Publications of Raluca Maria Popa

Contesting Gender Equality in Domestic-Violence Policy Debates: Comparing Three Countries in Central and Eastern Europe

This chapter looks at opposition to gender equality as a component of political opportunity structures, a factor that conditions women’s movement mobilization either by limiting the opportunities available to it or by serving as its catalyst. In order to understand how opposition can become an aspect of political opportunities we analyze opposition to women’s movement mobilizatin for domestic violence policy progress in four countries of Central and Eastern Europe. The analysis adopts a wide understanding of opposition to gender equality, to include not just explicitly articulated challenges to gender equality claims but also challenges that at face value do not address gender equality, but still indirectly threaten a gender equality understanding of domestic violence policy. In order to understand contestation to gender equality in this field the chapter looks at frames opposing a gendered understanding of domestic violence, and actors behind them, state as well as non-state opponents. To understand dynamics between opposition and movement strategies it looks at coping and reaction mechanisms used by movement actors in the presence of opposition. The chapter argues first that opposition influences the meanings articulated by movement actors in their claims. Discursive structures that are oppositional or oppositional framing used by strong actors set boundaries to meanings that can be articulated in feminist mobilization for change. Secondly, it shows that opposition also influences strategies of mobilization including coalition formation, institutional alliances, as well as the mechanisms of influence. Overall this chapter demonstrates the importance of looking at opposition over time rather than as a snapshot. Over time, changes in the specific form opposition takes, and the extent it is gendered, and mobilization patterns connected to it, highlight aspects of temporality of opposition and the extent to which it is historically contingent, and dynamically constructed in arenas populated by movements and their allies, states and non-state opposition actors.

Frames in Contestation: International Human Rights Norms and Domestic Violence Policy Debates in Five Countries of Central and Eastern Europe

The article looks at the translation of international norms on domestic violence to the national level in five Central and Eastern European countries. It argues that translation brings a concept of domestic violence, which stretches gender equality ideas underpinning international norms so as to be easier to endorse by mainstream policy actors, and results in policies framed in degendered individual rights terms. The potential for keeping gender equality in focus is then guaranteed by gendering policy processes through empowerment of gender equality actors at all stages. Absence of ownership of the policy by gender equality actors risks co-optation by frames contesting gender equality.

Krizsan A, Popa RM. Meanings and Uses of Europe in Policymaking against Domestic Violence in Central and Eastern Europe. In: Lombardo E, Forest M, editors. The Europeanization of Gender Equality Policies. A Discursive-sociological Approach. Basingstoke: Palgrave MacMillan; 2012.

Quality in Gender+ Equality Policies: State of the Art and Mapping of Competences Report: Romania

Research for the present report lasted two months, from January 15 to March 15, 2007, and involved extensive library and desk-research, as well as consultations with gender experts in Romania, and phone and email inquiries to the national equality bodies in Romania. Based on this documentation, several conclusions can be formulated about the current status of the most important research on national gender+ equality policies, and on gender equality aspects of policies related to intimate citizenship, non-employment, and gender-based violence.