Violence against women has increased throughout Mexico and in other Latin American countries such as Argentina, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Chile and Peru. Law enforcement officials have often failed or refused to undertake investigations and prosecutions, creating a climate of impunity for perpetrators and denying victims/survivors of violence and their families access to truth and justice.
Terrorizing Women is an impassioned yet rigorously analytical response to the escalation of violence against women in Latin America during the past two decades. It is part of a feminist effort to categorize violence rooted in gender power structures as a violation of human rights. The analytical framework of "feminicide" is crucial to that effort, as Fregoso and Bejarano explain in their introduction. They define feminicide as gender-based violence that implicates both the state (directly or indirectly) and individual perpetrators. Feminicide is structural violence rooted in social, political, economic and cultural inequalities, and should be considered a "crime against humanity."
"Feminicidio en América Latina" Spanish edition forthcoming Winter 2010
"Anyone who is interested in gaining a deeper understanding of gendered violence and the phenomenon of feminicide in Latin America must read Rosa-Linda Fregoso and Cynthia Bejarano's Terrorizing Women. The book's powerful contribution is to bring together the diverse voices of scholars, human rights lawyers, and activists, whose analyses help us better understand the structural and legal norms which give rise to the escalating violence against, and murders of, women."
—Karen Musalo, Founding Director,
Center for Gender and Refugee Studies,
Hastings College of the Law
"The concerted emergence of feminicidio finally traces the deep hollow of an absent international crime and a silent human rights violation. Now, fundamental inquiries must surface. Should the Genocide Convention be re-drafted to suppress, pursue, and punish feminicidio? Isn't a peace that is only defined by the cessation of armed conflict one that can tolerate feminicidio? Isn't securing transitional justice a perpetual 'State' for females? The authors' piercingly astute observations disintegrate illusory historical, geographical, political, and sexual frontiers that confine us and assign us 'partial human rights status.' Yes, we rise to your siren."
—Patricia Sellers, former Legal Advisor for Gender Related Crimes,
Office of the Prosecutor, the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia
"This one-of-a-kind book presents a collaborative hemispheric conversation among feminists responding to a crisis of overwhelming importance. It is a call to action from the field, a provocation for a new kind of knowledge and a new kind of activism. It is a book about history that will itself make history."
—George Lipsitz, author of American Studies in a Moment of Danger