Nov 112013
Schedule and Location: Wednesday, May 28 10:45am-12:15pm Vallee-300

Primary Session Category: Feminist Studies
Session Code: Fem4
Session Format: Regular (Presentations and Discussion)

Session Description: This panel examines competing interpretations of state responsibility being mobilized by state and non-state actors. Although there exists a specific legal definition of state responsibility, feminist and human rights scholars and activists have deployed a variety of strategies for expanding (and in some cases contracting or displacing) the role of states in addressing gendered violence and protecting women’s human rights. These efforts have drawn from alternative understandings of due diligence – rooted not solely in law, but also in normative human rights frameworks and emerging social movement discourses. In this series of papers, we bring into conversation multiple and potentially conflicting interpretations of the limits or boundaries of a state’s obligation to its citizens as well as to non-citizens in cases of gendered violence. To what extent can states be held accountable – both legally and normatively – for failing to protect, prevent and/or prosecute acts of violence against women? How are understandings of state responsibility being negotiated or reconfigured at the national and international levels? We invite papers that bring local, transnational, and/or postnational perspectives to bear on this issue.

Session Organizers:
Salina Abji, University of Toronto, Sociology,
Paulina Garcia Del Moral, University of Toronto, Sociology


1.     Salina Abji  

State Responsibility and Gendered Violence: a case study of efforts to address violence against non-status women in Toronto, Canada

2.     Lauren Montgomery  

Low Risk, High Gains: Sex Trafficking after the Era of the Exotic Dancer Visa. Where do we go from here?

3.     Jean-Sébastien Marier

Revisiting the 1951 Refugee Convention: Adding ‘gender’ to Article 1

4.     Sanchari Sur  

Neither Here Nor There : Leela’s Response to Trauma in Anita Rau Badami’s Can You Hear the Nightbird Call?

Full Abstracts

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