“POLITICAL CONFLICT AND GENDER RIGHTS IN SOUTH ASIA”
A TALK BY MEENAKSHI GANGULY
South Asia Director at Human Rights Watch (HRW)
Thursday, March 3, 2016, 6:00pm to 7:30pm
Room 170, Boalt Hall, Berkeley School of Law
This Talk is Free and Open to the Public. Location is wheelchair accessible.
Hosted by: Political Conflict, Gender and People's Rights Project, Center for Race and Gender, University of California, Berkeley
Event Introduced by Professor Evelyn Nakano Glenn
Director, Center for Race and Gender and Professor (Emerita), Departments of Ethnic Studies and Gender and Women’s Studies
Speaker Introduced by Professor Angana Chatterji
Co-chair, Project on Political Conflict, Gender and People's Rights, Center for Race and Gender, University of California, Berkeley, and Visiting Scholar, Institute for the Study of Human Rights, Columbia University
Moderated by Professor Paola Bacchetta
Department of Gender and Women’s Studies, University of California, Berkeley; Co-chair, Project on Political Conflict, Gender and People's Rights
Talk Abstract: Political violence is currently normalized in many sites across South Asia. Armed insurgencies, state security operations and right-wing attacks against minorities and other vulnerable populations lead to serious human rights abuses. Gender organization in South Asia impacts political conflict, producing tremendous gender violence and social constraints across gendered positionalities and identities. Depending upon the context, the gendered effects of such conflict can be especially harsh on women who are targeted in the violence. Culturally and politically marginalized, women remain particularly vulnerable to violent attacks, including sexual assault. They also very often lose their livelihood in the violence. When they function as de facto heads of households women often experience dramatically increased social exclusion, with all the despair that such exclusion entails. Many of the crimes against women that take place during periods of political conflict remain unreported. This talk speaks to all these issues. It highlights the ways in which women victimized-survivors are isolated and how they struggle to find justice and to have access to redress.
Meenakshi Ganguly is the South Asia Director at Human Rights Watch. She is the author and coordinator of numerous human rights reports produced for Human Rights Watch. She has also has written extensively on human rights related challenges across South Asia: in Bangladesh, Burma, India, Nepal, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka, including on the political conflicts in Jammu and Kashmir, Manipur, and Punjab. She has investigated a broad range of issues. Some of these are: discrimination against marginalized and minoritized groups; issues of religious freedom; peoples’ rights violations related to political and armed conflict; the precarity and violence against women and children in political conflict, including sexual abuse; bringing abusive members of state forces and combatants to justice; police reform;and human rights approaches to foreign policy.She has also worked on questions such as: immigrant and labor rights; discrimination against people living with HIV/AIDS; the rights of men who have sex with men; and various LGBTIQ+ communities.Before joining Human Rights Watch in 2004, Ganguly served as the South Asia Correspondent for Time Magazine,covering Afghanistan, Pakistan, Nepal, India, Bangladesh, and Sri Lanka. At present she also serves as a member of the Working Group of the Political Conflict, Gender and People's Rights Project based at the Center for Race and Gender at University of California, Berkeley.
Co-sponsors: Center for the Study of Sexual Cultures, University of California, Berkeley; Center for South Asia, Stanford University; Department of Gender and Women’s Studies, University of California, Berkeley; International and Area Studies, University of California, Berkeley; International Human Rights Law Clinic, University of California, Berkeley School of Law; Institute for the Study of Human Rights, Columbia University; The Human Rights Program, University of California, Berkeley; Townsend Center for the Humanities Working Group and CRG Working Group on Muslim Identities and Cultures, University of California, Berkeley; WSD HANDA Center for Human Rights and International Justice, Stanford University