Victims of crimes -- Legal status, laws, etc. -- United States.
Punishment -- Social aspects -- United States.
This essay analyzes crime policies enacted on behalf of, and often named for, particular victims of crime. This article argues that this naming reinforces a persistent and troubling image of the crime victim as young, white, female, and middle class. This image of victimization has so dominated and distorted discourse about crime in the United States that it is almost impossible to recognize and even harder to discuss how punishing these policies are not only for those accused and convicted of crime, but for most crime victims as well. As this essay argues, these crime victim policies often harm the very people they are supposed to protect.
Laci and Conner's Law / Megan's Law / AMBER Alert / symbolic violence / crime victims / crime policy
Women immigrants -- Legal status, laws, etc. -- United States.
Victims of crimes -- Legal status, laws, etc. -- United States.
Asylum, Right of -- United States.
Gender-based persecution is one way that immigrant women can seek political asylum and gain legal entry into the United States. Gender-based persecution includes harm such as female circumcision, rape, domestic violence, coercive family planning, honor killings, forced marriage, and repressive social norms. Legal scholars and immigrant advocates herald gender-based persecution laws and policies for advancing female asylum seekers' ability to gain asylum based on gendered harm. While gender-based persecution laws and policies offer optimism for women fleeing gendered harm, the implementation of these laws and policies may reproduce victimization for migrant women. A study of the implementation of gender-based persecution laws and policies makes visible assumptions about masculinity, femininity, sexuality, essentialism, women's agency, and authority that asylum seekers, immigration attorneys, service providers, immigration judges, and asylum officers engage. In this article, I find that protectionism and victimization, based on insecurity and fear, structure the legal institution of asylum.
asylum / gender-based persecution / victimization / human rights abuses
Abortion -- Moral and ethical aspects -- United States.
Iraq War, 2003- -- Prisoners and prisons -- Abuse of.
Torture -- Moral and ethical aspects -- United States.
The dichotomous images of Jessica Lynch, a West Virginia soldier who was rescued from an Iraqi hospital in 2003, and Lynndie England, another West Virginia soldier whose picture became synonymous with prison abuse in Iraq in 2004, have necessitated a feminist contribution to the theorizing of the hillbilly as a cultural icon. This article examines historical, political, and literary contexts for diverting attention to the hillbilly as a defense against criticism of America as an uncivilized nation, connecting the narratives of Lynch and England with accounts of Eric Rudolph, a supposed mountaineer survivalist who in 2005 was convicted of bombing abortion clinics, a lesbian bar, and an Olympic celebration. In each case, the hillbilly—that liminal, primitive white icon of ambivalence about modernity's "progress" and its American discontents—is deployed culturally to mediate American military extremism, religious retribution, and terror.
hillbilly / modernity / torture / anti-abortion / war on terror / Appalachia
Prostitution -- Government policy -- United States.
Women immigrants -- Crimes against.
Organized crime -- United States -- Prevention.
This article analyzes recent developments in U.S. anti-sex trafficking rhetoric and practices. In particular, it traces how pre-9/11 abolitionist legal frameworks have been redeployed in the context of regime change from the Clinton to Bush administrations. In the current political context, combating the traffic in women has become a common denominator political issue, uniting people across the political and religious spectrum against a seemingly indisputable act of oppression and exploitation. However, this essay argues that feminists should be the first to interrogate and critique the premises underlying many claims about global sex trafficking, as well as recent U.S.-based efforts to rescue prostitutes. It places the current raid-and-rehabilitation method of curbing sex trafficking within the broader context of Bush administration and conservative religious approaches to dealing with gender and sexuality on the international scene.
sex trafficking / social movements / prostitution / journalism / violence against women / evangelism
This essay critically examines the historical and contemporary discursive practices of anti-trafficking campaigns. I argue that such campaigns within the global North, often led by feminists, constitute the moral reform arm of contemporary anti-immigrant politics that targets negatively racialized migrants. As in the past, current campaigns collude with a state-backed international security agenda aimed at criminalizing self-determined migrations of people who have ever-less access to legal channels of migration. I argue that only by recognizing the agency, however constrained, of illegalized migrants can we come to understand how processes of capitalist globalization and the consequent effects of dislocation and dispersal shape the mobility of illegalized migrants. Within the current global circuits of capital, goods, and people, I argue that along with a call to end practices of displacement, a demand to eliminate immigration controls is necessary if feminists are to act in solidarity with the dispossessed in their search for new livelihoods and homes.
In the wake of the "war on terrorism," feminist analyses of international relations must broaden the concept of security to consider forms of violence beyond the statist security framework of realpolitik. This article argues that U.S. representations of the burqa rhetorically construct the women of Afghanistan as gendered slaves in need of "saving" by the West, increasing women's insecurity by promoting various forms of neocolonial violence. In negotiating a middle ground between poststructuralist and materialist methods, this essay also argues for a feminist postcolonial criticism that will provide a more nuanced understanding of the nature of gender insecurity in the post-cold war world.
This study explores representations of Burmese opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi in three major U.S. newsmagazines—Time, Newsweek, and U.S. News & World Report—analyzing her symbolic role as arguably the most powerful feminine personification of besieged democracy alive today. The coverage examined here employs an Orientalist framework that underpins media representations of both a threat to democracy worldwide and a set of differing national competencies available to deal with this threat. Media representations of Aung San Suu Kyi and Burma invoke a "protection scenario," which positions the United States as a comparatively mature, masculine form of democracy run by highly competent yet compassionate leaders working to promote freedom and democracy worldwide. This case study demonstrates that within a larger, Orientalist framework, enacting a protection scenario provides a great degree of flexibility for symbolically coding the complex geopolitical environment that has emerged in the aftermath of the cold war.
Burma / Myanmar / Aung San Suu Kyi / media / democracy / gender / Orientalism
Introducing and teaching women's studies courses at Ukrainian universities (at least as they function in the United States) is complicated and even impossible today. Every beginning has its obstacles. In the following article I will describe what work has been done in Women's Studies in Ukraine, what problems feminist scholars encounter, and the roots of these problems.
Women's Studies in Ukraine / feminist reader-response criticism / American literature in Ukraine / literary canon
Brents, Barbara G.
Hausbeck, Kathryn M.
Prokos, Anastasia H.
Keene, Jennifer Reid.