Affective Contestations: Engaging Emotion Through the Sepur Zarco Trial

  • Alison Crosby
  • M. Brinton Lykes
  • Fabienne Doiron


Crosby, Lykes, and Doiron explore the formation of multiple strategic emotional communities through the Sepur Zarco trial, where two former members of the Guatemalan military were found guilty of crimes against humanity, including sexual violence and domestic and sexual slavery committed against 15 Maya Q’eqchi’ women during the genocidal violence of the 1980s. Drawing on eight years of feminist participatory action research with Mayan women survivors, the chapter critically engages with multiple mediations and (dis)ruptions of relationality that occur within judicialized space, through which judges, lawyers, expert witnesses, multiple audiences, and researchers continually (re)interpret and (re)present indigenous women’s experiences of violence. It concludes with a reflection on Anzaldúa’s concept of nos-otras, to think through relations of empathetic engagement within—not outside—colonized time and space.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Alison Crosby
    • 1
  • M. Brinton Lykes
    • 2
  • Fabienne Doiron
    • 3
  1. 1.School of Gender, Sexuality and Women’s StudiesYork UniversityTorontoCanada
  2. 2.Lynch School of Education and Center for Human Rights and International JusticeBoston CollegeBostonUSA
  3. 3.Graduate Program in Gender, Feminist and Women’s StudiesYork UniversityTorontoCanada

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