For those who might not know, Israel will be holding a conference entitled "Pink Crime–Women, Crime and Punishment" on 30 May 2011. As the title implies it is all about female criminality: women as drug use offenders and drug traffickers, women murders, etc., as well as how the media covers female offenders. This is an international conference, drawing to it not only Israeli criminologists but also scholars and researchers from abroad. The United Kingdom and the United States will each have at least two participants.
One might ask what the big deal is? True, the internationals are ignoring a growing boycott of Israel by various elements of civil society. True, the Israeli criminologists should actually be giving priority to their government's criminal acts. True, there is something sexist about the entire affair. What is so unique about crime committed by women? Why "Pink"? Still, there is something else that marks this gathering as out of the ordinary. The "Pink Crime"Conference is being held at an illegal Israeli settlement sitting on stolen Palestinian land. It is scheduled for the "University Center" in the settlement of Ariel on the occupied West Bank. To put it more directly, Israel is to hold in conference on crime in a criminal place.
Saturday, May 21, 2011
Pink crime? It almost sounds fashionable and desirable. Indeed, I would say it's an (ethical) crime to call a session "Prisoners in Pink," especially as two of the three papers in that session look at women in US prisons, and we know who they disproportionately are. Lawrence Davidson, US professor of history, tells us that pink-washing this academic conference doesn't make rosy the larger crime being committed: