Gender, flight and neglect: an examination of the sexual and gender-based violence against Congolese women refugees

Norris, David (2012) Gender, flight and neglect: an examination of the sexual and gender-based violence against Congolese women refugees. In: 35th AFSAAP Conference: Africa: People, Places and Spaces, 26-28 Nov 2012, Canberra, Australia.


This paper examines the experiences of Congolese refugee women in their flight from conflict, examining the SGBV perpetrated against them therein. The experience of SGBV throughout flight is examined in order to ascertain its nature and intent. It is important to determine the pattern of sexual violence and whether or not the use of sexual violence is random or a strategic and systematic tool for multiple and widespread displacement. The paper also looks beyond the movement of people internally, and examines the population flow across state borders. In doing so, the paper assesses the consideration of gender in the paradigm of international law. Refugee law based on the 1951 Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees is examined from a gendered perspective to determine to what extant women’s persecution is considered or ignored throughout the legal process of refugee determination. The paper critically examines the gendered language and application of the Convention’s definition of a refugee and especially the use of the public/private binary in the examination of applicant’s experiences of persecution. Ultimately, this paper explores the insecurities of Congolese women, and the effectiveness of international refugee law to remedy said insecurity.

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Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Commonwealth Reporting Category E) (Paper)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: © 2013 The African Studies Association of Australasia and the Pacific.
Faculty / Department / School: Historic - Faculty of Arts - School of Humanities and Communication
Date Deposited: 20 May 2013 00:47
Last Modified: 22 Sep 2014 01:27
Uncontrolled Keywords: Congolese women; refugees; sexual violence
Fields of Research : 20 Language, Communication and Culture > 2002 Cultural Studies > 200208 Migrant Cultural Studies
16 Studies in Human Society > 1608 Sociology > 160803 Race and Ethnic Relations

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