Revenge Feminism: Tracing Global Punitive Demands in Spanish Gender Violence Legislation
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This project traces global punitive discourses in Spanish gender violence legislation by focusing particularly on the dialectic between the law and feminist political mobilizations. It examines the rise of institutional feminism in Spain and how its embrace of neoliberal social governance culminated in very punitively focused gender violence legislation. The project compares the carceral logics and tactics embedded in the Organic Law 1/2004 for Comprehensive Measures Against Gender Violence (BOE n 313, December 29, 2004; hereafter: Law 1/2004) and the more recently proposed Organic Law for the Comprehensive Guarantee of Sexual Freedom (hereafter: The “Yes Means Yes” Law). Law 1/2004 and The Yes Means Yes Law do not illustrate all the feminist contestations around punitive tactics in the last two decades, yet they act as productive case studies given that each are cornerstone pieces of legislation that set national guidelines for preventing, accessing and intervening in gender violence and happened to dramatically expand the penal code. Using a mixed-modal methodology of legal, feminist critical discourse analysis (CDA) with a genealogical approach, this project locates the converging and diverging globalizing carceral discourses in the laws. It features anti-carceral feminist resistances, in the form of organizing artefacts, to trouble the commonsensical claim that punishment is the most “just” and effective way to resolve gender violence. Transnational feminist criminologists, queer/trans scholars, and feminists of color further contextualize how globalizing carceral logics and carceral feminisms, embedded in gendered and racialized structures of power, travel and influence legal discourses and gender violence political strategies. This project contributes to other ways of reconciling gender violence that keep survivors and their communities safer and do not perpetuate violence against queer/trans and racialized bodies.