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Johanna Higgs

Johanna Higgs is from Perth, Australia. She is working on her Ph.D. in cultural anthropology from La Trobe University in Melbourne and is the director of Project MonMa, a nonprofit group focused on improving women's lives. She has an undergraduate degree in anthropology and politics from James Cook University in Queensland, and a master's degree in international development from Deakin University in Victoria. She speaks English and Spanish.

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ISHKASHIM, Afghanistan — I entered the country from the northeast, from Tajikistan, where I had been traveling for a month, researching the lives of women, as I have been doing across the world for years. From the small town of …

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KAMPOT, Cambodia — Chan Kanha is the deputy mayor for the Cambodian People’s Party in this small port town, which sits along Cambodia’s southern coast and still retains much of its French colonial architecture. The Cambodian People’s Party, or CCP, …

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ZAHEDAN, Iran — “They give all of the rights to men,” said Neda, a young woman living in Zahedan, a border city near Afghanistan and Pakistan, who did not want to reveal her last name. “You can never make your …

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LIOUSHUI, China — Known as the Kingdom of Women, the Mosuo are a small ethnic minority group living in Yunnan and Sichuan provinces, predominantly around Lugu Lake. The Mosuo have become somewhat famous for their matriarchal society, where the family …

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SUKHUMI, Abkhazia — Here in the Caucasus region, hugging the Black Sea, this is what the capital of the small breakaway territory of Abkhazia looks like, more than 20 years after severing from Georgia: a city in tatters with abandoned …

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NOUAKCHOTT, Mauritania — “The officials here in Mauritania will tell you the opposite of what victims will tell you, which is that there is no slavery in Mauritania,” said Brahim Bilal Ramdhane, who lives in this West African capital and …

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BRAZZAVILLE, Republic of Congo — On the outskirts of the capital here, it is dark and loud in a makeshift bar as Congolese music blares across the room. When we ask two patrons if children are there, they point to …

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ERBIL, Iraq — Despite the war crimes being committed against women and girls in northern Iraq since the extremist group ISIS invaded two years ago, rejection of entrenched violence and discrimination against females may be taking root among pockets of …

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BUENOS AIRES — Like many countries, Argentina is considered a source, transit and destination nation for the trafficking of men, women and girls, according to the United States State Department. Female victims and children are brought to the country from …

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BUENAVENTURA, Colombia — Described as Colombia’s horror capital, this costal city is a denizen of drug trafficking, gang violence and turf wars primarily between right-wing paramilitary networks and leftist rebels. Soldiers patrol the streets as part of the government’s attempt …

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MEDELLIN, Colombia — “There is conflict in every single country in the world,” a 16-year-old former combatant from the Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia, or FARC, rebel group said at a rehabilitation center for demobilized child soldiers here in Colombia’s …

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TUNIS — Tunisia has possessed the rare reputation of being progressive in gender equality in the Middle East-North African region. Yet with the rise of an Islamist political party in Tunisia after its relatively placid revolution in 2011, the question …

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NEAR TINDOUF, Algeria — Our goal was to understand the dynamics of women who live in the refugee camps here in the Sahara Desert, where tens of thousands of Sahrawi people reside in tents and mud-brick buildings, having fled their …

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