Centering Security Around Felt, Gendered Insecurities

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I begin with the contention that one of the most persistent features of the global political arena is gender hierarchy. Building on previous feminist thinking about gender hierarchy in global politics, I argue for its central nature not only for feminist security analysis but for security analysis more broadly. This argument is important for understanding the suggestion that gender analysis is relevant to all of Security Studies, rather than the part of Security Studies that might be interested in where women are or what happens to women. The second section of this article then addresses why it matters that gender hierarchy is persistent in the global political arena – shaping what is/what counts as security or insecurity and the distribution of securities and insecurities. The third section of the article makes the argument that seeing insecurity as gendered not only points to the importance of security as felt and experienced, but does so in a way that adds dimensionality even to accounts of emotion and security less engaged with gender. The article closes with a discussion paths forward for this sort of feminist analysis, as well as ways that a feminist-inspired understanding of security as sensed might be of use across Security Studies.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)51-63
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Global Security Studies
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 5 Feb 2016


  • gender
  • affect
  • emotion
  • security
  • feminist IR
  • feminist theory
  • international relations theory
  • international security

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