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A Challenge at the Crossroads of International Economic and Human Rights Law
Edited by Amandine Garde, Joshua Curtis and Olivier De Schutter
Edited by Jill Vickers, Joan Grace and Cheryl N. Collier
Jill Vickers, Joan Grace and Cheryl N. Collier
In this Handbook a number of international gender scholars explore the third ‘wave’ of research about gender, diversity and federalism. It focuses on how institutions, ideas and practices affect, and are affected by, gender regimes as well as territorially and non-territorially organized diversities, including minority ethnicities, ‘race’, religious and sexual minorities. In recent decades, scholarship examining the intersections between gender, diversity and state architectures in federations progressed through several earlier ‘waves’. In the first wave, starting in the 1980s, feminist political scientists and legal scholars began exploring if federal systems were good or bad for women in reference to their ability to make claims against the state, usually coming to the unsatisfying conclusion that ‘it depends’. Most of these early inquiries referred to older federations, such as Australia and Canada. A second wave of gender/federalism research started around 2000. Building on earlier inquiries, feminist scholars of federalism explored if and how federal systems were gendered and what this means for women’s advocacy, organization and citizenship. But they often failed to recognize the changing natures of federations and how actors such as women’s movements can reshape architectural arrangements and institutional opportunities.
Kate Ogg and Susan Harris Rimmer
For feminist international law scholars, practitioners and advocates, the first two decades of the new Millennium have produced moments of elation and disenchantment. It has been the best and worst of times, in the truly Dickensian sense. With respect to international law victories for women, there have been successful campaigns to further entrench women’s rights in international and regional instruments. For example, in 2002 the Rome Statute came into force, which includes sexual violence in the definition of a crime against humanity. The Maputo Protocol on the Rights of Women in Africa and the Council of Europe Convention on Preventing and Combating Violence against Women and Domestic Violence came into force in 2003 and 2014 respectively. Women’s achievements in the international sphere have been recognised and celebrated: since the turn of this century, seven women have been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for work relating to peace-building, democracy and human rights. International institutions have demonstrated greater awareness of and commitment to women’s rights and empowerment. This is perhaps best demonstrated by the United Nation’s (UN) eight resolutions on women, peace and security adopted between 2000 and 2015. Another institutional highlight was the creation of UN Women in 2010 – an organisation dedicated to gender equality and the empowerment of women. In some quarters of the academic community, there has been optimism about feminist international legal scholarship’s growth and potential for influence. Yet alongside these and other successes, the first two decades of the new millennium have also provided reasons for despair.
Ladies and Gentlemen! First of all, I would like to thank the organizers for inviting me to this important programme, and it is indeed a pleasure for me to speak in this timely programme. Secondly, I would like to mention that I am not a lawyer, and do not even have an academic background in any sector. I am simply a medical doctor and have lived in a male-dominated society that is poverty driven and is in a continued conflict situation. I have experienced discrimination based on my sex, ethnicity and the religion that my family practised. In order to survive such a situation, I chose and continued to fight for equality and human rights in Afghanistan. My talk today is based on my personal experience in a country where human rights abuse and violation is our daily scenario, sometimes even unnoticed. Afghanistan is a country that suffers from four decades of war; almost the majority of the powerful countries in the world are somehow involved in the conflict. Different regimes have come and gone, each one of them violated the human rights of the people, particularly the rights of women, children and other vulnerable groups including the rights of minorities.