Sexual Violence and War: Mapping Out a Complex Relationship

Skjelsbaek (SKJELSBÆK), Inger


Volume: 7 Issue: 2
European Journal of International Relations


The basis for this article is a literature survey carried out in 1998. The goal of the study was to gather scholarly literature and other forms of publications based on systematic research which deal specifically with the issue of sexual violence in times of war. The articles and publications have been compiled in an annotated bibliography. This article, however, focuses on three different epistemological conceptualizations of the interrelationship between sexual violence and war. As will be shown, the social constructionist conceptualization is best equipped to explain the complex empirical reality at hand. Only this approach can help us understand why men are targeted by this particular war crime while simultaneously recognizing that women, and targeted groups of women in particular, constitute the largest group of victims.

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