The Geopolitics of Intimacy and the Intimacies of Geopolitics: Combat Deployment, Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, and Domestic Abuse in the British Military

TitleThe Geopolitics of Intimacy and the Intimacies of Geopolitics: Combat Deployment, Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, and Domestic Abuse in the British Military
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2016
AuthorsGray, Harriet
JournalFeminist Studies
Volume42
Issue1
Start Page138
Pagination138-165
Abstract

This paper discusses narratives which identify experiences of deployment – in particular the difficulties of post-deployment reintegration and associated mental health conditions such as post-traumatic stress disorder – as causal in the domestic abuse perpetrated by servicemen in the British military. Drawing on a qualitative study of domestic abuse in this context, it challenges the notion that these narratives always have an empirical basis and instead draws attention to their discursive power. The paper argues that theorists of militarism should look not only to its enactments on the geopolitical stage but to the mundane, everyday gendered social relations which make such enactments possible. It illustrates how discourses which position post-deployment reintegration and PTSD as causal of domestic abuse both reproduce and depoliticise militarism by reinforcing and naturalising the everyday gendered structures of inequality by which it is underpinned in the contemporary British context.

URLhttp://www.jstor.org/stable/10.15767/feministstudies.42.1.138
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