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Rape

Witness to Rape: The Limits and Potential of International War Crimes Trials for Victims of Wartime Sexual Violence

Citation:

Henry, Nicola. 2009. “Witness to Rape: The Limits and Potential of International War Crimes Trials for Victims of Wartime Sexual Violence.” International Journal of Transitional Justice 3 (1): 114–34. doi:10.1093/ijtj/ijn036.

Author: Nicola Henry

Abstract:

Despite the proliferation of trauma and memory research in recent years, we know very little about the contribution of transitional justice mechanisms to psychological healing and societal reconciliation in the aftermath of genocide, armed conflict and politicized violence. Many scholars in this area have argued that the disclosure of traumatic experiences is beneficial to the psychological recovery process for survivors of gross human rights violations. This article critically examines this therapeutic assumption within a transitional justice paradigm. The article explores the potentials and limitations of international war crimes trials for victims of wartime sexual violence, focusing specifically on the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY). The article provides a theoretical framework for analyzing the significance of testimony at international war crimes trials and raises some critical questions related to the psychological impact of trials. It is argued that due to the sheer diversity and heterogeneity of wartime rape victims, the experience of giving testimony is likely to be mixed: while some victims may suffer under the constraints of legal process, under the right circumstances, war crimes trials may help others to make sense of their suffering.

Topics: Armed Conflict, Gender, Women, Health, Trauma, Justice, International Tribunals & Special Courts, Transitional Justice, Sexual Violence, Rape Regions: Europe, Balkans Countries: Yugoslavia (former)

Year: 2008

The Gender Politics of the Namibian Liberation Struggle

Citation:

Akawa, Martha, and Bience Gawanas. 2014. The Gender Politics of the Namibian Liberation Struggle. Basel Namibia Studies Series 13. Basel, Switzerland: Basler Afrika Bibliographien.

Authors: Martha Akawa, Bience Gawanas

Annotation:

Contents

Preface by Advocate Bience Gawanas

Acknowledgments

Introduction

1. "There can be no national liberation without the full participation of women": The role and position of women in the liberation struggle

2. Idealized struggle? Public and Visual Representations of Women

3. Women and the SWAPO Refugee Camps

4. Sexual Politics in the Camps

5. Education and Training

6. "All has not been won. Not everything has been lost": Women in post-independent Namibia

Epilogue

Abbreviations

List of Illustrations and Maps

Bibliography

Index

Topics: Armed Conflict, Displacement & Migration, Refugees, Gender, Femininity/ies, Political Participation, Sexual Violence, Rape, Sexual Exploitation and Abuse, Sexuality, Violence Regions: Africa, Southern Africa Countries: Namibia

Year: 2014

Enduring Violence: Ladina Women’s Lives in Guatemala

Citation:

Menjívar, Cecilia. 2011. Enduring Violence: Ladina Women’s Lives in Guatemala. Oakland: University of California Press. http://www.ucpress.edu/book.php?isbn=9780520267671.

Author: Cecilia Menjívar

Abstract:

Drawing on revealing, in-depth interviews, Cecilia Menjívar investigates the role that violence plays in the lives of Ladina women in eastern Guatemala, a little-visited and little-studied region. While much has been written on the subject of political violence in Guatemala, Menjívar turns to a different form of suffering—the violence embedded in institutions and in everyday life so familiar and routine that it is often not recognized as such. Rather than painting Guatemala (or even Latin America) as having a cultural propensity for normalizing and accepting violence, Menjívar aims to develop an approach to examining structures of violence—profound inequality, exploitation and poverty, and gender ideologies that position women in vulnerable situations— grounded in women’s experiences. In this way, her study provides a glimpse into the root causes of the increasing wave of feminicide in Guatemala, as well as in other Latin American countries, and offers observations relevant for understanding violence against women around the world today.

(University of California Press)

Keywords: sociology, gender studies

Topics: Gender, Women, Gender-Based Violence, Gendered Power Relations, UNSCR 1960, Rape, Sexual Exploitation and Abuse, SV against women, Violence Regions: Americas, Central America Countries: Guatemala

Year: 2011

Ending Impunity for Sexual and Gender-Based Crimes: The International Criminal Court and Complementarity in the Democratic Republic of Congo

Citation:

Lake, Milli. 2014. “Ending Impunity for Sexual and Gender-Based Crimes: The International Criminal Court and Complementarity in the Democratic Republic of Congo.” African Conflict and Peacebuilding Review 4 (1): 1-32

Author: Milli Lake

Abstract:

The International Criminal Court (ICC) was established in 2002 to combat impunity for the most serious crimes of international concern. It seeks to do so in two ways: through a series of high-profile cases in The Hague, intended to deter future war criminals; and through its complementarity mechanism, which equips national legal systems to prosecute ICC crimes domestically. Through a case study of the prosecution of sexual and gender-based violence in the Democratic Republic of Congo, this article examines efforts by various stakeholders to realize the legal complementarity principle embedded in the Rome Statute. The article argues that the domestic prosecution of ICC crimes requires developments in four distinct areas: legislative reform, institutional reform, education and training, and the building of public trust and participation. The research also reveals that where developments in these areas have occurred, they have been propelled by a variety of domestic and international stakeholders. However, the ICC itself has failed to contribute significantly to the realization of complementarity that is central to achieving its mandate.

Topics: Armed Conflict, Gender, Gender-Based Violence, Justice, International Tribunals & Special Courts, Sexual Violence, Rape Regions: Africa, Central Africa Countries: Democratic Republic of the Congo

Year: 2014

Political Transition and Sexual and Gender-Based Violence in South Africa, Kenya, and Zimbabwe: A Comparative Analysis

Citation:

Thomas, Kylie, Masheti Masinjila, and Eunice Bere. 2013. “Political Transition and Sexual and Gender-Based Violence in South Africa, Kenya, and Zimbabwe: A Comparative Analysis.” Gender & Development 21 (3): 519–32. 

Authors: Kylie Thomas, Masheti Masinjila, Eunice Bere

Abstract:

This article draws on research conducted in Kenya, South Africa, and Zimbabwe that focused on violence in the context of political transition. The paper examines the relation between political transition and sexual and gender-based violence in the three countries. The paper argues that it is critical to recognise sexual and gender-based violence as bound to systemic gendered inequality if such forms of violence are to be addressed and mitigated when periods of violent conflict end.

Keywords: political transition, sexual and gender-based violence, patriarchy, rape, colonial oppression, structural violence, Kenya, South Africa, Zimbabwe, post-election violence

Topics: Gender, Women, Gender-Based Violence, Gendered Power Relations, Patriarchy, Governance, Post-Conflict, Post-Conflict Reconstruction, Sexual Violence, Rape, Violence Regions: Africa, East Africa, Southern Africa Countries: Kenya, South Africa, Zimbabwe

Year: 2013

From Spoils to Weapons: Framing Wartime Sexual Violence

Citation:

Crawford, Kerry F. 2013. “From Spoils to Weapons: Framing Wartime Sexual Violence.” Gender & Development 21 (3): 505–17.

Author: Kerry F Crawford

Abstract:

The way an issue is ‘framed’ (viewed and understood) has a profound effect on whether it is viewed as a priority for action by international organisations, states, and civil society. Wartime sexual violence used to be framed as a ‘women's issue’, but since the issue gained widespread notoriety in the mid-1990s, it has shifted to being understood as a ‘security issue’. Activists and campaigners have used this as an opportunity to press for more attention at international and national levels, and policymakers have given higher priority to the issue of ending wartime sexual violence. Yet framing wartime sexual violence in terms of security – and in particular, a focus on ‘rape as a weapon’ – comes at a cost. First, it isolates this violence conceptually from the wider context of gender-based violence before, during, and after active armed conflict, and other types of violence may receive little attention. In addition, the specific emphasis on ‘rape as a weapon’ affects the types of wartime sexual violence recognised and condemned by the international community, the kinds of ‘victims’ granted assistance, and the extent to which women and men are perceived as victims, empowered agents, or perpetrators.

Keywords: sexual violence, wartime rape, international security, international law, war, advocacy

Topics: Armed Conflict, Civil Society, Gender, International Organizations, Security, Human Security, Sexual Violence, Rape, Violence

Year: 2013

The New Sexual Violence Legislation in the Congo: Dressing Indelible Scars on Human Dignity

Citation:

Zongwe, Dunia Prince. 2012. “The New Sexual Violence Legislation in the Congo: Dressing Indelible Scars on Human Dignity.” African Studies Review 55 (2): 37–57. doi:10.1353/arw.2012.0047.

 

Author: Dunia Prince Zongwe

Abstract:

This article describes a legal thread running from the commission of massive sexual violence in the eastern provinces of the Congo since 1996 to the enactment of liberal legislation in 2006 to combat sexual violence throughout the country, especially in eastern Congo. In doing so, the article fills a gap in the nascent legal literature on systematic sexual violence. It finds that the new rape law is progressive, liberal, gender-neutral, and in keeping with international law. However, an unfortunate lapse in legislative drafting puts in doubt the authority of the courts to use the new rape law to prosecute systematic sexual violence. Despite this weakness, as well as harsh realities such as resource limitations and institutionalized corruption, the new sexual violence law, "the law of shameful acts," nonetheless provides a framework on the basis of which the state and rape survivors can prosecute perpetrators. It is a necessary step in upholding accountability and preparing for the more daunting task of healing communities affected by a devastating regional war.

Topics: Extractive Industries, International Law, International Criminal Law, Justice, Post-Conflict, Post-Conflict Reconstruction, Sexual Violence, Rape, SV against women Regions: Africa, Central Africa Countries: Democratic Republic of the Congo

Year: 2012

The Experiences of Male Intimate Partners of Female Rape Victims from Cape Town, South Africa

Citation:

van Wijk, E. 2012. “The Experiences of Male Intimate Partners of Female Rape Victims from Cape Town, South Africa.” In Conflict-Related Sexual Violence: International Law, Local Responses. Sterling: Kumarian Press. https://www.rienner.com/title/Conflict_Related_Sexual_Violence_International_Law_Local_Responses.

Author: E. van Wijk

Topics: Gender, Men, Masculinity/ies, Post-Conflict, Sexual Violence, Rape, SV against women Regions: Africa, Southern Africa Countries: South Africa

Year: 2012

After Rape: Comparing Civilian and Combatant Perpetrated Crime in Northern Uganda

Citation:

Porter, Holly E. 2015. “After Rape: Comparing Civilian and Combatant Perpetrated Crime in Northern Uganda.” Women’s Studies International Forum 51 (July): 81–90. doi:10.1016/j.wsif.2014.11.005.

 

Author: Holly E. Porter

Annotation:

Synopsis:
This article explores responses to rape in northern Uganda. The continuum of violence that women experience, before, during and after war is well noted, yet how this relates to exceptional approaches of transitional justice is underexplored. Based on three years of participant observation and in-depth interviews with a random sample of 187 women from two Acholi villages, this article focuses on a comparison between rapes perpetrated by combatants and civilians, both of which followed abductions that were intended to result in “marriage.” The comparison illustrates how experiences of rape do not fit neatly into “war” and “ordinary” categories, and rather suggests that a more useful way of conceptualizing women’'s experiences comes from understanding how particular circumstances of rape shape the social harm she suffers. It shows how experiences of rape and the harm it causes are predicated on understandings of wrongdoing related to challenges posed to social harmony.

Topics: Combatants, Justice, Transitional Justice, Sexual Violence, Rape Regions: Africa, East Africa Countries: Uganda

Year: 2015

Sexual Violence during War and Peace: Gender, Power, and Post-Conflict Justice in Peru

Citation:

Boesten, Jelke. 2014. Sexual Violence during War and Peace: Gender, Power, and Post-Conflict Justice in Peru. Palgrave MacMillan.

 

Author: Jelke Boesten

Annotation:

"Using the Peruvian internal armed conflict as a case study, this book examines wartime rape and how it reproduces and reinforces existing hierarchies. Jelke Boesten argues that effective responses to sexual violence in wartime are conditional upon profound changes in legal frameworks and practices, institutions, and society at large." (From WorldCat)

Topics: Armed Conflict, Civil Wars, Gender, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Hierarchies, Justice, Post-Conflict, Sexual Violence, Rape Regions: Americas, South America Countries: Peru

Year: 2014

Pages

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