Against the Odds: Sustaining Feminist Momentum in Post-War Bosnia-Herzegovina

Citation:

Cockburn, Cynthia. 2013. “Against the Odds: Sustaining Feminist Momentum in Post-War Bosnia-Herzegovina.” Women’s Studies International Forum 37 (March): 26–35. doi:10.1016/j.wsif.2013.01.003.

Author: Cynthia Cockburn

Abstract:

During the nationalist wars that destroyed Yugoslavia, a women's organization in central Bosnia-Herzegovina was set up to respond to the needs of women raped and traumatized in the fighting. In 1995, as the war ended, the author made a study of the feminist and anti-nationalist thinking and relationships among the doctors, therapists and other staff of Medica Women's Therapy Centre. In 2012 she returned to Bosnia to reinterview women and track developments in this post-conflict period. Medica now supports survivors of domestic violence, on the one hand working in a close partnership with local government services and on the other lobbying the state for improved legislation and provision. In a political system driven by nationalism, women report a retrogression in gender relations and high levels of violence against women. A recent split in Medica signals divergences in feminism and aspirations to a more radical and holistic movement.

Topics: Armed Conflict, National Liberation Wars, Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Sexual Violence, Male Perpetrators, Rape, SV against women, Torture, Sexual Torture

Year: 2013

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