Women and the Law Program Presents Panel on Gender and the Practice of International Criminal Law
February 5, 2019
On Feb. 5, 2019, American University Washington College of Law’s Women and the Law Program hosted a panel discussion, “Gender and the Practice of International Criminal Law.”
The event featured Director of AUWCL’s War Crimes Research Office Susana SáCouto, along with Anna Cave, director of the Ben Ferencz International Justice Initiative, and Liz Evenson, associate director of the International Justice Program at Human Rights Watch.
The panel members, discussed their personal experiences in international criminal law and the role gender plays within this practice area.
SáCouto said that for a long time, there was virtually no discussion about the relationship between gender and the field of international criminal law – both in terms of the role men and women play in shaping and enforcing such laws, as well as silence about crimes involving sexual and gender-based violence.
“I work on international criminal law in the context of human rights, non-governmental organizations, and I really am struck by how so many of the spaces I am in – whether it is research or advocacy – that are still male dominated,” Evenson said. “Even if it’s not male dominated, because I think we should not talk about gender in such binary terms, that community hasn’t caught up to some of the conversations about representation, diversity, equity, and inclusion.”
But progress has been made, SáCouto noted.
“It’s what I’d call sort of a feminist project, which is to make more visible the lived experience of victims of sexual and gender-based violence, and addressing that experience through criminal accountability,” SáCouto said. “But there’s also progress in the way of participation of women in these various roles, and more representation of women in this field.”
LL.M. student counselor Celestine Greenwood served as moderator.