Manhood Deprived and (Re)constructed during Conflicts and International Prosecutions: The Curious Case of the Prosecutor v. Uhuru Muigai Kenyatta et al.

Citation:

Turan, Gözde. 2016. “Manhood Deprived and (Re)constructed during Conflicts and International Prosecutions: The Curious Case of the Prosecutor v. Uhuru Muigai Kenyatta et Al.” Feminist Legal Studies 24 (1): 29–47. doi:10.1007/s10691-016-9313-0.

Author: Gözde Turan

Abstract:

Recent case law on sexual violence crimes heard before the ad hoc international criminal tribunals and courts, that interpret them in connection with ethnic conflict, raises the question of which acts can be defined as sexual violence. The International Criminal Court (ICC), in the situation of Kenya, does not regard acts of forced nudity, forcible circumcision and penile amputation as sexual violence when they are motivated by ethnic prejudice and intended to demonstrate the cultural superiority of one tribe over another. The Court argues that not every act of violence that targets parts of the body commonly associated with sexuality should be considered an act of sexual violence. This recent interpretation of what counts as sexual violence provides another example of the complicity of international criminal law institutions in the ongoing construction process of female subordination. The ICC, in the Kenya situation, implicitly confirms the mutilation of female agency by interpreting penile amputation as a kind of power game between males, and by instrumentalizing the male sexual organ as an indicator of masculinity and manhood.

Keywords: sexual violence, international criminal court, intersectionality, Kenya case, masculinity

Topics: Armed Conflict, Gender, Women, Men, Masculinity/ies, International Criminal Law, International Tribunals & Special Courts, Post-Conflict, Sexual Violence Regions: Africa, East Africa Countries: Kenya

Year: 2016

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