Faye Curtis


International Relations (2020 cohort)

My DPhil will explore the role of women at war, specifically women as ‘warriors’ in the contemporary context. Until now, the art of soldiering in organised state combat has been an almost exclusively male domain. Recent decisions made in the UK, US and elsewhere, to open close combat roles to women thus presents an exciting opportunity for the study of new empirical terrain. I intend to observe the integration of women in elite fighting units of the British and United States Armed Forces, with a focus on unit cohesion and the socialising force of ‘band of brothers’ culture. In so doing, I will tap into debates within feminist international relations theory on the gendered nature of combat, as well as wider literature on organised state violence and the human condition.

Prior to joining Oxford’s DPIR, I worked for the UK diplomatic service at NATO. I specialised on NATO’s Resolute Support mission in Afghanistan, the Afghan peace process, and the implementation of NATO’s Women, Peace and Security agenda. I hold an MSc in Global Governance and Diplomacy from the University of Oxford, as well as an MRes in Politics and a BA in Global Politics and International Relations from Birkbeck College.