Write On! Call for Papers: Gender Implications of the Law of the Sea

Exploring the Human Element of the Oceans: The Gender Implications of the Law of the Sea

25-26 May 2017
Università degli Studi di Milano-Bicocca, Milano, Italy

Call for Papers

The School of Law, University of Milano-Bicocca is organising a two-days conference on the gender implications of the law of the sea, to be held in Milan (Italy) on 25-26 May 2017.

Concept

The conference stems from an empirical consideration: international law of the sea, including maritime law, has been traditionally silent about the role played by women at sea, and this is very much the case still today. Regulation is scant and scholarly research almost non-existent. The growing interest of scholars in the analysis of law of the sea and maritime law from a more human-oriented approach, in an attempt to integrate the human element into the law of the sea rules, has led to multiple interconnections between these two fields and international human rights law. However, none of these efforts have broached the impact of gender and women at sea. Yet, the issue is far from idle: women are increasingly accessing maritime careers and states and private actors are faced with the ensuing issues. In particular, the contribution of women in small- and medium-scale commercial fisheries is paramount, although often unrecognised and unregulated. The role of women as active agents and participants has been overlooked and international law of the sea still largely qualifies as a “male affair”. At the same time,

women constitute also a vulnerable group in international law of the sea, as they are more likely to be subject to trafficking, torture, and sexual abuses at seas, whether they end up there as seafarers, members of national navies, passengers or victims of trafficking.

Furthermore, after the 1995 Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action set the agenda for reaching women’s rights, gender equality has been placed at the frontline on the 2000 Millennium Development Goals. The MDG call upon the UN, the international community and civil society to adopt action and policies of gender mainstreaming tailored to achieve the equality commitments. At the institutional level, the need to recognise and strengthen the capacity of women in the maritime sector is currently addressed by the International Maritime Organization, the International Labour Organization and the Food and Agriculture Organization, and has been recently recalled also by the Secretary General of the United Nations in his 2014 and 2015 Reports to the General Assembly on Oceans and Law of the Sea.

The purpose of the conference is therefore to open up this field of research to the academic and professional communities, by mapping the existing international legal framework and discussing whether existing norms provide adequate protection for both women and men at sea and sufficient tools to strengthen their capacity to engage in a productive manner in this field. Questions that the conference intends to explore include: Is international law of the sea gender neutral, or does it reflect a male perspective that eventually marginalises women? What can be said about the role of international human rights law in providing protection to women at sea? Should a re- evaluation or re-interpretation of the system be taken into account in order to integrate a gender perspective? What are the most relevant areas in the law of the sea and maritime law where women play a major role or face particular hardships? How can their role be strengthened and women themselves be empowered?

The conference convenors welcome contributions on the gender implications of the law of the sea. We are particularly interested in international, comparative and EU perspectives on the following topics:

  •   International law of the sea and gender. Is the law of the sea gender neutral? Could/should feminist legal theory engage more with the topic? Would law of the sea benefit from such an analytical approach?
  • Torture, sexual abuses and trafficking at sea. Human trafficking, forced labour and slavery are endemic phenomena in the fisheries sector in some geographical areas; men and women, often due to their ethnicity, are sold and forced to work under physical and psychological threat. Women are the most vulnerable subject to torture, rape and sexual abuses. Do existing international norms adequately address the issue? What is peculiar about torture and sexual abuses when they occur at sea? Does international human rights law constitute a sufficient ground to tackle issues faced by women at sea or does it reinforce the depiction of women as victims rather than active participants within the international law of the sea framework?

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Call for Submissions-Race, Gender and Law: A tribute to the scholarship of Sherene Razack- Canadian Journal of Women and the Law

Call for Submissions – Race, Gender and Law: A tribute to the scholarship of Sherene Razack

http://bit.ly/cjwlcfp

The Canadian Journal of Women and Law (CJWL) seeks submissions for a special issue 30(2) to be published in December 2018 on Race, Gender and Law: A tribute to the scholarship of Sherene Razack (guest edited by Gada Mahrouse, Carmela Murdocca, and Leslie Thielen-Wilson). The deadline for submitting articles for this special issue is September 1, 2017. 

Dr. Sherene Razack is one of Canada’s leading critical race feminist theorists. She is especially known for developing an analytic that shows: 1. how racial violence is often legally and socially authorized and is integral to the making of states; and 2. how racial violence is gendered and sexualized. This special issue is in celebration of the 20th anniversary of her ground-breaking book Looking White People in the Eye (now in its fourth edition) and her important and on-going contributions to the interdisciplinary field of critical race feminisms and socio-legal studies. We invite articles in English and French from academics, legal scholars, educators, and activists, working in the areas of gender, race, and law. We are interested in receiving articles that are explicitly informed by Razack’s methodology or any other important aspect of her work.

Submissions should be no more than 35 pages (10,000 words) and should conform to the Style Guide available on our website: http://bit.ly/cjwlsubmit.  Please send articles in word format indicating it is for the special issue on “Race, Gender and the Law.” to: cjwl-rfd@uottawa.ca
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ICC trial against Dominic Ongwen commences – some thoughts on narratives

The trial against Dominic Ongwen, a former commander of the Sinia brigade in the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA), started at the International Criminal Court (ICC) this week. On 6 and 7 December, Trial Chamber IX heard opening statements from the Prosecution and two teams of Legal Representatives of Victims. The Defence had requested to defer its opening statements to the beginning of the presentation of its evidence. The trial is an important one for many reasons, not least because of the difficult issue of Ongwen being a ‘victim-turned-perpetrator’ (see this post by IntLawGrrl Diane Amann). Rather than providing a detailed overview of the submissions, I want to focus on a specific issue that struck me listening to the Prosecution’s opening statements: (gendered) narratives and discourse.

As Michelle Jarvis writes in the introduction to the book Prosecuting Conflict-Related Sexual Violence at the ICTY, and as IntLawGrrl Daniela Kravetz wrote, there has been a tendency in international criminal law to focus -almost exclusively- on the sexual component of SGBV crimes when committed against female victims. This renders the violence aspect of such crimes almost invisible. On the contrary, where it concerns sexual violence against male victims, the focus has predominantly been on the violence component, as opposed to the sexual component, with such harm often characterised only as torture, or cruel treatment. These gendered dynamics have been pervasive; hence the significance of the ICC’s conviction in the Bemba case classifying rape of male victims as rape.

The Ongwen case marks another breaking point – the Prosecution has classified acts of sexual violence against women and girls not just as sexual violence (rape and sexual slavery), but as torture and outrages upon personal dignity. It has also included charges of forced pregnancy and forced marriage, two predominantly gendered (rather than sexual) crimes (see the Prosecution’s pre-trial brief for its pleadings in this respect). The Prosecution described the LRA’s systematic, institutionalised practice to abduct young women with the express aim of forcing them into an exclusive forced conjugal relationship (“forced marriage”) with LRA commanders. They were raped, forced to carry out domestic duties such as cooking or cleaning, were beaten for refusing to do so, and some bore children as a result of their repeated rapes. This policy was “vigorously enforced” within the LRA and constituted one of its “defining features”. Ongwen himself had many forced wives, some of whom were as young as 10 years old.

The Prosecution summarised in detail the testimony already given by seven of Ongwen’s forced wives to the Pre-Trial Chamber, and referred to broader contextual evidence from other witnesses who have yet to testify. Importantly, the Prosecution underscored that in using the terms (forced) “marriage” and (forced) “wife”, it did not seek to legitimise what occurred. The Prosecution stressed that, while a victim’s lack of consent “may have been obvious at first”, when they were subsequently “bludgeoned into silent submission” this did not mean the acts became consensual.

While it was thus clear the Prosecution was very aware of nuances in language, there was nonetheless a notable change in terminology in its submissions. Continue reading

Call for Papers! Race, Gender and Law: A Tribute to the Scholarship of Sherene Razack

Canadian Journal of Women and the Law/Revue Femmes et Droit is available online at: http://bit.ly/cjwlcfp

 

The Canadian Journal of Women and Law (CJWL) seeks submissions for a special issue 30(2) to be published in December 2018 on Race, Gender and Law: A tribute to the scholarship of Sherene Razack (guest edited by Gada Mahrouse, Carmela Murdocca, and Leslie Thielen-Wilson). The deadline for submitting articles for this special issue is September 1, 2017. 

 Dr. Sherene Razack is one of Canada’s leading critical race feminist theorists. She is especially known for developing an analytic that shows: 1. how racial violence is often legally and socially authorized and is integral to the making of states; and 2. how racial violence is gendered and sexualized. This special issue is in celebration of the 20th anniversary of her ground-breaking book Looking White People in the Eye (now in its fourth edition) and her important and on-going contributions to the interdisciplinary field of critical race feminisms and socio-legal studies. We invite articles in English and French from academics, legal scholars, educators, and activists, working in the areas of gender, race, and law. We are interested in receiving articles that are explicitly informed by Razack’s methodology or any other important aspect of her work.

Submissions should be no more than 35 pages (10,000 words) and should conform to the Style Guide available on our website: http://bit.ly/cjwlsubmit.  Please send articles in word format indicating it is for the special issue on “Race, Gender and the Law.” to: cjwl-rfd@uottawa.ca
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Georgia Law launches women’s leadership initiative: “Georgia WILL”

georgiawillheader

I’m very pleased to reprint this announcement of an important Georgia Law initiative, available in its pinkest form here and at the Exchange of Notes blog of our Dean Rusk International Law Center here. IntLawGrrls: see below March 3 and stay tuned this week for more details.

In celebration of its own women leaders and in an effort to nurture women who will lead in the future, the University of Georgia School of Law this year is spearheading Georgia WILL (Georgia Women in Law Lead).

Georgia WILL launched with a breakfast on August 19, 2016, the centenary of the day that the State of Georgia enacted a statute entitled “Attorneys at Law; Females May Be,” and soon admitted Minnie Hale Daniel, whose previous applications had been rejected, as the state’s first woman lawyer. Celebrated along with Daniel were Georgia Law’s first alumnae, Edith House and Gussie Brooks, both members of the Class of 1925, as well as the many women who today help lead the law school. They include: Associate Deans Diane Marie Amann, Lori Ringhand, and Usha Rodrigues; Carol A. Watson, Director of Georgia Law’s Alexander Campbell King Law Library; Ramsey Bridges, Director of Law Admissions; Anne S. Moser, Senior Director of Law School Advancement; Heidi M. Murphy, Director of Communications and Public Relations; and Kathleen A. Day, Director of Business & Finance.

“This is a superb opportunity both to give recognition to our women leaders and to join in the global conversation about women’s leadership,” remarked Georgia Law Dean Peter B. “Bo” Rutledge. “Given our hope that this initiative will foster a new generation of women leaders, we’re especially pleased that our Women Law Students Association is cosponsoring all events.”

Events in the next twelve months will feature women, including members of the Georgia Law community, who are national and international pathbreakers in law, business, and public service. One highlight event will occur at the annual meeting of the Association of American Law Schools in San Francisco, where Georgia Law will host a brainstorming session for women professors who are or are interested in becoming law school or university administrators; another, at Georgia Law’s Athens main campus, where IntLawGrrls contributors will convene in March for a conference marking the blog’s 10th birthday.

Events scheduled so far (at Georgia Law’s Athens campus unless otherwise stated) are as follows:

October 13 Judge Lisa Godbey Wood (J.D. 1990), U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Georgia, will deliver “Reflections on Sentencing.” Her service as Georgia Law’s inaugural B. Avant Edenfield Jurist in Residence also includes teaching a week-long course on sentencing.

 

October 19 Judge Navanethem Pillay, a South African jurist whose former positions include United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights and Judge on the International Criminal Court and the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda, will speak on “National Sovereignty vs. International Human Rights” at Georgia Law’s Atlanta Campus. The World Affairs Council of Atlanta cosponsors.

October 25 Ethical challenges faced by corporations will be the topic of a talk by Sloane Perras (J.D. 2002), Chief Legal Officer at Krystal Company and On The Border. Earlier this month, Perras was recognized by the Women’s In-House Counsel Leadership Institute for welcoming other women into her area of practice and also for directing corporate policy toward inclusion of women in high-level legal positions.

January 5 Georgia Law will host “Women’s Leadership in Legal Academia” at the Annual Meeting of the Association of American Law Schools in San Francisco. This brainstorming session for women professors who are or are interested in becoming law school or university administrators will feature academics, as well as Monika Kalra Varma, an executive leadership consultant who served for the last five years as Executive Director of the District of Columbia Bar Pro Bono Program.

February 4  Georgia State Representative Stacey Godfrey Evans (J.D. 2003) will provide opening remarks at “Georgia Women Run.” Joining her will be a diverse group of elected officials, who will discuss the challenges and rewards of running for office as a nontraditional candidate.

 

March 1 to 31 Georgia Law’s Alexander Campbell King Law Library will host a special exhibit, “Attorneys at Law; Females May Be: Celebrating the Past and Ongoing Leadership of Women in Law,” in conjunction with Women’s History Month and, on March 8, International Women’s Day.

March 2 The Women Law Students Association will present the 35th Annual Edith House Lecture, named after a graduate of Georgia Law’s Class of 1925 whose career included service as the first woman U.S. Attorney in Florida. Delivering this year’s lecture will be Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson, U.S. District Judge for the District of Columbia.

March 3 Contributors to IntLawGrrls, the pre-eminent international blog authored primarily by women, will convene for a 10th birthday conference and research forum.

 

March 18 Receiving the 2016 Distinguished Service Scroll Awards, given annually by Georgia Law’s Law School Association, will be Ertharin Cousin (J.D. 1982), Executive Director of the U.N. World Food Programme, based in Rome, Italy, and Audrey Boone Tillman (J.D. 1989), Executive Vice President and General Counsel of Aflac Inc.

 
March 27 Gabrielle Kaufmann-Kohler, Professor of Law at the University of Geneva, Switzerland, will deliver the 2d Annual Glenn Hendrix Lecture at Georgia Law’s Atlanta campus. The Atlanta International Arbitration Society cosponsors.

 

Fall 2017 Vice-Chancellor Tamika R. Montgomery-Reeves (J.D. 2006) of the Delaware Court of Chancery will teach a short course on advanced topics in Delaware corporate law, and also headline an alumnae reception in Atlanta.

Work On! Opening for a Foreign Affairs Officer for the Office of Global Women’s Issues

The State Department has listed a GS-15 opening for a Foreign Affairs Officer, for the Office of Global Women’s Issues. Apply via USAJOBS.gov; applications close September 13 at midnight.  This is a GS-15 which typically requires 5-10 years work experience and has a commensurate level of responsibility.

They are looking for someone with a bachelor’s or graduate degree in international law, international relations, political science or social sciences or humanities.

https://www.usajobs.gov/GetJob/ViewDetails/449746300

  • Develops policy and programming initiatives in consultation with other Department offices, government agencies, and nongovernmental stakeholders. Develops and leads initiatives to ensure that gender issues are integrated into US foreign policy. Promotes bilateral and multilateral engagement opportunities to advance global women’s objectives.
  • Develops and maintains relationships with a wide array of counterparts across the interagency, with international governmental and non-governmental organizations, and bilaterally with relevant countries as well as with the private sector, U.S. international civil society groups, think tanks, and U.S. embassies and consulates to proactively and consistently raise and advance the objectives of the office and the Department regarding women and girls.
  • Provides expert policy analysis, development and coordination of women’s and girl’s issues covering North Africa / Egypt, countering violent extremism, and religious leader engagement, and oversees work of staff covering South Asia, economic empowerment, and social inclusion.
  • Monitors political, economic, social, and other significant developments and trends in order to gauge the effectiveness of, and facilitate efforts to achieve U.S. foreign policy objectives.
  • Provides expert analysis and policy advice on women and Islam in regard to legal, social, and political dimensions and the practical implications for women and girls in Muslim-majority countries related to advancing the status of women and girls globally.

IN ADDITION to the basic requirements, this position requires one year of specialized experience equivalent to at least the GS-14 level in the Federal service which provided the applicant with the particular knowledge, skills and abilities to perform the duties of the position. Qualifying specialized experience must demonstrate the following:

  • Experience making recommendations on how to advance the priorities in the North Africa and South Asian regions related to gender equality, gender-based violence, promoting women’s economic participation, and expanding women’s role in negotiations and peacebuilding activities.
  • Experience providing expert policy analysis, development and coordination of women’s and girls’ issues covering North Africa/Egypt, countering violent extremism, and religious leader engagement, and oversees work of staff covering South Asia, economic empowerment, and social inclusion.
  • Experience providing expert analysis and policy advice on women and Islam in regard to legal, social, and political dimensions and the practical implications for women and girls in Muslim-majority countries.

Good luck!

Read On! ‘Developing the Right to Social Security – A Gender Perspective’

I am really pleased to be writing for IntLawGrrls for the first time and to introduce my new book Developing the Right to Social Security – A Gender Perspective which is part of the Routledge Research in Human Rights Series. The right to social security has become increasingly relevant in the context of austerity cuts to welfare in many parts of the developed world following the global financial crisis. At the same time, there has been a burgeoning of social protection programs in developing nations as a response to poverty. Many countries in the world now recognise the right to social security within their national constitutions and the international law in this area has recently been given greater definition. These developments present an opportunity to consider the gender dimensions of this right, particularly as women face disproportional poverty all over the world.
My book develops a set of principles for a substantively equal, gendered right to social security by rethinking the relationship between the right to social security and traditional conceptions of work. I argue for a new understanding of this crucial right that takes account of women’s unpaid labour, informal work, and care, within the context of global economic changes. The book applies this gender perspective to an examination of the international law on the right to social security and includes three country studies – India, South Africa and Australia. Hopefully the book will be of interest to people working on international law, comparative constitutional law, social policy, feminism and women’s rights.