A global issue: Gender-based violence. A study on the main trends and discourses of articles, reports and literature on Gender-based violence, with a specific focus on violence against women.

University essay from Malmö universitet/Kultur och samhälle

Abstract: Introduction/purpose: GBV is considered a complex field, partly due to the differences in interpretations and understandings of what GBV is and why it exists (including factors such as culture, social status, politics and structures in society), and partly because of its sensitive nature. The purpose of this study is to identify trends and discourses in articles, reports and literature on GBV and thus also potential shortcomings. Research questions: 1. What main trends and discourses can we see in articles, reports and literature on GBV? 2. What are the main identified shortcomings in the reviewed articles, reports and literature? Theory/methodology: This study combines Foucault’s theory on Power/Knowledge and the Feminist Political Economy Theory. These choices were made due to their connection to power relations in society and between gender. This study stems from a discourse analysis and a hermeneutic approach. Further, this study is a literature review of a qualitative form with a broad selection criteria to avoid the limitation that comes with a too systematic review. Conclusion: • Lack of statistics is an issue as it gives a false image of reality • Language plays a part in gender stereotypes and inequality Further, the main common traits are: the need for multi-sector and multi-multi-stakeholder responses, the focus on harmful attitudes and harmful masculinity, top-down as well as bottom-up approaches, inclusion of women, getting men involved, that all socio-economic groups are affected and that environments more prone to violence are created by a combination of factors. Identified shortcomings are: a general lack of shown understanding of the influence of “appropriateness”, as well as of language and denomination on social-, cultural-, structural- and political factors as well as a lack of shown understanding of the influence of the researchers own culture and perspective, and thus objectivity.

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