Law 693: Feminist Legal Studies Workshop II (Winter 2015)

1 credit

Course description:

Course Outline for 2014-2015

The Feminist Legal Studies Workshop is designed to enable students to work closely with faculty in analyzing and discussing with leading feminist theorists and scholars visiting Queen's Faculty the topics of the speakers' papers.

The Feminist Legal Studies Workshop course is offered for one course credit per term. In the fall term of 2014, it is designated as Law 692; in the winter term of 2015 it is designated as Law 693. Students may enroll for one credit in the fall term, or for one credit in the winter term, or for a total of two credits in both terms combined. This course can also be combined with an ISP for students who may wish to carry out in-depth independent supervised work in relation to one or more of the areas discussed in this workshop.

Scheduling details:

The workshop speakers will be scheduled for the regular visitor slots on Mondays and Fridays, which run from 1 to 2:30 pm, and one or two additional meetings per term will be scheduled around everyone's class and other commitments. Speaker dates and locations are listed below.

Nature, mode, and content of evaluation of student participation:
Students will attend all the speakers events (4/term or all 7-8), will prepare advance reading for the first session of each term and two advance questions for the rest of the speakers in that term, plus 1-2 pages of briefing notes after each session (60% of course credit), will participate in the discussion at the speakers visit (10% of course credit), and will prepare a short term paper of approximately 10-15 pages on a topic that relates to any one of the speakers events (30% of course credit). To be taught by Profs. Amani and Lahey.

Winter Term Speakers (Winter 2015)

Friday, January 16, 2015

1pm, Macdonald Hall room 202

Dr. Anna Dolidze Assistant Professor, The University of Western Ontario, Faculty of Law; former President, Georgian Young Lawyers' Association, the largest legal advocacy organization in the Republic of Georgia Talk to Her: Feminist Civil Society Organizations and Gender-related Discourse in International Criminal Tribunals


Much has been written about civil society's role in creating and strengthening the international criminal tribunals and fostering a greater recognition of women under international criminal law. However, little is known about the specific nature of feminist legal strategies aimed at international law-making. Aiming at advancing the scholarship on feminism and international lawmaking, this paper examines the nature of feminist interventions as amici curiae in international criminal tribunals based on the first comprehensive empirical study of feminist amici curiae interventions in the International Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY), the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) and the International Criminal Court.

What are the issues in relation to which feminist groups request to be heard by the Tribunals and what is the proportion of feminist interventions relative to the overall number of amicus curiae briefs? How do we interpret the fact that the Coalition for Women's Human Rights in Conflict Situations has requested an amicus curiae intervention in the ICTR in three cases and was denied the opportunity by the Tribunal in all three instances? Or what is the role of women academics in fostering a particular view of gender related issues, considering the fact that women academics are often heard in the capacity of amicus curiae by the international tribunals? The ICTY case of Furundžija (IT-95-17/1) ''Lašva Valley'', where eleven women academics, including Dr. Annie Bunting and Dr. Valerie Oosterveld took part is a pertinent example.

This paper will answer these and related questions with the aim to enrich our knowledge about the relationship between feminism and the formation of international law.


The Jurisprudence of the Inter American Court of Human Rights

The Arctic Sunrise and NGOs in International Judicial Proceedings

Friday, Feb. 27, 2015

1pm, Macdonald Hall room 202

Sudabeh Mashkuri

Adjudicator, Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada (until 2012) and Senior Staff Lawyer, Barbra Schlifer Commemorative Clinic (2006-2009); presently Arbitrator, Financial Services Commission of Ontario

Practice, Power, and Intersections of Oppressions in Adjudication and Advocacy: A Practitioner's View Point


What does it mean to practice either in advocacy or adjudication through an anti-oppression lens? What are the systemic and individual barriers in attempting to move through the intersection of various oppressions? Anti-oppression framework is a concept which is mostly used in social work theory. This presentation will be based on an experiential framework - advocacy and adjudication. However, background reading provided to those attending provides background on the analysis of intersectionality and oppression from positions of privilege.

Sudabeh Mashkuri has practiced law and social justice advocacy in the areas of refugee and immigration law, human rights, and rights-based advocacy for women and children. She is currently an arbitrator for the Ontario Financial Services Commission. Previously, she served as an adjudicator at the Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada in the Refugee Protection Division until 2012. Prior to her appointment to the IRB, Sudabeh was Manager of Legal Services and Senior Counsel at the Human Rights Legal Support Centre of Ontario. Sudabeh established the first immigration and refugee law practice at the Barbra Schlifer Commemorative Clinic in Toronto, where she represented and advocated on behalf of women who are survivors of violence in immigration, family, and poverty law.


In advance of this session, I ask that you set aside some time to think about how perspectives and perceptions are shaped by experiences of racialization, immigration, privilege, and gender. Some references that address these issues are provided here:

In 1988 Peggy McIntosh wrote an essay called 'White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack,' which has been used in the last 25 years in anti-oppression training (in shorter format). It should be noted that the article was written in a US context and reality and many years ago.

Kimberle Crenshaw has written extensively on the intersectionality of race and gender and critical race theory as it relates to the practice of law. I have included a link to an interview she conducted last year in commemoration of the 20th year of Anita Hill and Clarance Thomas hearings. Crenshaw was on the team representing Anita Hill.

Other references that might be useful to you include a paper written by Carole Aylward in the Journal of Critical Race Inquiry entitled 'Intersectionality: Crossing the Theoretical and Praxis Divide' in 2010. It gives a background to how intersectionality has been interpreted in Canadian court cases, and Patricia Williams groundbreaking work on intersectionality in law, The Alchemy of Race and Rights: a diary of a law professor.

Friday, Mar. 6, 2015

7-8.30 pm, Sutherland Hall, room 202 [Policy Studies, next door to Faculty of Law] Dr. Attiya Waris Senior Lecturer, Department of Commercial Law, School of Law, University of Nairobi; Visiting Lecturer, Law School, National University of Rwanda; Vice Chair, Tax Justice International International Human Rights Law, Tax Justice, and Gender

Friday and Saturday Mar. 6-7, 2015 9 am-5 pm (Fri.) and 9-4 pm (Sat.) FLSQ/Women for Tax Justice/FemTax Int'l's International Women's Day Conference, Women and Tax Justice at Beijing+20: Taxing and Budgeting for Sex Equality Law 693 students are expected to select any panel or keynote event from the sessions scheduled over the course of these two days - each panel or keynote will count as one of the four lectures attended this term; other sessions or keynote events from these sessions can also be selected as substitutes for any other scheduled lecture that may have been missed during the term.

Date tba

Melissa Haussman Associate Professor, Department of Political Science, Carleton University, Ottawa Abortion: Politics and Law