Ni Aolain 2000 Violence

Title Information

Author: Fionnuala Ni Aolain

Title: Sex-Based Violence and the Holocaust

Subtitle: A Reevaluation of Harms and Rights in International Law

Journal: Yale Journal of Law and Feminism

Volume: 12

Issue: 1

Year: 2000

Pages: 43-84

ISSN: 1043-9366 – Find a Library: WordCat

Language: English

Keywords: 20th Century | German History | Prosecution: Law

Full Text

Link: Women's Human Rights Resources Database (Free Access)

Additional Information

Author: Fionnuala D. Ní Aoláin, Law School, University of MinnesotaWikipedia

Abstract: »This article identifies a general underdevelopment of sanctions pertaining to sexual violation during conflict situations. The article further explores the extent to which particular aspects of gender violence during war are entirely without legal scrutiny. This absence of scrutiny is explored through analysis of new empirical research conducted into sexual violations that occurred during the Holocaust. In analyzing the concept of harm, the author focuses on maternal separation and sexual erasure, demonstrating the inability of international law to articulate these acts as harms and the degree to which particular indignities were intended to have broader military objectives. Emphasizing the central paradigm of individual autonomy upon which the international human rights discourse is founded, the author concludes by reflecting on how international standards of protection may progress in future.« (Source: Women's Human Rights Resources Database)


  I. Confronting the Language of Violation
  II. The Experience of Violence During the Holocaust
    A. The Ghettos
    B. The Camps
  III. Accounting for Harms
    A. The Harm of Separation
    B. Military Functionalism and Maternal Separation
    C. The Harm of Sexual Erasure
  IV. The Laws of War and Sexual Violation
  V. Defining Sexual Harms Within the Human Rights Paradigm
    A. Individual Rights and Sexual Violation
    B. The Limits of Autonomy in Accounting for Harms
    C. The Communities of Harm
    D. Who Counts as a Victim?
  VI. Concluding Comments

Added: June 28, 2014 – Last updated: June 28, 2014