Women, War and Peace in South Asia - Beyond Victimhood to Agency

Women, War and Peace in South Asia - Beyond Victimhood to Agency

Product ID: 7847

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Author: Rita Manchanda
Editor(s): Rita Manchanda
Publisher: Sage Publications
Year: 2001
Language: English
Pages: 304
ISBN/UPC (if available): 0716995404


Perhaps the first to develop a gender analysis of conflict in South Asia, this volume challenges the centrality of men’s experiences and theorizations of conflict. Instead, it focuses on women’s experiences as representing alternative and non-violent ways of negotiating the construction of conflictual identities, and on women’s perspectives which privilege the notion of a just peace.

The six chronicles presented here demonstrate women’s variegated negotiations with conflict and their capacity to emerge as agents of social transformation. They span the gamut of the conflict ridden South Asian region from Kashmir in the north to Tamil women in Sri Lanka; from those caught in the Muttahid Quami Movement in Pakistan to women in the Chittagong Hill Tracts in Bangladesh; and to women trapped in tribal conflicts in Assam and Nagaland and the Maoist insurgency in Nepal.

Threaded through the chronicles is the controversial theme of the dualism of loss and gain. The societal upheaval which accompanies any protracted conflict opens up public spaces for women and brings about social changes which assist women’s empowerment. Yet, it is at precisely these times, as the chronicles show, that the impulse towards women’s autonomy is circumscribed by the nationalistic project which casts women in the role of the guardians of the community’s acceptable traditions and cultural identity.

This vital and timely contribution to an understanding of women’s neglected yet crucial role in times of war and peace highlights the way in which women manage survival and reconstruction. It will interest students and scholars of gender studies, conflict and peace studies, political science and psychology as well as the lay reader.



Where Are the Women in South Asian Conflicts?

Guns and Burqa: Women in the Kashmir Conflict

Ambivalent Empowerment: The Tragedy of Tamil Women in Conflict

Between Two Armed Patriarchies: Women in Assam and Nagaland

They Use Us and Others Abuse Us’: Women in the MOM Conflict

Where There Are No Men: Women in the Maoist Insurgency in Nepal

Women’s Narratives from the Chittagong Hill Tracts

About the Editor and Contributors