Encountering Femicide – Doing Justice to Victims of Intimate Partner Femicide

Dr Adrian Howe1
1Birkbeck University, North Melbourne, Australia

Panel: Encountering Femicide – Doing Justice to Victims of Intimate Partner Femicide

Convenors Adrian Howe and Daniela Alaattinoğlu

This panel launches Contesting Femicide – Feminism and the Power of Law Revisited (Routledge 2019) edited by Adrian Howe and Daniela Alaattinoğlu.

The panel will consist of the two editors and several contributors to the book, including Danielle Tyson, Anna Butler and Emma Buxton-Namisnyk. We will discuss our substantive research findings as well as our methodology, inspired by Carol Smart’s ground-breaking socio-legal text, Feminism and the Power of Law (Routledge 1989), which analyses and contests how criminal courts and criminal textbooks discursively constitute intimate partner femicide.

The book and the panel both have a strong focus on how traditionally and still today in many jurisdictions, criminal courts encountering these cases are concerned with doing justice to defendants, not their victims, leaving victims’ families and feminist analysts with a sense of injustice. It is precisely this sense of injustice that has led to reform movements in several Anglophone jurisdictions – Australia, Canada, England and Wales included – aimed at delivering justice to victims by tightening up or abolishing defences to murder that traditionally have had the effect of diminishing the lives and deaths of victims of intimate partner femicide. The treatment of victims in other jurisdictions, notably Turkey, Italy, Finland and South America, will also be discussed.


Adrian Howe  is an associate lecturer, Law School, Birkbeck University, London where she also has a visiting post. She has published widely in the field of sexed violence and is currently developing a Theatre in Education project based on her research on intimate partner femicide cases. The project’s first play,  Othello on Trial , has been performed in Melbourne, Australia and London, UK.

Daniela Alaattinoğlu  is a doctoral candidate at the European University Institute, Italy. She has taught criminal law at the Finnish Police University College and published within the fields of femicide, gender and law, gender violence and human rights. Her LLM thesis was awarded with the annual aw

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