Lorraine Bayard de Volo
Women and Gender Studies

Lorraine Bayard de Volo (PhD in political science, Graduate Certificate in women’s studies, University of Michigan, 1996) joined the faculty at CU Boulder in 2006. She was previously on the faculty in women’s studies and political science at the University of Kansas 1998-2006.

Dr. Bayard de Volo’s areas of interest include gender as it interacts with and informs war, revolution, political violence, and social movements. Her regional area of specialization is Latin America, and she has done fieldwork in Cuba, Colombia, Mexico (Chiapas), and Nicaragua.

Her Latin American research is based upon grants from the National Science Foundation and the United States Institute of Peace. She is currently working on a comparative research project on women, war, and peace processes in Colombia, Cuba, Mexico, and Nicaragua. Her first major publication out of this research will be a book on gender and the Cuban insurrection, forthcoming 2017. 

Book Title (tentative) Gendered Rebels: What a Gender Lens Tells Us about the Cuban Insurrection

Summary: How did Cuban rebels conduct a disastrous attack on a military barracks, emerge from prison and exile to launch a near suicidal invasion by sea, and just two years later take power? In the prevailing explanation, a small but dedicated group of men survived to establish the guerrilla army that would defeat the military and drive out the dictator. A gender lens sheds new and critical light on this narrative by both widening the focus to include women and zeroing in on the gendered logics of rebel forces that overturned or worked within dominant notions of masculinity and femininity. Gendered Rebels brings the Cuban insurrection into the field of feminist international relations (IR) and the literature on gender and war, returning to the official Cuban War Story and scholarly literature to develop new perspectives on armed insurrection and a fuller understanding of how the Cuban insurrection was waged and won.

Dr. Bayard de Volo’s research interests on gender and militarization also extend to the U.S. With co-author Lynn Hall, she has a 2015 article in Signs that engages with intra-military sexual violence through analysis of a gendered continuum of violence at the U.S. Air Force Academy: “‘I Wish All the Ladies Were Holes in the Road’: The US Air Force Academy and the Gendered Continuum of Violence.”

Another research project focuses on drones. She is co-director of Project Society within CU Grand Challenge’s Integrated Remote & In Situ Sensing Initiative (IRISS). Project Society aims to create a collaborative multidisciplinary environment on the CU Boulder campus that will be a national model for organizing and further developing expertise in the social sciences, humanities, and law for understanding the social, ethical, political, economic, and cultural implications of the rapidly growing use of drones and associated remote sensing technology. Dr. Bayard de Volo’s drone research uses gender as an analytical tool to identify and explore meanings and implications of drone warfare. She has a 2016 article in Politics & Gender: “Unmanned? Gender Recalibrations and the Rise of Drone Warfare.”

She is the author of Mothers of Heroes and Martyrs: Gender Identity Politics in Nicaragua, 1979-1999 (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press) as well as articles in journals including Signs, Politics & GenderComparative PoliticsGender & Society, Social Politics, International Feminist Journal of Politics, Mobilizations, and PS: Political Science and Politics.