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Transnational Governance, Local Politics, and Gender Violence Law in Nicaragua

  • Pamela J. Neumann (a1)
Abstract

Many Latin American countries have passed laws intended to address femicide and other forms of violence against women. Yet the implementation of these laws has been inconsistent at best. This article analyzes the case of Nicaragua, which passed a comprehensive law on gender-based violence (Law 779) in 2012. While celebrated by local women’s organizations, Law 779 was subsequently weakened through a series of legislative reforms and executive decrees. This article seeks to explain why state actors in Nicaragua initially supported Law 779 and later sought to undermine it. It argues that in contexts characterized by a high concentration of political power like Nicaragua, transnational governance structures are insufficient to ensure the success of gender violence legislation. Through an analysis of Law 779, this article contributes to broader debates about the nature of state legitimacy and the potential of legal advocacy to address violence against women.

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