International human rights law; economic, social and cultural rights (ESCR); critical legal studies; colonialism; gender; political economy
Europe, Latin America
Angelica Cocoma is a PhD Research Candidate at the Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology, affiliated with the research group ‘Just Migration: Labour Migration Regimes in Transnationalised Contexts’, led by Prof. Dr. Anuscheh Farahat. She holds an LLB in law and a bachelor’s degree in philosophy from Universidad de los Andes in Bogota, Colombia, and an LLM in legal theory (with distincition) from the London School of Economics and Political Science. She worked for three years at Women’s Link Worldwide, an international human rights NGO. Her role involved representing victims of forced abortion, contraception, and other human rights violations in cases before the Special Jurisdiction of Peace in Colombia (JEP). She also worked in the abortion lawsuit that decriminalized abortion up to the 24th week of gestation in 2022 in Colombia. Within the Inter-American System of Human Rights, she provided legal representation to migrant women affected by the Venezuelan humanitarian crisis, which sparked her interest in conducting research on migration. In her PhD research, she is studying the migration journeys of ‘highly-skilled’ migrant women from the Global South working in Europe. Specifically, she explores how EU and domestic labour migration laws facilitate migrants’ agency in terms of mobility decisions and power dynamics with their employers in recipient states.
Why Law and Anthropology?
Law and Anthropology matters to me because it allows me to study the local, particular and discrete ways in which migrant women understand and use the law. Working as a human-rights practicioner, I became more interested in understanding how ‘ordinary’ people relate to the law rather than focusing on the ‘law on the books’ as detached from the concerns of everyday people. By embracing anthropology, I gain valuable insights into the diverse and nuanced interactions between individuals and the law, enabling a bottom- up exploration of human rights.