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Feminist Approaches to Law

Theoretical and Historical Insights

  • Book
  • © 2023


  • Focuses on key concepts and various interpretations of gender and gender equality
  • Deconstructs the patriarchal matrix and power relations within mainstream political and legal theories
  • Raises awareness about gender perspective in political and legal theories and historical analysis

Part of the book series: Gender Perspectives in Law (GPL, volume 1)

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About this book

This book raises awareness about gender perspective in political and legal theories and historical analysis. The impacts of feminist political and legal theories, as well as critical legal studies, have been embedded in all the papers in different ways and degrees. Differences among feminist political and legal ideas are visible in the different approaches. The ongoing issue of defining gender, for example, is a recurring theme in the texts. Some papers question the binary basis of the gender issue and the notion of gender as such, while others start from the binary dichotomy and attempt to expand the consideration towards a multi-dimensional understanding of gender identities. The main focus is on a feminist reconsideration of all relevant fields of legal knowledge. The primary aim is to demystify the seemingly neutral character of legal norms and legal knowledge and highlight the power relations at different layers, beginning with male and female legal subjects of Western heredity (in terms of culture, ethnicity, and race), then moving on to different needs and power relations among female persons of different races and classes, and finally addressing differentiating gender relations and identities beyond the framework of the women-men binary codification, i.e., also taking into consideration the multiple options of intersex, transgender, queering, etc.

Taking seriously the issue of the “maleness” of political and legal theories is indeed a challenging and relevant endeavor for legal scholars. The male bias is present not only throughout history but also in the present, given that our “universal” categories of political and legal thought are still overburdened by unequal power relations. It is also important to open our minds and knowledge production for a gender-sensitive and gender-competent intersectional approach, which would also include various queer-, race- and class-based considerations. These tasks should be of interest not only tocritical legal scholars but also all those belonging to mainstream legal and political thought.

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Table of contents (6 chapters)


“This book is that it is written in a way that is … beneficial for practitioners, researchers, and activists within a variety of multidisciplinary fields of humanities and social sciences. … The book achieves its aims by offering the reader, in each chapter, thorough reflections on different theories … practices of feminists’ trajectories in their struggles against various forms of gender-based inequalities within law and legal system.” (Zara Saeidzadeh, Analysis PFB, Issue 2, 2023)

Editors and Affiliations

  • University of Belgrade, Belgrade, Serbia

    Dragica Vujadinović

  • University of Cádiz, Cadiz, Spain

    Antonio Álvarez del Cuvillo

  • Örebro University, Örebro, Sweden

    Susanne Strand

About the editors

Dragica Vujadinović is a full professor at the Faculty of Law, University of Belgrade, teaching Political and Legal Theories and Gender Studies at undergraduate studies, and Introduction into the EU Political System at the Master’s in European Integration program. She has also been the Head of the master’s study program Master in European Integration. She published seven books, including Political and Legal Theories, 1996, Political Philosophy of Ronald Dworkin, 2007, Democracy and Human Rights in the EU (co-authored with M. Jovanović and R. Etinski), 2009. She is also co-editor of seven books, including the book Gender Mainstreaming in Higher Education – Concepts, Practices and Challenges (co-authored with Z. Antonijević), 2019. She published chapters in many books (including P. Ginsborg 2011. The Golden Chain: Family, Civil Society and the State, Berghahn Publishers; SEELS ed. Legal Perspectives of Gender Equality in SouthEast Europe, 2012). She also published many articles in national and international scientific journals (including Gender Mainstreaming in Law and Legal Education, Belgrade Law Review Annals International, 2015). She is the Coordinator for the project Erasmus+ Strategic Partnership in Higher Education – New Quality in Education for Gender Equality – Strategic Partnership for the Development of Master’s Study Program LAW AND GENDER, LAWGEM. The book Gender Perspective in Law represents the added value to the LAWGEM project.

Antonio Álvarez del Cuvillo is an Associate Professor of Labour and Social Security Law at the University of Cadiz (Spain). He holds a dual undergraduate degree in Law and Social Anthropology and a doctorate in Law, so he is very interested in interdisciplinary research. He has taught at the Master's Degree in Gender, Identity and Citizenship (University of Cádiz), the Postgraduate Diploma in Gender and Equality of Opportunities in Business and Human Resources (University of Santiago de Compostela) and the Postgraduate Diploma in Gender and Women's Rights (University of Cádiz and the FUCID in Chile). He has authored numerous papers regarding gender and racial discrimination on different topics such as the concept of discrimination, the legal implications of the concept of gender, affirmative action, reverse discrimination, burden of proof in discrimination cases, sexual and gender-based harassment, cyber-bullying or the influence of collective bargaining on gender equality. He has been Principal Investigator on a interdisciplinary research project on sexual harassment and gender-based harassment in the context of public universities. He is a member of the Equality Commission of the Spanish Labour and Social Security Law Association and the coordinator of "Wikigualdad", a web page concerning equality and non-discrimination promoted by this Association. 

Susanne Strand is an associate professor of Criminology at Örebro University, Sweden, where she is the research leader for the Centre of Violence Studies (CVS). She is also an adjunct at the Centre for Forensic Behavioural Science at Swinburne University of Technology in Melbourne, Australia. Her research focus on risk assessment and risk management of interpersonal violence in different contexts, with the applied criminology as the academic base. She has produced over hundred scientific papers, books, book chapters, reports and conference presentations on interpersonal violence, mental health and risk assessment. Her current research concerns risk management for intimate partner violence, stalking and honor-based violence, where her longitudinal research program RISKSAM (2019-2025) is conducted in collaboration with the police and the social service.

Bibliographic Information

  • Book Title: Feminist Approaches to Law

  • Book Subtitle: Theoretical and Historical Insights

  • Editors: Dragica Vujadinović, Antonio Álvarez del Cuvillo, Susanne Strand

  • Series Title: Gender Perspectives in Law

  • DOI:

  • Publisher: Springer Cham

  • eBook Packages: Law and Criminology, Law and Criminology (R0)

  • Copyright Information: The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s), under exclusive license to Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2023

  • Hardcover ISBN: 978-3-031-14780-7Published: 16 November 2022

  • Softcover ISBN: 978-3-031-14783-8Published: 17 November 2023

  • eBook ISBN: 978-3-031-14781-4Published: 15 November 2022

  • Series ISSN: 2731-8346

  • Series E-ISSN: 2731-8354

  • Edition Number: 1

  • Number of Pages: XVI, 150

  • Number of Illustrations: 1 b/w illustrations

  • Topics: Theories of Law, Philosophy of Law, Legal History, Gender Studies

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