International Handbooks on Gender series
Edited by Simona Sharoni, Julia Welland, Linda Steiner and Jennifer Pedersen
Chapter 9: Risk and social transformation: gender and forced migration
As conflict has transformed in the decades since the end of the cold war, civilian populations have borne the brunt of chronic, protracted and unpredictable conflict dynamics. Forced migration is one of the most visible and disruptive consequences of armed conflict for civilian populations, regardless of gender. This chapter sets out to document the existence of a mutually constitutive relationship, whereby gender identities and relations both affect the context and experience of forced migration, and are affected by it. It first indicates some of the ways that people are constituted as refugees, and shows that experiences may differ widely depending on context and positionality. Specifically, it discusses how gender identity and subjectivities interact with the legal and practical exigencies of becoming a refugee or IDP, before introducing the illustrative case of the South Sudanese refugee population in Uganda. The chapter explores the implications of subjectivities for men and women in relation to the opportunities and risks afforded by forced migration through the lens of three main analytical areas: labour, social change and violence.
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