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What Counts as ‘Women’s Human Rights’? How Brazilian Black Women’s and Feminist NGOs Mobilize International Human Rights Law

Researcher name: Cecília Macdowell Santos

In the last twenty years, human rights and women’s NGOs have increasingly been engaged in transnational legal mobilization as a strategy to promote (women’s) human rights policies and norms. The ways in which they mobilize international human rights law might shed light on the differences, similarities and (dis)connections between their struggles for and practices of human rights. Using Brazil and the Inter-American Commission of Human Rights as a case study, this project asks the following questions: Do Black women’s NGOs and feminist NGOs complain about similar or different types of “women’s human rights” violations? What explains the similarities and differences? What norms do they invoke to make their claims? What social categories (e.g., gender and/or race) serve as the basis for their claims? Do they conceptualize “women’s human rights” from an intersectional perspective? Do they engage in an ‘intercultural dialogue’ with each other? What repertoires of struggles inform their legal mobilization?

Keywords: Women's Human Rights, Transnational Legal Mobilization, Sexism, Violence and Discrimination Against Women, Racism, Brazil
Countries of reference: Brazil