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New Directions in Women, Peace and Security$
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Soumita Basu, Paul Kirby, and Laura Shepherd

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9781529207743

Published to Policy Press Scholarship Online: January 2021

DOI: 10.1332/policypress/9781529207743.001.0001

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Women, Peace and Security: A Critical Cartography

Women, Peace and Security: A Critical Cartography

(p.1) 1 Women, Peace and Security: A Critical Cartography
New Directions in Women, Peace and Security

Soumita Basu

Paul Kirby

Laura J. Shepherd

Policy Press

This introductory chapter offers a mapping of the field of research to which we – the authors of the chapter and the editors of the volume – hope that the volume itself will contribute. Using the motif of ‘new directions’, we chart historical and contemporary scholarship on Women, Peace, and Security (WPS), tracing avenues of enquiry, streams of argument, and architectures of practice across geographical, temporal, and institutional scales. In the course of our mapping, we identify overlapping waves of WPS scholarship, beginning with those who came to study WPS primarily through peace activism and women’s movements (including those who engaged directly with the politics and processes that produced UNSCR 1325), through the emergence of ‘WPS’ as a discrete object of analysis, and to the current state of art represented by the contributions to this volume. In doing so we show how WPS has gone from peace activism at the margins to a more significant landmark in the peace and security environment than perhaps anyone had envisaged. This cataloguing constitutes the first substantive section of the chapter. In the second section of the chapter, we map the contours of the contemporary field of study, proposing three new horizons of WPS scholarship: new themes; new actors; and new methods of encounter. In the final section, we conclude our cartography with a discussion of the ways in which the more recent contributions to WPS scholarship and practice are producing interesting new contestations, tensions, and constellations of power, and re-situate the new politics of WPS in relation to the geographical, temporal and institutional scales which will shape its future trajectories.

Keywords:   1325, governance, women, peace, security, institutions, United Nations

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