In this chapter, I use the issue of violence against transgender individuals to explore the (limited) meanings of gender within the context of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) in the United Nations (UN).
Using constructivist grounded theory and institutional ethnography I bring together field research from two ethnographic qualitative research projects I have been pursuing from 2008 to 2012; I studied transgender communities in the US and the CSW through their annual meetings in the New York Headquarters of the UN.
I first demonstrate the severity of transphobic violence as a global public health problem. I proceed to report highlights of global LGBT activism, such as the Yogyakarta Principles and the latest developments within the Human Rights Council of the UN for the first time addressing global LGBT violence in 2011. I then examine the silencing of transgender experiences in the CSW by exploring the contested use of the term gender over the last two decades of intergovernmental negotiations.
This study highlights the need to broaden the conceptualization of violence and gender violence which has important theoretical and policy implications. Linking micro experiences of violent victimization in local trans-communities to the macro context of gender violence in global gender equality policy development is crucial to the advancement of human rights.
I sincerely thank my advisor Dr. Kathryn Feltey, as well as Dr. Sarah Swider, Dr. Tiffany Taylor, Dr. Judy Gordon, Dr. Werner Reichmann, Jodi Henderson Ross, and Marion Boeker for valuable inputs and comments on earlier drafts of the chapter. I am also grateful to the editors of this volume who did not only share important comments and their outstanding editing skills with me, but also blessed me with feminist energy and encouragement.
Jauk, D. (2013), "Invisible lives, silenced violence: Transphobic gender violence in global perspective", Gendered Perspectives on Conflict and Violence: Part A (Advances in Gender Research, Vol. 18A), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 111-136. https://doi.org/10.1108/S1529-2126(2013)000018A009
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