Author Subject: Welcome
Joshua Goldstein Posted At 09:35:49 10/26/2001
Welcome to the War and Gender forum. Post messages here on any of the topics discussed in the book and on this website, including women in combat, masculinity and war, nature-nurture, etc. Respectful and informative interdisciplinary exchanges are especially welcome.
Murray Feldstein Re: Welcome (Currently 0 replies)
Posted At 12:31:12 01/05/2002

I'm a third of the way through the book and find it a facinating treatise. I appreciate the formidable amount of work you have done. This will serve as a reference for others in the field for years to come.

As a clinical urologist I deal with problems relating to sexuality and male hormonal status on a daily basis, so I'm familiar with many of the works you cite. I'm also a fan of M. Ridley, E.O. Wilson, and R. Dalkins. Perhaps I'll encounter a discussion of evolutionary pressures of war on genes on the X chromosome somewhere after chapter 3, but I don't believe its been mentioned to this point. (Correct me if I'm wrong). I would think Y chromosomes would be a lot more expendable.

I'll visit this web site regularly. Thank you for such an important contribution to our thinking.
mary condren Your book (Currently 0 replies)
Posted At 14:15:20 01/07/2002

I have just finished reading your book. It is brilliant! I was especially appreciative since I am just about to embark on teaching a course on Gender and Violence at the Centre for Gender and Women's Studies at Trinity College Dublin. It is a nine-week optional module and I intend to highly recommend your book to the students and also to use some chapters as core texts. Since the course starts this week and it is optional, I don't know whether or not I can persuade them to buy it, especially since I have other expensive tastes in reading material.

I loved especially your wealth of reading material and bibliographical references. They will save me hours of work in the areas you have covered.

I have long worked in the area of war and gender, given our situation here in Ireland. I have focussed on the area of gender and sacrifice and hope this year to find the time to get my work into print. I teach part time in Trinity and the business of earning a living pre-occupies me far more than it is worth.

I did publish one article from my doctoral thesis (Harvard 1995) on The Role of Sacrifice in the Construction of a Gendered Social Order and Gendered System of Representation. It is in the Journal of Women's History, 1995/6. I think you would find it a useful addition to your own thinking. It draws on post-modernist perspectives in feminist and psychoanalytic theory.

Again many thanks and I will certainly pass on any useful material from my course.

Mary Condren

Jenni Stewart Re: Welcome (Currently 0 replies)
Posted At 10:00:40 10/29/2002

I am working my way through your book at the moment and it is such a wondefull read. I am currently writing my 4th Year dissertation for an MA Hons in History at St Andrews. My title is How the involvement of Women in the military has developed over the 20th century and your book is the perfect starter.
The sheer volume of research that you have undertaken will certianly save me hours of trawling through archives in the library.
If you know of any books, essays, thesis on this topic that are also available i would be greatfull for any information.
As i am also and Officer in the British Army I find this both relevant and stimulating. Thank you for your dedicated work.
Jennifer Stewart
Icantbelieve Re: Welcome (Currently 0 replies)
Posted At 02:04:55 11/25/2002

First of All, I boycott this and all other books by authors who write on subjects they know nothing about the subjects they profess to be so knowledgable about.

How many days did you spend in the military yourself Mr. Goldstein? Or in an elite combat unit at that!

"Intelectuals" who study the topic often cite research that states the biological or psychological capabilities of women in strenuous environments. If this is true equal opportunity should mean full integration of women into all positions in the armed forces - right?


The key failures of such research is the lack of evidence that these traits - posessed by some females - are proof that women in combat roles is appropriate. Quite the contrary....the opposite is true.

Women in combat roles - especially in elite units - erodes unit cohesion (and amazingly, combat effectiveness). But what do you know about this Mr. Goldstein? Have you bothered to do any substantive research on these units?

Hanging out in the Gender Studies Department trying to win favor with the "femmes" does not make you an expert on the role of women in the military, nor does your book or any of your other works make any accurate statements on how full integration of women would affect the U.S. Military (you may speak of Militaries in general, but we all know what you have your sights set on).

The fact is, women would destroy U.S. military effectivness if integration occured. "Brotherhood" may be a dirty word to a femenist, but its the glue that keeps the best military units in the world together. You might say "so what" if integration meant over %80 of the current force quitting rather than being "equal-opportunitied" into a second-rate unit, but frankly I don't want to lose the protection of the greatest military force in history.
not that simple You have to be kiding (Currently 1 replies)
Posted At 17:03:38 11/25/2002

Having served in a Special Operations unit, working in both houses of Congress, the State Department and a prominent policy think tank in Washington and unfortunately encountering integrated units I think I can speak with some authority about the role of women in the military. To be sure women can and do play a very important role in the defense of our nation, combat is not one of those roles. It is to the determent of any liberal to assume man is perfectible and that we are above or can negate human instinct.
The danger begins when the liberal assumption is made that men and women are so equal they are physically the same. I am two hounded pound male in good physical shape, Throw me in a room with a thousand women. How many do you really think could kick my ass or march longer or harder than me? One? Two or more? Now what we are talking about are exceptions not the average woman. Then of course the liberal argument goes, �so what about that 1 -2%, why can�t they serve in combat?� I refer you to exhibit A, why every sports team is not coed, you put boys and girls together and they care more about who is sleeping with whom then where the ball goes. Don�t think this is true? That�s fine, but let�s hear informed argument from someone who has served around or been in an integrated unit. They can tell you as well as I how high moral and readiness is in a unit that resembles a high school with all its drama and fornication. What they will tell you is it sucks, you cant trust any one and you have to be careful who you piss off because they can be sleeping with your boss or be trying to sleep with you. The bottom line is you cannot neglect human natures role in all things human.
Because that is what is, and always be about: Busting your ass walking with one hundred plus pounds of equipment on, meeting the enemy and cutting his heart out with your knife if necessary. Scholars who would dispute this universal truth of war need to look back into the books. As conflicts move more and more into urban terrain the likely hood of harsh hand to hand combat increases exponentially. And despite the glossy power point presentations put out by the pentagon, more technology still translates into for shit you have to hump around and carry batteries for. How many of the women in the room who succeeded in kicking my ass could carry one hundred plus pounds of equipment and ammo? Find an exception and she proves the rule, men and women are equal in many ways, muscular strength and body composition is not, nor ever will be one of them.
Now lets remove the rosy, simplistic liberal glasses and take a hard look at reality. Best case scenario, say you took a cue from human nature and made separate male female units, a great idea. Then one of these all female combat units ships off into harms way against a non-western enemy with drastically different views on female worth. Lest make a far reaching assumption that this unit is composed of genetic anomalies exactly equal to men. Be honest what do you think would really happen? What would any good dictator or despot do if they had the chance? They would put all their force and power towards butchering and letting the men do what they please with that unit, dragging naked women through the streets, anything that would horrify the Americans at home into rethinking their involvement in that conflict. Don�t fool yourself into thinking our society is ready top handle such scenes on CNN as we barely stomach casualties now. And if you don�t think our enemies have caught on, think again.
fiona Re: Welcome (Currently 0 replies)
Posted At 01:26:07 12/29/2002

"icantbelieve" - the point is that this much heralded 'brotherhood' is culturally constructed. Men learn to bond with men through exclusion and derision of women, most often constituting itself in misogyny - not a healthy state for anyone involved.

"not that simple" - ALL militaries use women (through violence, rape etc) in order to 'conquer' their enemies. Whilst it may not be legally or officially sanctioned by the US military or government, it occurs. Regardless, civilian societies perpetrate violence against women. Seeing such images as occurring in war is no different to the reality of 'peace time'. Men, regardless of nationality, do things that "horrify" Americans - the only difference being it is done by our own citizens in our own backyard. If a woman chooses an occupation with the knowledge of potential consequences, its exactly that - her choice. Additionally, documented cases of women and men as POWs demonstrate that there is very little difference in treatment according to gender. Men can be raped as well as women, men can be dragged naked through the streets.
Tyrone Chappelle Re:women in combat (Currently 1 replies)
Posted At 11:01:02 03/21/2003

I would like to recieve material of an objective view on women in combat.
shakeel Ahmad Re: how world war 1 affected women (Currently 1 replies)
Posted At 02:27:44 03/19/2002

I curious about the difference between the first world
feminist view on the other hand third world feminist view, there is a lot of differences between both point of view. I need to know the major differences between them.

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