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Beijing Platform for Action. Chapter IV. D. Violence Against Women – Paragraph 117


Author(s): Scott Douglas Jacobsen

Publication (Outlet/Website): The Good Men Project

Publication Date (yyyy/mm/dd): 2018/12/16

117. Acts or threats of violence, whether occurring within the home or in the community, or perpetrated or condoned by the State, instil fear and insecurity in women’s lives and are obstacles to the achievement of equality and for development and peace. The fear of violence, including harassment, is a permanent constraint on the mobility of women and limits their access to resources and basic activities. High social, health and economic costs to the individual and society are associated with violence against women. Violence against women is one of the crucial social mechanisms by which women are forced into a subordinate position compared with men. In many cases, violence against women and girls occurs in the family or within the home, where violence is often tolerated. The neglect, physical and sexual abuse, and rape of girl children and women by family members and other members of the household, as well as incidences of spousal and non-spousal abuse, often go unreported and are thus difficult to detect. Even when such violence is reported, there is often a failure to protect victims or punish perpetrators.

Beijing Declaration (1995)

The 117th paragraph of the Beijing Declaration deals with a number of things. Some of these appear to include home, community, and notions of the state. The various forms of precarity that women feel is simply a long nightmare for too many.

The act of violence can have immediate impacts on women. It can have an impact on their lives, their trajectories. As we beginning to see the pervasive abuse of women within even comedy circles, late-night television, Hollywood in general, and through the traditional religious institutions with sexual abuse by the Christian hierarchs or female genital mutilation by some of the international Muslim community.

These form one of the bases for women’s perceived and actual precarious safety in life. But then, of course, there is also the threats of violence from the community, the families, and the government. In formal academic terminology, the ones dominated by men who then set laws and policies to the detriment of women would amount to patriarchies. Systems dominated by men with men setting the agendas. Similar things happened with the structural adjustment reforms with women not being in its considerations directly and then women being the disproportionately negative recipients.

This has little to do with the idealized world of abstraction but with the real world in which we live and women bear the brunt of negative aspects. The removal of these barriers to women’s participation in social and political, and economic life.

The general global culture of women fearing for the livelihood and wellbeing is pervasive. We can consider the ways in which there is a constraint on the free mobility of women. This can, in turn, become a barrier to women’s “access to resources and basic activities.”

In addition, not only with different clothes or feminine hygiene products, we can see the issues with higher health and other economic costs for women, who already tend to be given lower wages.

At the same time, the individual and societal costs of this can ripple for a significant period of time, even intergenerationally. One of those is the violence against women being more probable when the woman or women are placed in an inferior or “subordinate” status compared to the men in the society around them.

As well, there is simply an ignoring of these problems because may not have the safety of ability to freely speak up about injustices against them, individually or as a demographic within societies.

Take the instance mentioned, the women who are victims; they may not be able to get support and the abusers or perpetrators of the violence against women crime may simply not get a trial or a significant punishment – a “slap on the wrist.”

These are the issues facing us. But the long tide of history simply sits in our favor compared to the opposite, where further freedom and equality is clarion call of society; but not handed from on high, it comes from long, persistent struggles and fights against injustices around the world with violence against one being a particularly large social health problem.

–(Updated 2018-11-10) One can find similar statements in other documents, conventions, declarations and so on, with the subsequent statements of equality or women’s rights:

–Human Rights
Wednesdays 1 pm EST / 10 am PST
Call-In Details: (701) 801-1220
Meeting ID: 934-317-242
Lead Page:
Led by: Scott Douglas JacobsenTo the socio-political Right, a disclaimer; to the socio-political Left, a trigger warning: the subject matter may be disturbing or triggering for some listeners, speakers, or call members. The statistics on international violence against women is disproportionately more than violence against men. In turn, there is violence against women committed by women against women but more often by men against women. It is the statistical difference, which is the basis for the international emphasis on violence against women in multiple spheres rather than localized differences. Wednesday morning, we will speak on violence against women for one hour or so.


In-Sight Publishing by Scott Douglas Jacobsen is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License. Based on a work at


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