Tag Archives: sierra leone

New on SSRN: International issues // Oosterveld on Gender Jurisprudence of the Special Court for Sierra Leone, Weissman on Feminism in Cuba

New on SSRN:

The Gender Jurisprudence of the Special Court for Sierra Leone: Progress in the Revolutionary United Front Judgments, Valerie Oosterveld (UWO Law)

Available for download here:http://ssrn.com/abstract=1933437

In March 2009, Trial Chamber I of the Special Court for Sierra Leone issued its judgment in Prosecutor v. Issa Hassan Sesay, Morris Kallon and Augustine Gbao, known as the Revolutionary United Front (RUF) case. ….

this article draws attention to the many ways in which the RUF judgments acknowledge the intersectionality of gender-based crimes. Specifically, it notes how the judgments demonstrate that gender-based crimes often intersect with other crimes, including the crime against humanity of murder and the war crime of committing acts of terrorism. The judgments also illustrate how gender-based crimes such as sexual slavery and forced marriage can intersect with each other. This article concludes that the RUF judgments are notable additions to the annals of gender jurisprudence.

Also new to SSRN is Deborah M. Weissman’s (UNC Law) Feminism in the Global Political Economy: Contradiction and Consensus in Cuba.

Transborder feminist organizing has transformed local, national, regional, and international discourses and practices. Global feminist initiatives have fostered the development of international legal standards that take into consideration the needs and circumstances of women, and have contributed to the gender mainstreaming of human rights norms. At the same time, the feminist enterprise has also served to promote a neoliberal agenda that has focused on individual empowerment and self-esteem issues, and thus raised questions about who is defining the agendas and strategies for women’s struggles for rights.

….. This article addresses the ways that Cuban feminism is decisively shaped by its national history as well as by the experience of colonization and neoliberal globalization, both essential mainstays for unequal global political economies. Among other issues, this article considers gendered migration strategies that have developed as a result of punitive U.S. policies and economic downturns. It also examines the gendered impact of the current cycle of Cuban economic reforms characterized by severe cuts to public sector employment that will drive increasing numbers of Cubans into self-employment (proprio cuentismo). Given that global self-employment data suggest that women fare poorly compared to men in self-employment endeavors, Cuban feminists must once again determine how to avoid a reversal of gains.

Forced Marriage in Conflict Situations International Conference

York colleague and IFLS member Annie Bunting, along with York’s Harriet Tubman Institute for Research on the Global Migrations of African Peoples,  and various international partners, has put together a great conference on Forced Marriage in Conflict Situations – if you will be in Freetown, Sierra Leone Feb 24-26.

Click here for the Conference Website.

Bringing together historians of slavery and women’s human rights scholars, survivor groups, local NGOs, officials and leading academics and activists working on the issue, the conference explores the phenomenon of forced marriage and enslavement from comparative and historical perspectives. During conflicts in Sierra Leone, Liberia, the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), Uganda and Rwanda, women were kidnapped, raped and forced into “marriages” with combatants. The Special Court for Sierra Leone recently found such gender violations to constitute a new crime against humanity of “forced marriage” as opposed to “sexual slavery”. The international expert group will explore the merits of prosecuting those responsible for forced marriage under the headings of “sexual slavery”, “forced marriage” or “enslavement”. It will also focus on the historical antecedents of servile marriage and enslavement of women.

More reading on the subject? You can find Prof. Bunting’s brief note “Sexual Slavery or “Forced Marriage” in Conflict Zones – A Legal Distinction with Ramifications” here.   You might also be interested in these posts from the amazing intlawgrrls blog:

You might also like the Women’s Initiatives for Gender Justice: “The Women’s Initiatives for Gender Justice is an international women’s human rights organization advocating for gender-inclusive justice and working towards an effective and independent International Criminal Court (ICC).”  They have a great set of updates and newsletters that you can sign up to receive, e.g. this. They also publish a gender report card which includes some reporting about charges of/testimony about sexual slavery (see pp58, 73, 88, etc).