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New Faculty Colloquium - Violence, Gender, and Decolonization, A Reflection

Dr. Ruramisai Charumbira

Wed, February 10, 2010 | GAR 2.112

4:45 PM

After the euphoria of independence had died out, and the reality of life after the colonial master had begun to sink in, women and girl children often faced another, often unspoken, war of liberation –freedom from fear of gender based violence, especially rape and silence. Using the case studies of Zimbabwe and South Africa, this paper analyzes and reflects on the often unspoken legacies of liberation wars, the use of rape not only as a weapon, but as a tool of oppression against women and girl children in the first ten years of freedom. What did those countries gain with political independence from oppressive regimes that they lost when many of their citizens where subjected to or lived in fear of their bodies being violated in the most profound ways? What did the culture of silence on that violence do to those societies which had held such lofty ideals during their anti-colonial or anti-apartheid campaigns?  

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