In the past several decades gender-violence and family violence have elicited a great deal of attention from academics, clinicians and policy-makers. Such a shift in attitude has contributed to shedding some light on a phenomena that is so easily ignored, minimized, denied or distorted (Jecker, 1993; Zinc et al., 2004; Romito, 2005).This combined effort – much of which stems from feminist thought,– has had a direct effect on shaping legislation (Frattaroli and Teret, 2006), health and social care practice (Humphreys, 2007), and public policy (Beckenridge and Mulroney, 2007 Feminist approaches bear similarities with other sociological theories that emphasize the oppressive character of social structures over individuals (e.g., Durkheim, 1982; Parsons, 1951; Bourdieu, 1977). As various scholars (e.g., Nicholson, 2010) have suggested, this viewpoint eschews both the issue of how couple dynamics and inter-individual factors impact upon the generation, perpetuation and maintenance of the cycle of violence. On the other hand, psychological approaches, have often neglected to consider how individual differences and interpersonal dynamics occur within a set of culturally-specific social norms, and how personal subjectivity and individual trajectories are inextricably inscribed in the social domain. In the present paper, we propose a third perspective, which draws upon cultural and discursive psychological theorizations of the relationship between cultural discourses, social representations, and subjective positions, to develop truly empowering interventions for victims of gender-based family violence. This perspective builds on the idea that individuals are at one and the same time the products of constraining social structures and discursive practices and irreducible, in their singularity, to socio-cultural determinants (e.g.,Valsiner 2000; Frosch, Pheonix and Pattman, 2003; Valsiner, Rosa, 2007). To the extent that subjects are necessarily inscribed in discourse and representations, which determine specific positions that a subject can come to occupy, such an inscription always leaves behind a residual space, which becomes a space for subjective resistance, movement and resignification (e.g., Butler, 1993). The present paper draws upon ethnographic data collected during a 3-year local interagency project to support victims of gender based violence to explore how certain construction and representation of gender based violence, enables specific practices and degrees of agency and empowerment, both for the project’s staff and for its participants. The project offers victims who need temporary refuge the opportunity to stay in a protected shelter, where they have access to free legal support and help in finding housing and employment (or educational funding). The data is analyzed using a combination of continued thematic and narrative analysis. The results present a set of case studies of women who have taken part in the project, exploring the different ways in which project protocols and interventions have been successful in enabling the woman to avoid re-victimization and access new resources. In particular, we explore how specific discourses and representations, define specific practices and actions that privilege certain interventions at the expense of others (for example, psychological or psychotherapeutic support).

GROSSO GONCALVES, V., Camussi, E. (2013). From discourse to practice and back: the case of a project for victims of gender-based violence in Italy. In C. Arcidiacono, I. Teston, A. Groterath (a cura di), Daphne and the Centaurs. Overcoming gender based violence (pp. 113-126). Barbara Budrich.

From discourse to practice and back: the case of a project for victims of gender-based violence in Italy

GROSSO GONCALVES, VALENTINA ELISA SANTINA;CAMUSSI, ELISABETTA
2013

Abstract

In the past several decades gender-violence and family violence have elicited a great deal of attention from academics, clinicians and policy-makers. Such a shift in attitude has contributed to shedding some light on a phenomena that is so easily ignored, minimized, denied or distorted (Jecker, 1993; Zinc et al., 2004; Romito, 2005).This combined effort – much of which stems from feminist thought,– has had a direct effect on shaping legislation (Frattaroli and Teret, 2006), health and social care practice (Humphreys, 2007), and public policy (Beckenridge and Mulroney, 2007 Feminist approaches bear similarities with other sociological theories that emphasize the oppressive character of social structures over individuals (e.g., Durkheim, 1982; Parsons, 1951; Bourdieu, 1977). As various scholars (e.g., Nicholson, 2010) have suggested, this viewpoint eschews both the issue of how couple dynamics and inter-individual factors impact upon the generation, perpetuation and maintenance of the cycle of violence. On the other hand, psychological approaches, have often neglected to consider how individual differences and interpersonal dynamics occur within a set of culturally-specific social norms, and how personal subjectivity and individual trajectories are inextricably inscribed in the social domain. In the present paper, we propose a third perspective, which draws upon cultural and discursive psychological theorizations of the relationship between cultural discourses, social representations, and subjective positions, to develop truly empowering interventions for victims of gender-based family violence. This perspective builds on the idea that individuals are at one and the same time the products of constraining social structures and discursive practices and irreducible, in their singularity, to socio-cultural determinants (e.g.,Valsiner 2000; Frosch, Pheonix and Pattman, 2003; Valsiner, Rosa, 2007). To the extent that subjects are necessarily inscribed in discourse and representations, which determine specific positions that a subject can come to occupy, such an inscription always leaves behind a residual space, which becomes a space for subjective resistance, movement and resignification (e.g., Butler, 1993). The present paper draws upon ethnographic data collected during a 3-year local interagency project to support victims of gender based violence to explore how certain construction and representation of gender based violence, enables specific practices and degrees of agency and empowerment, both for the project’s staff and for its participants. The project offers victims who need temporary refuge the opportunity to stay in a protected shelter, where they have access to free legal support and help in finding housing and employment (or educational funding). The data is analyzed using a combination of continued thematic and narrative analysis. The results present a set of case studies of women who have taken part in the project, exploring the different ways in which project protocols and interventions have been successful in enabling the woman to avoid re-victimization and access new resources. In particular, we explore how specific discourses and representations, define specific practices and actions that privilege certain interventions at the expense of others (for example, psychological or psychotherapeutic support).
Capitolo o saggio
gender-based violence;social representations; subjective positions
English
Daphne and the Centaurs. Overcoming gender based violence
978-3847-4012-47
GROSSO GONCALVES, V., Camussi, E. (2013). From discourse to practice and back: the case of a project for victims of gender-based violence in Italy. In C. Arcidiacono, I. Teston, A. Groterath (a cura di), Daphne and the Centaurs. Overcoming gender based violence (pp. 113-126). Barbara Budrich.
GROSSO GONCALVES, V; Camussi, E
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/10281/45597
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