Caitlin Steinke

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This Note examines the unique dimensions of honor killing asylum claims and focuses on the claims brought by men who fear becoming the victims of such violence. While honor killings certainly have an overwhelming gender element (as women are most often the victims), men have also been victims of this form of violence. Much of the current legal scholarship dealing with the threat of an honor killing as a basis for asylum has argued that asylum law largely ignores the many forms of persecution and threats of persecution that women face simply because they are women. However, men are not only killed by their family members for their homosexuality, but for marrying or dating women against the wishes of the women’s families. This Note argues that the courts should not view honor killings as a form of persecution that targets women exclusively, but as a form of persecution that subjects an individual to the ultimate act of violence solely because of a sense of shame that that individual’s action (or unconfirmed, rumored action) has brought upon another individual or family.


This article developed as an outgrowth of work supervised by Professor Rose Villazor.



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