Discursive practices during war polarize and politicize gender: they normally require men to fulfill a single, overriding task—destroy the enemy—but impose a series of often contradictory expectations on women. The essays in the book establish links between political ideology, history, psychology, cultural studies, cinema, literature, and gender studies and addresses questions such as— what is the role of women in war or military conflicts beyond the well-studied victimization? Can the often contradictory expectations of women and their traditional roles be (re)thought and (re)constructed? How do cultural representations of women during war times reveal conflicting desires and poke holes in the ideological apparatus of the state and society?
Geographically, focuses on the USSR / Russia, Central Europe, and the Balkans; historically, on WWII; the secessionist war(s) in Chechnya (1994–96, 1999–); and the Bosnia / Croatia / Serbia war (1992–95).
I. WORLD WAR II
Film and Television:
Elżbieta Ostrowska Invisible Deaths: Polish Cinema’s Representation of Women in World War II
Alexander Prokhorov She Defends His Motherland: The Myth of Mother Russia in Soviet Maternal Melodrama of the 1940s
Tatiana Mikhailova and The Subjectivity of a Female War Veteran in Larisa Shepit’ko’s Mark Lipovetsky Wings (1966)
Elena Prokhorova Gender(ed) Games: Romance, Slapstick, and Ideology in the Polish Television Series Four Tank Men and a Dog
Literature, graphics, song,:
Irina Sandomirskaja Rage, Body, and Power Talk in the City of Hunger: the Politics of Womanliness in Lidia Ginzburg’s Notes from the Siege of Leningrad
Helena Goscilo Graphic Womanhood under Fire
Robert Rothstein Songs of Women Warriors and Women Who Waited
II. RECENT WARS
Trina Mamoon “Black Widows”: Women as Political Combatants in the Chechen Conflict
Yana Hashamova War Rape: (Re)defining Motherhood, Fatherhood, and Nationhood
Jessica Wienhold-Brokish Dubravka Ugrešić’s War Museum: Approaching the “Point of Pain”