30 October 2019
The SHaME Research Hub is pleased to hold its inaugural reading group. Led by PhD Candidate and SHaME researcher, Adeline Moussion, this reading group will address the theoretical and practical challenges of trying to conceptualise the relationship between feminist activism, social reflection on violence, daily professional activities, and victims’ rights.
30 October 2019, 1-2pm
Room 101, 30 Russell Square
Birkbeck, University of London
State discourses on sexual violence, medical care and evidence collection practice as well as prosecution practices all carry assumptions sexual assault victims and perpetrators. As such they influence victims’ experiences of sexual assault and affect the working conditions of those supporting them. It is impossible to explore victims’ experiences of sexual violence as if they were disconnected from the concrete sociocultural institutions which shape them and from the institutional responses they get. Even victims who don’t report sexual assaults are affected by state enabled practices and discourses on sexual violence.
In this session, we will collectively discuss the theoretical and practical challenges of trying to conceptualise the relationship between feminist activism, social reflection on violence, daily professional activities, and victims’ rights. The session will begin with a short presentation of the following texts:
– Corrigan, Rose, 2013, Up Against a Wall. Rape reform and the failure of success, chapter 5 ‘Developing the Body of Evidence: Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner Programs’.
-Egan, Suzanne, 2019 ‘Excavating feminist knowledges and practices in the field of sexual assault service provision: An Australian case study’.
Both authors engage with questions about sexual assault service provisions and feminism. They ask whether state mandated medico-judicial services are compatible with sexual violence victims’ interests and women’s rights. They also inquire into the relationship between feminist struggles, epistemology and institutionalised practices around sexual violence.
These two texts echo other research arguing that the state’s interests in criminalising sexual violence does not match victims’ views on reparation and harm. If feminist advocacy organisations are dependent upon state funding to defend victims’ rights, how can they balance both interests? Can sexual assault professionals work for victims while following institutional procedures, both in view of defending victims’ rights and of enforcing state interests? If, to receive funding, organisations don’t label themselves as feminists, how can victims’ interests be defended? The two texts explore such questions, and many more.
For those interested in further readings about this topic, a bibliography will be provided as well.
Tea and coffee will be provided. You are invited to bring your own lunch if you like.
Fore more details, including the readings and bibliography, and to register your attendance, please email Adeline Moussion at firstname.lastname@example.org by Monday 21 October.