Engendering (In)Security:
: The Roles of Women Across Mozambique in The Frelimo-Renamo War

  • Alexander Van Der Biest

Student thesis: Master's ThesisMaster of Economic and Social Studies


African women‟s multiple forms of participation in contemporary (intrastate) warfare and the survival strategies they employ remain ill-researched. This dissertation studies this topic using the 1976-1992 conflict between FRELIMO and RENAMO in Mozambique as a case study. It remedies the lack of attention to gender-based violence, women combatants and grassroots level peacebuilding during that war. Although analysis is largely confined to circumstances within the war‟s ordinary end and start dates, comprehension is facilitated by links with pre-bellum gender relations and postpeace agreement demobilisation.
Evidence and argumentation are multidisciplinary and drawn from newer and older secondary evidence and a few consultations. Gender is used as a lens by which to help focus on women‟s position within society. Mozambican women are revealed as active agents rather than passive victims that engaged in a range of activities, from taking over men‟s chores on the farm to helping traumatised populations to escape the effects of the war. Women‟s diversity and capabilities and wartime societal changes become apparent. Consequently prevailing concepts regarding women and African wars during the Cold War respectively are rejected.
Date of Award2006
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • Aberystwyth University
SupervisorR Gerald Hughes (Supervisor)

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