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RIGID BOUNDARIES2018-08-13T14:42:46+00:00

RIGID BOUNDARIES A series on Gender and Violent Extremism

INTRO

In the hope of cast­ing light on the numer­ous ques­tions about how gen­der and Vio­lent Extrem­ism are relat­ed, the Brus­sels Inter­na­tion­al Cen­ter for Research (BIC-R) launched a series of essays that aims to trace the mul­ti­ple tra­jec­to­ries, for­ma­tion and trans­for­ma­tions that have defined the roles of women and men with regard to vio­lent extrem­ism. Seen through a broad his­tor­i­cal and gen­der lens­es, this series is an endeav­or  to under­stand the intractable, inter-con­nect­ed ques­tions con­cern­ing women’s and men’s agency and sub­jec­tiv­i­ty in process­es of vio­lent extrem­ism.

USING AN INTERDISCIPLINARY APPROACH, WE INVESTIGATE THE INTER-CONNECTED QUESTIONS BETWEEN GENDER AND VIOLENT EXTREMISM.

GENDER AND VIOLENT EXTREMISM

 

Giv­en the con­stant ram­i­fi­ca­tion and ambiva­lence sur­round­ing vio­lent extrem­ism and gen­der, we see both sys­tems as crit­i­cal to under­stand­ing the con­tem­po­rary and transna­tion­al cur­rents that effect our soci­eties.

The series, which con­tains 7 chap­ters, explores mul­ti­ple themes, rang­ing from gen­der to secu­ri­ty and from pol­i­cy frame­works to ini­tia­tives being con­duct­ed on the ground. Ques­tions such as the influ­ences of mas­culin­i­ty and fem­i­nin­i­ty were explored as a way to uncov­er the many lay­ers of a con­flict and its dynam­ics.

In many regions that have already faced inter­nal strife for decades, such as Nige­ria and Syr­ia, extrem­ist groups have pro­lif­er­at­ed and aligned. In these con­flict-set­tings, acts of vio­lence tend to be high­ly gen­dered and usu­al­ly exploit rigid stereo­types about mas­culin­i­ty and fem­i­nin­i­ty. For instance, men and boys are rou­tine­ly tar­get­ed for recruit­ment. Anoth­er exam­ple, which is explored in chap­ter 6, can be found in the actions of the Islam­ic State of Iraq and Lev­ant (ISIL) in their exploita­tion of gen­der norms and por­tray­al of women as the ‘future moth­ers of jiha­di chil­dren’ or when the armed group tar­get men using the mes­sage that male fight­ers will be reward­ed with as many women as they wish. Accord­ing­ly, using a gen­der lens also includes men and boys, as gen­der refers to the dif­fer­ent needs, expe­ri­ence and sta­tus of both women and men based in a social-cul­tur­al con­struct.

 

IN OUR VIEW, DE-RADICALIZATION OR PREVENTIVE EFFORTS ON VIOLENT EXTREMISM (P/CVE) HAS TO HAVE A SIGNIFICANT AND SUBSTANTIAL INCLUSION OF A GENDER PERSPECTIVE FOR THE SAKE OF ENHANCING ITS OPERATIONAL, POLICY AND PROGRAMSEFFECTIVENESS.

OBJECTIVES

There­fore, by per­ceiv­ing, dis­cov­er­ing and reflect­ing on the con­nec­tions between gen­der and vio­lence in con­flict-set­tings, the series ‘Rigid Bound­aries’ aims to show how rigid both con­cepts are per­ceived from a secu­ri­ty point of view and how this can ham­per counter-ter­ror­ism and anti-rad­i­cal­iza­tion efforts.

In our view, de-rad­i­cal­iza­tion or pre­ven­tive efforts on vio­lent extrem­ism (P/CVE) has to sig­nif­i­cant­ly and sub­stan­tial­ly include a gen­der per­spec­tive for the sake of enhanc­ing their oper­a­tional, pol­i­cy and pro­grams’ effec­tive­ness. 

Alto­geth­er, the series advo­cates for a par­a­digm shift in the under­stand­ing of vio­lent extrem­ism; one that includes gen­der at the core of the phe­nom­e­non, while also call­ing for a mul­ti-dimen­sion­al and rela­tion­al under­stand­ing of gen­der rela­tions.

As per sahana dharmapuri:

A gender perspective improves situational awareness because it provides a socio-cultural lens on power relationships, including race, class, poverty level, ethnicity and age. Using a gender perspective in the process of assessing the implications for both men and women of any planned cve action, program, policy, or legislation illuminates the differential threats and opportunities for men and women’s security.”

THIS SERIES WILL THEREFORE PROVIDE A MULTI-FACETED APPROACH TO GENDER AND VIOLENT EXTREMISM AND BRIDGE THE GAPS OF RESEARCH IN THE AREA.

CHAPTER 1

WOMEN’S ROLES IN TERRORISM AND VIOLENT EXTREMISM

CHAPTER 2

GENDERWOMEN: UNRAVELLING THE CONCEPT OF GENDER

CHAPTER 3

MOTIVATIONS AND DRIVERS TO VIOLENT EXTREMISM: CONTEXT MATTERS

CHAPTER 4

FROM THEORY TO ACTION: GENDER AT THE EU’S POLICY FRAMEWORK

CHAPTER 5

GENDER DYNAMICS OF BOKO HARAM’S TACTICS: INSIGHTS INTO THE NIGERIA CASE

CHAPTER 6

DIFFERENT PATHWAYS, SIMILAR MOTIVATIONS: WOMEN IN DAESH

 

CHAPTER 7

LOCAL WOMEN’S INITIATIVES ON P/CVE: BREAKING THE RIGID BOUNDARIES

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

FERNANDO AGUIAR

FERNANDO HAS A MASTER IN INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, WITH A SPECIALIZATION IN CONFLICT AND SECURITY FROM THE UNIVERSITY OF KENT. HE BUILT HIS EXPERTISE IN A MULTIFACETED APPROACH RAGING FROM POLITICAL COMMUNICATION AND STRATEGY, INTERNATIONAL POLITICS, GENDER AND CONFLICT, IN THE CENTRAL-EAST AFRICAN CONTEXT. HIS EXPOSURE TO POLICY MAKING AND DIPLOMATIC RELATIONS AT THE EU INSTITUTIONS (EEAS) HAS PROVIDED A SOLID BASIS FOR HIS ANALYTICAL UNDERSTANDING OF CONTEMPORARY ISSUES, PARTICULARLY IN THE FIELD OF GENDER IN CONFLICT PREVENTION AND PEACE PROCESSES IN CENTRAL AFRICA AND MIDDLE-EAST.