The Council of Europe Convention on preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence is a contested issue in Central and Eastern Europe. This article investigates this matter further by focusing specifically on Bulgaria and Poland using the most similar systems design: the former has not ratified the Convention but the latter has (albeit debate is still ongoing). In this article, we draw on the literature on gender politics and public policy, and law and society studies, to refine the Advocacy Coalition Framework and propose a novel perspective on (non-)ratification which accentuates the role of anti-gender and feminist advocacy coalitions. Specifically, this article links the (non-)ratification of the Convention to the complex modes of interaction between societal, partisan, and legal actors, who make up adversarial advocacy coalitions. This article also highlights that deep core beliefs deepen the cultural cleavage, with the traditional being pitted against the feminist in this case, thereby instigating “culture wars” in both countries.
|International Feminist Journal of Politics
|Accepted/In press - 27 Oct 2022