The need for numbers on rape in war—and why they’re nearly impossible to get

The need for numbers on rape in war—and why they’re nearly impossible to get

By — November 13, 2014
Countless women and girls have been raped to death, held as sexual slaves, gang raped, and subjected to sexual mutilation in conflicts during the last century—in the Rwandan genocide, the Nanking massacre, the war in the former Yugoslavia, Sierra Leone’s civil war, and Burma’s long-running armed conflict, to name a few. more »
Left behind: Inheritance practice in West Africa leaves women with nothing

Left behind: Inheritance practice in West Africa leaves women with nothing

By — November 5, 2014
Bimbatta Niamey, a poised and soft-spoken woman from West Africa’s Burkina Faso, was suddenly stripped of all her stability and left to rebuild her life alone in December 2012, when her husband died of liver complications. The family of her husband, who was a chauffeur, immediately withdrew her entire savings while she cared for him. more »
The pain of female genital mutilation is felt in the U.S., too

The pain of female genital mutilation is felt in the U.S., too

By — October 27, 2014
Her father helped her escape. He knew if she stayed in Ivory Coast, she’d be married against her will as a teenager, her genitals ritualistically cut, raped by her husband, and forced to bear his children. Her life as she knew it would end. She left for New York, where her father thought she would be safe. Now the U.S. immigration system wants to send her back. She is 16 years old. more »
From civil rights to Ferguson: What’s missing in media coverage of police violence

From civil rights to Ferguson: What’s missing in media coverage of police violence

By — October 16, 2014
Anyone watching the news this past August could think they’d been transported back to Montgomery, Georgia, circa 1954. Darren Wilson, a white police officer, had shot dead 18-year-old black teenager Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri. Images of police in riot gear unleashing dogs and water cannons on protesters dominated every TV network. Violence between demonstrators and police erupted in the small town. more »
Who killed the girls? In India, a forgotten crime

Who killed the girls? In India, a forgotten crime

By — October 2, 2014
On May 28, 2014, most Indian newspapers ran front-page stories about two teenage girls, cousins, who had been hanged in the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh after being allegedly gang-raped. Some papers also printed the disturbing image of the girls’ bodies hanging from a mango tree in their village. The public display of the young girls, wearing blood-stained clothes and riddled with thorns, caught India’s attention. more »
Double discrimination: Disabled women face increased violence in wartime

Double discrimination: Disabled women face increased violence in wartime

By — September 26, 2014
Just like any other population caught up in a war zone, people with disabilities suffer displacement, injury, and trauma. About 6.5 million of the 43.51 million people who have been displaced due to conflict live with a disability. Yet in conflict, when the social fabric is vulnerable and resources are limited, people with disabilities face increased violence while their protection needs often go ignored. more »
Carry that weight: A student protest highlights countrywide campus failure to find justice for rape

Carry that weight: A student protest highlights countrywide campus failure to find justice for rape

By — September 12, 2014
Emma Sulkowicz, a senior visual arts major at Columbia University, has been the frontwoman for the school’s mishandling of sexual assault on campus ever since she released her name to the press last spring. more »
Abuses by the Indian government keep one woman on a 14-year hunger strike

Abuses by the Indian government keep one woman on a 14-year hunger strike

By — September 4, 2014
Irom Sharmila, 42, has long advocated for the repeal of India’s Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act, or AFSPA, which gives the Indian army legal immunity for various brutal actions. She has been arrested again and again since starting a hunger strike in November 2000. “I have spent 14 years of my life chewing my tongue just for violence on all sides to end,” she has said. more »
Re-conceiving war: Stopping a cycle of violence depends on how we prioritize it

Re-conceiving war: Stopping a cycle of violence depends on how we prioritize it

By — September 3, 2014
A young woman seems to have attached herself to me one day at Zaatari, a refugee camp holding at least 120,000 Syrians in the middle of the Jordanian desert. Her name is Abeer and she is the less obviously beautiful, older sister to a 16-year-old girl who has been married off to a much-older Libyan food distributor. He gave the girl a watch, perfume, and water when they met. more »
New evidence emerges of mass rape during post-election violence in Kenya

New evidence emerges of mass rape during post-election violence in Kenya

By — August 29, 2014
A study by Physicians for Human Rights published today in the peer-reviewed online publication PLOS One has found that the pattern of sexual assault perpetrated during the period following the contested 2007 presidential elections in Kenya is consistent with the patterns of mass rape documented in conflict settings elsewhere. more »