Looking for dialogue and recognition: transgender persons’ rights

08.03.2021 18:00 - English

Ana Côrtes (LawTransform), Rachel Cichowski (University of California), Malcolm Langford (University of Oslo).


Relevant issues for transgender persons, such as the change of name and gender marks on birth certificates and the use of restrooms according to their gender identity, have been taken to the Brazilian Federal Supreme Court. Considering that and the democratisation role usually assigned to the
amicus curiae, in this Master’s Week webinar Ana Côrtes will present the work from her master’s thesis. She looked at both the agents who took part in the constitutional processes regarding transgender persons’ rights and their performance. Her analysis aimed to verify the benefits of this possibility of participation from the actors’ perspective as well as the limitations and troubles faced.

The work looks beyond courts and decisions and focuses more broadly on social movement organisations and their performance. It includes a description of the organisations’ work and analyses the major challenges faced, mostly related to legitimacy, requirements for
amicus curiae participation in the constitutional processes, and lack of financing for strategic litigation on transgender persons’ rights. That was achieved through interviews with the organisations and research considering all the ways of participation in the processes.

Highlighted topics for discussion are the Brazilian Federal Supreme Court’s selectivity and organisations’ interaction and choices aiming to overcome the selectivity. The civil society and social movement organisation’s goals are usually also related to visibility and dialogue and go beyond the decision. So, the organisations articulate themselves to prevail over difficulties and limitations of access and admissibility. Côrtes brings up that, nevertheless the participation as
amicus curiae plays an essential role in the democratisation of constitutional jurisdiction, some issues could be reconsidered so that democratisation would be better accomplished.

Ana’s presentation will be followed by a discussion with Rachel Cichowski, moderated by Malcolm Langford

Join the webinar on zoom.

Ana Côrtes
is a researcher at CMI-UiB Centre on Law and Social Transformation (LawTransform), a PhD candidate in Public Law at the University of Coimbra and studies the recognition of rights for LGBT persons in countries with a civil law legal system. She holds a master’s degree in Law and Development from the Getulio Vargas Foundation (2018) and a bachelor’s degree in Law from the University of São Paulo (2015).

Rachel Cichowski
(Ph.D., University of California, Irvine) is a Professor in the Department of Political Science with a joint appointment in the Law, Societies and Justice Department at the University of Washington. She is adjunct faculty at UW in the School of Law, Department of Gender, Women and Sexuality Studies and a member of the European Studies Faculty in the Jackson School of International Studies.

Malcolm Langford
is a Professor of Public Law, University of Oslo, and Adjunct Professor, Faculty of Law, University of Bergen. He is Director of the
Centre on Experiential Legal Learning (CELL), a Centre for Excellence in Education (SFU), Co-Director of the UiB-CMI LawTransform. A lawyer and social scientist, his publications span human rights, international investment and development, comparative constitutionalism, law and technology, and the politics of the legal profession.

Photo by
Sharon McCutcheon

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Event info.

Bergen Global
Jekteviksbakken 31, Bergen

Add to calendar 08.03.2021, 08.03.2021

Bergen Global is a joint initiative between the University of Bergen and Chr. Michelsen Institute that addresses global challenges.