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Segmented journeys, fragmented lives: women's forced migration to escape domestic violence

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Women's journeys to escape domestic violence can be understood as an active strategy to achieve safety and as forced migration during which women experience force from the abuser and the impact of agencies and authorities. This article explores the diverse trajectories of individual women's journeys from abuse, drawing on a mixed methods research project within the UK. It involved analysis and mapping of six years of administrative data from housing-related support services, interviews with 20 women in seven locations in the Midlands, Southern England and London, groupwork with nine women in the Midlands and South Coast, surveys with 34 women in domestic violence services and on 267 calls to the National Domestic Violence Helpline, and interviews with workers in services in eight locations. Drawing on 20 women's narratives and journey graphs over time and distance, it presents details of three women's journeys to illustrate how complex, segmented journeys are often made more fragmented by aspects of policy and practice. More effective responses could mean that women and children only make the journeys that are strictly necessary, and are more smoothly and swiftly able to move to where they can settle and rebuild their fragmented lives.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Email: [email protected]

Publication date: May 2017

More about this publication?
  • The Journal of Gender-Based Violence (JGBV), is the first international journal based in Europe to show case the work of scholars across disciplinary and topic boundaries, and from a range of methodologies.

    The journal acknowledges both the breadth of gender-based violence (GBV) and its links to gendered inequalities. It aims to continue to document the voices and experiences of victims and survivors of GBV, to publish work regarding those who perpetrate GBV and of the varied and complex social structures, inequalities and gender norms through which GBV is produced and sustained. The journal recognises the intersection of gender with other identities and power relations, such as ethnicity, nationality, sexuality, faith, disability and economic status.

    JGBV will publish high quality papers that contribute to understanding of GBV, policy, and/or activism, on sexual violence, domestic abuse, ‘honour’-based violence, prostitution, trafficking and/or reproductive violence and abuse in a wide range of intimate, familial, community and societal contexts.

    The editors invite interest from scholars working across the social sciences and related fields including social policy, sociology, politics, criminology, law, social psychology, development and economics, as well as disciplines allied to medicine, health and wellbeing.

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