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Professor Dianne Otto: Rethinking International Law's 'Peace': A queer feminist perspective
About the lecture: In light of today's endless wars, the UN Charter's approach to peace needs urgent rethinking. The international legal and political frameworks for securing and maintaining peace rely fundamentally on militarism, including the stockpiling of expensive and sophisticated weaponry and associated technologies - that is, 'enforced peace'. The international community has also declared wars on terror, on drugs, on poverty, and even on a pandemic, which has enabled emergency measures that enhance executive powers and curtail human freedoms. Have our imaginaries of peace become completely defined by the 'frames of war' (Judith Butler)? Is the deadly imperial, dualistically gendered, anthropocentric and militarized status quo the best we can hope for? Drawing on feminist, queer and postcolonial perspectives, I ask whether there are any remnants of opportunity in international law that may yet provide a foothold for rethinking peace as solidarity and redistributive economics, and the realization of social justice and equality for everyone.

About the speaker: Dianne Otto is Professorial Fellow at Melbourne Law School. She held the Francine V McNiff Chair in Human Rights Law 2013-2016. Her research, in the field of public international law and human rights law, covers a broad field including addressing gender (identity), sexuality and race inequalities in the context of international human rights law, the UN Security Council’s peacekeeping work, the technologies of global ‘crisis governance’, threats to economic, social and cultural rights, and the transformative potential of people’s tribunals and other NGO initiatives. Her recent publications include Queering International Law: Possibilities, Alliances, Complicities, Risks (editor, Routledge 2018).

May 24, 2021 12:00 PM in London

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