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The Nature of Gender

Are Juliet, Desdemona and Cordelia to their Fathers as Nature is to Culture?

Gordana Galić Kakkonen and Ana Penjak

This article brings ecofeminist critical thinking to William Shakespeare's female characters: Juliet in Romeo and Juliet, Desdemona in Othello, and Cordelia in King Lear. Beginning with the principal that women and nature are similar in many ways (reproductive function, discrimination, subordination, possession, violence), ecofeminism focuses on the interaction between the two. Ecofeminism grounds its beliefs in the fact that patriarchal domination gets imposed through different binary oppositions including man-woman and culture-nature categories. By applying ecofeminism's positions, the authors will provide a critical thinking of the production of socially imposed inequalities seen through Juliet, Desdemona, and Cordelia. Since out of many different publications on the topic of ecofeminism none has provided such an approach, the authors believe that the article presents an important addition to the literature on both Shakespeare and ecofeminism.

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Women, Gender and Conflict

Reflecting upon the Gendered Harms of War

Kirsten Campbell

Vesna Nikolić-Ristanović, ed., Women, Violence and War: Wartime Victimization of Refugees in the Balkans, trans. Borislav Radović, Budapest and New York: Central European University Press, 2000, 300 pp., £13.95 (pb), ISBN 978-963-9116-60-3.

Vesna Nikolić-Ristanović, ed., Zene, nasilje i rat (Women, violence, and war), Belgrade: Institut za kriminološka i sociološka istraživanja, 1995, 207 pp., €10.00 (pb), no ISBN mentioned.

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Gendered Experiences of Mobility

Travel Behavior of Middle-class Women in Dhaka City

Shahnaz Huq-Hussain and Umme Habiba

This article examines the travel behavior of middle-class women in Dhaka, the capital city of Bangladesh and one of the world's largest and most densely populated cities. In particular, we focus on women's use of non-motorized rickshaws to understand the constraints on mobility for women in Dhaka. Primary research, in the form of an empirical study that surveyed women in six neighborhoods of Dhaka, underpins our findings. Our quantitative and qualitative data presents a detailed picture of women's mobility through the city. We argue that although over 75 percent of women surveyed chose the rickshaw as their main vehicle for travel, they did so within a complex framework of limited transport options. Women's mobility patterns have been further complicated by government action to decrease congestion by banning rickshaws from major roads in the city. Our article highlights the constraints on mobility that middle-class women in Dhaka face including inadequate services, poorly maintained roads, adverse weather conditions, safety and security issues, and the difficulty of confronting traditional views of women in public arenas.

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Gender coherence for development

The inclusion of women in peace and development

Harlan Koff and Carmen Maganda

On December 9, 2015, the Consortium for Comparative Research on Regional Integration and Social Cohesion (RISC) proudly co-sponsored a Kapuscinski Development Lecture with the European Commission, the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), the Luxembourgish Ministry of Foreign Aff airs and the University of Luxembourg, which was delivered by 2011 Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Leymah Gbowee (kapuscinskilectures.eu/lectures/from-war-to-development-women-leading-the-nation). In order to highlight this inspirational talk given by an extraordinary person, the RISC Consortium, in association with Regions & Cohesion decided to distribute a call for papers for a special issue on “Women, Peace and Development.” Like all of RISC’s activities, the call aimed to attract contributions on these themes from different world regions.

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The Child's Worst Interests

Socio-legal Taboos on Same-Sex Parenting and Their Impact on Children's Well-Being

Zvi Triger

This article questions the way in which the 'child's best interests' test is applied by Israeli courts in cases of children of same-sex parents. It argues that the reluctance to recognize same-sex parenting indicates that the child's best interests is a politicized concept, which looks at heterosexual ideology rather than at the child's specific circumstances. This ideology views the opposite-sex parental model as the ideal model and thus is wary of recognizing same-sex parenting because it also entails recognition of same-sex relationships. I identify this prejudice against same-sex relationships and parenting as the product of what I term cultural and legal 'heterophilia'. To the extent that the objections of judges and social workers to same-sex parenting (pursuant to this ideology) are based on fears of actual harm caused to the children because of their parents' sexual orientation, they are the product of homophobia.

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Gender and the Politics of Literary Fame

Christina Rossetti and The Germ

Alexis Easley

The chronology of events leading to the publication of The Germ in 1850 is familiar to most scholars of nineteenth-century literature. In 1849, soon after the formation of the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood (PRB), Dante Gabriel Rossetti persuaded the group to found a journal that would promote their aesthetic principles and establish their literary reputation. After much discussion, the brethren decided to title their periodical The Germ and appointed William Michael Rossetti its editor. In addition to involving members of the PRB, other like-minded writers were invited to contribute, including Coventry Patmore, William Bell Scott and Christina Rossetti.

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Gender and Honour in Historical Perspective

Insights from Modern Greece

Paris Papamichos-Chronakis

Thomas W. Gallant, Experiencing Dominion. Culture, Identity and Power in the British Mediterranean (Notre Dame, Indiana: University of Notre Dame Press, 2002), 252 pp., $19.00 (pb). ISBN 0-268-02802-8

Efi Avdela, ‘Dia logous timis’. Via, Sinesthimata ke Axies sti Metemfiliaki Ellada (‘For the sake of honour’: Violence, emotions, and values in post-Civil War Greece) (Athens: Nefeli Publications, 2002), 257 pp., n15.00 (pb). ISBN 960-211-656-0

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Gendered Authorship, Literary Lionism and the Virtues of Domesticity

Contesting Wordsworth's fame in the life writings of Harriet Martineau and Thomas Carlyle.

David Amigoni

In her justly influential work on nineteenth-century strategies of self representation, Subjectivities (1990), Reginia Gagnier describes the dominant characteristics of the ‘high’ literary tradition of nineteenth-century auto/biography as consisting of a meditative and self-reflective sensibility; faith in writing as a tool of self-exploration; an attempt to make sense of life as a narrative progressing in time, with a narrative typically structured upon parent/child relationships and familial development; and a belief in personal creativity, autonomy and freedom for the future.

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Marianna Muravyeva

Olga Khazbulatova and Natalia Gafizova. Zhenskoe Dvizhenie v Rossiji (Vtoraja Polovina XIX—Nachalo XX veka) (The women’s movement in Russia [second half of the nineteenth, early twentieth century]), Ivanovo: Izdatel’stvo Ivanovo, 2003, 256 pp. ISBN 5-85229-147-1

Tatiana Mel’nikova. Zhenskoe Dvizhenie v Rossiji: Traditsiji i Innovatsiji (The women’s movement in Russia: Traditions and innovations), Moskva: Mysl’, 2000, 180 pp. ISBN 5-244-00968-0

Natalia Pushkareva. Russkaja Zhenschina: Istorija i Sovremennost’. Dva veka Izuchenija ‘Zhenskoj Temy‘ Russkoj i Zarubezhnoj Naukoj. 1800–2000. Materialy k Bibliografii (The Russian woman: history and present: Two centuries of studying ‘women’s theme’ by Russian and Western science. 1800–2000. With bibliography), Moskva: Nauchno- Izdatel’skij Tsentr ‘Ladomir’, 2002, 526 pp. ISBN 5-86218-397-3

Irina Yukina. Istorija Zhenschin v Rossiji. Zhenskoe Dvizhenie i Feminism v 1850–1920-e gg. Materialy k Bibliografiji (History of women in Russia: The women’s movement and feminism, 1850–1920. With bibliography), St. Petersburg: Aleteija, 2003, 234 pp. ISBN 5-89329-615-X

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Maria Bucur

This article questions the claim that in Romania, the post-1990 period was one of radically greater freedom in religious matters, as well as greater religiosity on the part of the population. Instead, it suggests that continuity be er encapsulates the development of religiosity—religious beliefs and their embodiment in specific practices— among Orthodox Christians in Romania in the twentieth century. It also makes visible important imbalances, gaps, and faulty assumptions about the importance of institutions in the daily religious practices and beliefs of most Orthodox populations in the historiography on Orthodoxy in Romania. Scholars have failed to see continuities and have embraced analytical frameworks that stress change, especially around the communist takeover period (1945–1949) and the fall of communism (1989–1990). Central to re-evaluating this trajectory are two aspects of Orthodoxy in Romania: (1) most believers live in the countryside; and (2) women have remained central to the development and maintenance of religious practices in ways that cannot be accounted for through any institutional analysis of the Orthodox Church, because of its both implicit and explicit misogyny.