Revisiting the 2023 Protests Against Femicide That Erupted in Italy.

Non Una di Meno “Not One Less”: Protests Against Femicide Erupt in Italy. Violence against women was already top of mind in the country.
By Heidi Basch-Harod and Erin Pedersen
Source: EPA-EFE/Mourad Balti Touati
Source: AP

ITALY: 102 Women Murdered by Intimate Partners.

On November 18, 2023,  the high-profile, week-long search for 22-year-old Italian university student, Giulia Cecchetin, ended with the discovery of her corpse, wrapped in black plastic and dumped by a lake, riddled with 26 stab wounds and a slit throat. She disappeared with her ex-boyfriend just days before she was set to graduate from the University of Padua. Cecchetin is among 102 women murdered through mid-November 2023 in Italy, more than half by current or former intimate partners, according to the Interior Ministry.

Source: AP

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Sexism and Abuse, Italian Style.

Violence against women was already top of mind in Italy. “C’è ancora domani” (There’s Still Tomorrow), a 2023 released film telling the story of a woman’s abuse at the hands of her husband, was topping the Italian box office. Even though the movie was set in 1946, the story resonated with Italian women for whom domestic abuse and sexism are far from old history. 

Source: Socialist Alternative, IMDb

Source: AP Photo/Luca Bruno
Source: EPA-EFE/Mourad Balti Touati

Not a Crime of Passion but a Crime of Power.

In a letter published in Corriere della Sera and in statements made on national live television, Elena Cecchetin, Giulia’s sister, called for a “moment of noise” to bring to the forefront the prevalence of femicide in Italy. The video of her speech reached over one million views. It led students across multiple universities and hundreds of thousands of protestors across Italy to unite in a “moment of noise” for Giulia, on November 25, 2023, the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women.

Source: Balkan Insight, Socialist Alternative

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Defining Femicide.

Femicide and feminicide can broadly be defined as intentional killings committed on the grounds of gender-related factors, including: the ideology of men’s entitlement and privilege over women, social norms regarding masculinity, and to prevent, discourage, or punish what is considered to be unacceptable female behavior. Femicides usually follow prior physical, sexual, or emotional abuse. 

Source: Girls’ Rights Platform

Source: EPA-EFE/Mourad Balti Touati
Source: UN Women

Femicide is a Worldwide Issue.

Women and girls in all regions across the world are affected by this type of gender-based violence. Most recent data for global femicide rates comes from 2022 when nearly 89,000 women and girls were killed intentionally, the highest yearly number recorded in the past two decades. While the overall number of homicides began to fall in 2022, after a spike in 2021, the number of female homicides are not decreasing.

Source: UN Women

Femicide Commonly Occurs in the Home.

In 2022, around 48,800 women and girls worldwide were killed by their intimate partners or other family members. Thus, on average, more than 133 women or girls were killed every day by someone in their own family. Women and girls are disproportionately affected by homicidal violence in the home: they represent approximately 53% of all victims of killings in the home and 66% of all victims of intimate partner killings.


Source:
UN Women

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Source: UN Women

“Femicide often results from a culture that devalues the lives of women, victims of those that should have loved them…How could this have happened to Giulia?…I turn first to men, because we should first demonstrate to be agents of change against gender violence.”

 Gino Cecchetin, father of Giulia Cecchetin

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