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Journal Article


Menjívar C, Walsh SD. Lat Am Res Rev 2017; 52(2): 221-240.


(Copyright © 2017, Latin American Studies Association)






Increasing exclusion and inequality in Honduras have posed escalating security risks for women in their homes and on the streets. In this article, we examine gender-based violence against women, including gender-motivated murders (feminicides), the everyday acts that can result in their deaths, and impunity for these crimes. Rather than analyzing these murders as interpersonal acts or linking them to economic deprivation, we examine the actions and inactions of the state that have amplified violence in the lives of Honduran women. We distinguish between the state's acts of omission and acts of commission in order to identify the political responsibility and failures that create a fertile ground for these killings. A context of multisided violence that facilitates extreme violence in the lives of women is present in Honduras, especially considering the diminishing power of civil society groups and increased political repression after the 2009 coup. We identify root causes of the wide (and widening) gap between laws on the books--which have been passed mostly to satisfy international and domestic organizations pushing for change--and laws in action, that is, implementation on the ground. Although we focus on Honduras, we note similar experiences of extreme violence in Guatemala, El Salvador, and in other countries in the Latin American region.

Language: en


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