The feminization of society, installment #1637, suffragist peace edition

Preferences for conflict and cooperation are systematically different for men and women. At each stage of the escalatory ladder, women prefer more peaceful options. They are less apt to approve of the use of force and the striking of hard bargains internationally, and more apt to approve of substantial concessions to preserve peace. They impose higher audience costs because they are more approving of leaders who simply remain out of conflicts, but they are also more willing to see their leaders back down than engage in wars. Unlike men, most women impose audience costs primarily because a leader behaved aggressively in making a threat, not because the leader endangered the states bargaining reputation through behaving inconsistently. Many of these differences, and possibly all, span time periods and national boundaries. Women have been increasingly incorporated into political decision-making over the last century through suffragist movements, raising the question of whether these changes have had effects on the conflict behavior of nations consistent with their large effects in other areas, such as the size and competencies of governments. We find that the evidence is consistent with the view that the increasing enfranchisement of women, not merely the rise of democracy itself, is the cause of the democratic peace.

Emphasis added, that is the abstract of a 2018 paper by Barnhart, Dafoe, Saunders, and Trager, and this tweet offers a useful image from the paper.  Via Ilya Novak.

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While women are on average less aggressive in the use of force, voters have shown that when they choose female leaders, they often prefer those far down the tail end of the aggression spectrum. I would start the list of examples with Margaret Thatcher, Golda Meier, and Indira Gandhi.
The female strategies of conflict resolution work best with small groups, groups from a homogeneous background, and groups with female leaders. International diplomacy is conducted with hard men who rose to the top because of their ruthless willingness to use whatever means necessary to gain power. Female methods of conflict resolution require combatants to find a common ground for compromise. They work well when that common ground exists. Conflict between nations, sadly, is often fairly Hobbesian. Some leaders will only negotiate with an opponent who threatens their power, or their life.

Yeah, I was thinking that too. Like Hillary Clinton isn't exactly anyone's definition of a pacifist, Obama was trying to pull military policy toward isolationism and Clinton demanded we engage in Syria and Libya.

Or even take Angela Merkel, I mean, yeah with the refuge policy she is less harsh but she has been plotting a policy of dominating over europe for a decade now. Is setting off European crisis left and right (I would claim, tentatively, that Brexit was in some ways her fault. Many of the legitimate gripes Britian had with the EU had to do with the controlling nature, largely from Berlin) an example of European peace?

I doubt it. And you gave a few too, Indira Ghandi was the most militaristic leader democratic India has ever had. She was successful because she was willing to crush the naxalites in ways other leaders were not comfortable doing. She was unsuccessful because she tried arresting all opposition and making herself dictator.

page 38 of paper
"Yet another avenue for future research concerns the potentially differing effects of female enfranchisement and female political leadership. While this study focuses on the former, others have
examined the latter, and some evidence exists that female leaders are more willing to participate in international conflicts (Dube and Harish 2017). Given the on average individual level differences between the sexes, this may be considered surprising. Future research should probe the extent to which this tension is explained by one of two factors. The first is whether female political leaders are systematically different from female population averages in ways that relate to political decisions
to engage in conflict (Fukuyama 1998, 32). The second is the extent to which female leaders, who have often been a gender minority among their peers, have been influenced by incentives to mimic or
even exceed the aggressive norms of male peers (Goldstein 2003, 124-5. Doing otherwise might have been interpreted as a form of “weakness” in the conduct of foreign affairs.33 In effect, as Ehrenreich
(1999) point out, the “tough” international actions of Indira Gandhi and Margaret Thatcher may have been a form of “male posturing.”"

The paper acknowledges so many qualifiers, assumptions for what qualifies as suffrage, post war measuring periods, country conditions, and on and on. I find no discussion of male female survey response differences. Perhaps the authors believe women mean what they say when responding to surveys.

"At each stage of the escalatory ladder, women prefer more peaceful options."
Bwahahahaha!! Does anyone really believe this? Have you never observed how catty, difficult, crazy and physical women get when they work together???

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I suspect the argument is actually rather that female voters vote for more more peaceful politicians, rather than that female politicians are more peaceful.

Personally, I suspect the first females entering a male dominated field will tend to rank highly on what are traditionally considered male characteristics. Old Maggie Bones didn't exactly play up her femininity to become leader of the UK.

I suspect that they were disproportionately voted into office by male voters, too, not by women.

No need to suspect, in the case of "Fatcher the Milk Snatcher" and the UK, Conservative lead higher among women than men from 1974 all the way through to 2001 - https://www.ipsos.com/ipsos-mori/en-uk/how-britain-voted-october-1974

So disproportionately female. I am led to believe that this actually goes back much further to the 50s, as well, though I don't know where the specific data is.

Women going all in for left wing candidates is a recent and a probably complex interaction, mainly due to older women having a relatively neutral preference and young women going all in for the left after the "Great Awokening". The long standing nature of the appeal of the left wing to women is much exaggerated.

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I suspect more errors come from underestimating or being unwilling to seek the grounds for accommodation than from overestimating them.

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https://marginalrevolution.com/marginalrevolution/2019/11/are-queens-more-warlike-than-kings.html

+1 it seems this OP is a dummy variable correlation paper. You could probably also claim the rise of nuclear weapons is the reason we have peace today. That said, there's probably some truth to it.

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The free market chooses strong men like Trump not weak women like Warren.

Oh come on, Warren can defeat Trump by going up stairs. Your President is about as physically able as a Dalek.

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Proving Thiel completely correct when decrying the role of women in democratic societies. They really do make things intolerable for the men who know that the only way to get ahead is to crush your enemies, see them driven before you, and to hear the lamentation of their women.

Actually, Mr. Thiel is a notorious homosexual.

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The downside of aiming for eternal peace is that you get taken advantage of by the neighborhood bully. China is expanding its control of the sea island by island and feminine, peaceful Japan is letting them do it. China is not going to nuke or invade Japan, so the occasional marine fender bender or exchange of shells or even sunken naval ships or lost aircraft would stop things and preserve the status quo. But you need have the nerve to do this stuff.

So you support Japanese fasicism.

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It seems out there; nuclear deterrent and lack of reason for conflict between systemically compatible nations seems more likely.

It's fine to look at these issue stances, but there's lot of data out there about how women actually voted for parties that engaged in wars vs did not (to use extreme, female vote for NSDAP similar to make on eve of NSDAP taking power). Attitudes that would seem naively to make war less likely do not necessarily lead to doing so.

I would also caution looking at any male endorsement of war as totally inherent. Politicians and folk for war will make arguments more concertedly to those who will have to fight and pay, not those who do not. That will have an outcome.

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In the case of the NSDAP, women are easily swayed by a charismatic figure, as Thiel undoubtedly is aware of. Just another reason to keep them as far away from voting as possible, one assumes.

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Men start wars, women and children suffer the consequences.

"How dangerous is war for civilians? Very dangerous. Between 1900 and 1990, 43 million soldiers died in wars. During the same period, 62 million civilians were killed. More than 34 million civilians died in World War II. One million died in North Korea. Hundreds of thousands were killed in South Korea, and 200,000 to 400,000 in Vietnam. In the wars of the 1990s, civilian deaths constituted between 75 and 90 percent of all war deaths.

"What is the civilian experience in war? They are shot, bombed, raped, starved, and driven from their homes. During World War II, 135,000 civilians died in two days in the firebombing of Dresden. A week later, in Pforzheim, Germany, 17,800 people were killed in 22 minutes. In Russia, after the three-year battle of Leningrad, only 600,000 civilians remained in a city that had held a population of 2.5 million. One million were evacuated, 100,000 were conscripted into the Red Army, and 800,000 died. In April 2003, during the Iraqi War, half of the 1.3 million civilians in Basra, Iraq, were trapped for days without food and water in temperatures in excess of 100 degrees.

"How many refugees are there? In 2001, 40 million people were displaced from their homes because of armed conflict or human rights violations. Refugees have been a concern throughout the twentieth century. Five million Europeans were uprooted from 1919 to 1939. World War II displaced 40 million non-Germans in Europe, and 13 million Germans were expelled from countries in Eastern Europe. Approximately 2.5 million of the 4.4 million people in Bosnia and Herzegovina were driven from their homes during that region's war in the early 1990s. More than 2 million Rwandans left their country in 1994. In 2001, 200,000 people were driven from Afghanistan to Pakistan. In early 2003, 45,000 Liberians were displaced from their homes.

"What are the consequences of becoming a refugee? Refugees have very high mortality rates, due primarily to malnutrition and infectious disease. Rwandan refugees in Zaire in 1994 had a death rate 25 to 50 times higher than prewar Rwandans. Iraqi Kurdish refugees in Turkey in 1991 had a death rate 18 times higher than usual.

"How does war affect children? More than 2 million children were killed in wars during the 1990s. Three times that number were disabled or seriously injured. Twenty million children were displaced from their homes in 2001. Many were forced into prostitution. A large percentage of those will contract AIDS. Children born to mothers who are raped or forced into prostitution often become outcasts."

https://www.nytimes.com/2003/07/06/books/chapters/what-every-person-should-know-about-war.html

43 million dead soldiers, likely almost all male, don't count as suffering? Civilian deaths and refugees are far from all female (look at the refugee population entering Europe). And plenty of women voted for the leaders who authorized the bombing of Dresden and the wars in Korea, Vietnam, and Iraq.

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An area a research could be in trade conflicts. In the US do women or men support trade wars or mercantilism more?

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A matter discussed in anthropological circles for many years, nature vs. nurture, innate vs. acquired.

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"At each stage of the escalatory ladder, women prefer more peaceful options."

When men start asking them out, they marry bodyguards so they don't have to fight men off--their husband will scare them off. Once their neighbors try to invade, they invest in nuclear weapons so their nations don't have to fight.

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Balderdash. Women do their killing in very large numbers when it is easiest.

In 2016 there were over 600,000 abortions in the US. That was about how many died in the Civil War. Hiroshima and Nagasaki atomic bombs killed around 200,000.

Such sweet, caring and peaceful creatures, these women.

Ok, now talking about real problems...

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Best you stay away from them, Derek. They are pretty scary.

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I'm not so sure, we started giving women enfranchisement world-wide (Germany being an early location), then we get two World Wars.

It is amazing how woman obtaining the vote in 1919 contributed so much to starting World War 1 in 1914. But it's hardly surprising given the direct contribution women's suffrage in 1902 in Australia in had in starting the Bore War in 1899. There's so much evidence of this it's not even worth mentioning any of it.

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I'd like to hear what you mean by "the democratic peace," because the results you seem to be describing by that phrase are neither peaceful nor especially democratic. The main effect I would expect is that we would elect more leaders like Woodrow Wilson and Neville Chamberlain, whose misguided efforts to stay out of wars only made the wars longer and worse by the time we were forced to join in them.

You mean the Chamberlain who instituted the first peacetime draft in British history or the one who doubled the aircraft factories capacity or the one who bought hundreds of planes from the US?

Refreshing that someone knows European history.

Chamberlain forced out the head of the Air Ministry in 1938 due to a lack of progress in rearmament. The Wikipedia article on UK Shadow Factories:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/British_shadow_factories

Shadow as in "next to" existing automobile plants, not "secret".

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Obviously, never read history books....

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"democratic peace"? How many American's died in uniform last year? I find our tolerance for the deaths (and injuries) of these (mostly) young men for no long-term advantage soul-wrenchingly awful. We should have been out of Afghanistan and Iraq 16 yrs ago.

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So the Hitlers, Stalins, and Maos of the world would have their way? So, if Neville Chamberlain were female, we would still have had WWII.

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"They are less apt to approve of the use of force and the striking of hard bargains internationally, and more apt to approve of substantial concessions to preserve peace.

are more approving of leaders who simply remain out of conflicts, but they are also more willing to see their leaders back down than engage in wars."

Can someone remind me how they became the weaker sex?

I really admire their strategy, I hope I see them on the other side of the table as often as possible.

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