Victims, soldiers, peacemakers and caretakers
the neoliberal constitution of women in the EU’s security policy

  • EW
Category: article
Publisher: Taylor & Francis
Year: 2017
In journal: International Feminist Journal of Politics


Feminist scholars praise and criticize the UNSC Resolution 1325 on Women, Peace and Security for its considerations of women and gender in conflicts. Poststructuralist feminists show how gender is constructed in the UN’s security policies and how these constructions reproduce gendered dichotomies between women and men and representations of women as victims, part of civil society and neoliberal subjects. Although the UNSC Resolutions 1325 and 1820 are implemented by the EU, there is no literature on how the EU is taking up the UN’s discourse. Scholars studying gender policies in and of the EU mainly analyze the (in)effectiveness of EU gender mainstreaming but rarely interrogate its discursive foundations. Using a governmentality perspective, I argue that on the one hand the EU produces a binary and stereotypical understanding of gender, and on the other hand constitutes women as neoliberal subjects responsible for their own well-being, ignoring broader structures of (gender) inequality and war and making gender equality solely an instrument to achieve more security and development.


Muehlenhoff, H.L. (2017) “Victims, soldiers, peace-makers and caretakers: the neoliberal constitution of women in the EU’s security policy”, International Feminist Journal of Politics, online first, 1-15.

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