Resisting Vulnerability: The Social Reconstruction of Gender in Interaction.

Author:

Hollander, Jocelyn.

Editor:

First

Date:

2002

Region:

[unspecified]

Theme:

Gender and Vulnerability

Language:

English

Publisher:

University of California Press

Full Harvard Reference:

Hollander, Jocelyn. (2002). Resisting Vulnerability: The Social Reconstruction of Gender in Interaction. Social Problems, Vol 49. No. 4. PP 474-496.

This paper focuses on the resistance to conventional constructions of gender, specifically women’s assumed vulnerability to violence perpetrated by men. Similarly, literature covering violence against women tends to focus on the victimisation of women which has often overshadowed any research undertaken that focuses on women’s resistance to violence. Hollander argues that women’s resistance to violence is often overlooked due to the conventional notions of gendered vulnerability, particularly in the realm of discourse. After conducting thirteen unstructured focus group discussions in Seattle, Washington, Hollander identifies six types of resistance: women’s potential ability to defend themselves against violence, men’s potential to defend themselves against violence, women’s actual self-defence against violence, men’s actual failure to defend themselves against violence, women’s lack of fear of violence, and finally, men’s fear of violence. Hollander’s concluding thoughts argue that alternative discourses appear to be context dependent and resistance discourse more likely to interact freely when away from hierarchical structures.