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SV against women

"Subjects of Change": Feminist Geopolitics and Gendered Truth-Telling in Guatemala

Citation:

Patterson-Markowitz, Rebecca, Elizabeth Oglesby, and Sallie Marston. 2012. “‘ Subjects of Change’: Feminist Geopolitics and Gendered Truth-Telling in Guatemala.” Journal of International Women’s Studies 13 (4): 82.

Authors: Rebecca Patterson-Markowitz, Elizabeth Oglesby, Sallie Marston

Abstract:

This paper explores the often-undervalued role of gender in transitional justice mechanisms and the importance of women's struggles and agency in that regard. We focus on the efforts of the women's movement in Guatemala to address questions of justice and healing for survivors of gendered violence during Guatemala's 36-year internal armed conflict. We discuss how the initial transitional justice measures of documenting gendered war crimes in the context of a genocide were subsequently taken up by the women's movement and how their endeavors to further expose sexual violence have resulted in notable interventions. Interviews with key organizational activists as well as testimonies given by victims of sexual violence during the conflict suggest that transitional justice mechanisms, extended by women's movements' efforts, are creating conditions for the emergence of new practices and spaces that support the fragile cultivation of new subjectivities. Sujetas de cambio (subjects of change) are premised not on victimhood but survivorhood. The emergence of these new subjectivities and new claims, including greater personal security and freedom from everyday violence, must be approached with caution, however, as they are not born automatically out of the deeply emotional struggles that play out around historical memory. Still, their emergence suggests new ways for women to cope not only with the sexual violence of the past but also to work against the normative violence that is part of their present.

Keywords: gendered violence, historical memory, transitional justice

Topics: Armed Conflict, Feminisms, Gender, Women, Genocide, Justice, Transitional Justice, Rights, Human Rights, Sexual Violence, Rape, SV against women, Violence Regions: Americas, Central America Countries: Guatemala

Year: 2012

How Does Fear of Sexual Harassment on Transit Affect Women’s Use of Transit?

Citation:

Hsu, Hsin-Ping. 2009. “How Does Fear of Sexual Harassment on Transit Affect Women’s Use of Transit?” In Women’s Issues in Transportation - Summary of the 4th International Conference. Vol. 2. Irvine, California: Transportation Research Board.

Author: Hsin-Ping Hsu

Abstract:

The purpose of this study is to understand how women’s fear of sexual harassment on transit changes their transit use and travel behavior. The study, which employed a qualitative research approach, found that cultural differences are important to women’s perceptions of sexual harassment and women’s attitudes about adequate policy responses. Yet cultural differences are not as important as the availability of a car in influencing how women modify their use of transit in response to sexual harassment. Thus, a feasible and effective policy addressing this issue should take the cultural context into consideration.

Topics: Gender, Women, Gender-Based Violence, Infrastructure, Transportation, Sexual Violence, Male Perpetrators, SV against women

Year: 2009

Abandon All Hope, Ye Who Enter Here: Understanding the Problem of ‘Eve Teasing’ in Chennai, India

Citation:

Mitra-Sarkar, Sheila, and P. Partheeban. 2009. “Abandon All Hope, Ye Who Enter Here: Understanding the Problem of ‘Eve Teasing’ in Chennai, India.” In Women’s Issues in Transportation - Summary of the 4th International Conference. Vol. 2. Irvine, California: Transportation Research Board.

Authors: Sheila Mitra-Sarkar, P. Partheeban

Abstract:

Fear of victimization and crime are important concerns for women in cities around the world, and this fear is provoked through encounters with men in public space because they are “unpredictable, potentially uncontrollable and hence threatening.” The South Asian literature has focused more on the subordinate role of women in Indian society and the workplace than on gender-based crime (referred to as “Eve teasing”) in the public spaces and transportation systems in South Asia. The objective of this paper is to elicit information on sexual harassment faced by women commuters in Chennai, India. The study found 66% of the surveyed respondents had been sexually harassed while commuting. Many of the respondents first encountered sexual harassment during their adolescent years. Very few (5% or less) found any of the modal choices to be best. The largest number of women (more than 40%) rated their worst harassment experiences to be in buses and trains with no separate sections for women. The paper offers other findings on the nature and frequency of sexual harassment and suggestions to address these incidents. (Abstract from original source)

Topics: Gender, Women, Gender Roles, Gender-Based Violence, Gendered Power Relations, Infrastructure, Transportation, Sexual Violence, Male Perpetrators, Rape, SV against women Regions: Asia, South Asia Countries: India

Year: 2009

Rethinking ‘Sexual Exploitation’ in UN Peacekeeping Operations

Citation:

Simic, Olivera. 2009. “Rethinking ‘Sexual Exploitation’ in UN Peacekeeping Operations.” Women’s Studies International Forum 32 (4): 288–95. doi:10.1016/j.wsif.2009.05.007.

Author: Olivera Simic

Abstract:

This article will question definitions used by researchers in their studies of “sexual exploitation” in UN peacekeeping operations. The article will suggest that there is confusion about the definition of “sexual exploitation” not only among scholars undertaking empirical studies and exploring “sexual exploitation” issues in several peacekeeping missions, but also among UN peacekeeping personnel and local people. I look closely at nine empirical studies and explore the language used, the definitions of “sexual exploitation”, the identified causes of “sexual exploitation” and the difficulties of gathering evidence in cases of “sexual exploitation”. My article will suggest that the term “sexual exploitation” is broadly defined and contentious, and might cover activity that is not necessarily “sexually exploitative”. The article concludes that researchers have not questioned the over inclusive and broad term of “sexual exploitation” defined in the Secretary General's ‘zero tolerance policy on sexual exploitation and sexual abuse’ [SGB (Secretary General's Bulletin) (2003) Special measures on protection from sexual exploitation and sexual abuse. UN Doc ST/SGB/2003/13] and, consequently, conflate all forms of sexual relationships with forced prostitution, rape, human trafficking and other forms of sexual offences.

Topics: Gender, Women, Peacebuilding, Peacekeeping, Peace Processes, Sexual Violence, Rape, Sexual Exploitation and Abuse, SV against women, Torture, Sexual Torture

Year: 2009

Waging Sexual Warfare: Case Studies of Rape Warfare Used by the Japanese Imperial Army during World War II

Citation:

Heit, Shannon. 2009. “Waging Sexual Warfare: Case Studies of Rape Warfare Used by the Japanese Imperial Army during World War II.” Women’s Studies International Forum 32 (5): 363–70. doi:10.1016/j.wsif.2009.07.010.

Author: Shannon Heit

Abstract:

Even in peacetime, women are victims, though to a lesser degree, of the same atrocities that become their fate in war. It is important to recognize that patriarchal and subjective attitudes towards women in peacetime make a logical, though horrifying, progression to the treatment of women during war and armed conflicts. Rape during wartime is an act as old as war itself, but it was not documented as a strategic military practice of warfare until World War I. After World War I these crimes were never prosecuted, further encouraging the use of mass rape as a strategic military operation in subsequent conflicts. Using case studies of documented rape warfare under the Japanese Imperial Army during World War II, we are able to discern two categories of rape: that as a weapon of terror as seen in the example of The Rape of Nanking during World War I and that as a form of sexual slavery as exemplified in the case of the “Korean Comfort Women” stations during World War II. This article outlines what actions must be taken to bring the perpetrators of wartime rapes to justice—a necessary step to bringing peace and reconciliation to the victims and in preventing future atrocities.

Topics: Armed Conflict, Gender, Women, Gender-Based Violence, Health, Trauma, Sexual Violence, Rape, Sexual Exploitation and Abuse, SV against women, Violence Regions: Asia, East Asia Countries: Japan

Year: 2009

Intimate Partner Violence Among Women Veterans: Previous Interpersonal Violence as a Risk Factor

Citation:

Iverson, Katherine M., Rowena Mercado, Sarah L. Carpenter, and Amy E. Street. 2013. “Intimate Partner Violence Among Women Veterans: Previous Interpersonal Violence as a Risk Factor.” Journal of Traumatic Stress 26 (6): 767–71. doi:10.1002/jts.21867.

Authors: Sarah L. Carpenter, Katherine M. Iverson, Rowena Mercado, Amy E. Street

Abstract:

Experiences of abuse during childhood or military service may increase women veterans’ risk for intimate partner violence (IPV) victimization. This study examined the relative impact of 3 forms of interpersonal violence exposure (childhood physical abuse [CPA], childhood sexual abuse [CSA], and unwanted sexual experiences during military service) and demographic and military characteristics on past-year IPV among women veterans. Participants were 160 female veteran patients at Veterans Afffairs hospitals in New England who completed a paper-and-pencil mail survey that included validated assessments of past-year IPV and previous interpersonal violence exposures. Women who reported CSA were 3.06 times, 95% confidence interval (CI) [1.14, 8.23], more likely to report past-year IPV relative to women who did not experience CSA. Similarly, women who reported unwanted sexual experiences during military service were 2.33 times, 95% CI [1.02, 5.35], more likely to report past-year IPV compared to women who did not report such experiences. CPA was not associated with IPV risk. Having less education and having served in the Army (vs. other branches) were also associated with greater risk of experiencing IPV in the past year. Findings have implications for assisting at risk women veterans in reducing their risk for IPV through detection and intervention efforts.

Topics: Combatants, Female Combatants, Gender, Women, Gender Analysis, Health, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Sexual Violence, SV against women, Violence Regions: Americas, North America Countries: United States of America

Year: 2013

Can Transnational Feminist Solidarity Accommodate Nationalism? Reflections from the Case Study of Korean “Comfort Women”

Citation:

Herr, Ranjoo Seodu. 2015. “Can Transnational Feminist Solidarity Accommodate Nationalism? Reflections from the Case Study of Korean ‘Comfort Women.’” Hypatia 31 (1): 41–57.

Author: Ranjoo Seodu Herr

Abstract:

This article aims to refute the “incompatibility thesis” that nationalism is incompatible with transnational feminist solidarity, as it fosters exclusionary practices, xenophobia, and racism among feminists with conflicting nationalist aspirations. I examine the plausibility of the incompatibility thesis by focusing on the controversy regarding just reparation for SecondWorld War “comfort women,” which is still unresolved. The Korean Council at the center ofthis controversy, which advocates for the rights of Korean former comfort women, has been criticized for its strident nationalism and held responsible for the stalemate. Consequently, the case of comfort women has been thought to exemplify the incompatibility thesis. I argue against this common feminist perception in three ways: first, those who subscribe to the incom-patibility thesis have misinterpreted facts surrounding the issue; second, the Korean Council’s nationalism is a version of “polycentric nationalism,” which avoids the problems of essentialist nationalism at the center of feminist concerns; and, third, transnational feminist solidarity is predicated on the idea of oppressed/marginalized women’s epistemic privilege and enjoins that feminists respect oppressed/marginalized women’s epistemic privilege. To the extent that oppressed/marginalized women’s voices are expressed in nationalist terms, I argue that feminists committed to transnational feminist solidarity must accommodate their nationalism.

Topics: Gender, Women, Gender-Based Violence, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Nationalism, Sexual Violence, Rape, Sexual Exploitation and Abuse, Sexual Slavery, SV against women Regions: Asia, East Asia Countries: North Korea, South Korea

Year: 2015

Justice on Whose Terms? A Critique of International Criminal Justice Responses to Conflict-Related Sexual Violence

Citation:

St. Germain, Tonia, and Susan Dewey. 2013. “Justice on Whose Terms? A Critique of International Criminal Justice Responses to Conflict-Related Sexual Violence.” Women’s Studies International Forum 37 (March): 36–45. 

Authors: Tonia St. Germain, Susan Dewey

Abstract:

This article argues that the international criminal justice system fails to sufficiently address conflict-related sexual violence in two critical ways: [1] by advocating a pro-prosecution, “end impunity” approach (defined as holding perpetrators accountable through criminal, civil, administrative or disciplinary proceedings) which applies the prevailing Euro-American model of justice designed to prosecute one man for the rape of one woman to post-conflict zones where widespread sexual violence occurred, and [2] by identifying conflict and post-conflict zones as both discursive and practical sites of pathology that require intervention by elites who strongly identify with a Euro-American liberal individualistic vision of justice. We argue that the international community can no longer conveniently refuse to address the inequalities characterizing the international criminal justice system, in which a tiny minority of self-congratulatory elites uses the noble principles of human rights and justice to advance an agenda that works in their own best interests. To explore possible alternatives to a prosecution-centered approach to conflict-related sexual violence, we employ two African case study examples of community-led gender justice initiatives that have successfully shifted legal discourse while simultaneously transforming wider cultural frameworks.

Topics: Armed Conflict, Gender, Women, Gender-Based Violence, International Law, International Criminal Law, Justice, Post-Conflict, Rights, Sexual Violence, SV against women, Violence

Year: 2013

Who Is Worthy of Protection?: Gender-Based Asylum and U. S. Immigration Politics

Citation:

Nayak, Meghana. 2015. Who Is Worthy of Protection?: Gender-Based Asylum and U. S. Immigration Politics. Oxford: Oxford University Press, Incorporated. https://global.oup.com/academic/product/who-is-worthy-of-protection-9780199397624?cc=us&lang=en&.

Author: Meghana Nayak

Abstract:

A surprisingly understudied topic in international relations is gender-based asylum. Gender-based asylum offers protection from deportation for migrants who have suffered gender violence and persecution in their home countries. Countries are increasingly acknowledging that even though international refugee law does not include "gender" as a category of persecution, gender violence can threaten people's lives and requires attention. But Meghana Nayak argues that it matters not just that but how we respond to gender violence and persecution.  Asylum advocates and the US government have created "frames," or ideas about how to understand different types of gender violence and who counts as victims. These frames are useful in increasing gender-based asylum grants. But the United States is negotiating the tension between the protection and the restriction of non-citizens, claiming to offer safe haven to persecuted people at the same time that it aims to control borders. Thus, the frames construct which migrants are "worthy" of protection. The effects of the asylum frames are two-fold. First, they leave out or distort the stories and experiences of asylum seekers who do not fit preconceived narratives of "good" victims. Second, the frames reflect but also serve as an entry point to deepen, strengthen, and shape the US position of power relative to other countries, international organizations, and immigrant communities. Who Is Worthy of Protection? explores the politics of gender-based asylum through a comparative examination of US asylum policy and cases regarding domestic violence, female circumcision, rape, trafficking, coercive sterilization and abortion, and persecution based on sexual and gender identity.
(Oxford University Press)

Topics: Displacement & Migration, Refugees, Gender, Women, Gender-Based Violence, Sexual Violence, Rape, SV against women, Trafficking, Human Trafficking, Sex Trafficking, Violence Regions: Americas, North America Countries: United States of America

Year: 2015

"We Are Not Victims, We Are Protagonists of This History": Latin American Gender Violence and the Limits of Women’s Rights as Human Rights

Citation:

MacManus, Viviana Beatriz. 2015. “‘We Are Not Victims, We Are Protagonists of This History’: Latin American Gender Violence and the Limits of Women’s Rights as Human Rights.” International Feminist Journal of Politics 17 (1): 40–57. doi:10.1080/14616742.2013.817847.

Author: Viviana Beatriz MacManus

Abstract:

This article centers on the Mexican and Argentinean ‘Dirty Wars’, examining the limitations inherent in human rights and women's human rights responses to these epochs of violence. I situate Argentina's report on the dictatorship, Nunca más (1984), in conversation with Elena Poniatowska's text on the 1968 Mexico City massacre, La noche de Tlatelolco (1971), to trace the rise of a global human rights discourse that has become the dominant manner of conceptualizing human rights violations and gender violence in the latter half of the twentieth century. While feminist critiques of human rights have centered on the lack of gender-specific focus of violence committed against women, this article questions whether the women's human rights discourse disengages the historical, economic and geopolitical realities from which these violations were committed and instead focuses on women's sexual violations to garner international condemnation of gender violence. By turning to these texts, this article centers on the possibilities and limitations of women's human rights discourse and the impact this has on the shaping of women's political agency. This article calls for a critical feminist approach to women's human rights in order to document narratives of women survivors of human rights abuses without obfuscating their political subjectivities.

Keywords: Latin American 'Dirty Wars', Argentina, mexico, women's and human rights, gender and state violence, literary criticism, Nunca más, La noche de Tlatelolco

Topics: Armed Conflict, Gender, Women, Gender-Based Violence, Rights, Human Rights, Women's Rights, Sexual Violence, SV against women, Violence Regions: Americas, North America, South America Countries: Argentina, Mexico

Year: 2015

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