Armed Conflict, Gender and the Rights of Nature

Keina Yoshida

March 30, 2023

Snowden Auditorium, W01-0088 Wheatley Hall & Zoom webinar

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Trade, Gender and Post-War Recovery, Part Two: Visioning Feminist Trade Alternatives for Sustainable Peace

Nancy Kachingwe

Nandini Chami

Diyana Yahaya

April 27, 2022

Online via Zoom

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This webinar series is co-sponsored by the University of Massachusetts Boston's Anthropology Department; Asian Studies Department; Department of Conflict Resolution, Human Security, and Global Governance; Economics Department; History Department; The Honors College; Latino Studies Program; School for Global Inclusion and Social Development; School for the Environment; Sociology Department; and Women's, Gender and Sexuality Studies Department and Human Rights Minor.

The Dead, the Living, and the Sacred: Patsy Mink, Antimilitarism, and Reimagining the Pacific World


Wu, Judy Tzu-Chun. 2019. “The Dead, the Living, and the Sacred: Patsy Mink, Antimilitarism, and Reimagining the Pacific World.” Meridians: Feminism, Race, Transnationalism 18 (2): 304–31.

Author: Judy Tzu-Chun Wu


This article focuses on the antinuclear and antimilitarism politics of Patsy Takemoto Mink (1927–2002), the first Japanese American female lawyer in Hawai'i, the first woman of color to become a U.S. congressional representative, and the namesake for Title IX. During the late 1960s and 1970s, Mink challenged the use of the Pacific lands, waters, and peoples as sites of military experimentation, subject to nuclear and chemical testing as well as war games. Mink's political worldview, shaped by her experiences and understanding of the interconnectedness between human and nonhuman life as well as water and land, reflected a Pacific World sensibility. She worked with, but also articulated political priorities that differed from, indigenous peoples of the Pacific. Focusing on these connected yet divergent Pacific imaginaries provides an opportunity to explore the significance of these antimilitarism campaigns for the study of transnational feminisms as well as Asian American and Pacific Islander studies. First, the protests of Mink and Native Hawaiian activists against U.S. militarism in the Pacific represented gendered critiques of U.S. empire, although in different ways. Second, Mink's advocacy via political liberalism provided opportunities for coalition formation yet also constrained the range of her gendered arguments and limited possible solutions beyond the U.S. polity. Third, the coalitional possibilities and incommensurabilities reveal the points of convergence and divergence between Asian American demands for full inclusion and Pacific Islander calls for decolonization and sovereignty. (Abstract from original source)

Keywords: Patsy Takemoto Mink, Cold War militarism, Pacific World, liberalism, settler colonialism

Topics: Coloniality/Post-Coloniality, Environment, Gender, Gender Analysis, Women, Livelihoods, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Militarism, Political Participation, Rights, Human Rights, Indigenous Rights, Weapons /Arms, Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD) Regions: Oceania Countries: United States of America

Year: 2019

Banning the Bomb, Smashing the Patriarchy


Acheson, Ray. 2021. Banning the Bomb, Smashing the Patriarchy. Milton Keynes, UK: Rowman & Littlefield.

Author: Ray Acheson



Banning the Bomb, Smashing the Patriarchy offers a look inside the antinuclear movement and its recent successful campaign to ban the bomb. From scrappy organizing to winning the Nobel Peace Prize in 2017 and achieving a landmark UN treaty banning nuclear weapons, this book narrates the journey of the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN) and developments in feminist disarmament activism. Acheson explains the process through which diplomats, activists, and nuclear survivors worked together to elevate the horrific humanitarian and environmental impacts of nuclear weapons, develop new international law categorically prohibiting the bomb, challenge the nuclear orthodoxy, and strengthen norms for disarmament and peace. Told from the perspective of a queer feminist antimilitarist organizer who was involved from the start of the process through to the treaty’s adoption, the book utilizes interviews with dozens of participants, as well as critical theoretical perspectives about transnational advocacy networks, discourse change, and intersectional feminist action. It is meant to provide useful insights for anyone trying to make change amidst structures of power and politics. (Summary from publisher)

Topics: Environment, Feminisms, Gender, Gender Analysis, Gendered Power Relations, Patriarchy, International Law, NGOs, Rights, Human Rights, Weapons /Arms, Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Year: 2021

Disposable Waste, Lands and Bodies under Canada’s Gendered Nuclear Colonialism


Runyan, Anne Sisson. 2018. “Disposable Waste, Lands and Bodies under Canada’s Gendered Nuclear Colonialism.” International Feminist Journal of Politics 20 (1): 24–38.

Author: Anne Sisson Runyan


Nuclear colonialism, or the exploitation of Indigenous lands and peoples to sustain the nuclear fuel cycle from uranium mining and refining to nuclear energy and weapons production and the dumping of the resulting nuclear waste, occurs in many parts of the world and has generated considerable protest. This article focuses on a contemporary and ongoing case of nuclear colonialism in Canada: attempts to site two national deep geological repositories (DGRs) for nuclear waste on traditional First Nations land in Southwestern Ontario near the world’s largest operational nuclear power plant. Through histories of the rise of nuclear power and nuclear waste policy-making and their relationship to settler colonialism in Canada, as well as actions taken by the Saugeen Ojibway Nation (SON) and white settler antinuclear waste movements, the article explores how gender is at work in nuclear colonialism and anti-nuclear waste struggles. Gender is explored here in terms of the patriarchal nuclear imperative, the appropriation of Aboriginal land through undermining Aboriginal women’s status and the problematic relationship between First Nations and white settler women-led movements in resistance to nuclear waste burial from a feminist decolonial perspective.

Keywords: nuclear waste, gendered nuclear colonialism, white settler colonialism, patriarchal nuclear imperative, Canada

Topics: Coloniality/Post-Coloniality, Environment, Feminisms, Gender, Gender Analysis, Indigenous, Rights, Indigenous Rights, Weapons /Arms, Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD) Regions: Americas, North America Countries: Canada

Year: 2018

Gender Perspective on Nuclear Weapons and Human Rights


Venturini, Gabriella. 2018. “Gender Perspective on Nuclear Weapons and Human Rights.” Edited by Jonathan L. Black-Branch and Dieter Fleck. In Nuclear Non-Proliferation in International Law IV: 99–115. The Hague: T.M.C. Asser Press.

Author: Gabriella Venturini


Gender perspective is currently being mainstreamed in the context of security, disarmament, non-proliferation and arms control. Since gender is not just about women and girls but also relates to men and boys, gender perspective must be balanced and take into account the broad socio-cultural context as a whole. The adverse effects of nuclear detonations may impinge on the right to life and encroach upon a number of other civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights among which the right to family life, health, education, property and housing. It has become apparent that the use and testing of nuclear weapons affect differently men and boys, women and girls, both physically and in the context of society, hindering their ability to fully exercise their basic human rights. Gender-aware assistance is needed to contribute reducing the adverse consequences of nuclear detonations for the health and wellbeing of individuals and communities. Gender perspective may help redirect debates concerning nuclear weapons towards a greater consideration of human factors, and ultimately reshape the strategies for security, disarmament, non-proliferation and arms control. Women’s engagement in the struggle for peace and disarmament is extremely relevant and should gain more influence, while involving more women in nuclear issues, at both national and international level, could enhance the non-proliferation and disarmament agenda. However, only if women and men are able to work together within governments, international organisations and civil society with full awareness of, and respect for, their respective roles, diversities and needs, effective and sustainable solutions on issues of nuclear disarmament can be achieved.

Keywords: gender, women, human rights, nuclear weapons, nuclear disarmament, nuclear tests

Topics: Gender, Gender Analysis, Gendered Discourses, Gender Balance, Gender Mainstreaming, Peace and Security, Political Participation, Rights, Human Rights, Property Rights, Women's Rights, Weapons /Arms, Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Year: 2018

Faslane Peace Camp and the Political Economy of the Everyday


Eschle, Catherine. 2016. “Faslane Peace Camp and the Political Economy of the Everyday.” Globalizations 13 (6): 912–14.

Author: Catherine Eschle



"In what ways is ‘the everyday’ reproduced and reconfigured at protest camps? I pursue this question in my current research project, in which protest camps are defined as a ‘place-based social movement strategy that involves both acts of ongoing protest and acts of social reproduction needed to sustain everyday life’ (Feigenbaum, Frenzel, & McCurdy, 2013, p. 12). . . . buttressed by a feminist curiosity about the interconnections between the personal and political, I cling to the view that the reconfiguration of the everyday in protest camps is intrinsic rather than irrelevant to their political effect. In this short piece, I examine how daily life at Faslane Peace Camp, in Scotland, depends upon and fosters the critical interrogation of economic norms" (Eschle 2016, 912).

Topics: Economies, Care Economies, Feminist Economics, Feminisms, Feminist Political Economy, Gender, Gender Roles, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, Peace and Security, Peacebuilding, Rights, Women's Rights, Weapons /Arms, Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Year: 2016

Beyond Greenham Woman?: Gender Identities and Anti-Nuclear Activism in Peace Camps


Eschle, Catherine. 2017. “Beyond Greenham Woman?: Gender Identities and Anti-Nuclear Activism in Peace Camps.” International Feminist Journal of Politics 19 (4): 471–90.

Author: Catherine Eschle


This article investigates the discursive construction of gendered identities in anti-nuclear activism and particularly in peace camps. My starting point is the now substantial academic literature on Cold War women-only peace camps, such as that at Greenham Common. I extend the analysis that emerges from this literature in my research on the mixed-gender, long-standing camp at Faslane naval base in Scotland. I argue that the 1980s saw the articulation in the camp of the figure of the Gender-Equal Peace Activist, displaced in the mid-1990s by Peace Warrior/Earth Goddess identities shaped by radical environmentalism and reinstating hierarchical gender norms. I conclude that gendered identities constructed in and through anti-nuclear activism are even more variable than previously considered; that they shift over time as well as place and are influenced by diverse movements, not solely feminism; and that they gain their political effect not only through the transgression of social norms, but also through discursive linkage with, or disconnection from, political subjectivities in wider society. With such claims, the article aims to re-contextualise Greenham Woman in her particular place and time, and to contribute to a more expansive understanding of the gendering of anti-nuclear activism.

Keywords: Anti-nuclear, peace camps, gender identities, discourse analysis, Faslane peace camps

Topics: Feminisms, Gender, Gendered Discourses, Women, Peace and Security, Peacebuilding, Rights, Women's Rights, Weapons /Arms, Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD) Countries: United Kingdom

Year: 2017

Disarming Patriarchy: Feminism and Political Action at Greenham


Roseneil, Sasha. 1995. Disarming Patriarchy: Feminism and Political Action at Greenham. London: Open University Press.

Author: Sasha Roseneil



This text provides a sociological study of the Greenham Common Women's Peace Camp. Using this as a basis, the author examines the ways in which feminists can resist and transform relations of male domination and female subordination. (Summary from WorldCat)

Topics: Feminisms, Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Patriarchy, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Militarism, Peace and Security, Rights, Women's Rights, Weapons /Arms, Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD) Countries: United Kingdom

Year: 1995


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