War affects women in profoundly different ways than men. Women play many roles during wartime: they are "gendered" as mothers, as soldiers, as munitions makers, as caretakers, as sex workers. How is it that womanhood in the context of war may mean, for one woman, tearfully sending her son off to war, and for another, engaging in civil disobedience against the state? Why do we think of war as "men's business" when women are more likely to be killed in war and to become war refugees than men?
The Women and War Reader brings together the work of the foremost scholars on women and war to address questions of ethnicity, citizenship, women's agency, policy making, women and the war complex, peacemaking, and aspects of motherhood. Moving beyond simplistic gender dichotomies, the volume leaves behind outdated arguments about militarist men and pacifist women while still recognizing that there are patterns of difference in men's and women's relationships to war.
The Women and War Reader challenges essentialist, class-based, and ethnocentric analysis. A comprehensive volume covering such regions as the former Yugoslavia, Northern Ireland, Israel and Palestine, Iran, Nicaragua, Chiapas, South Africa, Afghanistan, Sri Lanka, South Korea, and India, it will provide a much-needed resource. The volume includes the work of over 35 contributors, including Cynthia Enloe, Sara Ruddick, V. Spike Peterson, Betty Reardon, April Carter, Leila J. Rupp, Harriet Hyman Alonso, Francine D'Amico, Nancy Scheper-Hughes, and Carolyn Nordstrom.