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War and Gender

Details

  • 44 b/w illus. 8 tables
  • Page extent: 540 pages
  • Size: 228 x 152 mm
  • Weight: 0.8 kg
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Paperback

 (ISBN-13: 9780521001809 | ISBN-10: 0521001803)

  • Also available in Hardback
  • Published July 2003

Available, despatch within 3-4 weeks

US $34.99
Singapore price US $37.44 (inclusive of GST)

Gender roles are nowhere more prominent than in war. Yet contentious debates, and the scattering of scholarship across academic disciplines, have obscured understanding of how gender affects war and vice versa. In this authoritative and lively review of our state of knowledge, Joshua Goldstein assesses the possible explanations for the near-total exclusion of women from combat forces, through history and across cultures. Topics covered include the history of women who did fight and fought well, the complex role of testosterone in men's social behaviours, and the construction of masculinity and femininity in the shadow of war. Goldstein concludes that killing in war does not come naturally for either gender, and that gender norms often shape men, women, and children to the needs of the war system. lllustrated with photographs, drawings, and graphics, and drawing from scholarship spanning six academic disciplines, this book provides a unique study of a fascinating issue.

• Interdisciplinary; ranges across fascinating range of topics - from the Amazons to primate behaviour • Gets the story right; careful scholarship and comprehensive documentation • Easy to read and beautifully illustrated

Contents

1. A puzzle: the cross-cultural consistency of gender roles in war; 2. Women warriors: the historical record of female combatants; 3. Bodies: the biology of individual gender; 4. Groups: bonding, hierarchy, and social identity; 5. Heroes: the making of militarised masculinity; 6. Conquests: sex, rape, and exploitation in wartime; 7. Reflections: the mutuality of gender and war.

Reviews

'War and Gender is a fascinating book about an important issue. I thoroughly recommend it to everyone who has an interest in why we humans behave the way we do.' Jane Goodall, Primatologist, The Jane Goodall Institute

'I've been citing some of the findings in this book since the moment I read it in typescript. A must-read for anyone interested in gender and militarism.' Jane Mansbridge, Harvard University

'What a marvelous book! Readers will be captured by Goldstein's clear, trenchant writing style, remarkable interdisciplinary breadth, and the wealth of fascinating new details and ideas on every page. Some of his conclusions will undoubtedly be controversial. So much the better. This is definitely a 'must read' book.' Eleanor Maccoby, Stanford University

'Joshua Goldstein's book redefines what we think of both 'war' and 'gender'. It is simply the most disturbing account of the link between sex and violence yet written. Finally, we have a truly multi-disciplinary study of the subject. Distressing, and convincing.' Joanna Bourke, University of London

'… he has produced a remarkable compendium of information and analysis that moves toward a vital, ongoing cultural discussion.' Publishers Weekly

' … this ambitious work brings together much of the current understanding of history, biology, psychology, and anthropology, as it relates to war and gender.' National Journal

'War and Gender provides a consistently intelligent and fascinating discussion of a vitally important and usually ignored topic … I learned a great deal from War and Gender, as will anyone else who reads it. this is a book that deserves a wide audience.' Acta Politica

'… this book is a decisive contribution to the history of war and the military.' The Independent

'… it is the amount of evidence from so many different fields of science and research that make this volume unique.' Inger Skjelsbaek, International Peace Research Institute, Oslo

'… thoughtful and wide-ranging study.' History

'War and Gender provides a consistently intelligent and fascinating discussion of a vitally important and usually ignored topic … I learned a great deal from War and Gender, as will anyone else who reads it. this is a book that deserves a wide audience.' Acta Politica

'… he combines empirical evidence across a broad range of disciplines in testing a clearly defined set of hypotheses … this book does groundbreaking work in 'sending some cherished myths down in flames' (to use the author's own words). The implications for feminist theory and the gender analysis of conflicts and the public policy environments are undeniable and revolutionary … Goldstein proves that a central threat links many disciplines and that the potential for change based on complete understanding often lies at the intersections … War and Gender is a milestone and a challenge for feminism and militarism alike. A worthy read if you have a sincere interest in the topic, and a handy reference work for any scholar across a range of disciplines.' Politeia

'War and Gender is a going to be an important book, one to be read thoughtfully.' War in History

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