Panel Addresses Gender Violence in Latin America

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Terrorizing Women: Feminicide in the Americas, Editors Rosa-Linda Fregoso and Cynthia Bejarano, Duke University Press, 2010.

"Gender Violence and the Phenomenon of Femicides in the Americas" will explore issues of violence against women throughout Mexico and in other Latin American countries, in a panel discussion on Friday, Feb. 18 at noon in room 4003 at the FedEx Global Education Center. A reception will follow the event on Friday. There will also be a conversation with visiting scholars the day before on Thursday, Feb. 17 at 4:00 in room 5043 at UNC School of Law.

"Both events will bring together scholars, attorneys and human rights activists to address incidents in which enforcement officials throughout Latin America have failed or refused to undertake investigations and prosecutions after incidents of violence against women," says Deborah Weissman, Reef C. Ivey II Distinguished Professor of Law at UNC School of Law. Weissman notes that this has created a climate of impunity for perpetrators and has denied victims and survivors of violence and their families appropriate access to truth and justice.

In 2009, the Inter-American Court of Human Rights issued a judgment against the Mexican government for its failure to investigate the femicides in Mexico. The 167-page decision included evidence of government negligence, corruption, cover-ups, torture and the obstruction of justice. As part of a feminist effort to categorize violence rooted in gender power structures as a violation of human rights, the discussion and panel will explore the analytical framework and response to the escalation of violence against women in Latin America during the past two decades.

Speakers include:

Cynthia Bejarano
Department of Criminal Justice
New Mexico State University

Rosa-Linda Fregoso
Latin American & Latino Studies
University of California, Santa Cruz

Marcela Lagarde
Department of Anthropology
National Autonomous University of Mexico

Hilda Morales Trujillo
Guatemala's Network for Non-Violence Against Women

Deborah Weissman
University of North Carolina School of Law, Chapel Hill

Sponsors include the UNC School of Law Immigration/Human Rights Policy Clinic, UNC Center for Global Initiatives, UNC Institute for the Study of the Americas, Carolina Women's Center, UNC School of Law Immigration Law Association and UNC School of Law Domestic Violence Advocacy Project.

-January 27, 2011

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