Do all women combatants experience war and peace uniformly? Intersectionality and women combatants

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Do women combatants experience war and post-war “peace” in the same way? Existing studies on gender and war treat women combatants as a homogeneous group with similar identities, interests, and statuses experiencing the war uniformly. I argue that women combatants’ experiences of war and post-war “peace” cannot be detached from their multiple statuses, positions, and identities. I follow the stories of five women ex-combatants in the Maoist insurgency in Nepal at different spatial and temporal spaces out of thirty-nine semi-structured interviews that I conducted in Nepal (2017–2018). The women ex-combatants come from the same rank but from different caste, class, ethnicity, marital status, social status, education status, and geographical location. I use a feminist intersectional framework inspired by “matrix of domination” while using intersectionality also as a method. My research shows that women ex-combatants’ experiences of the insurgency and post-insurgency lives have been molded by their intersectional positions and identities in complex ways. This work not only contributes to the holistic understanding of the war in its complexity but also has implications for designing the policy interventions aimed at the prevention of armed conflict and building sustainable post-war “peace.”
Original languageEnglish
JournalGlobal Studies Quarterly
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 21 Apr 2021


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