Review of Melissa S. Herbet, ‘Camouflage Isn’t Only for Combat: gender, sexuality and women in the military’

Publication type

Journal Article


Publication date

November 1, 2001


Herbert's book focuses on women's perceptions of pressures to act masculine, pressures to act feminine, penalties for being perceived as too masculine or too feminine, and strategies for surviving as a woman in a man's world. The strength of the book is it's vivid account of the range of experiences and views of military women. Herbert allows women's individual voices to speak to the reader directly through ample and appropriate directly quoted passages. Nevertheless, the book falls short in its exploration of military sexuality. Though noting that the meaning of sexuality is problematic, Herbert does not explore this problematic. The book does not consider how lesbians and bi-sexual women in the military came to recognise their orientation, or how life as sexuality minorities changed for those women who had left military service by the time they entered Herbert's study.

Published in


Volume and page numbers

Volume: 4 , p.507 -509






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