Europe: Proposal of new indicators to measure the effects of gender violence
The FourthWorldWomen’s Conference, celebrated in Beijing in 1995, has described violence against women (VAW) as a social subject that consists in “any act of violence based on gender, which may result or actually results in physical, sexual or psychological harm, including threats, coercion or arbitrary deprivation of liberty, in either private or public life”.
Thus, VAW can be considered as gender based violence, understanding gender as the set of roles, rights, representations, expectations and values assigned to each sex; this socio-cultural construction of what is feminine and masculine places men and women in different positions in society, establishing power relationships among them and locating women in an inferior and less valued situation. In this way, gender “refers to the social organisation of the relationship between the sexes and to the fundamentally social quality of the distinction”.
In the GVEI project, the concept of GV refers to gender-based violence perpetrated against women, which is constituted by:
“any kind of violence addressed against women as a representation of discrimination and inequality, framed in an ancient and structural system of power of relationships between men and women, that is expressed in any sphere of life (private or public) throughout economic, physical or psychological harms, including threats, intimidations or coactions, which may result or actually result in physical, sexual or psychological injury or suffering.
As GV is a very broad concept, GVEI has focused on two main types of GV:
—GV in the intimate partner context: understood as physical, psychological, sexual and/or economic abuse of a woman by her male partner or ex-partner(s) or by another person who has or has had a similar relationship with her.
—Workplace context: it includes physical, psychological, economic or sexual violence that usually, but not solely, adopts the form of the so called “sexual harassment” or “sexual based harassment”.
You can download the book here: www.surt.org/docs/publicats/2009/gvei_proposta_indicadors_en.pdf
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- Report of the Special Rapporteur on violence against women, its causes and consequences, Rashida Manjoo*
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