Handbook on Gender and War
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Handbook on Gender and War

Edited by Simona Sharoni, Julia Welland, Linda Steiner and Jennifer Pedersen

Gender and war are in many ways inextricably linked, and this path-breaking Handbook systematically examines the major issues surrounding this relationship. Each of its four sections covers a distinct phase of war: gender and opposition to war; gender and the conduct of war; gender and the impact of war; and gender and the aftermath of war. Original contributions from an international group of leading experts make use of a range of historical and contemporary examples to interrogate the multi-faceted connection between gender and war.
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Chapter 16: CODEPINK and pink soldiers: reading feminist antimilitarism anew

Ilene R. Feinman


This chapter asks US-based feminist antimilitarists to consider a new set of questions regarding the engagement of feminism as an organizing trope for peace activism. As personnel patterns and structures shift within the US military we need to address the meanings of females as perpetrators of classically masculinist violence and in broad leadership roles inclusive of leading militaries and state diplomatic missions at the nation-state level. If in fact dominance is a historically masculinist trope, is it always that, even when ‘alienated’ from males as such? Reading the ways in which current US-based and some international feminist peace organizations have evolved their discourse, the chapter notes that these movements have grown savvy analyses of militarism with attention to the particulars of region, race, ethnicity, gender and class status in a way that earlier movements were unable to fully engage. In part because of the proliferation of local-global organizations for females’ rights, there is a framework within which to place these expressions. The chapter concludes with a query regarding how we might consider the discourse of feminist peace activism in response to a world-wide military that is increasingly less reliant on mobilizing via masculinist tropes and structures.

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