Perspectives on masculinity, femininity and the South African military : gender relations with specific focus on the impact of the South African Army Women’s College and the SADF (1971-1998).

Kotze, Esté (2015-12)

Thesis (MA)--Stellenbosch Unversity, 2015.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: The South African Army Women’s College (1971 – 1998) has largely been ignored by many books that have been written about the history of the South African Defence Force. It is necessary to investigate why this institution’s history has been ignored, despite its relevance as marking the first time that women were accepted into the Permanent Force of the SADF; let alone the roles played many women in other aspects of the SADF. Female participation in conflict is often reduced to the roles of either victim or caring nurse, despite many examples to the contrary. This thesis seeks to address the ways in which women have been integrated into the military context in the past and how the presence of women has affected notions surrounding gender norms in the strongly masculine world of the military. The experiences of the women of SAAWCOL as women in the male-dominated world of the military will be examined in particular as a window into the larger context of the SADF. This will be achieved by examining four main aspects. These are, firstly, looking at what gender norms are and how they are created and maintained in the military; secondly, the history of women’s roles in various military engagements in South African history; thirdly, the formation and history of SAAWCOL during this period; and finally, the lived experiences of women who entered into the ‘man’s world’ of the SADF.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Die Suid-Afrikaanse Leer Vroue Kollege (1971 - 1998) is grootliks geïgnoreer deur baie boeke wat al geskryf is oor die geskiedenis van die Suid-Afrikaanse Weermag. Dit is nodig om te ondersoek waarom hierdie instelling se geskiedenis geïgnoreer, ten spyte van sy relevansie as die eerste keer dat vroue in die Staande Mag van die SAW aanvaar is; nog te sê die rolle wat baie vroue in ander aspekte van die SAW al gespeel het. Vroulike deelname in konflik word dikwels verminder tot die rolle van beide slagoffer of sorgsame verpleegster, ten spyte van vele voorbeelde tot die teendeel. Hierdie navorsing poog om die maniere waarop vroue in die militêre konteks in die verlede opgeneem is en hoe die teenwoordigheid van vroue nosies rondom norme van geslag in die sterk manlike wêreld van die militêre aanraak aan te spreek. Die ervarings van die dames van SALVKOL as vroue in die manlikegedomineerde wêreld van die weermag sal in veral ondersoek word as 'n venster in die groter konteks van die SAW. Dit sal bereik word deur die ondersoek van vier aspekte. Dit is, eerstens, ‘n blik op wat geslag norme is en hoe hulle geskep word en in stand gehou word in die weermag; tweedens, die geskiedenis van vroue se rolle in verskeie militêre optredes in Suid-Afrikaanse geskiedenis. Derdens, word daar gekyk na die vorming en geskiedenis van SAAWCOL gedurende hierdie tydperk; en uiteindelik, die beleefde ervaringe van die vroue wat in die 'n man se wêreld van die SAW aangegaan.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/97909
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