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Maria O’Reilly

This chapter highlights the vital contributions and key challenges posed by feminist scholarship in Peace & Conflict Studies (PCS). It provides an overview of feminist PCS research and examines the crucial insights that are gained by bringing women, gender, and feminism to the forefront of analyses of contemporary conflict and post-war peacebuilding processes. Feminist voices remain marginalised from contemporary debates on statebuilding. Yet, feminist contributions are essential for understanding why dominant models of post-conflict reconstruction often (re)embed (rather than effectively contest) gendered forms of violence, injustice, and inequality in conflict-affected contexts. This chapter aims to bridge this gap by providing an introduction to feminist theory, and by outlining the significance of gender as a power-laden social construction that must be unpacked to understand the key drivers of conflict and post-war recovery processes.