Transnational Justice & International Criminal Law
Areas of Interest
Choice & Agency
Sexual and Gender-based violence
Women in politics
Wumi’s PhD project advances new understandings of how women’s practices and actions provides multidimensional understandings of conflict prevention with gender and power at the centre. The project argues that despite women’s exclusion from formal (and even) informal peace building and conflict prevention mechanisms, their preventative practices, often unintelligible to predominant political thought, have the potential to serve unending cycles of conflict in postcolonial states such as Nigeria. The main goal of Wumi’s project is to raise the value of women’s preventative work in conflict situations by reinscribing new practices and norms into government policies and projects.
Full description of PhD project
International law and institutions such as the International Criminal Court and the United Nations Security Council have been known to acknowledge the roles that women play in conflict prevention and peace building (citation). However, their involvement is often framed within Eurocentric imaginations of victimhood and caregiving (citation). It is also the case that Feminist scholarship on conflict studies has tended to overemphasize women’s victimhood within African conflicts, thus producing problematic understandings of gender, ethnicity, war and peace. Both approaches to peace and justice risk representing African women as victims without agency and the ability to mobilize change on their own terms. Multidimensional approaches to peace and justice require that we eschew a “political” versus a “care-based” framework. This is because mainstream political analysts assume that women are excluded from political peace building mechanisms or conflict prevention strategies because their preventative practices are considered as care giving.
Using postcolonial feminist approaches and Nigerian case studies, my research explores the way that colonialism and modernity’s inscriptions have produced ways of framing theories of gender and power that beg further complexity. My work underway advances new understandings of the women’s practices and advances multidimensional understandings of conflict prevention with gender and power at the centre. I posit that despite women’s exclusion from formal (and even) informal peace building and conflict prevention mechanisms, their preventative practices, often unintelligible to predominant political thought, have the potential to serve unending cycles of conflict in postcolonial states such as Nigeria.
Omowumi Asubiaro Dada (Wumi) is a PhD candidate at the Centre for Criminology and Sociolegal studies. She holds a 2023-2024 Connaught PhDs for Public Impact Fellowship for the project "Amplifying Gendered Conflict Prevention Practices in the Global South."
Prior to her PhD studies, she worked as a human rights lawyer on issues of social inequality, gender-based violence and inclusion. She received a Bachelor of Laws degree from Lagos State University, Nigeria, was called to the Nigerian Bar, and obtained a Master of Law Degree from the University of Pretoria in South Africa.
Wumi has worked in law and public policy for the past 21 years to design and manage projects for non-governmental organisations, government agencies and international development agencies. As a feminist, she makes significant personal and technical contributions to the women’s movement in Nigeria and Africa. She co-convenes the Feminist Womanifesto, one of the biggest platforms for feminists organising in Nigeria, and sits on the boards of BAOBAB For Women Human Rights, Gatefield Africa, Abode Community Centre (Canada), and the Centre for Redefining Alternative Civic Engagement for Africa.
LLB, BL, LLM, University of Pretoria, South Africa