Using Gender to Understand Extremism: Lecture with Elizabeth Pearson Online

47th Käte Hamburger Lecture Now on Youtube

A recent lecture with a great deal of visual material in support of a differentiated analysis is now available on Youtube.

In the 47th Käte Hamburger Lecture, entitled ‘Misogyny and Masculinity: Using Gender to Understand Extremism’, Dr Elizabeth Pearson reflected on an observation in academic research and the media alike, namely that aggressive misogyny is evident in the rise of the manosphere, the so-called ‘incel’ movement, and new far right groups, but is also central to the organization of jihadist groups.

Being an expert in this field, Pearson conducted research in 2015 on Islamic State supporters on Twitter during a Fellowship with VOX-Pol, the European Union Network of Excellence for the study of extremism online. Elizabeth has also written on gender and the West African jihadist group Boko Haram, and worked with the European Union Technical Assistance to Nigeria's Evolving Security Challenges (EUTANS) in 2015. 

Based on ‘close-up’ ethnographic research in a UK context, as well as study of transnational jihadist groups, this presentation explores how and why understanding gender is central to understanding the behaviours, ideologies, and alliances of activists in two extreme movements: far right actors, and Islamist groups. 

Dr Aleksandra Dier, Regional Advisor for Women, Peace and Security, Regional Office for the Arab States (ROAS), UN Women, provides insightful commentary on Pearson’s lecture in an event that was introduced and moderated by the Centre’s Research Group Leader Patricia Rinck.

Watch on Youtube


The 47th Käte Hamburger Lecture was organized by the Centre for Global Cooperation Research (KHK/GCR21), University of Duisburg-Essen.

This online event took place on May 31st, 2022.

Moderator: Patricia Rinck Research Group Leader, Käte Hamburger Kolleg / Centre for Global Cooperation Research, University of Duisburg-Essen

Lecturer: Dr Elizabeth Pearson Lecturer in Criminology, Department of Law and Criminology, Royal Holloway, University of London

Commentary: Dr. Aleksandra Dier (@AleksandraDier) Regional Advisor for Women, Peace and Security, Regional Office for the Arab States (ROAS), UN Women

Elizabeth Pearson

Dr Elizabeth Pearson is a Lecturer in Criminology with the Conflict, Violence and Terrorism Research Centre at Royal Holloway. Her research interests are in gender, extremism and counter-extremism. Elizabeth is the lead author of the book Countering Violent Extremism: Making Gender Matter, co-authored with Emily Winterbotham of the Royal United Services Institute and Dr Katherine Brown.