Conflict, Gender, Ethnicity and Post-Conflict Reconstruction

Authored by: Lori Handrahan

Categories: Statebuilding
Sub-Categories: Economic Recovery, Human Development, Post-Conflict Reconstruction
Region: No Region
Year: 2004
Citation: Handrahan, Lori. "Conflict, Gender, Ethnicity and Post-Conflict Reconstruction." Security Dialogue 35, no. 4 (2004): 429-445.

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This article introduces the concept of ethnicity in relation to gendered security problems in conflict and post-conflict settings. Feminist research has established that men and women experience conflict and post-conflict situations differently owing to issues of identity and power. National and gendered identities and women’s disadvantageous location within global and local power structures combine to put women at risk, while simultaneously providing little room for them to voice their security problems. Theories on women as female boundary-makers show how ethnicity appears in part to be created, maintained and socialized through male control of gender identities, and how women’s fundamental human rights and dignity are often caught up in male power struggles. In post-conflict settings, gender construction appears to be further complicated by both national agendas of identity formation and re-formation, which often include an ethnic focus, and the presence of a competing ‘fraternity’ as aconsequence of the arrival of the international community.