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Colombia

Narrating Victimhood: Dilemmas and (In)Dignities

Citation:

Krystalli, Roxani C. 2021. “Narrating Victimhood: Dilemmas and (In)Dignities.” International Feminist Journal of Politics. doi:10.1080/14616742.2020.1861961.

Author: Roxani C. Krystalli

Abstract:

Feminist researchers are increasingly paying attention to the politics of victimhood during transitions from violence. In this article, I address the dilemmas of researching victimhood when the researcher herself is part of the production of its politics and hierarchies. Based on in-depth fieldwork in Colombia, I examine dilemmas related to (1) directing the research gaze during transitions from war; (2) investigating violence without requiring people to re-narrate harms suffered during armed conflict; (3) engaging with both voluntary and imposed silences; and (4) navigating the complicated tug of loyalties among conflict-affected actors. I argue that ethics and methods are inseparable from each other, from the findings of the research, and from the meaningful study of power and violence. Collectively, these insights contribute to an ongoing interdisciplinary conversation about power and politics in the study of violence.

Topics: Armed Conflict, Feminisms, Post-Conflict, Post-Conflict Reconstruction, Violence Regions: Americas, South America Countries: Colombia

Year: 2021

The Nature of Women, Peace and Security: A Colombian Perspective

Citation:

Yoshida, Keina, and Lina M Céspedes-Báez. 2021. “The Nature of Women, Peace and Security: A Colombian Perspective.” International Affairs 97 (1): 17–34.

Authors: Keina Yoshida, Lina M Céspedes-Báez

Abstract:

On 12 November 2019, the Special Jurisdiction for Peace (JEP), handed down a landmark decision in the case of ‘Katsa Su’ concerning the Awa indigenous group in Colombia. The Colombian conflict has particularly affected indigenous groups, such as the Awa people, and has also affected the territory in which they live. In this article, we explore the decision of the JEP, within a broader analysis of the Colombian peace agreement and consider how it might help us to think about the place of the environment in the Women, Peace and Security agenda and in international law. We call for a gendered and intersectional approach to environmental peacebuilding which is attentive to the importance of gender and different groups. Further, we highlight how the Colombian example shows how concepts such as relief, recovery and reparations are often confined in international law to women's recovery and redress with respect to sexual violence and yet, this conceptualization should be much broader. The Katsa Su case provides an example of the fact that reparations and redress must address other forms of violence, spiritual and ecological, which women also suffer in times of conflict.

Keywords: Americas, Energy and Environment, International Governance, Law and Ethics, conflict, Security and Defence

Topics: Conflict, Environment, Gender, Women, Indigenous, Infrastructure, Energy, International Law, Peacebuilding, Security, UN Security Council Resolutions on WPS, Violence Regions: Americas, South America Countries: Colombia

Year: 2021

Strategies for Including Women’s and LGBTI Groups in the Columbian Peace Process

Citation:

Cóbar, Kosé Alvarado. 2020. Strategies for Including Women’s and LGBTI Groups in the Columbian Peace Process. Stockholm: SIPRI.

Author: José Alvarado Cóbar

Annotation:

Summary: 

In order to have a more nuanced understanding of inclusive peace processes, it is important to understand how civil society can connect to formal peace negotiations. The Colombian peace negotiation process is highly regarded as one of the most inclusive processes; involving civil society groups from diverse backgrounds, including both women’s and lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender/ transsexual and intersex (LGBTI) groups. But how do these groups leverage influence among the main conflict actors, and what specific challenges and opportunities do they face? This paper applies a conflict resolution and negotiation framework to assess the involvement of women’s and LGBTI groups in the most recent Colombian peace negotiation process. In doing so, the suggested framework provides a practical application of conflict resolution and negotiation strategies that can further complement discussions on inclusion of marginalized groups in other peace negotiation processes. (Summary from original source)

Topics: Armed Conflict, Civil Society, Justice, LGBTQ, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Peace and Security, Peace Processes, Post-Conflict Regions: Americas, South America Countries: Colombia

Year: 2020

Territorio y el ser decolonial: Pervivencia de las mujeres y los pueblos en tiempos de conflicto, paz y desarrollo

Citation:

Gruner, Sheila. 2018. "Territorio y el ser decolonial: Pervivencia de las mujeres y los pueblos en tiempos de conflicto, paz y desarrollo." In Movimientos indígenas y autonomías en América Latina: Escenarios de disputa y horizontes de posibilidad, edited by Flores Pavel C. López and Guerreiro Luciana García, 259-84. Buenos Aires, Argentina: CLACSO.

Author: Sheila Gruner

Abstract:

SPANISH ABSTRACT:

La autonomía de los movimientos étnico-territoriales está orientada por conceptualizaciones de territorio y los derechos políticoterritoriales, y las relaciones sociales de producción que se producen y reproducen dentro del mismo territorio. Para entender lo que está en juego para pueblos indígenas y negros tanto como sociedad en general, se requiere abordar temas del desarrollo, conflicto y paz en su conjunto, mirar las tendencias de violencia contra las mujeres, y las mujeres racializadas en específico, desde un marco crítico, global y decolonial, tanto como anti-racista y depatriarcal. En este artículo serán explorados movimientos étnico-territoriales en Colombia y Canadá, examinando aquellos que han avanzado hacia formulaciones ontológicas alternativas al desarrollo, representado en conceptos como el buen vivir, ubuntu, y mino-bimaadiziwin. En este escrito se examinarán de igual forma los esfuerzos de los pueblos indígenas y negros en Colombia en cuanto a la construcción de la paz, la defensa del territorio y su autonomía, y la inclusión del Capítulo Étnico en los Acuerdos de paz de la Habana.

ENGLISH ABSTRACT:

The autonomy of ethno-territorial movements is oriented by conceptualizations of territory, political and territorial rights and the social relations of production that are produced and reproduced within this same territory. To understand what is at stake for indigenous and black people, as well as for society in general, issues of development, conflict, and peace must be addressed in relation to each other, examining tendencies of violence against women and racialized women in particular, from within a critical, global and decolonial framework, that is also anti-racist and depatriarchal. Ethno-territorial movements in Colombia and Canada will be explored, examining those that express ontologies alternative to that which underpins dominant development, represented in concepts such as good life, ubuntu and mino-bimaadiiziwin. Efforts of indigenous and afrocolombian communities will also be explored in relation to the construction of peace, the defense of territory, autonomy and will centre on the inclusion of the Ethnic Chapter in the Havana Peace Accords.

Keywords: decolonial, buen vivir, good life, ubuntu, mino-bimaadiiziwin, movimiento etno-territorial, ethnoterritorial movement, territorio ancestral, ancestral territory, Acuerdos de Habana, Havana Accords, Ethnic Chapter, Capitulo Etnico

Topics: Coloniality/Post-Coloniality, Conflict, Ethnicity, Gender, Women, Gender-Based Violence, Indigenous, Indigenous Knowledge Systems, Peacebuilding, Race, Rights, Indigenous Rights, Land Rights Regions: Americas, North America, South America Countries: Canada, Colombia

Year: 2018

After the War: Displaced Women, Ordinary Ethics, and Grassroots Reconstruction in Colombia

Citation:

Lemaitre, Julieta. 2016. “After the War: Displaced Women, Ordinary Ethics, and Grassroots Reconstruction in Colombia.” Social & Legal Studies 25 (5): 545–65.

Author: Julieta Lemaitre

Abstract:

This article examines internally displaced women’s narratives of rebuilding their life after displacement, focusing on questions of moral agency and community governance. The data come from a 3-year research project (2010–2013) with internally displaced women in Colombia, during the emergence of a new transitional justice regime. The article finds in internally displaced women’s narratives of the injuries of war, of their own resistance and overcoming, and of their aspirations for the future, concerns that go beyond poverty alleviation and redistribution in peace-building efforts. Internally displaced women’s narratives also engage with questions of ordinary ethics and community governance, describing the loss of moral agency in civil war and its painstaking recovery. This article questions the limitations of transitional justice regimes and peace-building efforts that ignore concerns with the loss of moral agency and community during civil war as well as the role of ordinary ethics in peace building at the grassroots.

Keywords: community governance, internal displacement, internally displaced women, moral agency, ordinary ethics, peace building, transitional justice, Colombia

Topics: Armed Conflict, Civil Wars, Displacement & Migration, IDPs, Gender, Women, Justice, Transitional Justice, Post-Conflict, Peacebuilding Regions: Americas, South America Countries: Colombia

Year: 2016

‘We Are Not Poor Things’: Territorio Cuerpo-Tierra and Colombian Women’s Organised Struggles

Citation:

Rodriguez Castro, Laura. 2020. “‘We Are Not Poor Things’: Territorio Cuerpo-Tierra and Colombian Women’s Organised Struggles.” Feminist Theory (March). doi: 10.1177/1464700120909508.

Author: Laura Castro Rodriguez

Abstract:

In this article, I use Lorena Cabnal’s notion of territorio cuerpo-tierra to analyse seventeen in-depth interviews with women leaders of rural social movements and other organisations in Colombia. In the interviews, social leaders condemn violence that is epistemic, systemic, militarised and that permeates all ambits of life. They denounce how the coloniality of power operates, while at the same time they propose alternatives for a better life from their own cosmovisions by enacting food sovereignty and constructing feminisms from ‘below’. I demonstrate how these social leaders’ actions are entangled in decolonial feminist struggles, which undermine the way in which women in the Global South have been constructed as ‘objects’ or ‘in need of saving’. These women are not ‘victims who need saving’, but politically active subjects who enact change locally and nationally through their ‘territories bodies-lands’. Not only do their narratives highlight the intimate relationship of the body with the land, but I argue that we must follow their lead in order to dismantle the coloniality of power.

Keywords: decoloniality, feminism, food sovereignty, global south, rurality, territory

Topics: Coloniality/Post-Coloniality, Conflict, Feminisms, Gender, Women, Violence Regions: Americas, South America Countries: Colombia

Year: 2020

Militarized Peace: Understanding Post-Conflict Violence in the Wake of the Peace Deal in Colombia

Citation:

Meger, Sara, and Julia Sachseder. 2020. “Militarized Peace: Understanding Post-Conflict Violence in the Wake of the Peace Deal in Colombia.” Globalizations 17 (6): 953–73.

Authors: Sara Meger, Julia Sachseder

Abstract:

After more than 50 years of war, in 2016, the Colombian government signed a historic peace accord with the country’s largest rebel group, the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC). Although the cessation of hostilities between the rebel group and the government is a monumental step, violence remains rife in the country. By drawing attention to the correlation between neoliberal economic development in the country and militarism, this paper sheds light on several structural issues that have been left potentially unresolved by the peace negotiations, each with the potential to ignite further violence. We introduce the concept of militaristic neoliberalism to argue that there is a fundamental link between Colombia’s neoliberal development and a culture of militarism, which relies on gendered and racialized constructions of ‘self’ and ‘other’, that exacerbate structural inequalities and severely hampers prospects for achieving peace for many of Colombia’s citizens post-conflict.

Keywords: Colombia, peace accord, paramilitaries, political economy, feminist theory, militaristic neoliberalism

Topics: Gender, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Militarism, Non-State Armed Groups, Peacebuilding, Post-Conflict, Race, Violence Regions: Americas, South America Countries: Colombia

Year: 2020

From Street Girls to "VMC" Girls: Empowering Strategies for Representing and Overcoming Place-Memories of Violence in Colombia

Citation:

Ritterbusch, Amy E. 2013. “From Street Girls to “VMC” Girls: Empowering Strategies for Representing and Overcoming Place-Memories of Violence in Colombia.” Children, Youth and Environments 23 (1): 64-104.

Author: Amy E. Ritterbusch

Abstract:

Memories of violence for “street girls” (referred to as VMC girls in this article) are stored in multiple places across geographic scales. From particular private places to blood-stained street corners, VMC girls’ movements throughout the city are haunted by place-memories of violence. Based on findings from youth-driven participatory action research (YPAR) with VMC girls in Bogotá, Colombia, this article re-presents violence through their eyes by drawing from participatory writing workshops, place-perception interviews, street-corner cartography, and textual reflections in fieldnotes on violence in the socio-spatial context of VMC girls. The inclusion of VMC girls’ voices through qualitative data excerpts takes the reader on a journey through these young people’s minds, voices and visions of Bogotá. Through a description of how VMC girls exercised their “right to the city” during the project, the article discusses strategies adapted by the YPAR team to overcome experiences of violence and to re-envision the urban spaces in which violence occurred. These strategies include artistic expression and different acts of “speaking out” in which VMC girls alter spaces in order to erase painful place- memories of violence and construct an alternative geo-narrative of the city.

Keywords: youth participatory action research (YPAR), children's geographies, gender-based violence, place-memories, street girls

Topics: Age, Youth, Gender, Girls, Gender-Based Violence, Sexual Violence, Trafficking, Violence Regions: Americas, South America Countries: Colombia

Year: 2013

(Re)Productive Discourses: Media Coverage of Children Born of War in Colombia

Citation:

Parra, Tatiana Sanchez, and Sergio Lo Iacono. 2019. "(Re)Productive Discourses: Media Coverage of Children Born of War in Colombia." Bulletin of Latin American Research 39 (1): 22–36.

Authors: Tatiana Sanchez Parra, Sergio Lo Iacono

Abstract:

Children born as a result of wartime sexual violence have not gained a place in the stories covered by the Colombian media. Based on an extensive content analysis (using the software MAXQDA 12) of newspaper articles published between 1990 and 2015, ethnographic content analysis, and drawing upon feminist critical discourse analysis, this paper explores how information about these children is presented as part of storylines that use the explanatory framework of sexual violence as a weapon of war. In those storylines, children emerge not as independent subjects but as part of social representations of female victims of wartime sexual violence and male perpetrators.

Keywords: children born of war, content analysis, Colombia

Topics: Conflict, Feminisms, Gender, Gendered Discourses, Sexual Violence, Male Perpetrators, Violence Regions: Americas, South America Countries: Colombia

Year: 2019

The Voices of Girl Child Soldiers Colombia

Citation:

Keairns, Yvonne E. 2003. The Voices of Girl Child Soldiers Colombia. New York: Quaker United Nations Office; Geneva: Quaker United Nations Office.

Author: Yvonne E. Keairns

Annotation:

Summary:

"This report on the voices of girl child soldiers in Colombia is part of a larger study that carried out in-depth interviews with 23 girl soldiers from four different conflict areas around the world. The voices of these girls provide important insights into becoming a child soldier, the experience of being a child soldier and their view of the future. Among the key conclusions were the messages that:

• Becoming a child soldier is very dependent on a combination of the local environment and the personal circumstances surrounding the girl’s life.

• Living in poverty was important in girls joining a movement or being abducted.

• The girls are not searching for ways to retaliate and bring harm to those who had used and misused them. They were looking for ways to make a contribution, to do something meaningful and productive with their life and to make up for the harm they have delivered upon others" (Keairns 2003, 1).

 

Table of Contents:

 

i Acknowledgments

 

1 Summary

 

2 Introduction

 

2 Why listen to the voices of the girl soldier?

 

3 Methodology

 

5 Analysis of the Data

 

6 What Were the Important Themes

 

6 The Voices of Girl Soldiers from Colombia

 

15 Colombia Distinctives

 

16 What are Key Risk Factors in the Choice to Become a Child Soldier?

 

17 Lessons Learned from the Girl Soldiers on the Interview Process

 

19 References

 

21 APPENDICES

 

21 I. Affirmation of Informed Consent

for Interviewee

 

22 II. Ethical Guidelines for Interviewers

 

23 III. Interviewer Actions and Responsibilities

 

25 IV. APA Code of Ethics

 

26 V. Team Leader Actions and Responsibilities

 

27 VI. Interviewer Training / Dialogue Agenda

 

29 VII. Role Play

 

30 VIII. The Voices of Girl Soldiers from Colombia

Topics: Age, Youth, Combatants, Child Soldiers, Female Combatants, Gender, Girls Regions: Americas, South America Countries: Colombia

Year: 2003

Pages

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