56 E. Union St. Athens, Ohio

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Dr. Anderson joins us for a lunchtime paper presentation and research Q+A, presenting on her recent work in progress with Madeline Eskandari, a JD Candidate at the University of Toronto.

Abstract: Peace agreements often break down, but their deterioration may fall short of constituting armed conflict. While the war-peace binary holds currency with decision-makers and scholars, it does not capture women’s lived reality during so-called “peace times.” As a result, we know little about the work of contemporary self-identified women’s peace associations when they are not responding to armed conflicts or seeking to influence peace negotiations. Using a Participatory Action Research methodological approach with a Burundian women’s peace organization in exile, we conducted extensive archival research and 68 interviews in Rwanda in 2019 and via Zoom/What’s App in 2021. We examine the women’s peace organization, Mouvement Inamahoro: Femmes et Filles pour la Paix et la Sécurité, which formed in the wake of Burundi’s 2015 electoral crisis, which signified the undoing of the Arusha peace accords. Specifically, we examine the numerous functions that the organization serves including humanitarian assistance, political advocacy, associational benefits for members, and information sharing and awareness-raising. In particular we highlight Inamahoro’s activities during the Covid-19 pandemic which worsened an already precarious situation for Burundian refugees in East Africa to which Mouvement Inamahoro responded through humanitarian assistance, advocacy, and awareness-raising. From Inamahoro’s standpoint, Covid-19 constituted a security threat exacerbated by international actors’ reliance on mainstream conceptions of war/peace, which de-prioritized vulnerable populations.

War and Peace Studies offers a one-year, 30 credit MA! This innovative and interdisciplinary program prepares graduates for work in national/international security and peacebuilding. Possibilities are also offered for Accelerated Graduate Pathways + credit for experiential learning. For more information, contact Dr. Agensky, agensky@ohio.edu.

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