Tag Archives: Africa

New in Print: “To Live Freely in This World: Sex Worker Activism in Africa” by Chi Adanna Mgbako

book cover
source: http://nyupress.org/books/9781479849062/

A new book for a new year. Here’s one to add to our 2016 feminist reading list, just released from NYU press.

To Live Freely in This World: Sex Worker Activism in Africa by Chi Adanna Mgbako

From the publisher’s website:

Sex worker activists throughout Africa are demanding an end to the criminalization of sex work and the recognition of their human rights to safe working conditions, health and justice services, and lives free from violence and discrimination. To Live Freely in This World is the first book to tell the story of the brave activists at the beating heart of the sex workers’ rights movement in Africa—the newest and most vibrant face of the global sex workers’ rights struggle. African sex worker activists are proving that communities facing human rights abuses are not bereft of agency. They’re challenging politicians, religious fundamentalists, and anti-prostitution advocates; confronting the multiple stigmas that affect the diverse members of their communities; engaging in intersectional movement building with similarly marginalized groups; and participating in the larger global sex workers’ rights struggle in order to determine their social and political fate.

By locating this counter-narrative in Africa, To Live Freely in This World challenges disempowering and one-dimensional depictions of “degraded Third World prostitutes” and helps fill what has been a gaping hole in feminist scholarship regarding sex work in the African context. Based on original fieldwork in seven African countries, including Botswana, Kenya, Mauritius, Namibia, Nigeria, South Africa, and Uganda, Chi Adanna Mgbako draws on extensive interviews with over 160 African female and male (cisgender and transgender) sex worker activists, and weaves their voices and experiences into a fascinating, richly-detailed, and powerful examination of the history and continuing activism of this young movement.
About the author:
picture of Chi Mgbako
Chi Mgbako. Source: https://www.fordham.edu/info/23164/chi_adanna_mgbako

Chi Adanna Mgbako is clinical professor of law and director of the Walter Leitner International Human Rights Clinic at Fordham Law School. In partnership with grassroots organizations, she and her students work on human rights projects focusing on sex workers’ rights, women’s rights, criminal justice reform, and access to justice. She has conducted human rights fieldwork in many countries, among them Botswana, Ethiopia, Kenya, Liberia, Mauritius, Malawi, Namibia, Nigeria, Rwanda, Sierra Leone, South Africa, Uganda, and the United States.

Under Mgbako’s direction, the clinic has conducted human rights trainings on women and HIV/AIDS, female genital cutting, and LGBT refugee rights; published human rights reports on access to safe abortion and police abuse of marginalized communities; ran mobile legal aid clinics in rural communities; contributed legal research to lawsuits challenging the forced HIV testing of sex workers; submitted claims to the United Nations on behalf of arbitrarily detained prisoners; and consulted organizations on best practices of community-based paralegal programs, among many other projects.

Mgbako’s publications have appeared in the Harvard Human Rights Journal, Yale Journal of International Affairs, Georgetown Journal of International Law, and Human Rights Quarterly, and popular media, including The International New York Times, The Guardian, and The Huffington Post. She is the author of To Live Freely in This World: Sex Worker Activism in Africa (New York University Press, 2016).

In recognition of Mgbako’s clinical teaching, writing, and human rights advocacy, she has been honored as one of the New York Law Journal’s Rising Stars, National Law Journal’s Top 40 Lawyers of Color Under 40, Fordham Law School’s Public Interest Faculty Member of the Year, and the Police Reform Organizing Project’s Citizen of the City Award recipient.

Before joining the Fordham law faculty in 2007, Mgbako served as the Harvard Henigson Human Rights Fellow in the West Africa Project of the International Crisis Group, where she focused on justice sector reform in Liberia and political reform in Nigeria, and as the Crowley Fellow in International Human Rights at Fordham Law School, where she co-produced a documentary on the feminization of HIV/AIDS in Malawi.

Mgbako earned her JD from Harvard Law School, where she received the Gary Bellow Public Service Award, and her BA, magna cum laude, from Columbia University.

November 28 at York: Problematizing international discourses on displacement and sexual violence in Central Africa | Centre for Refugee Studies

Centre for Refugee Studies celebrates 25 years with a keynote address by

Dr. Patricia Daley, Oxford University 

Thursday, November 28th  3:00pm – 5:00pm

Room 519, Kaneff Tower  Yorku 

Problematizing International Discourses on Displacement and Sexual Violence in Central Africa

Dr. Daley’s latest publication is titled “Refugees, idps and Citizenship Rights: the perils of humanitarianism in the African Great Lakes region”. It can be found here.  

Current Research

Her principal research interests are on the intersection between global geo-politics, militarism, masculinities, genocidal violence, humanitarianism and forced migration in East and Central Africa. She is also interested in the dynamics of land tenure, resource extraction and environmental change from a political ecology perspective. Her other projects include an examination of the condition of new African diaspora communities in Great Britain, focusing on issues relating to their spatial distribution, socio-economic status and housing characteristics, and the negotiation of their multiple identities, especially that arising from the experience of trans-racial fostering.  http://www.geog.ox.ac.uk/staff/pdaley.html#bio

Other publications include

Daley, P. (2007) Gender and Genocide in Burundi: The Search for Spaces of Peace in the Great Lakes Region, Oxford: James Currey, Bloomington, Indiana: Indiana University Press 

 

Sponsored by:

Office of Dean of LA&PS Office of Dean of FES Office of VP Research & Innovation Centre for Feminist Research Department of Social Science York Centre for International & Strategic Studies Faculty of Graduate Studies School of Gender, Sexuality & WS Development Studies Department of Geography Harriet Tubman Institute Social and Political Thought Graduate Program in Gender, Feminist and Women’s Studies Graduate Program in Sociology Department of Gender Studies, Queen’s University

160 Girls Fundraiser October 25 at Fasken Martineau, Toronto

The “160 Girls” project is a legal initiative that aims to achieve justice and protect against rape for all girls in Kenya. The 160 Girls project will initiate litigation to secure legal remedies ordering the state to enforce existing laws in Kenya to protect girls from sexual violence and to hold rapists accountable.

The project will mobilize the law to secure concrete change for women and girls who currently experience some of the most appalling forms of violence in the world today.

More information on the 160 Girls Project here.

Information on the October 25 event here, including agenda, location, and RSVP email information.

This evening will also include an address by Dr. Elizabeth Archampong, Vice-Dean of Law at Kwame Nkrumah University, Ghana, [and former Osgoode student!] and a video launch of a mini-documentary on the 160 Girls, created by award-winning filmmaker Andrea Dorfman.

More information about the Equality Effect charitable organization, which uses human rights law to improve the lives of women and girl and has many Osgoode connections, at their website here and a previous IFLS blog post here.


The Equality Effect (Human rights for African Women & Girls): 160 Girls Fundraiser

This fundraiser is being held Wednesday September 29th, Marriott Hotel at 525 Bay Street, Toronto.

The Equality Effect is an organization which developed out of the African and Canadian Women’s Human Rights Project (ACWHRP) involving Canadian feminist legal academics like Jennifer Koshan (U Calgary Law) and Melanie Randall (UWO Law).  Osgoode PhD’s Dr. Elizabeth Archampong (now Vice Dean at the Faculty of Law, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Ghana) and Dr. Winifred Kamau (now teaching at the School of Law, University of Nairobi) were part of the ACWHRP and are on the Advisory Board of the Equality Effect.

The Project Director of the Equality Effect is also an Osgoode adjunct and former grad student – Dr. Fiona Sampson:

Fiona originally conceived of the equality effect in 2005, in collaboration with friends and colleagues from Africa at the Osgoode Hall Law School graduate program.  Fiona has worked as a Staff Lawyer and as the Director of Litigation at the Women’s Legal Education and Action Fund (LEAF).  Fiona has appeared as counsel before the Supreme Court of Canada on many occasions representing women’s NGO’s in different equality rights cases.  Fiona has worked as a legal consultant with, amongst others, the Ontario Native Council on Justice, the DisAbled Women’s Network (DAWN) of Canada, Education Wife Assault, and the Ethiopian Muslim Relief and Development Association.

If you can’t make it to the fundraiser, you can donate money by sending it here:

the equality effect
2589 Yonge Street, Suite A
Toronto, Ontario
M4P 2J1

There are other ways to contribute as well.

The Equality Effect – Human Rights for Women and Girls.