Suzanne Zaccour is a DPhil student conducting research on rape law. Her dissertation is supervised by Prof. Jonathan Herring and Prof. Rebecca Williams.
Prior to coming to Oxford, she completed a B.C.L. & LL.B. at McGill University, an LL.M. at the University of Toronto, and an LL.M. at the University of Cambridge. She is an Oxford Farthings scholar at Pembroke College.
She is the author of books on gender and language, and sexual violence.Suzanne Zaccour's personal website: https://suzannezaccour.wixsite.com/site/
- This research studies the use of gendered mental-health labels, such as "crazy," "hysterical," "insane," and "emotionally unstable," in Canadian custody cases decided between 2000 and 2016. Building on Judith Mosoff's work on gender and mental health stigma in custody proceedings, it maps how these "pop-psychology" labels impact custody litigation. This investigation reveals that mental-health labels serve to discredit the mother, attack her parenting abilities, and distract from her allegations of violence by the father. The article also explores fathers', mental health experts', and judges'roles in framing the mother's credibility and parental capacity with regard to her alleged mental instability. It observes how the unjustified use of mental-health labels can backfire against the father, and how mothers can link out-of-court mental-health insults to legal arguments supporting their claim for custody. Although producing varied consequences, mental-health labels often reinforce gender biases and myths regarding domestic violence.This article is a study of all Quebec custody cases dealing with parental alienation in 2016. It explores the definitions, findings and implications of parental alienation in legal disputes, in light of the models of parental alienation and parental alienation syndrome described in the academic literature. This research confirms feminists’ skepticism toward the use of parental alienation in custody litigation. It concludes that alienation has varying and inconsistent definitions in law, that there is a considerable disconnect between scientific knowledge and judges’ understanding of alienation, and that the concept of parental alienation in law is ambiguous and over-inclusive, seemingly to the detriment of mothers. There is a dire need for clearer and stricter guidelines on the use of parental alienation to ensure the accuracy, coherence, and fairness of the case law.
Rape Law; Feminist Legal Theory; Law and Language; Family Law; Animal Rights.