This paper looks at human security through the lens of the private space and structural violence, making links to the broader theoretical literature, in particular Patricia Owens who draws heavily in Hannah Arendt’s classic work on bureaucracies. It then uses two case one from the Solomon Islands in the Pacific and the other form India to argue that the human security based actions by government and official bodies generally leave out women in the everyday space as a result of bureaucratic action or inaction. This has the effect of exacerbating both the physical and structural violence women face in their everyday lives.


Patrick Kilby

Dr. Patrick Kilby is a senior lecturer and the Program Convenor for the Master of Applied Anthropology and Participatory Development Program, at the Australian National University. He has published widely on development policy issues focussing on gender and development, Non-government organisations, and good development practice. He is currently researching a history of foreign aid. In 2015 he published monograph NGOs and Political Change: a history of the Australian Council for International Development with ANU Press.

Joyce Wu

Joyce Wu is a Research Fellow at the Australian National University and the Australian Government’s Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization (CSIRO). Joyce has done research on violence against women and gender relations in conflict and post-conflict countries, including Afghanistan, Rakhine state in Myanmar, Pakistan, the Solomon Islands, and Timor Leste. She is currently researching on gender integration in water resource management and governance in Pakistan.

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Gender and Human Security – Bureaucracy and the Marginalization of Women: Cases from the Solomon Islands and India