In 2018, the African Foundation of International Law organized a book launch for the publication International Courts and the African Woman Judge, Unveiled Narratives. After opening remarks by Deputy-Registrar of the ICJ, Mr. Jean-Pelé Fomété, Dr. Josephine Jarpa Dawuni, one of the editors, presented her book. She explained that the book narrates the lives and achievements of seven African female judges who currently sit on international courts and tribunals.  The presentation was followed by a panel discussion with ICJ Judge Julia Sebutinde and Judge Liesbeth Lijnzaad of the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea and former ICTY prosecutor, Daniela Kravetz. Judge Sebutinde and Judge Lijnzaad spoke on the subject of gender and international courts and shared their personal experiences with the members of the audience. Daniela Kravetz, former ICTY Prosecutor,  talked about the Gqual campaign and the strategies they use to promote gender parity in international legal organs.


A sequel to Bauer and Dawuni's pioneering study on gender and the judiciary in Africa (Routledge, 2016), International Courts and the African Woman Judge examines questions on gender diversity, representative benches, and international courts by focusing on women judges from the continent of Africa.

Drawing from postcolonial feminism, feminist institutionalism, feminist legal theory, and legal narratives, this book provides fresh and detailed narratives of seven women judges that challenge existing discourse on gender diversity in international courts. It answers important questions about how the politics of judicial appointments, gender, geographic location, class, and professional capital combine to shape the lives of women judges who sit on international courts and argues the need to disaggregate gender diversity with a view to understanding intra-group differences.

International Courts and the African Woman Judge will be of interest to a variety of audiences including governments, policy makers, civil society organizations, students of gender studies, and feminist activists interested in all questions of gender and judging.

A signed copy of this book is available in the Peace Palace Library.

More information about the Editors:

Josephine Jarpa Dawuni  (pictures left) is an Assistant Professor of Political Science at Howard University, Washington D.C. Her areas of research include judicial politics, women and the law, international human rights, and women in the legal professions. She is the editor (with Gretchen Bauer) of Gender and the Judiciary in Africa: From Obscurity to Parity?

Hon. Judge Akua Kuenyehia served as a judge of the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague, Netherlands from 2003-2015 and was elected First Vice-President of the ICC. Prior to the ICC, she was Dean, Faculty of Law of the University of Ghana.

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