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SV against women

Analyzing Rape Regimes at the Interface of War and Peace in Peru

Citation:

Boesten, Jelke. 2010. “Analyzing Rape Regimes at the Interface of War and Peace in Peru.” International Journal of Transitional Justice 4 (1): 110–29. doi:10.1093/ijtj/ijp029.

Author: Jelke Boesten

Abstract:

Using the political conflict in Peru as a case study, the author argues that the thesis that rape is a weapon of war obscures other rape regimes during political conflict. These include rape as consumption, opportunistic rape, rape by neighbors or family members, forced prostitution and rape in the aftermath of war. Neglect of forms of sexual violence that do not fit the rape-as-a-weapon-of-war script seriously impedes the transformative potential of processes of transitional justice, as it allows for the continuation of (sexual) violence against women that perpetuates hierarchies based on gender, race and class.

Topics: Armed Conflict, Class, Gender, Justice, Transitional Justice, Race, Sexual Violence, SV against women Regions: Americas, South America Countries: Peru

Year: 2010

Armed Conflict and Sexual Violence Against Women: An Inevitable Accompaniment?

Citation:

Gökalp Kutlu, Ayşegül. 2014. “Armed Conflicts and Sexual Violence Against Women: An Inevitable Accompaniment?” Kosbed 28: 1–20.

Author: Ayşegül Gökalp Kutlu

Abstract:

Violence against women – rape and all kinds of sexual assault – during armed conflicts is a practice which was known but ignored by human rights discourse and humanitarian law for many years. When states and ideals legitimize killing and other acts of violence, rape is seen as an unfortunate by-product. Therefore, it is common to think about sexual violence against women in armed conflicts as “coincidental”. However, normalizing rape and sexual assault contains the risk of permitting sexual violence and legitimizing its use as a weapon of war. This article will analyse the development and mechanisms of International Humanitarian Law, which is also known for the law of war, with a feminist perspective. It will be argued that International Humanitarian Law lacks effective measures to counter sexual violence.

Keywords: feminism, International Humanitarian Law, sexual violence

Topics: Armed Conflict, Feminisms, Gender, Women, International Law, International Human Rights, International Humanitarian Law IHL, Rights, Human Rights, Women's Rights, Sexual Violence, SV against women

Year: 2014

A Congolese–US Participatory Action Research Partnership to Rebuild the Lives of Rape Survivors and Their Families in Eastern Democratic Republic of Congo

Citation:

Glass, Nancy, Paul Ramazani, Mafille Tosha, Mitima Mpanano, and Matthias Cinyabuguma. 2012. “A Congolese–US Participatory Action Research Partnership to Rebuild the Lives of Rape Survivors and Their Families in Eastern Democratic Republic of Congo.” Global Public Health 7 (2): 184–95. doi:10.1080/17441692.2011.594449.

Authors: Nancy Glass, Paul Ramazani, Mafille Tosha, Mitima Mpanano, Matthias Cinyabuguma

Abstract:

The Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) remains an all-too-potent reminder of how war, human rights violations and their related health and economic impacts can devastate a society. The last decade has seen the use of rape as a weapon of war in the DRC, where rebels and soldiers subject women and girls to brutalising attacks, rape, torture and mutilation. Survivors of sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV) are often further traumatised by infections, disease, poverty, stigma and social isolation. Substantial evidence exists showing an association between social determinants (e.g., poverty, stress and trauma, stigma, lack of access to health care) and health; however, limited research has been conducted to elucidate these relationships or to develop and test interventions to change social determinants of health, especially in conflict and post-conflict settings such as the DRC. The purpose of this article is to present a Congolese US community- academic research partnership to obtain evidence to develop and implement a sustainable intervention to begin to address the social determinants of health, including poverty and traumatic stress for survivors of SGBV and their families in the South Kivu province of eastern DRC. 

 

Keywords: Participatory Action Research, social determinants of health, sexual and gender based violence, human rights, microfinance

Topics: Gender, Women, Gender-Based Violence, Health, Rights, Human Rights, Sexual Violence, Rape, SV against women, Torture, Sexual Torture Regions: Africa, Central Africa Countries: Democratic Republic of the Congo

Year: 2012

Controlled Trial of Psychotherapy for Congolese Survivors of Sexual Violence

Citation:

Bass, Judith K., Jeannie Annan, Sarah McIvor Murray, Debra Kaysen, Shelly Griffiths, Talita Cetinoglu, Karin Wachter, Laura K. Murray, and Paul A. Bolton. 2013. “Controlled Trial of Psychotherapy for Congolese Survivors of Sexual Violence.” New England Journal of Medicine 368 (23): 2182–91. doi:10.1056/NEJMoa1211853.

Authors: Judith K. Bass, Jeannie Annan, Sarah McIvor Murray, Debra Kaysen, Shelly Griffiths, Talita Cetinoglu, Karin Wachter, Laura K. Murray, Paul A. Bolton

Abstract:

Background Survivors of sexual violence have high rates of depression, anxiety, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Although treatment for symptoms related to sexual violence has been shown to be effective in high-income countries, evidence is lacking in low-income, conflict-affected countries.

Methods In this trial in the Democratic Republic of Congo, we randomly assigned 16 villages to provide cognitive processing therapy (1 individual session and 11 group sessions) or in- dividual support to female sexual-violence survivors with high levels of PTSD symptoms and combined depression and anxiety symptoms. One village was excluded owing to concern about the competency of the psychosocial assistant, resulting in 7 villages that provided therapy (157 women) and 8 villages that provided individual support (248 wom- en). Assessments of combined depression and anxiety symptoms (average score on the Hopkins Symptom Checklist [range, 0 to 3, with higher scores indicating worse symp- toms]), PTSD symptoms (average score on the PTSD Checklist [range, 0 to 3, with higher scores indicating worse symptoms]), and functional impairment (average score across 20 tasks [range, 0 to 4, with higher scores indicating greater impairment]) were performed at baseline, at the end of treatment, and 6 months after treatment ended.

Results A total of 65% of participants in the therapy group and 52% of participants in the indi- vidual-support group completed all three assessments. Mean scores for combined de- pression and anxiety improved in the individual-support group (2.2 at baseline, 1.7 at the end of treatment, and 1.5 at 6 months after treatment), but improvements were signifi- cantly greater in the therapy group (2.0 at baseline, 0.8 at the end of treatment, and 0.7 at 6 months after treatment) (P<0.001 for all comparisons). Similar patterns were ob- served for PTSD and functional impairment. At 6 months after treatment, 9% of par- ticipants in the therapy group and 42% of participants in the individual-support group met criteria for probable depression or anxiety (P<0.001), with similar results for PTSD.

Conclusions In this study of sexual-violence survivors in a low-income, conflict-affected country, group psychotherapy reduced PTSD symptoms and combined depression and anxi- ety symptoms and improved functioning. 

 

Topics: Armed Conflict, Gender, Women, Health, Mental Health, PTSD, Sexual Violence, SV against women Regions: Africa, Central Africa Countries: Democratic Republic of the Congo

Year: 2013

Rape and Sexual Violence in the Democratic Republic of Congo: A Case Study of Gender-Based Violence

Citation:

Banwell, Stacy. 2014. “Rape and Sexual Violence in the Democratic Republic of Congo: A Case Study of Gender-Based Violence.” Journal of Gender Studies 23 (1): 45–58. doi:10.1080/09589236.2012.726603.

Author: Stacy Banwell

Abstract:

The just war tradition is based on two principles: jus ad bellum – just war-making, and jus in bello – just war-fighting. Jus in bello contains the non-combatant immunity principle. This ‘protects’ civilians during war, giving them ‘immunity’ from the violence of war-fighting. Women are, for the most part, non-combatants. Still, their experiences during war are far from ‘protected’. Following the widespread use of rape in the conflicts in Rwanda and the former Yugoslavia, the raping of women in combat and occupation zones is now considered a human rights violation and treated as a crime against humanity. Yet, despite developments in international law and policy-making on sexual violence in armed conflict, the systematic rape of girls and women during armed conflict continues. In the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), this type of gender-based violence is being perpetrated and facilitated at a macro, meso, and micro level. This article will explore these levels through a feminist lens and will consider what is necessary to achieve just post bellum (just peace) in the DRC.

Keywords: rape, sexual violence, armed conflict, hegemonic masculinity, globalization, Democratic Republic of Congo

Topics: Armed Conflict, Gender, Masculinity/ies, Gender-Based Violence, Globalization, Rights, Human Rights, Sexual Violence, Rape, SV against women Regions: Africa, Central Africa Countries: Democratic Republic of the Congo

Year: 2014

The Gender-Specific Terror of El Salvador and Guatemala: Post-traumatic Stress Disorder in Central American Refugee Women

Citation:

Aron, Adrianne, Shawn Corne, Anthea Fursland, and Barbara Zelwer. 1991. “The Gender-Specific Terror of El Salvador and Guatemala: Post-traumatic Stress Disorder in Central American Refugee Women.” Women’s Studies International Forum 14 (1): 37–47. doi:10.1016/0277-5395(91)90082-S.

Authors: Adrianne Aron, Shawn Corne, Anthea Fursland, Barbara Zelwer

Abstract:

A taxonomy of three broad categories describes the forms of sexual abuse commonly found in El Salvador and Guatemala, where gender-specific political repression traumatizes people and gives rise to Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PSTD). If the psychological problems of Central American women refugees are to be addressed meaningfully, we must attend not only to the special characteristics of the assaults they have endured, but also to features of the pre-trauma environment in which they lived, and the post-trauma experience of exile. Of particular importance is the distinction between institutionalized and noninstitutionalized sexual assault; that is, assault sanctioned by the government as a normative act of social control versus assault which is considered deviant, criminal, and punishable by law. A case study of a Central American refugee woman suffering from PSTD is presented, to illustrate the psychological symptoms attendant to trauma and the use of sexual abuse as a form of political repression.

Topics: Displacement & Migration, Refugees, Gender, Women, Health, PTSD, Sexual Violence, SV against women Regions: Americas, Central America Countries: El Salvador, Guatemala

Year: 1991

Gender Norms, Poverty and Armed Conflict in Cote D’Ivoire: Engaging Men in Women’s Social and Economic Empowerment Programming

Citation:

Falb, K. L., J. Annan, E. King, J. Hopkins, D. Kpebo, and J. Gupta. 2014. “Gender Norms, Poverty and Armed Conflict in Cote D’Ivoire: Engaging Men in Women’s Social and Economic Empowerment Programming.” Health Education Research 29 (6): 1015–27. doi:10.1093/her/cyu058.

Authors: J. Annan, E. King, J. Hopkins, D. Kpebo, J. Gupta, K. L. Falb

Abstract:

Engaging men is a critical component in efforts to reduce intimate partner violence (IPV). Little is known regarding men’s perspectives of approaches that challenge inequitable gender norms, particularly in settings impacted by armed conflict. This article describes men’s experiences with a women’s empowerment program and highlights men’s perceptions of gender norms, poverty and armed conflict, as they relate to achieving programmatic goals. Data are from 32 Ivorian men who participated in indepth interviews in 2012. Interviews were undertaken as part of an intervention that combined gender dialogue groups for both women and their male partners with women’s only village savings and loans programs to reduce IPV against women. Findings suggested that in the context of armed conflict, traditional gender norms and economic stressors experienced by men challenged fulfillment of gender roles and threatened men’s sense of masculinity. Men who participated in gender dialogue groups discussed their acceptance of programming and identified improvements in their relationships with their female partners. These men further discussed increased financial planning along with their partners, and attributed such increases to the intervention. Addressing men’s perceptions of masculinity, poverty and armed conflict may be key components to reduce men’s violence against women in conflict-affected settings.

Topics: Armed Conflict, Economies, Poverty, Gender, Masculinity/ies, Gender Roles, Gender Budgeting, Households, Sexual Violence, Male Perpetrators, SV against women, Violence Regions: Africa, West Africa Countries: Côte D'Ivoire

Year: 2014

The Nairobi Declaration: Redefining Reparation for Women Victims of Sexual Violence

Citation:

Couillard, Valérie. 2007. “The Nairobi Declaration: Redefining Reparation for Women Victims of Sexual Violence.” International Journal of Transitional Justice 1 (3): 444–53. doi:10.1093/ijtj/ijm030.

Author: Valérie Couillard

Abstract:

This paper explores the contribution of the Nairobi Declaration on the Right of Women and Girls to a Remedy and Reparation to the problem of delivering justice through reparation programmes for women victims of sexual violence in conflict situations. It highlights that this civil society initiative is particularly significant because it gives voice to women and girls who are survivors of sexual violence. Placed in the context of the recent adoption by the United Nations' General Assembly of the Basic Principles and Guidelines on the Right to a Remedy and Reparation for Victims of Gross Violations of International Human Rights Law and Serious Violations of International Humanitarian Law, the Nairobi Declaration redefines reparation and guides policy-making to implement the right to reparation specifically for victims of sexual violence. The concept of reparation as a transformative and participative process put forward in the Nairobi Declaration constitutes its most innovative and inspiring contribution.

Topics: Civil Society, Gender, Women, International Law, International Human Rights, International Humanitarian Law IHL, Justice, Reparations, Sexual Violence, SV against women Regions: Africa, East Africa Countries: Kenya

Year: 2007

Violence Against Women in Ethiopia

Citation:

Kedir, Abbi and Lul Admasachew. 2010. “Violence Against Women in Ethiopia.” Gender, Place & Culture 17 (4): 437–52. doi:10.1080/0966369X.2010.485832.

Authors: Abbi Kedir, Lul Admasachew

Abstract:

Investigating the experience of violence against women and exploring women's coping strategies is a crucial component of re-tailoring the provision of services for victims/survivors. This article explores violence against women in the context of culture, theory of fear of violence and literature on spaces perceived to be ‘safe’ or ‘dangerous’ by women victims/survivors of violence in Ethiopia. To collect the relevant data, we conducted 14 semi-structured interviews with Ethiopian women who are victims/survivors of violence and three interviews with gender experts in Ethiopia. Our group of women suffer in ‘silence’ and confide only in friends and relatives. They did not resort to institutional support due to lack of awareness and general societal disapproval of such measures. This contrasts with claims by experts that the needs of these women are addressed using an institutional approach. Culture, migration status and lack of negotiating power in places of work are key factors when considering violence. The majority of the respondents in this study occupy both public and private spaces such as bars and homes and have experienced violence in those spaces. The social relations and subsequent offences they endured do not make spaces such as these safe. Education of both sexes, creation of awareness, sustainable resource allocation to support victims/survivors, ratification of the Maputo protocol and effective law enforcement institutions are some of the practical strategies we propose to mitigate the incidence of violence in Ethiopia.

Keywords: violence, women, ethiopia, victim/survivor

Topics: Gender, Women, Gender-Based Violence, Health, Trauma, Humanitarian Assistance, Context-Appropriate Response to Trauma, Sexual Violence, SV against women, Violence Regions: Africa, East Africa Countries: Ethiopia

Year: 2010

When the Personal Becomes Political: Using Legal Reform to Combat Violence against Women in Ethiopia

Citation:

Burgess, Gemma Lucy. 2012. “When the Personal Becomes Political: Using Legal Reform to Combat Violence against Women in Ethiopia.” Gender, Place & Culture 19 (2): 153–74. doi:10.1080/0966369X.2011.573142.

Author: Gemma Lucy Burgess

Abstract:

This article focuses on Ethiopia's first civil society organisation, the Ethiopian Women Lawyers Association (EWLA), which has been campaigning for legal reform to secure women's rights and address violence against women. Implementing legal changes to benefit women in Ethiopia is impeded by difficulties in using the formal legal system, by poverty and deeply embedded gender inequalities, by plural legal systems, and by entrenched cultural norms. However, the article argues that the most significant challenge is the increasing degree of authoritarianism in Ethiopian state politics, that this is crucial in determining the space for activism, and that this shapes the successful implementation of legal change. The research shows how women's activism around personal rights challenges public/private and personal/political boundaries and can be seen as a political threat by governments in contexts where democracy and rule of the law are not embedded, leading to repression of women's activism and hindering the implementation of measures to protect women's rights when states become more authoritarian. Little is known empirically about the impact of democratisation on the implementation of measures to protect women's rights in Africa. This article shows how the emergence of democracy and legal reform intersects with the emergence of women's rights, especially with respect to gender-based violence. It shows how trying to secure women's personal right to be free from violence through the law is profoundly political and argues that the nature of democratisation really matters in terms of the implementation of measures such as legal changes designed to protect women's rights.

Keywords: ethiopia, legal reform, women's rights, Violence against women, activism

Topics: Civil Society, Feminisms, Gender, Women, Gender-Based Violence, Political Participation, Post-Conflict, Sexual Violence, SV against women, Violence Regions: Africa, East Africa Countries: Ethiopia

Year: 2012

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