1st Edition

Re-writing Women as Victims From Theory to Practice

    250 Pages 1 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    250 Pages 1 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    This volume critically analyses political strategies, civil society initiatives and modes of representation that challenge the conventional narratives of women in contexts of violence. It deepens into the concepts of victimhood and agency that inform the current debate on women as victims.

    The volume opens the scope to explore initiatives that transcend the pair abuser–victim and explore the complex relations between gender and violence, and individual and collective accountability, through politics, activism and cultural productions in order to seek social transformation for gender justice. In innovative and interdisciplinary case studies, it brings attention to initiatives and narratives that make new spaces possible in which to name, self-identify, and resignify the female political subject as a social agent in situations of violence. The volume is global in scope, bringing together contributions ranging from India, Cambodia or Kenya, to Quebec, Bosnia or Spain. Different aspects of gender-based violence are analysed, from intimate relationships, sexual violence, military contexts, society and institutions.

    Re-writing Women as Victims: From Theory to Practice will be a key text for students, researchers and professionals in gender studies, political sciences, sociology and media and cultural Studies. Activists and policy makers will also find its practical approach and engagement with social transformation to be essential reading.


    Chapter One: Reframing Women’s Victimization: Challenges and Possibilities

    María José Gámez Fuentes, Sonia Núñez Puente and Emma Gómez Nicolau

    Part I: Politics

    Chapter Two: Women Survivors of Sexist Abuse in Spain: The Role of Affects of Proximity and Recognition on the Way Out

    Cristina Peñamarín Beristain and Diana Fernández Romero

    Chapter Three: The ‘Comfort Women’ Apologies: Gender Victimhood and the Politics of Grievability

    Emma Dolan

    Chapter Four: Gender, Agency and the Construction of a Rape Victim: The ICTY and the Prosecution of Sexual Violence In Bosnia-Hercegovina

    Louis Tozer

    Chapter Five: Women’s Resistance in Violent Settings: Infrapolitical Strategies in Brazil and Colombia

    Anne-Marie Veillette and Priscyll Anctil Avoine

    Chapter Six: Towards Transformative Gender Equality: The Importance of Addressing Economic Violence against Women in Cambodia

    Olga Jurasz and Natalia Szablewska

    Part II: Activism

    Chapter Seven: Feminist and Grassroots Activism Re-writing Women as Victims: Kenyan Women’s Untold Story

    Wanjiku Mukabi Kabira and Lanoi Maloiy

    Chapter Eight: Collective Action and Organization against Gender Violence in Spain: When Victims Became Activists

    Maria Martinez

    Chapter Nine: Transnational Feminist Activism to Reframe Femicide: The Case of #NiuNaMenos and #VivasNosQueremos

    Virginia Villaplana-Ruiz


    Chapter Ten: Materialising Resistance against Rape Culture Online: The Phenomenon of SlutWalks

    Jessie A. Bustillos Morales

    Chapter Eleven: Mukhtaran Mai’s Transformation From Gang-rape Victim to the Feminist Face of Glamour: Transcending Notions of Tribal Honour, Gender and Class in Pakistan

    Rahat Imran

    Part III: Cultural Narratives

    Chapter Twelve: ‘Pump Up the Positivity’: Neoliberalism, Affective Entrepreneurship and the Victimhood/Agency Debate

    Laura Favaro and Rosalind Gill

    Chapter Thirteen: Radical Vulnerability: Feminism, Victimhood and Agency

    Sarah Banet-Weiser

    Chapter Fourteen: Rethinking the Victim in Zoë Morrison’s Music and Freedom (2016)

    Sue Kossew

    Chapter Fifteen: Survivor Speech: Formulations of the Victim/Survivor Identity in Contemporary UK Media

    Elena De Sacco

    Chapter Sixteen: Rape Victims, Representation and Resistance in India: Between Collectivity and Solitariness

    Nandana Dutta

    List of Contributors



    Maria José Gámez Fuentes is Full Professor in Gender and Media at the Universitat Jaume I. Her research focuses on feminist theory, the analysis of gender representations and the transformation of cultural violence. This has been developed through several stays at the University of Nottingham; Goldsmiths, the University of London; the University of Roehampton; and Columbia University, among others. She has also led R+D projects on the resignification of women as victims and ethical witnessing. She has published extensively in journals such as Feminist Media Studies, Social Movement Studies, International Journal of Iberian Studies, Journal of Spanish Cultural Studies, Hispanic Research Journal, Cineaste, and Peace Review.

    Sonia Núñez Puente is Associate Professor in Gender and Media at the Universidad Rey Juan Carlos. She has led national and international projects on feminist digital activism, gender-based violence and the image of women in the area of cultural studies. Together with the writer Lucía Etxebarria, she is co-author of En brazos de la mujer fetiche (2002). She has been a Leverhulme Research Fellow at the University of Aberdeen (Scotland) and a lecturer at Vanderbilt University (USA). She has been a visiting scholar at the universities of Cambridge (United Kingdom) and Humboldt zu Berlin (Germany), among others. She has published in journals such as Journal of Gender Studies, Feminist Media Studies, Continuum: Journal of Media & Cultural Studies, Feminist Review, Journal of European Women’s Studies and Journal of Spanish Cultural Studies.

    Emma Gómez Nicolau is Assistant Professor in Methodology and Sociology at the Universitat Jaume I. She is a member of REMUVIC Project Modes and practices of resignification of women as victims: from vulnerability to resistance. She is also member of DESiRES (Sociology and Methodology studies of Inequalities and Resistances). She has been a predoctoral fellow at the University of Valencia, Spain, and a visiting scholar at the School of Journalism, Media and Culture (Cardiff University). Her research interests are feminisms, menstrual and health activism and youth studies. She has published several articles and book chapters on the modes of recognition of gender violence.