VAW Social Change Resource Center

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Cultural Supports for Violence Against Women

      Society is designed to organize people’s lives.  Violence against women is tolerated as normal in societies built to benefit some people and not others.  Over our lifetime we adapt to our society’s expectations of us.  We find our place in society through

    stories, traditions, and rituals that teach us what behaviors

        are valued

  ●  arts, language, and fads that create, reflect, and challenge

        those values. 

  ●  cultural tools such as institutions and agencies of the state

        that define and then enforce what is ‘normal’.     

  belief systems that give us excuses for violence, abuse,

        power, and  privilege.

 

      We are interested in thinking critically about how societies are organized.  We encourage activists to examine what causes violence and understand how those causes are connected through systems of oppression and privilege.

  We support activist strategies for resisting cultures of dominance!

Education models, training materials and readings are welcome.

Excuses & Justifications for Violence

Access Rights

Fear & need for dominance

 

Hierarchy (right to violence)

 

             The Culture of Power

Paul Kivel explains how cultural neutrality masks cultures of power and how to assess a

culture of power.  2000

 

Isms/Privilege

 

             Tactics of Oppression and Challenging Privilege

                          Social Change Resource Center

 

Scarcity

 

             The Spiral of Violence

Archbishop Helder Camara's treatise on the violence of poverty, revolt, and repression.

Urges justice to balance privilege and oppression. 1971

 

Tools for Social Control

 

             Power and Control Tools

                          Social Change Resource Center

Valuing  Violence

 

Art

 

Dance

Fads

Heroes/Heroines

 

Language

 

             Choosing Our Words: The Dilemma of Gender-Neutral Language

Language is power!  Red Crowley talks about the every day pressure to alter and shape

language when speaking to those in power.  From Men Stopping Violence, 2001

 

Music

 

             Building Human Rights through Popular Culture

                          Intro to Breakthrough, Inc. using human rights to connect to social justice.  Media project,

DV Video.

 

Mythology/stories

Rituals

Traditions

 

Pornography

 

             Pornography and Sexual Violence

Robert Jensen asks “Is pornography implicated in sexual violence in this culture?”  VAWnet

article with Brief.  2004

 

Sports

Violence as a Tool

Tools for Violence

Colonization

 

             Colonization and Violence Against Women

Val Kalei Kanuha discusses colonization and patriarchy in the context of Asian and Pacific

cultures.  Pp.  7-11, n.d.

 

Economics

 

             Beauty … And the Beast of Advertising

Jean Kilbourne connects how treatment of women in advertising as artificial/sex objects

influences sexual attitudes. 1990

 

             Welfare and Domestic Violence Against Women: Lessons from Research

Eleanor Lyon summarizes research on the connections between poverty, public assistance,

employment, and violence against women.  Includes aspects of advocacy.  VAWnet article, 2002

 

Education

Family/Parenting

Gender Roles

 

Media

 

             Center for Media Literacy

                          Pages of tools, resources, best practices!

 

             Sexpot Virgins: The Media's Sexualization of Young Girls

Gigi Durham discusses corporate media’s sexual objectification of girls.  Recommendations for

how girls can fight back. Tana Ganeva 2008

 

Religion

Strategies for Change

Critical Thinking

 

             Fairy Tales and Gender Roles

7th grade lesson plan for analyzing the role of fairy tales in defining gender roles.  Marcella

Candelaria

 

                The Control Game

A Reference Guide for Recognizing Political/Social Control Tactics by Power Brokers, Large Corporations, Public Relations Firms, and Government Entities.  By EIN, 1997.

 

Exposure

 

Organizing

            

             Organizing for Social Change

                          Social Change Resource Center

            

Challenging Personal Privilege

 

             Screams from Somewhere Else

                                TIME essay urging public response to screams. Roger Rosenblatt, 1987

 

                Challenging Privilege

                                Social Change Resource Center

 

Resistance

Reframing/Reclaiming

 

Undermining Oppression

 

             Community Accountability

Principles, concerns, strategies, and models for accountability when working on violence

against women of color.  Working Document by INCITE!  activists, 2003

 

             Inside/Out: Democratic Participation and Economic Justice in Our Own Organizations

Suzanne Pharr challenges how we are working toward social change and lists suggestions for

democratic participation within our organizations.  2008

Social Change Resource Center © 2007,  Afterwords, Inc.

 

 

Introduction to Social Change

Reflections on Social Change

  Cultural Supports

  Oppression & Privilege

  Questions of Research

  Theory

Strategies for Action

  Activist Writings

  Mentoring

  Organizing

Domestic Violence

  Accountability

  Power & Control Tools

Culture

             Culture

                          Extensive list of academic definitions.

 

             Culture: What It Is, Who Owns It, Claims It, Changes It

Sujata Warrier argues that western understandings of culture serve as a strategy of

colonization.  Definitions of culture and cultural positions.  For the Asian and Pacific

Islander Institute on Domestic Violence, n.d.

 

             What is Culture?

                          Popular definitions as shared meaning and behavioral rules.