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European University Institute - Robert Schuman Centre for Advanced Studies - Department of History

Ursula Hirschmann lecture: exploring feminist political economy of war and peace

What unites refugees, mercenaries, veterans and victims of human trafficking? First and foremost, they are bodies moving across borders in the framework of armed conflicts in the post-Cold War world. Following their movements can help us understand conflict dynamics and underlying economic structures.

15 November 2023 | Event

This was the starting point of Professor Aida A. Hozić’s reflections at the 2023 Ursula Hirschmann Lecture on 6 November, titled 'Feminist Political Economy of War and Peace'. The Ursula Hirschmann lecture is an annual event dedicated to gender studies jointly organised by the EUI History Department and the Robert Schuman Centre for Advanced Studies. As an Associate Professor of International Relations and the Associate Chair of the Department of Political Science at the University of Florida, Professor Hozić's research converges at the crossroads of political economy, cultural studies, and international security.

In her lecture, Hozić argued that international security approaches focus narrowly on political institutions and general economic statistics. Feminist theoretical frameworks allow us to see wars differently, especially by focusing on the experiences of the conflicts’ actors and victims. Through this shift of focus, feminist approaches seem to be the most apt at underlining the cycles and continuums of violence and the economic transformations that continue to plague post-war contexts at different levels.

In Hozić’s view, these perspectives help us frame wars and violence in their functions within the global political economy and its gendered and racial hierarchies. Concluding her lecture, Professor Hozić referred to Ursula Hirschmann and the 'Manifesto di Ventotene', which envisioned a free and united Europe while also advocating gender equality, as an inspiration to "offer hope amidst wars.” To be faithful to Ursula Hirschmann’s legacy, Hozić argued, Europe should start looking at itself and at its geopolitical role from a different perspective, from its peripheries and margins.

Last update: 08 March 2024

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