in English
Accessible Justice in the Nordic Countries? Continuous Victimisation and Intersectional Discrimination after Istanbul

n Wednesday the 25th of March 2015, at 10.15 am – 5 pm.

t University of Turku Faculty of Law, lecture hall C3
in Calonia building (Caloniankuja 3).

Participation is free.

Registration: open now, closes by March 16th (or earlier if event is full).



​Domestic violence against women is a serious violation of human rights and a form of discrimination against women. The issue has gained a new kind of attention in the aftermath of increasing immigration to and within Europe, including the Nordic countries; the “traditional” understanding of domestic violence has been challenged by the acts of violence committed in the contexts of cultures which rely strongly on religious and family communities. Such acts are not fully recognized as acts causing intersectional discrimination, in which not only gender but also ethnic, cultural or religious backgrounds cause repeated and continuous victimisation. Furthermore, these forms of violence question the relevance of the existing criminal and procedural legislations in addressing the issue of violence against women.

 According to the Swedish penal code, a person can be sentenced for “gross violation of women’s integrity”. The fundamental idea behind the provision is to capture the repeated violence against women, and to judge various acts of violence against women as parts of the same entity (a legal structure called “kvinnofrid”). From the victim’s perspective, these acts can be interpreted as crimes leading to continuous or repeated victimisation. In Finland, there is no specific legislation to be applied in the cases of violence against women. The concerns of incompatibility between legislation and the actual cases of violence against women highlight the importance of discussing not only cases of repeated victimisation but also new criminal law provisions. For example forced marriage and genital mutilation are at present covered only to some extent by non-specific provisions of the Finnish Criminal Code. Should the legislative and other criminal policies be rethought in order to properly fulfil the requirements of the Istanbul treaty? These questions are now topical due to the ratification of the Istanbul Treaty. We wish to draw from the experience in other Nordic and other European states in addressing these issues.

Guest speakers:

  • Ulrika Andersson (Lund University, Sweden)
  • Monica Burman (Forum for Studies on Law and Society, Umeå University, Sweden)
  • Suzan van der Aa (International Victimology Institute Tilburg University, Netherlands)
  • Anja Bredal (Institute for Social Research, Oslo, Norway)
  • Jenny Westerstrand (Centre for Gender Research, Uppsala University, Sweden)