article seeks to theorise an integrated decolonised feminist frame for peacebuilding in an African context. Arguing that a decolonial-feminist lens has the potential to change the way we look at peacebuilding practices, I propose the notion of ‘feminist frontiers’ – an engaged yet stabilising heuristic tool for analysing racialised and gendered relations post-conflict. The argument is structured around three pillars, namely: metageographies as metaphoric mental-space constructions of a colonial peace; masks that constrain the introduction of complicated and intersected human subjecthoods; and mundane matter that elicits ambivalent engagements between human and post-human subjectivities in the areas of everyday political economies and infrastructural rule of peacebuilding. I conclude that such feminist frontiers represent intermediate and mediated spaces or epistemological borderlands from where the undertheorised and empirically understudied discursive and material dimensions of peacebuilding from a gender perspective can be investigated.

Keywords: decoloniality, gender, peacebuilding, Africa, intersectionality, feminist

Topics: Coloniality/Post-Coloniality, Feminisms, Feminist Political Economy, Gender, Infrastructure, Intersectionality, Political Economies, Post-Conflict, Peacebuilding, Race Regions: Africa

Year: 2016

The UN Security Council and the Political Economy of the WPS Resolutions

Citation:

Basu, Soumita. 2017. "The UN Security Council and the Political Economy of the WPS Resolutions." Politics & Gender 13 (4): 721-7.

Author: Soumita Basu

Annotation:

Summary:
"This contribution to the forum links these themes, which dominate discussions of the political economy of the WPS resolutions — funding, economic rights of women, and neoliberal peacebuilding — to a fourth dimension that has remained largely unexplored in feminist international relations scholarship so far: the materiality of the Security Council. Particularly in light of the attention paid to UNSCR 1325 in a number of contributions to the previous Politics & Gender forum on feminist security studies (FSS) and feminist political economy (FPE), this contribution presents the council as an arena in which the meeting of the two strands of feminist international relations can yield valuable insights about the trajectory of the WPS resolutions. It considers not just the politics of financing the provisions of the WPS resolutions but also the broad frames of understanding — of market, state, and society — within which the resolutions are conceived at the council" (Basu 2017, 722).

Topics: Armed Conflict, Feminisms, Feminist Political Economy, Gender, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, International Organizations, Peace and Security, Peace Processes, Political Economies, Post-Conflict, Post-Conflict Reconstruction, Rights, Women's Rights, UN Security Council Resolutions on WPS

Year: 2017

When There Is No Justice: Gendered Violence and Harm in Post-conflict Sri Lanka

Citation:

Davies, Sara E., and Jacqui True. 2017. "When There Is No Justice: Gendered Violence and Harm in Post-conflict Sri Lanka." The International Journal of Human Rights 21 (9): 1320-36.

Authors: Sara E. Davies, Jacqui True

Abstract:

Reparative measures for conflict-related sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV) attend to the practical needs of victims while also addressing the long-term structural conditions that led to the violence and often endure after conflict. Over the last decade, transitional justice has sought to address high levels of impunity for SGBV, while also addressing the long-term structural conditions causing and exacerbating it. In this article we study the case of Sri Lanka, where crimes have been committed during and after the civil war (1983–2009) but a transitional justice mechanism to redress them is unlikely to be established. The article considers whether in such a situation of impunity gender-sensitive approaches to SGBV prevention can still be promoted to ensure its non-recurrence. We closely examine post-conflict Sri Lanka and women’s ongoing experiences of multiple forms of insecurity and violence to highlight the relationship between enduring structural gender inequalities and reparative justice. Bridging human rights and political economy approaches, we argue that addressing gender inequalities in access to resources and public space is essential to prevent further gender-based violence and structural harms in conflict-affected countries like Sri Lanka.

Keywords: post-conflict, sexual violence, gender-based violence, gender inequality, human rights, transitional justice, Sri Lanka

Topics: Armed Conflict, Civil Wars, Conflict, Gender, Women, Gender-Based Violence, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, Justice, Transitional Justice, Political Economies, Post-Conflict, Rights, Sexual Violence, Violence Regions: Asia, South Asia Countries: Sri Lanka

Year: 2017

Subverting Economic Empowerment: Towards a Postcolonial-Feminist Framework on Gender (In)Securities in Post-War Settings

Citation:

Martin de Almagro, Maria, and Caitlin Ryan. 2019. "Subverting Economic Empowerment: Towards a Postcolonial-Feminist Framework on Gender (In)Securities in Post-War Settings." European Journal of International Relations 25 (4): 1059-79.

Authors: Maria Martin De Almagro, Caitlin Ryan

Abstract:

This article demonstrates that the inability of the United Nations Women, Peace and Security agenda to realize greater peace and security for women in post-war states stems to a great extent from its failure to engage deeply with the materiality of women’s lives under economic empowerment projects. We argue that the Women, Peace and Security agenda reproduces a neoliberal understanding of economic empowerment that inadequately captures the reality of women’s lives in post-war settings for two reasons: first, it views formal and informal economic activities as dichotomous and separate, rather than as intertwined and constitutive of each other; and, second, it conceptualizes agency as individual, disembodied, abstract, universalizing and conforming to the requirements of the competitive pressures of the market. The article then offers a three-pronged postcolonial-feminist framework to analyse international interventions in which representation, materiality and agency are interconnected. We argue that such a framework helps understand better who is empowered in post-war economies and how they are empowered. This, in turn, makes visible how post-war economies produce gendered and racialized (in)securities that need to be addressed by the Women, Peace and Security agenda. With this, we also hope to reflect on broader international political economy concerns about the problems of making conceptual distinctions between politics and economics, and to challenge the constructed borders between materiality and discourse that have pervaded peace and conflict studies.

Keywords: discourse, feminist political economy, feminist security studies, gender, materiality, postcolonialism

Topics: Coloniality/Post-Coloniality, Economies, Feminisms, Feminist Political Economy, Gender, Women, Feminist Foreign Policy, Peace and Security, Political Economies, Post-Conflict, Race, Security, UN Security Council Resolutions on WPS

Year: 2019

The Palgrave International Handbook of Gender and the Military

Citation:

Woodward, Rachel, and Claire Duncanson, eds. 2017. The Palgrave International Handbook of Gender and the Military. London: Palgrave Macmillan.

Authors: Rachel Woodward, Claire Duncanson

Annotation:

Summary:
The Palgrave International Handbook of Gender and the Military provides a comprehensive overview of the multiple ways in which gender and militaries connect.  International and multi-disciplinary in scope, this edited volume provides authoritative accounts of the many intersections through which militaries issues and military forces are shaped by gender.  The chapters provide detailed accounts of key issues, informed by examples from original research in a wealth of different national contexts.  This Handbook includes coverage of conceptual approaches to the study of gender and militaries, gender and the organisation of state military forces, gender as it pertains to military forces in action, transitions and transgressions within militaries, gender and non-state military forces, and gender in representations of military personnel and practices.  With contributions from a range of both established and early career scholars, The Palgrave International Handbook of Gender and the Military is an essential guide to current debates on gender and contemporary military issues. (Summary from Springer)
 
Table of Contents 
1. An Introduction to Gender and the Military
Rachel Woodward and Claire Duncanson
 
2. Liberal Feminists, Militaries and War 
Caroline Kennedy-Pipe
 
3. Anti-Militarist Feminist Approaches to Researching Gender and the Military 
Claire Duncanson
 
4. Critical Military Studies as Method: An Approach to Studying Gender and the Military 
Victoria M. Basham and Sarah Bulmer
 
5. Quantitative Approaches to Researching Gender and Militaries 
Lana Obradovic
 
6. Qualitative Approaches to Researching Gender and the Military 
Lauren Greenwood
 
7. Gendered Organizational Dynamics in Military Contexts 
Helena Carreiras
 
8. Ethnicity and Gender in Militaries: An Intersectional Analysis 
Orna Sasson-Levy
 
9. Theorizing Military Masculinities and National Identities: The Norwegian Experience 
Nina Rones and Kari Fasting
 
10. Sexualities in State Militaries 
Sarah Bulmer
 
11. Transgender Military Service: A Snapshot in Time 
M. Sheridan Embser-Herbert
 
12. The Civilian Wives of Military Personnel: Mobile Subjects or Agents of Militarisation? 
Alexandra Hyde
 
13. Military Families: Life, Social Organization and Remote Basing Experiences for Brazilian Military Families 
Cristina Rodrigues da Silva
 
14. Domestic Abuse and the Reproduction of the Idealised ‘Military Wife’ 
Harriet Gray
 
15. Violence in the Military and Relations Among Men: Military Masculinities and ‘Rape Prone Cultures’ 
Ben Wadham
 
16. Female Military Veterans with Disabilities 
Rachel Dekel and Miriam Goldberg
 
17. Gender, Mental Health and the Military 
Hilary Cornish
 
18. Gendered Military Identities: Army Deserters in Exile 
Godfrey Maringira
 
19. Gender and Close Combat Roles 
Anthony King
 
20. Gender and Counterinsurgency 
Synne L. Dyvik
 
21. Gender, Humanitarianism and the Military 
Ryerson Christie
 
22. Transitions and Transformation in Gender Relations in the South African Military: From Support in Warfare to Valued Peacekeepers 
Lindy Heinecken
 
23. Military Markets, Masculinities and the Global Political Economy of the Everyday: Understanding Military Outsourcing as Gendered and Racialised 
Amanda Chisholm and Saskia Stachowitsch
 
24. Gender, Militaries and Security Sector Reform 
Megan Bastick
 
25. Gender Mainstreaming and Integration in the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation 
Matthew Hurley
 
26. Gender and Terrorist Movements 
Katherine E. Brown
 
27. Gender Dynamics in Rebel Groups 
Zoe Marks
 
28. Women in Non-State Armed Groups after War: The (Non)Evolution of Disarmament, Demobilization and Reintegration 
Christopher Hills and Megan MacKenzie
 
29. Gender and Visual Representations of Women Combatants 
Chava Brownfield-Stein
 
30. Military Women in Cinema: War Stories and Future Worlds 
Yvonne Tasker
 
31. (Re)Producing an (Anti)Military Masculinity: Popular Culture Representations of Gender and Military Dissent in the Figure of Ron Kovic 
Joanna Tidy
 
32. Gender and Military Memoirs 
Rachel Woodward, Claire Duncanson and K. Neil Jenkings
 
33. Gendered Representations of Soldier Deaths 
Katharine M. Millar

Topics: Armed Conflict, Combatants, DDR, Domestic Violence, Ethnicity, Feminisms, Gender, Masculinity/ies, Gender Mainstreaming, Health, Mental Health, International Organizations, Intersectionality, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Militaries, Militarism, Militarization, Non-State Armed Groups, Political Economies, Race, Peacekeeping, Security Sector Reform, Sexuality, Sexual Violence, Rape

Year: 2017

Drawing on the Continuum: A War and Post-war Political Economy of Gender-Based Violence in Bosnia and Herzegovina

Citation:

Kostovicova, Denisa, Vesna Bojicic-Dzelilovic, and Marsha Henry. 2020. "Drawing on the Continuum: A War and Post-war Political Economy of Gender-Based Violence in Bosnia and Herzegovina." International Feminist Journal of Politics 22 (2): 250-72.

Authors: Denia Kostovicova, Vesna Bojicic-Dzelilovic, Marsha Henry

Abstract:

Current understandings of why and how gender-based violence continues beyond the end of conflict remain siloed along theoretical and disciplinary lines. Recent scholarship has addressed the neglected structural dimension when examining the incidence and variation of post-conflict gender-based violence. In particular, continuum of violence and feminist political economy perspectives have offered accounts of gender-based violence during and after conflict. However, these approaches overlook how war and post-war economic processes interact over time and co-constitute the material basis for the continuation of gender-based violence. The war and post-war political economy perspective that we leverage examines critically the distinction, both in theory and practice, between global and local dynamics, and between formal and informal actors in post-conflict societies. Exposing these neglected structural and historical interconnections with evidence from post-conflict Bosnia and Herzegovina, we demonstrate that the material basis of gender-based violence is a cumulative result of political and socio-economic dynamics along the war-to-peace trajectory. Our findings point to the need to be attentive to the enduring material consequences of interests and incentives formed through war, and to the impact of post-war global governance ideologies that transform local conditions conducive to gender-based violence.

Keywords: gender, violence, continuum, political economy, Bosnia

Topics: Armed Conflict, Economies, Feminisms, Feminist Political Economy, Gender, Gender-Based Violence, Political Economies, Post-Conflict Regions: Europe, Balkans, Eastern Europe Countries: Bosnia & Herzegovina

Year: 2020

Forced Prostitution: Unpacking the Links between Globalization, Neo-liberalism, and the Illicit Sex Trade

Citation:

Banwell, Stacy. 2018. “Forced Prostitution: Unpacking the Links between Globalization, Neo-liberalism, and the Illicit Sex Trade.” Paper presented at Prostitution, Pimping and Trafficking, Conway Hall, London, September 5.

Author: Stacy Banwell

Abstract:

Transnational feminism attributes women’s social, political and economic marginalization to capitalism, class exploitation, neo-imperialism and neo-liberalism. It addresses the local and global contexts in which violence against women and girls occurs. Allied to this is the political economy approach. This approach addresses the relationship between the economic, the social and the political. Moving beyond direct acts of physical violence - by addressing structural forms of inequality and violence - the political economy approach broadens what is meant by violence and abuse. Accordingly, forced prostitution - resulting from a lack of employment opportunities - is considered a form of structural violence. Drawing on both of these perspectives, and focusing on Iraq and Syria, Dr Banwell examines how globalization and neo-liberalism impact the day-to-day lives of women and girls in war-shattered economies. The talk will conclude with some thoughts on what is being done to address gender-based violence and what measures can be taken to achieve gender equality in post-conflict situations.

Topics: Economies, Feminisms, Gender, Women, Girls, Gender-Based Violence, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, Globalization, Political Economies, Post-Conflict, Sexual Violence, Sexual Exploitation and Abuse, SV against Women, Violence Regions: MENA, Asia, Middle East Countries: Iraq, Syria

Year: 2018

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