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date: 16 May 2021

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter critically explores how the African Union (AU) understands and interprets the global norms around gender and security found in the Women, Peace, and Security (WPS) agenda. It shows how the WPS agenda is situated within the AU’s African Peace and Security Architecture (APSA) while taking into account the local/regional gender regime including regional action plans (RAPs). To do so, the chapter maps out ways in which gender intersects with security when global and local norms interact within a regional security institution. Drawing on a selection of case studies, this chapter demonstrates that there is now a well-established network of frameworks that embed WPS on the continent. It concludes that this has been informed by a certain understanding of feminism and a new pan-Africanist push via the AU and women’s movements on the continent. Indeed, the chapter highlights the adoption of National Action Plans (NAPs) in seventeen member states as one of the primary achievements of the AU women’s movement. This chapter thus offers a unique perspective on the regional institutionalization process of the WPS agenda.

Keywords: African Union, pan-Africanist, regional institutionalization, African peace and security architecture

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