The course aims at offering students a wide spectrum of issues surrounding women underrepresentation in the public sphere. Through an investigation of the concept of women' rights, gender, equality and non-discrimination, the course attempts to provide students with the tools for a better understanding of the complexity and controversies that surround women's presence in the society. The case-law analysis will allow students to engage in the challenges that are nowadays affecting the national as well as the supranational system of rights protection.
Understanding the basic notions of women' rights, gender, equality and non-discrimination, in both constitutional and international human rights law;
Learning the gaps and the conflicts behind the claim for fostering women's presence in the public sphere;
Learning critical tools to investigate and analyse the case-law of the Italian Constitutional Court, the ECtHR, and that of international supervisory bodies;
Understanding the current controversies through a legal perspective.
The course aims at covering one of the most crucial challenge in our democracy, that is the role and the presence of women in society and, in particular, in pivotal roles as well as in politics. In fact, women conquered the public sphere just in the last century and the conquest of women's suffrage was in fact a cross-border and very long process. In Italy, women voted for the very first time only in 1946. The Italian Constitution of 1948 established the principle of equality between men and woman but until a few years ago women's presence in politics and, more generally, in the public sphere was insufficient. Through the concrete analysis of the Italian and the international constitutional framework, the course aims at offering elements to reason on and to discuss about the main problems and cases which determined a development as far as women presence in the public institutions is concerned. The key question regards the admissibility and/or the utility of mechanism to foster women presence, by tackling discrimination, such as quotas and similar measures directed to guarantee women's presence in institutions and in representative assemblies. Another important part of the course will deal with the relationship between women and the economic sphere. The course will therefore undergo the examination of italian Law no. 120 of 2011, which represents an inspiring model to overcome the underrepresentation of women at least in Europe, as well as the investigation of models adopted in other European countries accordingly to quasi-comparative approach. One more significant issue has to do with the presence of women in the legal profession: in Italy, in fact, some very important legislative measures have been adopted in recent years. The course will therefore be dedicated to the concern regarding the limited presence of women in the Italian judiciary. Although the judiciary is now composed of 50% of women judges, they are not represented in the High Council of the Judiciary (e.g. Consiglio Superiore della Magistratura) and in other senior positions: at the moment, means of solving this issue are being examined although they are not yet enforced. In the last part, the course will then focus on the existing link between sustainable development as applied to human rights discourse, by looking at cases concerning aboriginal women living in closed communities and their relationship with western law culture. This specific focus will enable students to verify the limits and the impact of policies in favour of women in contexts embracing different values that nevertheless reproduce hierarchical model of relationship between men and women similar to those known and analysed in western law countries. This part of the program will feature a high-level comparative approach.
Together with a focus on the domestic Italian model, the course will embrace a supranational perspective, allowing students to confront themselves with national and supranational system of rights protection as well as with non-italian experience on women' rights. All the issues addressed in the course will therefore be investigated in an opened and diverse perspective, touching upon the Italian legal system response, without leaving behind other European countries' experiences as well as the International Human rights bodies' jurisprudence.
Table of Contents:
Women rights and their history Women empowerment and the future of human rights. Women rights to vote (18th century until now) The principles of our Constitution and the long way to apply them. Women and politics, quotas or equality? From judgement to Law. The way to introduce anti-discrimination Law Women and economics. Law no. 120 of 2011. Women and legal profession. Women and judiciary power. Women and Sustainable Development: the case of aboriginal women.
Informazioni sul programma
Connection with other courses and national and supranational institutions:
The course maintains a strong link with first semester course, Gender Justice (Professor Irene Pellizzone) whose program allows an integrated approach to issues pertaining to women's rights. Joined attendance to both courses is encouraged. The course will also benefit from the long-standing collaboration among the Department of Public Italian and supranational Law of the University of Milan, the Harvey Milk Foundation and United Nations' Agency UN Women.
Prerequisiti e modalità di esame
Attending students: in-class presentations or written paper and oral exam. The oral presentation will consist of an illustration of a selected case provided by professors. The written paper will consist of a brief analysis of a topic addressed in class.
Materiale didattico e bibliografia
During the course, in order to properly prepare for in-class oral presentations, students will be provided with additional study material and case-law that will be regularly uploaded and updated on the Ariel Platform.
The following readings are strongly recommended for both attending and non-attending students:
1. S. Deller Ross, Women's Human Rights. The International and Comparative Law Casebook, University of Pennsylvania Press, 2013.
2. P. Profeta, L. Aliberti, A. Casarico, M. D'Amico, A. Puccio, Women Directors. The Italian Way and Beyond, Palgrave, 2014.
3. M.L. Minow, D.E. Roberts, J.G. Greenberg, L. Crooms, L.S. Adler, Women and the Law, New York Foundation Press, 2008.
4. M. D'Amico, "Perspectives on Political Participation, Human Security and 'Gender Education': the Italian Case (from the Equality Deficit to the Challenges of Multiuculturalism)", in Miyoko Tsujimura (edited by), International Perspectives on Gender Equality & SocialDiversity, Gender Law & Policy Center, Tohoku University Press, 2008.