Women to Women Sexual Violence-Does She Call it Rape?

Posted in Books of Interest

womantowomansexualviolence Women to Women Sexual Violence-Does She Call it Rape?, by L. Girshick, Northeastern University Press, 2002. The American Library Association's review on Amazon's webpage says: "Perhaps the most isolated crime victims are lesbian and bisexual survivors of woman-to-woman sexual violence. Multifaceted sexual-identity issues combine with shame and institutionalized heterosexism to make society unable to acknowledge such assaults. The legal system, women's support services, and the lesbian community are just beginning to name such behaviors, let alone confronting and dealing with them. Women's studies professor Girshick breaks new ground as she plumbs the experiences and thoughts of 70 women, gleaned from a nationwide U.S. survey and in-depth interviews. She documents the women's responses to the violence, whether they received or were denied aid, and whether silence was imposed on them. Her insightful and provocative work well may stir controversy even as it sheds light on a previously shadowed subject. Dedicated to "those who are still silenced," the book also powerfully explores the need for community and such preconceived notions and myths as lesbian utopia. A worthy addition to the sociology of violence in women's lives"

Naming the Violence: Speaking Out About Lesbian Battering

Posted in Books of Interest

namingtheviolence Lobel, K (Ed.). Naming the Violence: Speaking Out About Lesbian Battering. by Kerry Lobel, Seal Press: Seattle, WA, 1986. The Publishers Weekly on Amazon's website says this: "From Publishers Weekly Sponsored by the Lesbian Task Force of the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence, this book is ``by and for battered lesbians and those who work to support their empowerment.'' Contributors note that the topic is especiallydifficult for lesbians because, as Barbara Hart, an activist lawyer, states in the preface, lesbian battering ``contradicts our belief in the inherent nonviolence of women,'' and publicity about it ``may enhance the arsenal of homophobes.'' Lobel alternates personal histories with commentary by counselors, activists and others who offer advice on how to treat victims and how to deal with the problem generally. (They note the many parallels to man-woman battering cases.) The victims' stories are wrenching: one battered woman has become so suspicious that when she sees an adult and several girls flying kites in a park (while she writes her contribution to this volume), she remarks only, ``I hope that their relationship is as loving and playful as it looks.'' This collection constitutes a challenge to lesbians who abuse their lovers and to those who tolerate such abuse."

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