Why does a feminist perspective matter in work to prevent and respond to violence against women and girls?
This Tip Sheet is part of the COFEM Feminist Pocketbook (www.cofemsocialchange.org) . The Feminist Pocketbook is a resource to support practitioners, researchers and others working in humanitarian and development settings to articulate and implement feminist-informed approaches to addressing VAWG, also referred to as gender-based violence (GBV).
The Pocketbook consists of 10 ‘tip sheets’ on key topics related to addressing GBV in humanitarian and development settings. The goal of the Pocketbook is to empower practitioners, researchers and activists to help their colleagues, organisations and other stakeholders improve advocacy, policy and programming efforts by promoting a common theoretical ground for shared understanding and action.
This tip sheet introduces a feminist perspective to violence against women and girls’ (VAWG), explores key feminist concepts and highlights the need to reassert a feminist approach in addressing VAWG.
- The root cause of violence against women and girls (VAWG) is gender inequality, or unequal power between women and men.
- The main goal of feminist-oriented work to end VAWG is to establish equality between women and men because equality between the sexes is the basis for ending VAWG.
- A feminist perspective in work to end VAWG helps us focus on inequality — and the resulting oppression of women and girls — as the root cause of violence.
- In the current climate of the depoliticisation of VAWG and backlash against feminism, reasserting a feminist approach is critical to the success of all work to end VAWG.