Gender Equality

Living Edition
| Editors: Walter Leal Filho, Anabela Marisa Azul, Luciana Brandli, Amanda Lange Salvia, Tony Wall

Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women

  • Fabiana PaesEmail author
  • André Geraldes
Living reference work entry

One is not born, but rather becomes, a woman”, Simone de Beauvoir (1989)


One of the main documents in international law related to women’s right is the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (the Women’s Convention or the CEDAW Convention). This treaty is seen as “an international bill of rights for women,” because it obliges States Parties to undertake the necessary legal strategies and programmatic procedures to ensure women’s full enjoyment of all human rights and fundamental liberties (Byrnes and Freeman 2012; Byrnes 2012a). The Convention was adopted by the United Nations General Assembly in 1979, by votes of 130 to none, with 10 abstentions. It entered into force on September 3, 1981, with the deposit of 20 ratifications. As of July 8, 2018, there were 189 States Parties to the Convention. Somalia, Sudan, and Iran have not become party to the CEDAW up to now. The United States signed the CEDAW, but it remains in the Senate...

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.The University of New South Wales (UNSW)SydneyAustralia
  2. 2.University of Buenos Aires (UBA)Buenos AiresArgentina
  3. 3.Brazil’s Agency for Law Enforcement and Prosecution – Sao Paulo State (MP/SP), Domestic Violence and Family Violence Group (GEVID)Sao PauloBrazil
  4. 4.Pontifical University of Sao Paulo (PUC/SP)Sao PauloBrazil

Section editors and affiliations

  • Andréia Faraoni Freitas Setti
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of BiologyCESAM Centre for Environmental and Marine Studies, University of AveiroAveiroPortugal