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Open Access (free)
Reframing gendered urban violence from a translocational feminist perspective
Cathy McIlwaine
,
Yara Evans
,
Paul Heritage
,
Miriam Krenzinger
,
Moniza Rizzini Ansari
, and
Eliana Sousa Silva

The conclusion to the book reiterates the core contributions outlined in the introduction but also identifies additional emergent themes as well as drawing some lessons learned. It assesses the value of the ‘translocational gendered urban violence framework’ and the ‘translocational feminist tracing methodological framework’ in enhancing understanding and reframing gendered urban violence in other contexts and across literal and figurative borders and boundaries. The chapter shows how women survivors’ experiences are at the core of the book along with the complex, innovative and inspiring ways that they deal with and resist violence, all with a view to engendering wider empathetic transformations to address it. It argues for the importance of creative encounters in enhancing understanding of gendered urban violence as well as raising awareness and engendering change. The conclusion also reflects on similarities and differences in working with Brazilian women in Maré and London together with how their experiences echo those of other women living in marginalised urban territories and migrating from and to other countries. Finally, it assesses the wider implications of the research in terms of transnational knowledge production, mutual learning for the organisational partners and the policy effects.

in Gendered urban violence among Brazilians
Cathy McIlwaine
,
Yara Evans
,
Paul Heritage
,
Miriam Krenzinger
,
Moniza Rizzini Ansari
, and
Eliana Sousa Silva

Chapter 6 considers the nature of gendered infrastructural violence faced by women in London and Maré in terms of the barriers they face in accessing support when they experience gender-based violence, and as a form of structural violence. It also evaluates how women face difficulties in accessing services more generally. In London, the chapter outlines the challenges faced by migrant Brazilian women when trying to report violence to formal services, especially when they have insecure immigration status. It details their experiences of fear and stigma, coupled with English language difficulties and underpinned by institutional racism. It reflects on how women especially fear deportation if they report and how perpetrators use insecure status as a tool of manipulation. In Maré, the chapter discusses extremely low levels of formal reporting violence, despite the Maria da Penha Law that is supposed to ensure access to specialist police stations. It discusses how some have no choice but to turn to the armed gangs to mete out ‘justice’. Barriers to support for women are thus analysed as a form of gendered infrastructural violence that can also lead to the intensification of further forms of direct gender-based violence. Again, several aspects of the creative encounters highlight how women experience exclusion and re-traumatisation in an embodied and visceral way.

in Gendered urban violence among Brazilians
Painful truths from Rio de Janeiro and London

This book aims to understand the ‘painful truths’ of gendered violence in the city and how women challenge it through resistance and creative practices. Drawing on an extensive body of collaborative research with women in the favelas of Maré in Rio de Janeiro and among Brazilian migrants in London, it conceives gendered urban violence as multidimensional, multiscalar and deeply embedded within structural and intersectional power relations. The book develops a ‘translocational gendered urban violence framework’ that foregrounds transnational connections across symbolic and literal borders. The framework emphasises the need to move beyond individual interpretations of gendered violence in cities towards one that acknowledges structural, symbolic and infrastructural violence. It also incorporates the need for an embodied approach that can be captured through engagement with the arts and arts-based methods as well as resistance practices. The book outlines a ‘translocational feminist tracing methodological framework’ that captures transnational dialogue and knowledge production, drawing on a feminist epistemological approach based on collaboration, co-design and engagement beyond the academy. In centring the painful truths of gendered urban violence as revealed by women, the book contributes to a range of debates that include acknowledging such violence as direct and indirect ranging from the body to the global, as well as the need to recognise urban violence as deeply gendered in intersectional ways. Finally, it suggests that creative engagements and arts-based approaches are crucial for understanding and resisting gendered urban violence and in generating empathetic transformation.

Open Access (free)
Revealing and resisting the ‘painful truths’ of gendered urban violence
Cathy McIlwaine
,
Yara Evans
,
Paul Heritage
,
Miriam Krenzinger
,
Moniza Rizzini Ansari
, and
Eliana Sousa Silva

The introduction sets the scene for the book, explaining what ‘painful truths’ means and identifying the main debates to which it contributes. This revolves around the importance of visibilising multidimensional and multiscalar gendered urban violence, a term that encompasses direct and indirect forms of male violence against women and girls. This emphasises the structural causes of gendered urban violence and moves beyond individualised interpretations, spanning the body, community, city and global contexts. Relatedly, the discussion argues for the need to reframe everyday urban violence as deeply gendered in intersectional ways. In outlining the empirical realities of gender-based violence in Rio de Janeiro and London, the chapter explains that this is not a traditional comparative book given the differences in the lives of the women. However, it shows that there are connections between the two cities and groups of women. The discussion introduces the conceptual, epistemological, methodological and empirical approaches developed in the book. These revolve around the translocational feminist frameworks and methodologies that are based on collaboration, co-production and engagement with the arts. The introduction emphasises the importance of working with artists and using arts-based methods to reveal the nature of gendered urban violence. The chapter outlines the core narrative of the book, which is the importance of revealing the painful truths about gendered urban violence in order to be able to fight it in terms of resistance and agency developed by women themselves. The chapter finishes with an outline of the structure of the book.

in Gendered urban violence among Brazilians
Cathy McIlwaine
,
Yara Evans
,
Paul Heritage
,
Miriam Krenzinger
,
Moniza Rizzini Ansari
, and
Eliana Sousa Silva

Chapter 7 outlines how women in London and Maré negotiate and resist gendered urban violence. This entails developing everyday short- and medium-/longer-term coping and resistance practices to deal with discrimination and stigma as well as direct forms of private and public violence. In Maré, the practices are especially powerful, where resilience has built up over time, transforming into multiple forms of resistance. The roles of grassroots and community organisations are also considered as essential sources of solidarity and support. In London, where the Brazilian community is more disparate in terms of territorial distribution, the focus is on coping mechanisms and the role of civil society organisations in engendering resistance. The chapter engages closely with the work of Migrants in Action (MinA) and their applied drama workshops, and the creation of their multimedia video installation and the collaboration with the Museum of the Person through digital storytelling. It reflects on how various artistic practices can enable women to challenge gendered urban violence in innovative ways that are therapeutic and transformative.

in Gendered urban violence among Brazilians
Cathy McIlwaine
,
Yara Evans
,
Paul Heritage
,
Miriam Krenzinger
,
Moniza Rizzini Ansari
, and
Eliana Sousa Silva

Chapter 4 explores gendered urban violence in the private sphere in London and Maré. Although the discussion revolves primarily around intimate partner violence, it also considers non-intimate partner violence that can also occur in the home by male relatives, friends and strangers. It shows that women experience diverse and overlapping types of violence that are not one-off events. The chapter considers the causes of intra-family violence as they intersect with other types of indirect structural, symbolic and infrastructural violence and how these vary according to a range of different intersectionalities including immigration status, nationality, class, race, ethnicity and sexualities. In the case of London, we highlight how immigration status is mobilised as a tool of manipulation and control by intimate partners. In Maré, we foreground how gender-based violence in the private sphere is bolstered by wider public insecurity on the part of the police and armed groups. Throughout the chapter, we reflect on how contestations around the meaning of gendered violence have been understood, embodied and communicated through the multiple artistic works in London and Maré.

in Gendered urban violence among Brazilians
Cathy McIlwaine
,
Yara Evans
,
Paul Heritage
,
Miriam Krenzinger
,
Moniza Rizzini Ansari
, and
Eliana Sousa Silva

Chapter 5 examines gendered urban violence in the public sphere; while some intimate partner violence occurred in spaces beyond the home, much of this was perpetrated by non-partners and mainly those already known to women. The chapter focuses on violence in work-related spaces in the case of London and especially on the role of immigration status and how this links with workplace exploitation, triggering symbolic violence through discrimination bolstered by racism and sexism. In Maré, it addresses the close linkages between gender-based violence and other forms of urban violence and armed conflict. The territorial dimensions of gendered urban violence are explored in terms of how the intersections between gendered and wider urban violence affect women’s mobility around the city. In both cases, racialisation plays a significant role in underplaying the brutal intersections of structural, symbolic and infrastructural gendered violence. As in Chapter 4, the nature of gendered violence is assessed through engagements with the artistic material to deepen the understanding of gendered violence in public spheres in cities.

in Gendered urban violence among Brazilians
Cathy McIlwaine
,
Yara Evans
,
Paul Heritage
,
Miriam Krenzinger
,
Moniza Rizzini Ansari
, and
Eliana Sousa Silva

Chapter 3 situates the empirical context for the book by providing an overview of the women included in the research in Maré in Rio de Janeiro and London: the nature of their lives, education, occupational backgrounds and so on. This chapter also briefly outlines the prevalence and nature of the violence in London and in Maré, drawing on the primary research. It highlights the diversity and multidimensionality of violence against women and illustrates how it is a complex geometry of different types bolstered by indirect violence rooted in deep-seated gendered hierarchies. It combines analysis from the social science and creative research. The chapter also provides background context for the book in terms of how gender-based violence has been addressed from legislative and policy perspectives since the 1960s, also considering the role of women’s organisations. It concludes with reflections from service providers in Rio de Janeiro and London.

in Gendered urban violence among Brazilians
Cathy McIlwaine
,
Yara Evans
,
Paul Heritage
,
Miriam Krenzinger
,
Moniza Rizzini Ansari
, and
Eliana Sousa Silva

The third chapter outlines the epistemological and methodological approaches used to conduct the empirical research in Rio de Janeiro and London that entailed combining social science methods and arts-based methods together with creative translations. The chapter outlines the ‘translocational feminist tracing methodological framework’ that incorporates flows of ideas and people through transnational dialogue based on a feminist epistemological approach, speaking across disciplines and beyond the academy to generate transnational mutual learning across borders. It outlines the two main stages of the social science research and the creative methods and engagements developed in each. The discussion highlights a shift from mapping gendered urban violence through traditional social science tools and engaging with artists through curation of the research to a more co-produced and participatory approach using innovative methods and creative engagements. This is conceptualised as a ‘creative translation pathway’. The chapter engages with the importance of collaborative, decolonial and co-produced knowledge production in conducting ethical and sensitive research on gendered urban violence over time, in this case, between 2016 and 2023.

in Gendered urban violence among Brazilians
Cathy McIlwaine
,
Yara Evans
,
Paul Heritage
,
Miriam Krenzinger
,
Moniza Rizzini Ansari
, and
Eliana Sousa Silva

This chapter outlines how researching and understanding the ‘painful truths’ of gendered urban violence can be usefully analysed through a ‘translocational gendered urban violence framework’, which forms the conceptual foundation for the book. Before discussing the framework, the discussion delineates the key categorisations and definitions of violence against women and girls, which are themselves diverse and intersectional across the overlapping private, public and transnational spheres, as well as deeply contested. The chapter provides an overview of the incidence of gender-based violence in cities and among international migrants generally, identifying some key themes. The conceptual discussion begins with an outline of the transnational continuum of gendered urban violence which underpins the framework before moving on to delineate the main components of the translocational gendered urban violence framework. This is presented as a heuristic tool for understanding the dynamics of gendered urban violence, with a focus on how direct violence against migrant women and women living in peripheral territories is fundamentally rooted in deep-seated gendered inequalities of power which intersect with other forms of indirect structural, symbolic and infrastructural violence. This framework seeks to emphasise how gendered urban violence is not an individual phenomenon but one deeply embedded and embodied within intersectional and translocational power structures. Women’s protagonism is incorporated within the framework through pinpointing embodied creative and everyday resistance practices. In highlighting how gendered urban violence is embedded within wider circuits of power and control across scales, this approach captures a feminist politics of translation and insists on a transformational perspective.

in Gendered urban violence among Brazilians