Archive | Gender RSS feed for this section

Women and children in the North: Sexual harassment, grievances and challenges

In September 2013, Watchdog travelled to the Vanni[1] and met with survivors of sexual violence, women’s rights activists and representatives of women’s groups. This report is based on information provided during interviews conducted with them, Human Rights organisations based in the North and Colombo and Government sources. During our interactions with these groups, we learnt […]

Will Logarani Be The Last Victim Of Violence Against Women?

All photographs by the author, or sent it by the author. Around 5pm on 17 October 2013, within the Jaffna municipality, one of our friends (a male youth resident of Jaffna) came to our home (a few friends were gathered there) looking very disturbed. We were surprised to see him again, as he was with […]

Women in post war reconstruction and recovery

Image courtesy IPS The aftermath of Sri Lanka’s decades of civil conflict have left, not only massive damage of physical property, both public and private, requiring extensive reconstruction but many households and even whole communities affected by the conflict through loss of loved ones, loss of property including homes, personal injuries, displacement, disruption of children’s […]

Above the Law: Violations of Women’s Reproductive Rights in Northern Sri Lanka

Image courtesy The Social Architects This report, TSA’s fourth, outlines the findings of the organization’s September 2013 field mission on coercive contraception clinics in Kilinochchi District. In early September of this year, activists in Kilinochchi discovered that public health workers had administered the sub-dermal contraceptive implant, Jadelle, to women from Veravil, Keranchi, and Valaipaddu during […]

Is this the beginning of women’s political representation in the Northern Provincial Council?

Photo by Buddhika Weerasinghe/Getty Images The Northern Provincial Council Elections has concluded amidst various challenges. While WAN welcomes the conclusion of these elections the need for the full devolution of powers so as to ensure the rights of historically subordinated communities remains.  The women who contested the elections faced several additional challenges to their male counterparts […]

Coercive Population Control in Kilinochchi

Photo courtesy The Social Architects [Editors note: Please read Above the Law: Violations of Women’s Reproductive Rights in Northern Sri Lanka by The Social Architects, which expands on this initial report and address the points made in the comments as well as in other web fora, including mainstream media which picked up on this article.] […]

Daddy: A Mad Incestuous Dance

Incest in this country has probably been always spoken about, albeit in hushed, almost reverent whispers. Curiosity has probably always led to incestuous acts among children, but then, is that something we can say out loud? It is universally accepted that Adults who engage in incestuous acts are despicable. Filthy. Sick. There is a joke about […]

‘Women’s Issues': Shooting the messenger

Image courtesy ICRW ‘Are we not raped every day when we walk down the street and are leered at ? Are we not raped when we are treated as sex objects, denied our rights, oppressed in so many ways ?’ Archives of Manushi, written by Sohaila (1983) Sri Lanka reminds one of one’s gender. To be female in a […]

Archiving ‘Her Stories': In conversation with Radhika Hettiarachchi

Her Stories, a unique archive of oral history, was conceived of and curated by Radhika Hettiarachchi. We begin by Radhika going in to what the archive is, and how it came about. Featuring 240 stories of mothers, the archive’s website avers, These histories or ‘Herstories’ showcase a shared history and highlight how we Sri Lankans […]

Travails of the Women in the Vanni

Photo courtesy Amantha Perera / Perambara (Following is a copy of  a presentation made by the author at a side event at the UNHRC in Geneva on 11th March, 2013 organised by the Co-operative Society of Netherlands in collaboration with the International Movement Against Discrimination and Racism)     All of us remember the day the war […]

Lady in Green

I am travelling from Colombo to the United States. Who doesn’t like a change of pace? There will also be additional passport stamps. While I consider myself a pretty well-stamped man, one cannot be satisfied with past achievements… I absolutely love flying. I am looking forward to the reading and catching up on movies. I’ve […]

Feminism bottom-up: Women’s Support Networks in the North and East

Before, during and after the three decade long conflict, women have played a major role in supporting their families, community support systems, and the economy. This video highlights the stories of women groups that set up successful support networks in the north before the war, through which they addressed various community and livelihood issues, as well […]

Which way forward in post-conflict Sri Lanka? Lessons from the so-called ‘powerless’ women of the North

Image courtesy Sri Lanka Brief Introduction Before the war, we were all together. Now, we are widows with no security, and no one sees what we have to live through. But we go on, try to find some money to get us through the day…we have to eat, no? The cooking and cleaning needs to […]

Do women play a role in Sri Lanka’s ‘reconciliation’?: Gender dynamics in the transition from war to peace

A mother displaying the photographs of her sons who are missing during the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) session in Trincomalee, December, 3-5, 2010. Photo courtesy Centre for Human Rights Introduction In order to understand the ‘role’ of women in such a vital process of social transition, we have to understand the place of women […]