IP31620 Women and Military Service Semester One, 2009-2010

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IP31620 Women and Military Service

Semester One, 2009-2010

Module Handbook


Women and Military Service


This module is about the roles which women have played and continue to play in and in relation to militaries from the First World War to the post-9/11 conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan. The main focus will be on women soldiers, but there will be the opportunity to explore at least some of the other ways in which women support or oppose the work of militaries. The module will begin with some consideration of the concept of gender and how that concept has been applied to women’s and men’s roles in militaries. The very idea of women as soldiers has long been contentious, even (or perhaps especially) for feminists, and both sides of the academic (and popular) debates on this topic will be explored. Students will examine historical and contemporary cases, such as the First and Second World Wars, the Persian Gulf War of 1990-91 and 21st century conflicts, making use of the personal accounts of women who were involved in these conflicts as well as the academic literature. Students will also consider the involvement of women in civil wars and wars of resistance, looking at examples from around the world and examining the similarities and differences between women’s experiences in state militaries and their experiences in non-state forces (as well as what happens to the women when non-state forces are victorious and are transformed into state militaries). The concept and practice of military culture will be discussed as well as possible links between military culture and sexual discrimination and abuse in the military. Students will explore the debates which link citizenship with military service as well as debates about women in combat roles.

Module Convenor:

Dr Jenny Mathers

Room 1.4, International Politics Building

Tel. 01970 622705

Email: zzk@aber.ac.uk

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