Oslo Conference of ESIL : The Judicialization of International Law – A Mixed Blessing?

Oslo speakers

The 11th Annual Conference in Oslo brought together some interesting papers for the interest Group under the Question: ‘Has feminist theory had any substantive effect on the output of International Courts and/or Tribunals?’.

Akayesu’s Rape Definition: an illustration of feminist influence?

Christine M.G. Tremblay, Leiden University

Crossing lines but not bridges: International law, gender and the future of the International Criminal Court

Olga Juraz Open University

Gender stereotyping and the Strasbourg Court’s (Non)Engagements with Feminist Legal Thought

Lourdes Peroni and Alexandra Timmer, Ghent University

The ICJ Croatia v. Serbia Genocide Judgement: A Feminist Assessment

Enzamaria Tramatana, University of Palemo Italy

Exploring ICJ’s (Dis)engagement with Feminism Separate and Dissenting Opinions as an Indicator.

Ekaterina Yahyaoui Krivenko, NUI Galway University

The interest Group was also happy to have some members attend the Women in International Law Happy Hour hosted by Professor Cecilia Bailliet, many thanks for the warm welcome in Oslo.


Representations of Women in International Law

3rd September 2014, 2-6pm

Faculty of Law, University of Vienna, Lecture room 14 (basement)


2:00pm -3:30pm: Panel 1: Representations

  • Screening International Criminal Justice : What Part do Women Play ?

Anne Lagerwall, Université Libre de Bruxelles,

  • Representations of Women in International Criminal Tribunals

Caterine Arrabal-Ward, Glasgow Caledonian University

  • Spectacles of Justice: Gender Crimes in Law and on Screen

Keina Yoshida, London School of Economics

  • International Law, Human Trafficking, Everydayness : exploring the ‘dark background of mere givenness’

Siobhan Mullally University College Cork

3:30-3:45pm: Break

3:45-5:00pm: Panel 2: Representatives

  • A Woman First: Examining the Legacy of the Diplomat, Lawyer and Academic Patricia Roberts Harris

Ursula Tracy Doyle, Northern Kentucky University

  • The Ideas of Women

Wendy Guns, Open University, the Netherlands

  • Women as State Representatives in Sweden: A feminist Party entering Parliament in 2014

Katarina Jansson, Stockholm Arbitration and Litigation Center

5:00-5:15: Break

5:15-6:00pm: Idea Sharing: Future Plans for the Interest Group

Paper for discussion: Mentorship and Women in International Law Careers

Cheah Wui Ling, National University of Singapore and Emily Linnea Mahoney, Electronic Frontier Foundation.

Call for papers: ESIL conference in Vienna, 3rd September 2014



Call for Papers – Deadline 11 June 2014


The European Society of International Law (ESIL) Interest Group on Feminism and International Law is calling for papers for its panel during the interest group meetings at the 10th ESIL Anniversary Conference (4th-6th Sept), to be held in Vienna, Austria, on 3 September 2014 from 2-6pm.

Following the overarching theme of the Conference, “International Law and …: Boundaries of International Law and Bridges to Other Fields and Disciplines”, we invite papers addressing the interplay between the representation of women in international law and other disciplines.

Papers may consider (but are not limited to) the following subjects:

* representation of women in international organisations;

* women as state representatives;

* dramatic and visual representations of women in situations such as armed conflict;

* stereotypes in representations of women, such as human rights victims;

* representations of ‘the other woman’ in international law;

* literary accounts of women in international law.


Please submit abstract proposal of no more than 500 words via email to Troy Lavers and Loveday Hodson (Troy.Lavers@le.ac.uk and Loveday.Hodson@le.ac.uk) by 11th June 2014.

Successful applicants will be informed by 30 June 2014. See below for further details.


In addition to the abstract, the following information must be provided on the submission:

  • The author’s name and affiliation
  • The author’s CV, including a list of relevant publications
  • The author’s contact details
  • Whether the author is an ESIL member

Papers will be selected by the co-chairs of the Interest Group (Dr. Troy Lavers and Dr Loveday Hodson) on the basis of abstracts submitted. Selection criteria are: originality of the work, links to the panel theme, and geographical representation of the speakers.

The purpose of the panel is to share cutting-edge research in specific areas of international law, to stimulate debate, and to foster contacts between participants. We welcome the sharing of ideas in progress.

In order to participate in the Interest Group panel, speakers must be members of ESIL. The membership can be formalised once abstracts have been accepted.

Unfortunately, the ESIL Interest Group on Feminism and International Law is not in a position to cover expenses for travelling and accommodation, or to waiver the ESIL conference fee.

Information on the 10th ESIL Anniversary Conference is available here: https://esil2014.univie.ac.at/home.

ESIL Interest G…

ESIL Interest Group on Feminism and International Law

Workshop Programme

ADEIT – Fundación Universidad-Empresa de Valencia
Plaza Virgen de la Paz, 3 – 46001 Valencia (España)

Room 2.3

Panel One

9am -10:20 (15 min per paper and 15 min questions)

Reut Yael Paz, Alexander von Humboldt Law Faculty, Ostjüdische Regionalism and Feminism à la Rosa Luxemburg

Loveday Hodson, University of Leicester, The ECHR and Women’s Rights

 Enzamaria Tramontana, University of Palermo, Judicial Dialogue and Cross-Fertilization of Regional Women’s Rights Standards: The Case of Reproductive Rights

 Dorothy Estrada-Tanck. European University Institute, Violence against Women, Human Security, and Human Rights of Women and Girls


Panel Two

10:30-12:00 (15 min per paper and 15 min questions)

 Marion Lewis, American Graduate School in Paris, Women, War and Just War Theory: Why this Silent Majority Must “Bandwagon” To Influence The “Power Brokers” To Create A Normative Framework For Jus Post Bellum

 Eki Y. Omorogbe, University of Leicester, The Impact of the African Union on Women in Armed Conflict in Africa

Solange Mouthaan, University of Warwick, Sexual Violence against Men in Armed Conflict in Africa

 CHEAH Wui Ling, National University of Singapore, Exploring Institutionalisation through Regionalisation: The Limits of Legal Mobilisation and the ‘Comfort Women’ Movement’s Experience in Southeast Asia

Call for Papers: ESIL Biennial Conference

Call for Papers
5th ESIL Biennial Conference: Interest Group Workshops
13th September 2012, Valencia Spain
“Regionalism and Feminism: How regionalism impacts on women’s lives”
This is a call for papers for the interest group workshops that will take place on the morning of 13th September 2012 as part of the 5th ESIL Biennial Conference. The interest group on Feminism and International Law is organising a panel to consider the contribution feminist theory and methodology can make to questions raised by conference theme: regionalism and international law.
This meeting of the interest group on Feminism and International Law will provide participants with an opportunity to explore the impact of regionalism on women’s lives. In particular, participants will explore whether the fracture and fragmentation of international law is mirrored in the fragmentation of feminist thought. The question of whether a uniquely ‘European’ feminism exists – and the implications of this for women in Europe and beyond – is foremost in our minds. There will also be an opportunity in this session to look in depth at the meaning of regional legal institutions and tribunals, such as the European Court of Human Rights, to women’s lives.
Abstracts of no more than 300 words in English or French should be submitted directly to troy.lavers@le.ac.uk with the author’s title, contact information and organisational affiliation. The deadline for submitting abstracts is Friday 18th May 2012.  We anticipate that scholars who contribute to the workshop maybe interested in publishing their papers jointly in a good quality peer reviewed journal, and publication plans will be discussed at the meeting.
Please note that is you wish to attend the meeting of the Feminism and International Law Interest Group you do not have to register for the full ESIL conference. There will also be an opportunity at the end of the panel for a discussion on future events of the interest group.

Female Circumcision: Recent Spanish Case

Female circumcision, universal jurisdiction and equality before the law by Nicolás Zambrana-Tévar

A couple from Gambia who lives in Alcañiz (Aragon, Spain) has been condemned to 6 (the father) and 2 (the mother) years in prison, respectively, for being responsible, alone or with the help of unknown accomplices, of the circumcision of their daughter, who is now two years old (please see Decision Nº26, of 15 November 2011 / Sentencia Nº26 de 15 de noviembre de 2011; http://www.heraldo.es/uploads/documentos/documentos_ablacionjpg_2baa227c.pdf). It is the first case of this kind in Spain that reaches the stage of oral proceedings. There have been other cases before this one but they have all been stayed after it has been determined, in the course of the investigatory stage, that the facts had taken place abroad, taking also into account the difficulties encountered in finding out the identity of those responsible for the atrocity. In this case, it has been considered proven that the female circumcision was carried out in Spain. The Spanish 1994 Criminal Code punishes the severance of the genitals (in males or females) with up to 12 years in prison and the withdrawal of the children’s custody, which is subject to the plea of the Prosecutor. The tribunal has been more lenient with the mother because it has considered proven that she did not know that female circumcision was illegal in Spain. The tribunal has not given any importance to the defence’s arguments that the father was bound “by the weight of tradition”. Furthermore, the tribunal has underscored that this is an attack against a woman’s rights and sexuality and can also lead to trauma and infections of different kinds. Interesting for international lawyers is the fact that Spanish courts have universal jurisdiction to adjudicate in cases of female circumcision, no matter the nationality of the victim nor of the perpetrator, nor the place where the facts take place. This was the case prior to a 2009 legal reform which, according to many, did away with universal jurisdiction in Spain because, after the aforementioned reform, some sort of link with Spain is also required for Spanish courts to have jurisdiction. In the case of the Gambian couple, the Prosecutor alleged and proved that the circumcision took place in Spain, so the rules on universal jurisdiction have not been invoked. Nevertheless, the couple insisted that the facts had taken place in Gambia and that those responsible where the girl’s grandparents. Furthermore, the Spanish constitution, as so many others, contains a specific precept on equality before the law. Could the Spanish rules on universal jurisdiction for female circumcision be against that principle of equality and be, therefore, unconstitutional, for being only applicable to victims who are women and not to male castration? This may not be the case after theSpanish Constitutional Court issued a judgement in 2009 which considered to be constitutional a 2004 statute which punished slightly more heavily domestic violence against women than against men. We will have to wait until another female circumcision case arises in order to see if this issue of the unconstitutionality of universal jurisdiction rules is considered.

Canadian Journal of Women and the Law

Founded in 1985, the same year as the equality guarantee of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms came into force, the Canadian Journal of Women and the Law has been publishing ground-breaking, multi-disciplinary scholarship on the impact of law on women’s social, economic and legal status for twenty-five years.

Please see the attached TOCJWL 23:1C of CJWL 23:1,  Special Issue: “Regulating Decent Work for Domestic Workers” .