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The Global Epidemic Of Violence Against Women

3690 words - 15 pages

In today’s global society violence against women is a grave issue of epidemic proportions. “Violence against women takes a variety of forms, all of which are violations of the fundamental rights of women,(50 Nnadi)” and the unequal position of women compared to men directly relates to violence against women, including sexual abuse (UN).Through this patriarchy women’s lack of individual rights and freedoms has been the largest correlating aspect to violence against women. Some key examples of how a lack of women’s rights has created ideal circumstances for violence against women to take over include Crimes of Honor, Genital Manipulation, Femicide, Sexual Violence, Domestic Violence, Widowhood Practices, Human Trafficking, and Sex Selective Abortions. All of these factors of violence are, “embedded in unequal power relations between men and women hinged on patriarchal learning’s of society” (49 Nnadi).
The Centre of Islamic and Middle Eastern Laws (CIMEL) and International Centre for the Legal Protection of Human Rights (INTERIGHTS) describe Crimes of “Honor” here to encompass;
“[A] variety of manifestations of violence against women, including “honour killings,” assault, confinement or imprisonment, and interference with choice in marriage, where the publicly articulated “justification” is attributed to a social order claimed to require the preservation of a concept of “honour” vested in male (family and/or conjugal) control over women and specifically women’s sexual conduct: actual, suspected or potential. (524 Cusack)”
Although the meaning above is well written and covers much of the issues associated with crimes of “Honor” the concept of honor can be seen as employed not only by regulating women’s sexuality and sexual behaviour, but also through other behaviours deemed to challenge male power and control. Why are these crimes occurring and what is the limiting effect it has on women? Crimes of “Honor” have the intent of the subordination of women and to enforce patriarchy. The idea is that women should behave in society, and if she does not display appropriate behavior according to society, then the men were embarrassed in front of the public. The crime of "Honor" not only wants to regulate women's sexuality or sexual behavior, but also to control any type of behavior against men. In the past, crimes of "Honor" were used and only applied when the women were having sex outside marriage, but over the years the law also includes any conduct that is not approved by the family or if she defies male authority, and consequently she will be responsible for her own life. This law can also result in some form of other punishment such as violence. A woman can also be judged if for example, she laughs too hard on the street, or if she looks to be enjoying a conversation with a strange man, because she risked her reputation and the reputation of her family. Allegations of engaging in “dishonorable” acts or behavior have also been used as tools for...

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