Fulbright Forum

Gender and Transitional Justice in Nepal: Preliminary Thoughts from Multi-Sited Ethnography

The Fulbright Commission and Fulbright Alumni Association of Nepal (FAAN) are delighted to host an in-person Fulbright Forum on Thursday, December 15 at 4:00 PM at the Fulbright Commission, Aakriti Marg, Maharajgunj.  

Sukhamaya tends the wood fire as she heats up a pot of homemade raksi to share. She takes a long drag of her cigarette. She inhales deeply and exhales slowly, as if letting go of the worries and pain that have followed her since the conflict, so many years ago. Her wrinkled skin attests to a lifetime of hard labor in the fields nearby. The cold air becomes thick with smoke and stings our eyes. She takes one last puff of the cigarette, stares up at the stone ceiling, and begins to talk. To return to a time in her life that she would rather forget because it still haunts her. As it haunts almost everyone in Thabang.

Meanwhile, a world away amidst the hustle and bustle of Kathmandu, the Truth and Reconciliation Commission and the Commission of Investigation on Enforced Disappeared Persons have collected 64,000 cases of victims like Sukhmaya with the objective of “Transitional Justice” following the country’s decade-long civil war. But what is Transitional Justice in Nepal? Who is creating and sustaining this process and why? How are the experiences of women like Sukhamaya included or excluded? And what role has the process played in perpetuating silences around conflict-related sexual violence in Nepal?

These are some of the research questions that Tracy Fehr’s dissertation aims to address. Over the past year as a Fulbright-Hays DDRA fellow, Tracy has conducted a multi-sited ethnography of Gender and Transitional Justice in Nepal spanning Rolpa, Kathmandu, Butwal, and Dang. As she finishes data collection in Nepal, Tracy will present preliminary thoughts and discuss the ongoing research process. 

Tracy Fehr is a PhD Candidate in Sociology at the University of Colorado Boulder and is currently affiliated with Social Science Baha and Women for Human Rights, Nepal.

Registration is encouraged.

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