Women, War and Peace issue of On The Issue Magazine
As the U.S. approaches a decade of war, what are feminist writers and artists thinking? On The Issues Magazine Summer 2011 probes peace activism and war reality.

Women, War and Peace
by the Editors


What has contemporary feminism meant to war and what has contemporary war meant to feminism? As the U.S. rounds the corner into a decade of war, Women, War and Peace, the Summer 2011 edition of On The Issues Magazine, takes a look at an age-old topic with a 21st century lens.

In Gender Values: The Costs of War, feminist economist Susan Feiner describes how the billions of dollars expended on the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan steal money from women’s jobs, healthcare and education. Lori Adelman analyzes the research on war attitudes and finds that women are, indeed, more inclined to oppose military action in Fighting to Gratify a Sex Instinct? War Attitudes Vary by Gender. Cora Weiss, who has a long history in international women’s and peace movements at the UN, takes a strong stand in Peace is a Human Right: Give Us Women Who Get It, calling for the advancement of women who will weigh carefully the burdens of war, and activists who understand that ending rape in war is not enough -- but that war itself must end.

Three writers look more closely at the costs to women who are in target zones. Debra Sweet, director of World Can't Wait, challenges the notion that the war in Afghanistan benefits women in The Cruel Lie: Bombing to Liberate Women. Yifat Susskind, executive director of Madre, shows how post-conflict gender violence stalks women and what grassroots groups in Guatemala and Iraq are doing in response in Violence Against Women Surges When War Is "Done". Kathleen Barry concludes that a major cultural shift is needed to address the macho fury that embroils men in both war and violence on the home front in A Feminist Looks at Masculine Rage and the Haditha Massacre.

Eleanor Bader zooms in on anti-war activists who try to combat military recruitment in schools in War Resisters Inject Truth into Military Recruitment, while Chris Lombardi, author of an upcoming book on war dissenters, gives a multi-layered portrait of the challenges and stresses that face servicewomen in Paradoxes of Women in Uniform Take Deep Listening. Jean Stevens gives us insight into the intersectional thinking of a new generation of peace activists in Next "Wave" Peace Activists Pour Feminism into the Mix. And for a look at an iconic book from earlier years, anthology editor Pam McAllister describes how her thinking has evolved in Finding Hope: Reweaving -- Then and Now.

On The Issues Magazine publisher and editor Merle Hoffman takes us back to the start of our current military engagements in All Wars Are Intimate Wars, an excerpt from her upcoming memoir, Intimate Wars, with a step back to 9/11 and how it resonated with the terror threats that abortion providers had faced for years.

In a new feature, the staff of the Feminist Press recommends good reading on war and peace from its catalog and those of other publishers in Books of Note: War and Peace. We get yet another perspective on war from our feature video, Pioneering Women War Correspondents by Milena Jovanovitch, which looks at journalists who took risks and overcame obstacles to be eyewitnesses to history.

As always, we carry art and poetry. In The Art Perspective, Art Editor Linda Stein features a slide show and audio description of the works of Frances Jetter, whose linocuts illustrate disarmament, human rights and the hypocrisy of warmaking. Throughout the edition, another ten artists are also displayed. Poetry Co-Editor Sarah Browning deepens the understanding of war and peace with four poets: Carmen Calatayud, Kathy Engel, Meg Hamill and Lisa Suhair Majaj, who sort through flames of memory and trails of hope.

We take our readers back to pertinent articles from prior editions of On The Issues Magazine -- in print (1983-1999); online (2008-2011) -- in Related Stories. And since Summer 2011 marks three years of online publishing by On The Issues Magazine, Gabrielle Korn looks at our most-read stories in Top Ten: Three Years of Stories That Grabbed Readers; reality, media representations and 21st century conundrums of sex won out.

Women, War and Peace is obviously a topic that is complex, multidimensional -- and of vast importance. It tests and challenges our humanity, our values, our futures. Take a moment to make a comment at the end of our stories. We will also explore fresh angles and provocative thinking in our unique Café feature. Feel free to write us with your ideas or letters at [email protected].

The Editors

Also see RELATED STORIES in this edition of On The Issues Magazine.

Read the Cafe for new and updated stories.

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