I am always keeping an eye out for instances of feminism breaking through to mainstream culture, particularly if it involves women in politics. So when Netflix decided to make its biggest payment ever of $10 million to buy the rights to Knock Down the House, I was eager to learn about how this film came about. How did this relatively new film team suddenly find itself poised to reach Netflix’s estimated 148 million subscribers?
Knock Down the House follows four progressive women who made it into the U.S. Congress in the 2018 elections, inviting viewers to witness the progression of their historic journeys into politics. Just weeks ago, it won Best Documentary Film for 2019 at the Sundance Film Festival.
University of San Diego’s Joan B. Kroc Institute for Peace and Justice just announced a call for application to its Women PeaceMakers fellowship program. The 10-month fellowship will bring on four women peacebuilders to work in high conflict areas internationally, engaging with four international peace partners on the goal of reducing violence in the community. Each fellow will also be followed by a Peace Researcher who will “document her peacebuilding journey, and specifically, how she engages the security sector.”
Each year, an urgent peacebuilding issue is identified and participants are selected based on their work in that area. During the 2017-18 academic year, the program will focus on Women PeaceMakers working with the local security sector (police, military and other state security forces) to advance peacebuilding, human security, and women’s rights in pre-, during or post-conflict settings. The guiding question that the fellows will work on is:How can Women PeaceMakers and international partners build more effective local/global collaborations in their peacebuilding efforts to engage the security sector?Examples of civilian-led engagement with the security sector to ensure legal mechanisms are upheld and human rights are protected include the following:● Efforts to enhance accountability (e.g. civilian-led reporting mechanisms and efforts to combat impunity);● Facilitation of security sector reform (e.g. civilian-supported disarmament, demobilization, and reintegration campaigns of certain military, police or militias);● Building community-security partnerships● The work of former female combatants to reintegrate and rehabilitate fellow fighters
There are several components to this fellowship for women peacemakers, which is free for participants. More information on the fellowship and the history of the Women PeaceMakers program is available at the University of San Diego’s website: