Thu, Oct 1

POL 389-800, Security Studies
SUNY Oswego | Fall 2020
Dr. Craig Warkentin


  • Ch. 11, Gender and Security (Kennedy & Dingli, 159-172)
  • Women and War (Case Study)


  • Describe how a focus on gender can expand definitions and analyses of security.
  • Articulate ways in which gender is connected to insecurity, violence, and war.
  • Discuss how understandings of gender can increase or ensure security.
  • Contrast approaches focused on gender to other covered approaches.


  • Greenham Common (166)
  • masculinity (160)
  • misogyny (161)
  • Private Military Companies (PMCs) (166)
  • queer theory (162)
  • rape (163)
  • soft security (160)




Textbook (171-172)

  1. What does gender mean?
  2. What difference does it make to ask "where are the women?"
  3. Why have liberal states admitted women to the frontline?
  4. Why does rape occur in every conflict zone?
  5. Does a warrior have to be male?
  6. How have the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan highlighted the complexities of the gender question in International Relations?
  7. What can be done to ensure the safety of the vulnerable in post-conflict situations?
  8. What role can and should international organizations play in ensuring the physical and mental health of women in places of conflict?
  9. Do armed drone strikes make women safer than traditional modes of warfare?
  10. How should we think about female terrorists?

Online Case Study

  1. There is often a focus on 'women and children' in war. Why is this the case? Does this have consequences for men?
  2. Nobel Peace Prize winner Nadia Murad was a victim of rape and sexual violence at the hands of ISIS. Discuss why women are targets of sexual violence in armed conflict. What can be done at the societal level to reduce the prevalence of rape as a weapon of war?
  3. What are common arguments against women participating in hand-to-hand combat missions? How convincing is the evidence used to support those arguments?
  4. Explore the technological advances in military strategy that could allow more women to participate in warfare, and explain why these technologies are more acceptable for female combatants.