Women have historically been excluded in formal peace processes. While structural changes have pushed for women’s participation in peace negotiations, we locate the shift from women’s exclusion to women’s inclusion as enacted in the discursive patterns of talk. Using positioning theory as a discursive lens, we looked at how women’s inclusion was facilitated in the peace negotiations between the Government of the Philippines (GPH) and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) that reached the landmark Philippine peace accord of 2014. Positioning theory argues that every utterance is a speech act that ascribes rights and duties, in this case, the right of women to be included in peace negotiations. Each act of positioning is comprised of storylines, identities, rights and duties, and social forces. From interviews with members of the GPH-MILF peace panels, we identified three patterns of positioning: (1) storylines of cultural and religious restrictions resisting women’s inclusion; (2) storylines of gender equality; compliance with important statutes; and political will facilitating women’s inclusion; and (3) storylines of women’s inclusion transforming women’s identities in peace negotiations from normative to agentic. Results are discussed in terms of the theoretical and practical contributions of a discursive approach to women’s inclusion in peace processes.
Perez, J.P., & Ofreneo, M.A.P. (2022). Positioning Women's Inclusion in Peace Negotiations: The Landmark Case of the Philippines. Peace and Conflict Studies, 28(2). https://nsuworks.nova.edu/pcs/vol28/iss2/2
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