Essay on Internal Displacement in Colombia: A Gendered Dilemma

Essay on Internal Displacement in Colombia: A Gendered Dilemma

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Every year thousands of Colombians are forced from their homes due to the perpetual state of violence that has been tearing the country apart for over forty years. According to a recent field report from Refugees International, over 130,000 people are displaced every year as a direct result of this internal conflict. Some of these people cross borders to Ecuador and Panama seeking refuge, others for various reasons cannot or will not leave their country. These internally displaced persons (or IDP as I will refer to them for brevity’s sake) are amongst the most vulnerable populations in the world. Since the start of this violence more than 3 million people have been left as refugees in their own country (A refugee in their own country – the fate of the Colombian IDPs n.d.). These people are forced to live in deplorable conditions, have suffered the loss of friends and family, live with the pain of their experiences that memory will not allow them to forget, and live in a state of fear for survival of this violence both directly and indirectly. Caught in the crossfire, innocent men, women and children suffer alike . . . well, not exactly alike.
While all IDP suffer, their experiences are not identical. An individual’s experience is shaped by their age, ethnicity, gender, socioeconomic class, and so on. This paper will focus on how internal displacement is a severally gendered experience. Specifically, it will focus on the experiences of internally displaced women (or IDW), exploring the contradictory, multi-layer identity of an IDW. It will explore the physical, symbolic, and structural violence that IDWs are subjected to, the ways in which individual power is taken from them, and the ways in which they strive to obtain a level ...


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...ught in the Crossfire." World Politics Review. February 8, 2011. http://www.worldpoliticsreview.com/articles/7810/colombias-idp-crisis-caught-in-the-crossfire (accessed April 25, 2013).

Perez, Flor and Mariana Ortega Brena
2008 Forced Displacement among Rural Women in Colombia. Latin American Perspectives. 35 (6): 29-40.

Segura Escobar, Nora
2000 Colombia: A New Century, an Old War, and More Internal Displacement. International Journal of Politics, Culture, and Society. 14 (1): 107-127.

Uribe, Maria Victoria
1996 Matar, rematar y contramatar. Bogota: CINEP.



Villareal, Norma and Maria Angelica Rios
2006 Cartagraphia de la esperanza: Iniciativas de resistance pacifica desde las mujeres. Borogta: Corporacion ECOMUJER.

Warms and Nanda, Serena Nanda and Richard Warms
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