Community Blog

  • 12 Mar 2022 21:22 | Susana Arrese (Administrator)

    Sociolegal scholars of the OC agree on a statement condemning Russian aggression on Ukraine

    The Russian Federation’s war on Ukraine and its terror attacks against civilians violate fundamental principles of law and humanity, breach Human Rights and constitute an act of aggression that should be the subject of international prosecution and indictment. As socio-legal scholars, we recognize the inherent dignity and inalienable rights of all members of the human family to be the foundation of freedom, justice, and peace in the world.  Expansionist attacks against democratic states, and denial of the right of self-determination of peoples all violate basic requirements of justice and international law.

    The Russian attack on Ukraine, ordered by President Putin further displays a manifest disdain for the values of democracy, the rule of law and the dignity of human beings. The victims of this aggression also include brave Russian citizens who demonstrate against the war and reporters who dare tell the truth about the atrocities committed by the Putin dictatorship and face flagrant Human Rights violations but the serious victims are Ukranians and all civilians living in Ukraine. The war and its consequences threaten to destroy the basis for meaningful international cooperation.

    As scholars we have the duty to recognize and raise awareness about the fact that violations of international law and military aggressions have happened in other countries, and to stand against all breaches of international law, and all violations of human rights and against the use of violence and military aggression in international relations. We therefore join the many voices demanding an immediate stop to Russian aggression, a withdrawal of Russian troops from Ukraine’s territory and the search for a diplomatic, peaceful, and politically sustainable solution of the crisis. We extend our profound sympathy to our colleagues in Ukraine, thinking very particularly of Yuriy Fedkovich Czernivtsi University, a historic symbol of our discipline, where Ehrlich developed sociology of law, to the people of Ukraine, and to the victims of Russian aggression.

    (Adam Czarnota-Poland;Aida Araceli Patiño-Mexico;Alejandro Celorio-Mexico;Alexander Kondakov-Russia;Alfred Hill-Liberia;Andrés Hernandez-Colombia;Ana Vaideanu-Romania;Andrew Goldsmith-Australia;Angela Melville-Australia;Anna Lundberg-Sweden;Anne Wallace-Australia;Annette Lansink-SouthAfrica;Antonio Rodrigues de Freitas-Brazil;Bart van Klink-The Netherlands;Ben Semple-Northern Ireland;Blacej Kaucz-Ireland;C Ernesto Gonzalez Zarate-Mexico;Carlos Lista-Argentina;Carlos Perette-Argentina;Carolyn Mckay-Australia;Colin Sumner-UK;David Wexler-Puerto Rico;Deborah Brock-Canada;Dolores Morondo-Spain;Dota Szyborska-Poland;Elijah Tukwariba  Yin-Ghana;Eugenia Relaño Pastor-Spain;Fátima el Fakih-Venezuela;Fernando Tapia-Spain;Fiammetta Bonfigli-Italy/Brazil;Filip Cyunczyk-Poland;Francesca Scamardella-Italy;Gabriela Farinha-Portugal;Gema Varona-Spain;Giovanni Torrisi-Italy;Grazyna Skapska-Poland;Heike Jung-Germany;Ihintza Palacin-France;Iker Nabaskues-;Ilse Griek-the Netherlands;Jacek Kurczewski-Poland;Jason Keith Fernandes-India;Javier de Lucas-Spain;Jernej Letnar-Slovenia;Jill Hunter-Australia;Jiri Priban-UK/Czechia;Johannes Feest-Germany;John Brigham-USA;Jose Maria Sauca-Spain;Joxerramon Bengoetxea-Spain;Karolina Kocemba-Poland;Kiyoshi Hasegawa-Japan;Kristina Cufar-Slovenia;Laura María Melián-Spain;Letizia Mancini-Italy;Linda della Raggione-Italy;Lucero Ibarra-Mexico;Luigi Cominelli-Italy;Lukasz Bojarski -Norway;Maciej Pichlak-poland;Maggy Barrere-Spain;Marcin Wróbel-Poland;Marije Mesonero-Spain;Martin Ramstedt-Germany;Masayuki Murayama-Japan;Mavis Maclean-UK;Michal Peno-Poland;Michal Stambulski-Poland;Monjuriul Ahsan-Bangladesh;Nick Frijns-The Netherlands;Nicola Giampietro-Italy;Nikolaos Intzesiloglou-Greece;Nkoli Aniekwu-Nigeria;Noe Galizia-Mexico;Paula Gisele Pelaez-Argentina;Peter Alldridge-UK;Peter Brezina-Czech Republic;Phoebe Heilig-Canada;Pierre Guibentif-Portugal;Ramiro Avila-Ecuador;Ramon Flecha-Spain;Ricardo Leon Pastor-Peru;Richard Lempert-USA;Rogelio Perez Perdomo-Venezuela;Roger Cotterrell-UK;Sara Ramshaw-Canada;Sarah Blandy-UK;Sharyn Roach Anleu-Australia;Silvana Begala - Argentina;Susanne Karstedt-Germany;Stefanie Khoury-UK;Stephan Parmentier-Belgium;Susana Arrese-Spain;Susana Santos-Portugal;Tamar Pitch-Italy;Tanya Monforte-USA;Teresa Picontó Novales-Spain;Ulrike Schultz_Germany;Valeria Verdolini-Italy;Viacheslav Tuliakov -Ukraine;Victoria Capriles-Venezuela;Vincenzo Ferrari-Italy;William L.F. Felstiner-USA;Wladimir L. R. Dias-Brazil;Xabier Arana-;Xabier Fernandez-Spain;Yordanka Bekirska-Bulgaria)

  • 3 Dec 2021 09:05 | Ihintza Palacin Mariscal

    I want to use the opportunity of celebrating the international day of the Basque language to reflect on the recent (legal) events concerning the teaching in Basque in the Northern Basque Country (Iparralde), located in France.

    In a country where unity is mistakenly synonym of uniformity, the lesser-used or minority languages are still fighting for their rightful space in education. 2021 can be marked as a year where immersive education in regional1 languages (Basque included) has been a focal point in France. The latest development on the legislation concerning the Basque language was brought this year by the law on the heritage protection of the regional languages and their promotion, known as the Molac law.

    In a nutshell, this law sought to strengthen the protection of regional languages, notably in the areas of education and diacritic signs. This would have resulted in the inclusion of immersive schooling in regional languages in the public schooling system (Article 4). This law also aimed at financially supporting the enrolment of children in schools offering the teaching of a regional language when the option was not available in their municipality (Article 6). Finally, another key point was the inclusion of the use of diacritic marks in civil status documents (Article 9).

    The French National Assembly adopted the Molac law on the 8th of April 2021, with 247 votes in favour and 76 against, and 19 abstentions. This marked a historic win for the regional languages in France. However, despite this law being adopted, it was challenged before the Constitutional Council, resulting in the decision nº2021-818.

    For this short discussion, the key element to take into account is the sanction of Article 4 by the Constitutional Council. In fact, Article 4 of the Molac law amended Article L.321-10 of the Code of Education, concerning the teaching of regional languages, adding a third point that included immersive education. The Constitutional Council poorly motivated the unconstitutionality of Article 4, arguing since immersive schooling is not limited to the teaching of a regional language, but rather uses this language as the “main language of teaching and as the language of communication in the school”, Article 4 of the Molac law breached Article 2 of the Constitution.2 Yet article 4 included immersive schooling alongside other forms of schooling, and mentioned immersive schooling should be performed without hindering “the objective of a good knowledge of French”. In other words, Article 4 added an additional choice to the parents for the schooling of their children and did not impose sending their children to an immersive classroom in a regional language. Once againthe Constitutional Council seems to automatically pair immersive schooling in a regional language with the imposition of a language other than French, hindering the teaching of regional languages.

    2021 has shown two things to the Basque-speakers of Iparralde. On the one hand, it marks an achievement with the adoption of the Molac law, yet on the other hand, still in 2021, Basque speakers know there is still a lot to fight for.  Therefore, on this December 3rd, let us remind ourselves of the still precarious situation of the Basque language in Iparralde, but more importantly, let us celebrate the achievements obtained by the perseverance of Basque and regional language speakers, in a quite difficult legal environment towards their language(s).

    If you are interested in this issue, this topic (and more), please join us for the discussion of my PhD dissertation in January 2022 hosted by the Oñati Community!

    Laster arte!

    See you soon!

    1 In France, the Basque language is listed as being a “regional language”. The author will use the term “regional language” to be consistent with the French law. However, she does not believe this is the best term to use in France to refer to these languages due to its underlying value judgments, and the delimitation of these languages to “regional matters”.

    2 “The language of the Republic shall be French.”

  • 22 Nov 2021 17:07 | Malena Maceira

    Voy por mi segundo invierno consecutivo y pandémico, pienso. Las mejillas coloradas del calor de la calefacción y las manos heladas. Mala circulación. Estoy sentada en el piso de mi habitación apoyada contra la pared. En la falda tengo la computadora de mi compañera. Ella está sentada al lado mío. Aunque la habitación es grande, vamos pegadas una al lado de la otra tratando de darnos ánimo. Cada cual la lee a la otra. Cada corrección se hace sin ánimo de desanimar y con amor. Sororidad, decimos y reímos también para no llorar. 

    Mientras me mira tipear me dice "¿te pone nerviosa que te mire?" y yo le digo que no, que me mete un poco de presión no más, pero que no pasa nada. Por dentro pienso que sí, que un poco nerviosa me pone porque no estoy acostumbrada a trabajar en equipo. 

    Después de que terminamos nuestras correcciones me pregunté porqué me ponía nerviosa trabajar en equipo. Y recordé que hacía unos días, o ya quizás unas semanas -el tiempo en estos contextos se percibe con mucha distorsión- otra de nuestras compañeras (no lo es formalmente porque es una visiting scholar, pero ya es como si lo fuera) había reflexionado sobre lo mismo. No sobre el trabajo en equipo, sino de que justamente, las ideas fluían muy bien cuando se compartían. Y eso fue lo que me sacudió por un momento. Toda nuestra carrera universitaria vamos armando un recorrido de soledad tal que el trabajo en equipo no es un beneficio. Es un yunque. 

    Los espacios de crecimiento académico que atravesé durante los últimos diez años estuvieron marcados por la soledad: si querés algo bien hecho, hacelo vos mismx. Si querés las cosas hechas, no delegues. No confíes en lxs demás. Nunca sabés cuándo están al lado tuyo y después, chau: tu idea se fue con ellxs. 

    Esta y otra cantidad de ideas tan esperanzadoras se forjan día a día en un contexto de aprendizaje capitalista, clasista y jerárquico en el que quienes no nos sentimos comodxs, tenemos que seguir avanzando. 

    Sin embargo, algo pasó. Esa incomodidad del trabajo colectivo vino para sacudir lo que tenía bastante adormecido. La incomodidad del registro del otrx. Las lógicas aprehendidas en los últimos años llevan tiempo de deconstrucción y cierto es que estos espacios como la Residencia, como la Oñati Community vienen a mostrarnos que hay que darse el espacio.

    Las condiciones del contexto son apabullantes: miles de kilómetros de casa, un frío calador de huesos, pocas horas de sueño, un cerebro fragmentado en idiomas. 

    En ese contexto de vulnerabilidad es que me quiebro y algo aparece. La posibilidad de identificación con quien está adelante. Desde la diferencia, desde las similitudes. 

    El imperativo de la soledad como garantía del trabajo bien hecho se desdibuja y empiezan a calar hondo otras como tales. Lo individual deja de ser importante cuando la lectura compañera es quien le da el tono que faltaba. El trabajo de unx de nosotrxs ya se convierte en el trabajo de todxs. No es una sola cabeza pensando únicamente un tema si no que en el almuerzo hablamos de cómo hacer una pregunta correcta para ver quién puede responderla. Entre este pequeño colectivo de personas de varios países se construye una identidad propia: la del grupo de estudiantes de un mismo máster en una pequeña ciudad. 

    Por eso creo que más allá de cualquier aprendizaje académico -que por cierto ya observo su vastedad- el más importante es cómo trabajar en la academia. Y por si fuera poco y de la pandemia sabemos que salimos entre todxs, con esto solo lo refuerzo. 

    El conocimiento tiene que ser una construcción colectiva. De lo contrario solo puede perecer en el llano de mi propia cabeza. 

    ¡Eskerrik asko a todxs por creer y apoyar la construcción colectiva de conocimiento!

    Malena Maceira (malemace@gmail.com)

  • 19 Nov 2021 16:30 | Cansu Bostan

    On November 30, 2021, I will give a talk at the IISL with the collaboration of the Department of Equality, Justice and Social Policy, Basque Government. This is very meaningful for me for many different reasons.

    Seven years later, now, as a visiting PhD candidate to complete my doctoral thesis, I am back in Oñati, Residence and the Institute where I studied my Masters in 2013-4. It is not a coincidence that I am back after all these years. Oñati, Institute, and the lovely friends I have here have always facilitated my journey in academia. Three years after my Master’s, when I decided to return to academia to conduct my PhD in 2017, I was working for an NGO in Istanbul with flexible hours. This made it not easier, as friends who have been in the process would relate to since even reaching out to the announced positions after getting detached from the academic environment requires a full-time commitment. It was dear Susana Arrese’s social media post through which I saw the announcement of recruitment of PhD Candidates in the Sociology of Law Department, Lund University, wherein I ended up spending my last four years. Oñati Community, which I am happily a part of, provides this solidarity and equal access to everyone against the backdrop of isolated networking in contemporary academia.

    Oñati not only provided me this access to my current affiliation but also inspired the topic of my forthcoming PhD thesis, which is co-supervised by one of my previous teachers from the IISL Master’s and current Scientific Director of the Institute, Martin Ramstedt, together with Ida Nafstad, Associate Professor in Lund University. My PhD research project was initiated by a curiosity provoked but left unsatisfied by my MA research project’s fieldwork conducted in Şırnak, Northern Kurdistan, in 2014, when the Peace Process collapsed in 2015 was still ongoing in Turkey. Throughout that research, in which I looked into the contesting discourses on peace, I came to realize how embedded the imaginary of death into the subjectivities in the region. From the organization of the spaces to the way the narratives were formulated, it was impossible to ignore the domination of death haunting daily life, which can be illustrated by the word choices of one of the respondents of my interviews conducted within the scope of that research. “We missed it by ten minutes,” said she, while telling me how they survived the Şırnak massacre in 1992, “a mortar shell hit our house 10 minutes after we left.” When introduced within the broader context that my fieldwork provided, those words echoed that death was no longer experienced as the end of life but what defines it. Her choice of words revealed death as a reference point: ‘missing it’ instead of ‘surviving it,’ arousing my curiosity regarding the boundaries of the law. How could law be responsive to such an experience shaped by the destruction of the linear flow of life ending with death when its scope was limited to life and living and its temporality to linearity?

    Tracing this curiosity, I conducted ethnographic fieldwork in Amed, Northern Kurdistan, between April-September 2019 for my PhD project, and my thesis, during the analysis, revealed the contesting and competing formulations of justice in Northern Kurdistan as what enables the movement and responsiveness of law in different ways. This ethnographic contextualization and disclosure eventually informed the concern of my inquiry in this study around the question of how the law responds to different justice aspirations in Northern Kurdistan and how its formations change when it attempts to be responsive to them. Against the backdrop of the Necropolitical practices of the Turkish State in Northern Kurdistan marked by the gravelessness in different forms such as enforced disappearances, mass graves, unidentified murders, destruction of the cemeteries and gravestones, my thesis, and also the talk I will give, a) reveal the exclusions of the modern spatiotemporal boundaries of the nation-state, its law, and justice narrative of Turkishness, b) explore the subjective experiences forming justice aspirations in Northern Kurdistan and their translations into the experience-distant language of the state law, and c) trace the appearing and disappearing legal spatialities in Northern Kurdistan, beyond the state law.

    If you are interested, I am looking forward to discussing my project with you all, friends and colleagues from the Oñati Community. If you can make it, let's talk about human rights and justice and imagine the paths for sustainable peace worldwide within the platform facilitated by Basque Country, whose memory would provide us with significant points to learn from in this quest for peace and justice.

    For more information about the talk, please check the events section.

    Cansu Bostan

  • 6 Oct 2021 19:49 | Ihintza Palacin Mariscal

    Ihintza Palacin Mariscal, a former Master student (2014-2015) cordially invites you to participate in the panel discussion at the Fundamental Rights Forum 2021 organised by the EU’s Fundamental Rights Agency.

    The panel titled “Rethinking Cultural Diversity: Discrimination and Difference in Europe and Beyond” will bring together four EUI researchers, Anna Krisztian, Ihintza Palacin Mariscal, Raghavi Viswanath, and Timothy Jacob-Owens, who will share insights from cutting-edge socio-legal research on cultural diversity, focusing on internally contested, cross-border, and supranational aspects of culture(s. Our session is scheduled for Monday, 11 October from 15:30 to 16:30. 

    In order to participate, please register in advance at: https://hybrid.fundamentalrightsforum.eu/signup and sign up for our session! 

    The Fundamental Rights Forum is organised by the Fundamental Rights Agency and will take place on 11 - 12 October 2021. The full programme of the Forum 2021 can be found at: https://hybrid.fundamentalrightsforum.eu/Programme

    You can sign up for as many sessions as you wish. 

    We hope to see you there!

  • 2 Sep 2021 22:31 | Amanda Kovalczuk

    by Amanda Kovalczuk (amandakovalczuk@gmail.com) and Izabela Zonato (izabelazonato@gmail.com)

    The ideas for writing this text came up in a conversation between the two of us, Izabela and Amanda – both master’s students at the IISL from classes of 2018 and 2019, respectively – about how to manage the pressures for publishing in academia. Our main concern was, in a time in which budget restriction and job insecurity hassle Brazilian academics and postgraduates, how to find balance between putting ideas out to the public and thoroughly processing data analyses and results. While the first often stands as a requirement for academics, it is no surprise that drastic cuts in funding, as well as the effects of the Covid crisis in the country, are severely affecting academic performance and health of Brazilian students. In face of that, we decided to put together a text, suggesting our guiding question as follows: is there a way to keep up to excellence standards in academia, while still conserving a sense of satisfaction and fulfillment within the difficult conditions that are posed? Can our writing process still be carried out as an enriching experience, other than simply responding to pressures for publication and risking burnout? 

    At the time we had our conversation, Izabela was reading The Burnout Society, by the Korean philosopher Byung-Chul Han (2015). Amanda, on the other hand, had just came across a beautiful piece by the black, lesbian feminist Audre Lorde (1991), in which the author addressed uses of the erotic. We gathered the reflections both authors inspired us to elaborate in this short text. We depart from Audre Lorde’s perspective on the erotic as a creative life force that moves towards excellence and self-affirmation, and from the conception of burnout as an exhaustive state of hyperactivity and self-referentiality, as suggested by Byung-Chul Han. Considering the difficulties for the first to thrive in the face of the conditions imposed by the latter, we situate these reflections in the Brazilian academic context.

    According to Lorde (1991), the erotic is a deeply female (though not in an essentialist fashion), commonly unrecognized and unused resource that touches the spiritual, the physical, and the emotional realm. For her, the Western society is rooted in “the suppression of the erotic in our lives” (1991, p. 88), as it naturalizes a system that “robs our work of its erotic value, its erotic power and life appeal and fulfillment” (1991, p. 89).

    The erotic, for Lorde, beyond any sexual meaning, conveys a creative, living force that encourages a self-affirmative posture that can be present each everyday activity. It consists of “an internal sense of satisfaction to which, once we have experienced it, we know we can aspire” (Lorde, 1991, p. 88). This internal sense of satisfaction and completion can be made conscious in every activity we engage in, as it is not related to the character of the activity itself, rather to one’s implication in it. Likewise, it can also be used to encourage excellence in everything we do, such as work and writing processes, and is most fostered by sharing deeply with others. As the author explains, “within the celebration of the erotic in all our endeavors, my work becomes a conscious decision – a longed-for bed which I enter gratefully and from which I rise up empowered” (Lorde, 1991, p. 88).

    The current Brazilian academic context, however, boosts anything but an erotic working process. In face of funding cuts, and of an increasingly scarce prospect of teaching positions, competition and hyperproductivity are fostered. While some postgraduate students simply decide to refocus and pursue non-academic careers, those who remain are eager to answer questions such as this: how will some of us be able to succeed and fill in such scarce positions in universities? What should one do in order to stand out? A general feeling of burnout is then stimulated: not an individual, psychological condition, but a systemically induced fatigue that relates to a general sense of acceleration and hyperactivity, as if they were the only path for succeeding. 

    In Byung-Chul Han’s interpretation (2015), we live in a performance society that leads to a depressive state in which the late-modern subjects tend to feel like losers. They inhabit a social unconscious that feeds a constant seek for productivity, while paradoxically produces tiredness. Thistiredness, in the terms posed by Byung-Chul Han (2015), has also relational consequences, as it is a lonely, individualist, and isolated state.

    Tiredness and insufficiency are then produced in a never-ending process of escalation of achievement expectations. In it, the feeling of completion in having reached a goal is never present. Feeling that no achievement is enough, and no final goal exists, the late-modern individual is incapable to rest and to appreciate what has already been accomplished, living in constant shame for what has not yet been done (Han, 2015).

    Byung-Chul Han (2015) suggests that, lacking awareness of the consequences of these processes, the achievement-subjects are unable to say no. They constantly believe themselves to be capable of doing anything, and tend to live in a state of self-comparison. They push themselves to overcome their own capacities until they reach a psychic collapse state - the burnout. The burnout, in that sense, stands as the pathological consequence of self-exploitation.

    By considering both Byung-Chul Han’s and Audre Lorde’s works integratedly, and in the face of achievement-oriented practices in some academic spaces, we suggest that the overworking state in which many postgraduate students find themselves often prevents the time to seek pleasure and emotional connection. In Lorde’s (1991) terms, it may leave us less erotic, and less conscious in our myriad daily activities - even in our own research and writing processes. Likewise, as posed by Han (2015, p. 18), we often may find ourselves in a fleeting state, in which we lack vigor, and in which “merely working and merely living define and condition each other”.

    We started this text by posing some quite ambitious questions. While we surely do not have the answers for that, we were willing to offer our reflections on the issue. We also intended to publicly remark that, perhaps quite ironically, a quite important part of young researchers like ourselves have pursued academic careers because we saw in it a space where we could explore our restless curiosity towards the social world. We shared, in the words of Audre Lord (1991), an eros in our intellectual activity. We may not know exactly how it may keep flourishing in times like these, but we are sure that making our individual creative process collective may be a first successful step towards it.

    We are looking forward to hearing your thoughts on the matter.


    Han, B. C. (2015). The burnout society. Stanford California Press.

    Lorde, A. (1991). The Uses of the Erotic: The Erotic as Power. In Gray, P. H. The uses of theory. Text and Performance Quarterly, 11(3), 267–277. https://doi.org/10.1080/10462939109366014.

  • 28 Jul 2021 18:44 | Claudia Serna

    Las protestas sociales que empezaron en abril pasado evidencian las grietas del régimen político y económico colombiano, y, al mismo tiempo, dan cuenta de los ajustes que han de realizarse. Se filtran entonces las voces, los reclamos. Las necesidades que se soportan individualmente se hacen colectivas. Y los cambios que requiere el país se expresan de distintas formas. Tiene cabida la rabia, pero también el arte. En la calle se abraza la lucha, la gente se mira a los ojos, grita al unísono. El silencio no tiene más lugar.

    Desde el 28 de abril miles de colombianos salieron a las calles para manifestar su desacuerdo con el Gobierno actual. Y es que, en medio de la pandemia del covid-19, el aumento del desempleo y el empobrecimiento generalizado de la población colombiana, el presidente Iván Duque decidió recaudar impuestos para hacer un ajuste fiscal grabando productos de la canasta básica como los huevos, el arroz y el café. Un acto violento en un país que, en el tiempo del confinamiento, se observaron cientos de casas con trapos rojos con los que los moradores querían llamar la atención pues, ante la prohibición de salir a trabajar, estaban pasando hambre.

    Pero paradójicamente, en plena pandemia, el presidente invertía en armas, y en material de guerra. La compra de balas, gases lacrimógenos, camionetas, tanquetas, e incluso, aeronaves para la Fuerza Aérea, estuvo a la orden del día. Una compra de lujo, en el mismo país donde no existe la prestación de desempleo; ni se aprobaron medidas como los Expedientes de Regulación Temporal de Empleo (ERTE), ni la renta básica, para paliar los efectos económicos producidos por la pandemia.

    Todo ello motivó el estallido social. Este paro nacional ha sido uno de los más significativos en la historia del país, pues no se habían presentado protestas sociales que se prolongaran por tantos días, y que se extendiera así por la geografía nacional. El cual hasta ahora da cuenta de más de 1.100 movilizaciones en todo el territorio. Regiones abandonadas históricamente por el Estado comenzaron a ser visibles, así como los jóvenes de los barrios populares de las ciudades.

    El amplio repertorio de acciones y reivindicaciones, visibilizó nuevos sujetos políticos y diversos asuntos que resolver en un estado social de derecho. Este paro ha tenido la singularidad de no ser exclusivo de un sector social, no es de los sindicatos, ni de las organizaciones estudiantiles, ni de la izquierda progresista exclusivamente, es la suma de mucha gente consciente que reclama mejores condiciones de vida. La minga indígena, las mujeres, las madres, los jóvenes, estudiantes o no, empleados o no, alzan la voz para reclamar mejores oportunidades. Dicen que les han quitado todo, hasta el miedo, aun cuando la represión estatal ha sido brutal.

    Solidaridad, organización, represión

    La movilización social despertó la solidaridad de gran parte del pueblo. Se convocaron artistas, grafiteros, orquestas de música para ofrecer su arte al pueblo. En los barrios se hicieron ollas comunitarias donde se preparaba comida para todos. Los profesionales –abogados, médicos, enfermeros– se organizaron para defender y apoyar la labor de la primera línea, –quienes, con sus cuerpos, sin armas y sin mayores recursos, intentan proteger la movilización social frente a las brigadas del ESMAD–.

    El Gobierno por su parte, en su propósito de retomar el orden y lograr el control de la movilidad en las principales vías del país, hizo un uso desproporcionado de la fuerza, activó mecanismos de violencia soterrados, como las ejecuciones extrajudiciales, y recurrió a acciones coordinadas con civiles, es decir con grupos paramilitares para enfrentar la protesta.

    En medio de este despertar, se han documentado alrededor de 80 muertes de presunta responsabilidad de la Fuerza Pública. Además de un alto número de actos de abuso de autoridad, tortura, tratos crueles inhumanos y degradantes; violencia sexual, lesiones personales, mutilaciones de ojo, detenciones arbitrarias, e incluso casos de desaparición forzada, cometidas en su mayoría a personas entre los 17 y 30 años de edad. Denuncias que fueron documentadas recientemente por la Comisión Interamericana de Derechos Humanos quien visitó el país para constatar las graves violaciones a los Derechos en manos de la policía, en connivencia con grupos paramilitares.

    A pesar de todo este panorama y la represión sufrida, gran parte de los colombianos está convencido de que es necesario transformar este país. Y para la muestra, las madres de los jóvenes muertos, que las podemos ver alzar la voz y reclamar por los crímenes de Estado. Madres que abrazan las luchas que sus hijos estarían dando. Mujeres que se organizan para encontrar a sus hijos desaparecidos, para reclamar justicia y para quienes la verdad es su única necesidad.

    Las madres, en primera línea

    De ello da cuenta Estella, la madre de Lucas Villa, quien, a pesar de haber sufrido el asesinato de su hijo, el 5 de mayo en medio de las protestas, está convencida de que «para que haya un cambio siempre se requiere de un momento complicado. En este momento estamos sintiendo que Colombia se quitó la venda y quiere ver más, quiere vivir con intensidad este cambio, porque este es un pueblo especial, ya nos estamos dando cuenta. Yo lo sentí hace unos dos o tres meses, (pensaba) Dios mío donde se despierte este pueblo, la pérdida de vidas, todo lo que va a suceder es complicado. Pero es de la única manera que se dará el cambio. Sin sacrificio no se obtiene algo mejor. A veces, hay que apropiarse y decir es duro, hay que poner la vida y la sangre de uno mismo, pero ¿por qué?, porque va a haber algo mejor y ese será un cambio en la humanidad. Cosas que son difíciles en medio el caos, pero el cambio no se da de la noche a la mañana y requiere de pasos, de momentos, de que la gente vaya entendiendo, y adaptándose», subraya.

    Y es que Estella también ha sufrido por la falta de empleo e ingresos económicos en Colombia, por lo que hace un par de años, decidió viajar al Estado español para buscar las oportunidades que en su país le negaron:

    «En Colombia, para la gente de los estratos más bajos cada vez es más difícil la situación, y en el caso de Lucas, de mis hijos, las oportunidades son imposibles ya de alcanzar, a todo nivel, ya no hay salud, ya no hay trabajo, ya no hay estudios, los chicos ni ropa pueden ponerse, ni el ocio, que es muy importante para el ser humano; en Colombia decir que se va de vacaciones a la costa, es un lujo», manifiesta.

    Estella dedica gran parte de su día a día a visibilizar lo que sucede en Colombia, poniendo especial énfasis en el rol de las madres que, en medio de la precariedad y el abandono de los padres, entregan todo su tiempo para sacar a sus hijos adelante. Está convencida de que es necesario visibilizar todas esas cosas que vivió y que viven muchas mujeres, «pues hay muchos hogares donde somos las mamás las que llevamos la parte económica, porque los papás se van y no importa, no se preocupan de si los hijos comen o no, de si están o no están. No les interesa. Es de admirar que son las mamás las que ponemos el pecho y enfrentamos la vida, una mamá se convierte como en tres personas y de todo hacemos», remarca.

    Y es que, dentro de este paro, las madres han tenido un papel protagónico, tanto que incluso se dieron a la tarea de conformar una primera línea. Tal y como admite, «yo como mamá estaría en primera línea, a mí no me daría miedo, yo no entiendo qué se mueve en uno mismo para que se den ciertas cosas, pero en esta situación no me da miedo. A las mamás que están en primera línea, siempre que me las encuentro en Facebook les escribo: guerreras, ánimo, fuerza, las admiro, adelante, así se hace, esto es admirable, yo las acompañaría, les daría aliento. Ya por lo que estamos viviendo, por lo menos muchas dirán, la mamá de Lucas salió a darnos una voz de aliento, esto vale la pena, ya no voy a dejar a mi hijo solo».

    Lo que hoy se manifiesta es una profunda convicción por la necesidad de un cambio en el país y es que los colombianos están ya en el límite del empobrecimiento. Es el reclamo social porque se atiendan las necesidades humanas y que el Estado funcione para frenar la precariedad de la vida de las personas en territorios y sectores históricamente abandonados.

    A partir de las protestas, el Gobierno ha retirado algunas reformas que ajustará y presentará de nuevo; así como han renunciado algunos funcionarios responsables del desastre; pero para la gente, esto ha sabido a poco. Actualmente ha mermado la intensidad de las protestas, el Gobierno ha sabido jugar en la medida en que no cedió a la mayor parte de las exigencias y supo esperar a que el paso del tiempo desgastara la movilización. Ahora se empeña en perseguir judicialmente a los miembros de las primeras líneas. Mientras tanto, el pueblo se sigue preparando a través de las asambleas y reuniones en las que se ponen en conversación los cambios que se deben adelantar en el país. Estamos como en suspenso, se siguen acumulando inconformidades; pero se siente en el ambiente, que algo está cambiando, el pueblo colombiano, ya no es el mismo.

  • 24 Dec 2020 15:23 | Susana Arrese (Administrator)

    Dear friends and colleagues,

    A lot of things have been written about the year that is concluding, and a lot of things will be written about 2020 in the future. We all assisted in the first row to a glimpse of how the future of humanity looks like; and, we haven't left our seat yet.

    2020 has been a tough year, the COVID 19 provoked a social, economic, and health emergency as no other we have been able to experience in our individual lifetimes. The outcomes and consequences of the disruption of the virus in our world are not completely clear. I think no one can fully understand how the world has changed. However, this is an opportunity and a challenge for our field.

    This year has been particularly cruel to our guild, we lost many colleagues and friends, people that we admire and love. Please, keep them in your thoughts and prayers. Let's remember each one of them with a smile, let's try to keep their legacy alive. That will be our best memorial to honor their lives.

    Next year will not be easier; however, we have, and we will keep developing the tools to overcome the adversities to come. Our community will evolve, and we have a lot of exciting surprises coming. Please keep safe, healthy, and beloved. Enjoy these holidays and wherever you live, whatever is your faith, remember that you have in Oñati your Community, your happy place to join with friends, family, and colleagues. As we say in Basque…

    Zorionak eta Urte Berri On"

    Oñati  Community Team (onaticommunity@gmail.com)

    OC Christmas Letter.edited.pdf

  • 27 Oct 2020 17:22 | Izabela Zonato Villas Boas

    This is an initial analysis of gender at the International Institute for the Sociology of Law (IISL), which will be divided into 3 parts: students; professors; and AJA award winners.

    • Students
      • 2019/2020 – 9 students, 7 women (78%), 2 men (22%);
      • 2018/2019 – 8 students, 5 women (63%), 3 men (37%);
      • 2017/2018 – 13 students, 8 women (62%), 5 men (38%);
      • 2016/2017 – 12 students, 4 women (36%), 7 men (64%);
      • 2015/2016 – 23 students, 8 women (35%), 15 men (65%);
      • All students: 65 students, 32 women (50%), 32 men (50%).

    It is possible to understand that between 2015 and 2017 the number of women was lower than that of men. However, from 2017 to 2020 the number of women is higher than that of men. Therefore, the total number of students in the last 5 years shows a balance where half are women and the other half are men.

    • Professors
      • 2019/2020 – 18 professors, 8 women (44%), 10 men (56%);
      • 2018/2019 – 16 professors, 7 women (39 %), 9 men (61 %);
      • 2017/2018 – 17 professors, 8 women (47%), 9 men (53%);
      • 2016/2017 – 15 professors, 4 women (27 %), 11 men (73 %);
      • 2015/2016 – 15 professors, 3 women (21 %), 12 men (79 %);
      • All professors: 81 professors, 30 women (37 %), 51 men (63 %).

    It is important to inform that the total number of teachers refers to the sum of professors, where, for example, Professor Ulrike Schultz appears 5 times for being present in all years of the analysis.

    Given this metric, it is possible to verify that between the years 2015 and 2017 the number of female professors was less than 30%. Between 2017 and 2020 there was an increase in the number of female teachers, but it is still lower than the number of male professors who always exceed more than 55%.

    • André-Jean Arnaud Prize winners

    It is important to mention that the prize was created to celebrate André-Jean Arnaud (AJA), the first director of the International Institute for Sociology of Law, who passed away in 2015. The prize is actually a symbolic distinction given every year to the student having produced the best Master Thesis of the IISL.

    • 2019/2020 – Mariana Vivian Motta, from Brazil;
    • 2018/2019 Maria de los Angeles Ramallo, from Argentina;
    • 2017/2018 – Pamela Teutli Elizondo, from México;
    • 2016/2017 – Florencia Radeljak, from Argentina;
    • 2015/2016 – Arianna Jacqmin, from Italy.

    Therefore, it is possible to note that, in the last five years, since the creation of the prize, only women have been winners. In addition, all of these women are from Latin languages, and four of them are Latin American.

    PS: The information collected regarding the number of students and prize winners was collected on the IISL website. Information on the number of professors was collected from posters for disseminating the courses (with the help of dear Susana Arese).

  • 10 Jun 2020 15:15 | Susana Arrese (Administrator)

    We have started a series of interviews with Oñati Community members. The first one, to Ihintza Palacin, Master's student 2014-15, took place on May 6. 

    The second one with Prof Johannes Feest, Scientific Director of the IISL, 1995-97, Master's Professor during several years. took place on May 14.

    The third one will be with Camilo Umaña, former master's student and current master's professor on May 27, at 19:00.

    And the fourth one, with Annette Lansink,from South Africa. 10th June, Wednesday, at 19:00.

    "Categories of exclusion and systemic injustice" an important theme for most societies (black, Roma, oriental, indigenous, immigrant, the poor, muslims, non-muslims, jews, non-jews, women). How is the situation in South Africa? 

    What would you like to know about her? Hobbies, current research interests? We will ask her about it.  If you want to send her your own questions, send a message in advance to the email onaticommunity@gmail.com

    Join us at @onati.community (Instagram)

    New youtube channel with interviews:


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