Sex and violence Issues in representation and experience

Edited ByPenelope Harvey, Peter Gow

Published: November, 2022



This chapter shows extremely clearly how the goals of identity and personhood are different for women and men, and how engaged individuals are in strategies which invest in and maintain particular self-representations and social evaluations. It seems clear that individuals do constitute their self-representations as engendered subjects through several different subject positions on gender. Discourses about sexuality and gender construct women and men as different sorts of persons. The chapter suggests a link between the thwarting of investments in various subject positions based on gender and interpersonal violence. From an anthropological perspective, there is an obvious need to integrate the sociological and psychological theories of interpersonal violence with theories about meaning, representation and symbolism. In spite of a great mass of writing, research, and speculation, the concept of violence in the social sciences still seems remarkably undertheorized.

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