This spring, researchers at the Centers had the opportunity to meet and work with two distinguished international human-rights advocates, Indai Lourdes Sajor of the Philippines and Nadera Shalhoub-Kevorkian, a Palestinian citizen of Israel. Sajor and Shalhoub-Kevorkian met with organizers of the Center’s spring 2004 International Conference on Violence Against Women.
Internationally renowned activist, lobbyist, and educator Indai Lourdes Sajor founded the Asian Centre for Women’s Human Rights in the Philippines. As its executive director, she spearheaded the organization’s efforts to inform the public about threats to women’s security and rights during times of war. Sajor has also served as a gender consultant to a number of international organizations including the UN Development Fund for Women and development agencies in Canada and the Netherlands. Her documentation of the experiences of comfort women in the Philippines raised issues of sexual slavery worldwide and culminated in a case against the Japanese government for its abuses of women during wartime. Her current work is aimed at expanding the definition of human security to include the well-being of individuals as well as nations.
Activist and scholar Nadera Shalhoub-Kevorkian is a passionate advocate for female victims of gender-related violence in Israel, Palestine, and Jordan. Professor of criminology and social work at Hebrew University in Jerusalem, she is also the founder of the Women’s Center for Legal Aid and Counseling, which focuses attention on acts of violence against girls and women who are thought to have shamed their families as victims of rape, sexual abuse, incest, or alleged adultery. During her consulting visit, Shalhoub-Kevorkian worked with Linda Williams and
Nan Stein , WCW co-directors of the National Violence Against Women Prevention Research Center, and spoke in professor Sally Merry and Nan Stein’s “Gendered Violations” seminar in the Wellesley College anthropology department. She also presented “Violence Against Women and Politically Progressive/Liberating Methodologies: Sexual Abusers in Israel, Jordan and Palestine” as part of a Wellesley College series on human rights and the international movement against violence against women.