Denise Walsh is an Associate Professor in the Departments of Politics and Women, Gender & Sexuality at the University of Virginia. Her research investigates how liberal democracies can become more inclusive and just. Walsh's current book project, Weaponizing Rights: The Politics of Debating Culture and Women's Rights in Liberal States, investigates how liberal states integrate non-liberal groups and assesses whether they should try to do it at all. The project compares policy debates about the right to culture and women's rights in Canada, South Africa, and France. Walsh also has a concurrent project on backlash and obstruction to women’s political participation, which includes a co-edited special symposium and introduction on "Backlash and the Future of Feminism," forthcoming in Signs, January 2020.
Walsh's first book, Women’s Rights in Democratizing States (Cambridge University Press, 2011), compares South Africa, Poland, and Chile and finds that when public debate is more open and inclusive in leading democratic institutions, such as social movements and political parties, women’s rights progress. Walsh's research has been funded by the National Science Foundation, USAID, the Institute for Women's Studies at the University of Michigan, the Collegio Carlo Alberto in Italy, the Dickey Center for International Understanding at Dartmouth College, and many organizations at the University of Virginia.
Photo Credits: Bailey Photography; Mark Edwards