Think & Resist: Conversations about Feminism and Peace is a podcast series that explores how feminism can redefine security.

Each episode features representatives from WILPF’s Women, Peace & Security and Disarmament teams moderating discussions with experts about different themes in international peace and security from a feminist lens. The conversations explore relevant policymaking and practice, identify opportunities and gaps, and recommend ways to advance change. 

This podcast seeks to expand your awareness and deepen your understanding of how global security challenges and gender inequalities intersect, with a focus on the overlap between the WPS agenda and disarmament work. If you would like to learn more about each topic discussed, related content will be provided for you to explore the issues further. 

Our remarkable guests include Cynthia Enloe, Sylvie Ndongmo, Maritza Chan, Aicha Madi, Shobha Shrestha, Anthony Keedi, Jennifer Rodriguez Bruno, Verónica Ferrari, Tara Hairston, Anne-Marie Buzatu, Lucina DiMeco, Doug Weir, Lina Hjärtström, Deanne Uyangoda, Inna Michaeli and Samira Hamidi. Each guest brings their own experiences and perspectives as feminist experts, researchers, activists, and scholars. 

Listen to their insights on themes including disarmament, militarised masculinities, the gendered impacts of the arms trade, digital violence against women, and conflict prevention amidst the climate emergency.

To put women, peace, and security together is a radical breakthrough.

– Cynthia Enloe, feminist writer and theorist

LISTEN TO THINK & RESIST

What about Think and Resist?

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In this episode, co-hosts Zarin, Genevieve, and Allison discuss the motivation behind creating this podcast series and about WILPF’s history and approach as a feminist peace organization. They outline what listeners can expect in future episodes.

What about WPS and Disarmament?

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In this episode we discuss the Women, Peace and Security (WPS) Agenda and disarmament – two major focus areas for WILPF. What is the WPS agenda, what is meant by disarmament, and how do they relate to one another? Why should those who are working on women’s leadership care about curbing militarisation, and what does gender have to do with disarmament and arms control? In this foundational episode, Cynthia Enloe, Maritza Chan Valverde, and Sylvie Ndongmo talk about the connections between these two areas, as well as the gaps and challenges in filling them.

What about the Arms trade?

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Why is the arms trade a feminist issue? This episode dives into the gendered impacts of the international arms trade, and the ways in which arms proliferation can undermine efforts to achieve the Women, Peace and Security agenda. With examples from Yemen and Nepal, Aïcha Madi and Shobha Shrestha explore how different arms control instruments function practically in efforts to limit human rights violations and gender-based violence, as well as the limitations to these instruments. They also ask: is feminist foreign policy compatible with active participation in the arms trade? Their answers and more in this episode.

What about Masculinity and Militarism?

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In this episode, our guests delve into conversations about the relationships between masculinity, militarism, armed conflict, and violence. Anthony Keedi and Jennifer Rodriguez Bruno shed light on why it’s so important to also think critically about masculinity and men’s experiences in our gender analysis and work for peace. Tune in to expand your awareness about the social pressures as well as the social, economic, and political structures that generate violent or militarised masculinities, and how men can be mobilised in support of gender justice.

What about Women, Peace and
Digital (In)security?

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There’s a lot in the news about new technologies, cyber attacks, and the use and misuse of online platforms. But what do all of these things have to do with gender? In this episode, Anne-Marie Buzatu, Lucina DiMeco, Tara Hairston, and Verónica Ferrari speak about the gender-related risks and harms in a digital world, including online violence and repression.

What about the Ecological Crisis?

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As the effects of the climate emergency become more stark throughout the world, more attention is being paid to the important links between climate and security. But from a feminist perspective, are these climate and security discussions focusing on the right things? Our guests Doug Weir and Lina Hjärtström talk about how militarism is impacting the environment, the kind of action that’s needed to prevent conflict in the face of the climate emergency, and why gender needs to be part of the discussion.

What about Women Human Rights Defenders?

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One of the pillars of the WPS agenda is participation – but what are the prospects for peace when it’s not safe for women leaders to participate in the first place? In our last episode of the season, we speak with Deanne Uyangoda, Inna Michaeli, and Samira Hamidi, who talk about the many risks, threats, and reprisals faced by women human rights defenders in response to their courageous work. They outline the many different actors – governments, armed groups, and community members – who are violently seeking to block women from challenging repression, authoritarianism, and militarism. Why is defending women’s free expression so urgent? More in our episode.

What About Think and Resist? Season Wrap Up

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In this last episode, co-hosts Zarin, Genevieve, and Allison take a moment to reflect on the podcast series. The speakers discuss the importance of moving away from the usual formal discussions and instead towards more candid conversations with people who are affected and those directly trying to make change happen.

A huge thank you to everyone for listening to this podcast, we hope you were inspired and learned something new along the way.

Guests

Maritza Chan

Maritza Chan is Ambassador, Deputy Permanent Representative of Costa Rica to the United Nations. Ambassador Chan is an international peace and security expert and global feminist activist. With decades of experience as a professional speechwriter and arms control negotiator, Ambassador Chan’s platform revolves around arms control, gender and security, the rule of law, and anti-impunity reform.

Sylvie Ndognmo

Sylvie Jacqueline Ndongmo has been involved in WILPF since 2012 and was a member of the International Board between 2015 and 2018. Prior to her election as Africa Regional Representative, Sylvie Jacqueline Ndongmo was WILPF Cameroon Section President and co-coordinator of the African Working Group. Sylvie Jacqueline Ndongmo is a teacher by profession and an African Union Trainer in peace support operations. She has 20 years of experience advocating for the political and social rights of Cameroonian and African women.

Cynthia Enloe

Cynthia Enloe is Research Professor of Political Science and Women’s and Gender Studies at Clark University in Massachusetts, USA. Among her most recent books are a fully updated edition of Bananas, Beaches and Bases: Making Feminist Sense of International Politics, and The Big Push: Exposing and Challenging Persistent Patriarchy. Cynthia Enloe has been recognised for her contributions by several organisations, including The International Studies Association and the Gender Justice Caucus of the International Crimes Court.

Aïcha Madi

Aïcha Madi is a political analyst and conflict resolution practitioner who specialises in security and gender issues. She is currently working on the promotion of women’s participation in the peace and political process in Yemen. She has had several field experiences in the MENA region where she worked with women victims of sexual and gender based violence as well as with victims of enforced disappearances and torture. She holds a BSc in international studies with a peace and security concentration from the University of Montreal and an MSc in public and international affairs from the same university. 

Shobha Shrestha

Shobha Pradhan Shrestha is the founder and executive chair of Women for Peace and Democracy (WPD) Nepal. Shobha Pradhan Shrestha is a peace-building professional working in rural communities of Nepal on women’s empowerment, gender equality, human rights, the Women, Peace and Security Agenda. Shobha Pradhan Shrestha has been campaigning for arms control since 2003 and has been an active member of the Control Arms Coalition, Campaign to Stop Killer Robots, IANSA and a great admirer of WILPF work.

Anthony Keedi

Anthony Keedi has been working in Lebanon for the past 15 years piloting and promoting the concept of engaging men in ending violence against women and masculinities in the Middle East North Africa (MENA) region. He is a psychologist and also holds a master’s degree in gender studies. He is currently the Masculinities Technical Advisor at Abaad: Resource Center for Gender Equality. In his work thus far, he has managed the first ever White Ribbon Campaign in MENA; Developed Gender Equality Training workbooks and manuals on Masculinities in MENA; established the first psychological rehabilitation clinic for men with abusive behaviours in MENA; and participated in expert panels for the CEDAW commission as well as on the first Human Rights Council Resolution for engaging men and boys to end gender-based violence.

Jennifer Rodriguez Bruno

Jennifer Rodriguez Bruno serves as the Global Advocacy Manager for the MenEngage Alliance Global Secretariat working to advance the Alliance’s interconnected national-regional-global advocacy strategy. Through accountable advocacy practices that aim to work in solidarity, partnership and power-with – feminist, women’s rights, climate, racial and LGBTIQ activists, organizations and movements, Jennifer Rodriguez Bruno supports Alliance members in carrying out advocacy to advance intersectional feminist informed approaches to transform patriarchal masculinities and work with men and boys to advance gender justice.

Verónica Ferrari

Verónica Ferrari is Global Policy Advocacy Coordinator at the Association for Progressive Communications (APC), where she coordinates the organisation and members’ involvement in various global policy spaces such as the UN OEWG, ITU, the UN Human Rights Council, and the OECD, among others. Verónica Ferrari also represents APC at the Freedom Online Coalition Advisory Network, where she co-leads the Digital Equality Task Force. Before joining APC, she served as a senior policy advisor at the Government Secretariat of Modernization in Argentina, where she led the work with the OECD on digital government, open government, and innovation. Her work focuses on freedom of expression, privacy, gender and technology.

Lucina DiMeco

Lucina Di Meco is the co-founder of #ShePersisted, a global initiative dedicated to tackling gendered disinformation against women in politics. A women’s rights advocate and author, Lucina Di Meco has been recognised by Apolitical as one of the 100 Most Influential People in Gender Policy and her work has been featured in The New York Times, BBC, Time magazine, The Washington Post, Politico, Brookings, and The Council of Foreign Relations, among others.

Anne-Marie Buzatu

Anne-Marie Buzatu is the Vice President and Chief Operations Officer of ICT4Peace Foundation. An international lawyer by training, she also worked for several years in the information technology sector as a web developer and database administrator. Anne-Marie Buzatu consults with governments and international organisations and develops and delivers capacity building in the areas of cyber (human) security policy, multi-stakeholder approaches to governance, and impacts of private commercial actors on human rights. She has also published several policy papers and articles in the areas of private security and cybersecurity.

Tara Hairston

Bio coming soon.

Doug Weir

Doug Weir has undertaken research and advocacy on the polluting legacy of armed conflicts and military activities since 2005. After working on conflict pollution and the toxic remnants of war for many years, he established the non-profit Conflict and Environment Observatory (CEOBS) to monitor and raise awareness of the environmental and humanitarian consequences of conflicts. He has contributed to a wide range of domestic, regional and international initiatives on conflict and the environment, with a current focus on the progressive development of the legal framework protecting the environment in relation to armed conflicts. www.ceobs.org

Lina Hjärtström

Lina Hjärtström has been a WILPF member for ten years, starting out with local activism. She has been chairwoman of WILPF Sweden and a member of WILPFs International Board before starting her position with WILPF Sweden as Policy and Advocacy Director in August 2021, now working on disarmament, environment and feminist peace.

Deanne Uyangoda

Deanne Uyangoda is a Protection Coordinator for Asia-Pacific at Front Line Defenders.

Samira Hamidi

Bio coming soon.

Inna Michaeli

Dr. Inna Michaeli, Director of Programs, AWID (Association for Women’s Rights in Development) Inna Michaeli is a feminist activist and sociologist, based in Berlin, Germany, raised in Haifa, Palestine/Israel, and born in St. Petersburg, Russia. In the past 20 years she took part in LGBTQI+ and feminist struggles, political education and organizing by and for migrant women, and Palestine liberation and solidarity. She is a Board Member of the Germany-based organization Jewish Voice for a Just Peace in the Middle East. In the years 2005-2012 she has worked with the Coalition of Women for Peace, a feminist organization against the occupation of Palestine and for a just peace.

Technical Team

Allison Pytlak
Writer, producer & host

Genevieve Riccoboni
Writer, producer & host

Zarin Hamid
Writer, producer & host

Cameron Navarro
Consultant and editor

Danielle Stenger
Consultant

Adélaïde Barat Magan
Communications lead

Rebecca Hunt
Communications intern

Nadia Joubert
Graphic designer

Pierre Joubert
Web developer

DO YOU WANT MORE?

How lucky!

You can listen to the other podcasts produced by WILPF and our Sections listed and available.

If you feel passionate about the topics discussed in Think & Resist: Conversations about feminism and peace, consider getting involved with WILPF! With National Sections and Groups in more than 45 countries, joining is easy. Learn more about how to join a Section or Group.

Melissa Torres

VICE-PRESIDENT

Prior to being elected Vice-President, Melissa Torres was the WILPF US International Board Member from 2015 to 2018. Melissa joined WILPF in 2011 when she was selected as a Delegate to the Commission on the Status of Women as part of WILPF US’ Practicum in Advocacy Programme at the United Nations. She holds a PhD in Social Work and currently works at the University of Texas as the Director of Human Trafficking Research at one of the university’s think tanks. Of Mexican descent, born on the US and Mexican border, and raised between the two countries, Melissa is mostly concerned with the protection of displaced Latinxs in the Americas. She is also involved with the American Red Cross as a volunteer, trainer, and researcher focused on post-disaster aid distribution and work with undocumented Latinxs. Some of her goals as Vice-President are to highlight intersectionality and increase diversity by fostering inclusive spaces for mentorship and leadership. She also contributes to WILPF’s emerging work on the topic of displacement and migration.

Jamila Afghani

VICE-PRESIDENT

Jamila Afghani is the President of WILPF Afghanistan which she started in 2015. She is also an active member and founder of several organisations including the Noor Educational and Capacity Development Organisation (NECDO). Elected in 2018 as South Asia Regional Representative to WILPF’s International Board, WILPF benefits from Jamila’s work experience in education, migration, gender, including gender-based violence and democratic governance in post-conflict and transitional countries.

Sylvie Jacqueline Ndongmo

PRESIDENT

Sylvie Jacqueline NDONGMO is a human rights and peace leader with over 27 years experience including ten within WILPF. She has a multi-disciplinary background with a track record of multiple socio-economic development projects implemented to improve policies, practices and peace-oriented actions. Sylvie is the founder of WILPF Cameroon and was the Section’s president until 2022. She co-coordinated the African Working Group before her election as Africa Representative to WILPF’s International Board in 2018. A teacher by profession and an African Union Trainer in peace support operations, Sylvie has extensive experience advocating for the political and social rights of women in Africa and worldwide.

WILPF Afghanistan

In response to the takeover of Afghanistan by the Taliban and its targeted attacks on civil society members, WILPF Afghanistan issued several statements calling on the international community to stand in solidarity with Afghan people and ensure that their rights be upheld, including access to aid. The Section also published 100 Untold Stories of War and Peace, a compilation of true stories that highlight the effects of war and militarisation on the region. 

IPB Congress Barcelona

WILPF Germany (+Young WILPF network), WILPF Spain and MENA Regional Representative

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Demilitarisation

WILPF uses feminist analysis to argue that militarisation is a counter-productive and ill-conceived response to establishing security in the world. The more society becomes militarised, the more violence and injustice are likely to grow locally and worldwide.

Sixteen states are believed to have supplied weapons to Afghanistan from 2001 to 2020 with the US supplying 74 % of weapons, followed by Russia. Much of this equipment was left behind by the US military and is being used to inflate Taliban’s arsenal. WILPF is calling for better oversight on arms movement, for compensating affected Afghan people and for an end to all militarised systems.

Militarised masculinity

Mobilising men and boys around feminist peace has been one way of deconstructing and redefining masculinities. WILPF shares a feminist analysis on the links between militarism, masculinities, peace and security. We explore opportunities for strengthening activists’ action to build equal partnerships among women and men for gender equality.

WILPF has been working on challenging the prevailing notion of masculinity based on men’s physical and social superiority to, and dominance of, women in Afghanistan. It recognizes that these notions are not representative of all Afghan men, contrary to the publicly prevailing notion.

Feminist peace​

In WILPF’s view, any process towards establishing peace that has not been partly designed by women remains deficient. Beyond bringing perspectives that encapsulate the views of half of the society and unlike the men only designed processes, women’s true and meaningful participation allows the situation to improve.

In Afghanistan, WILPF has been demanding that women occupy the front seats at the negotiating tables. The experience of the past 20 has shown that women’s presence produces more sustainable solutions when they are empowered and enabled to play a role.

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