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Gender and Violence in Spanish Culture

From Vulnerability to Accountability

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Edited By María José Gámez Fuentes and Rebeca Maseda García

For the true exercise of citizenship to occur, gender violence must be eradicated, as it is not an interpersonal problem, but an attack on the very concept of democracy. Despite increasing social awareness and legal measures taken to fight gender violence, it is still prevalent worldwide. Even in a country such as Spain, praised in the UN Handbook for Legislation on Violence Against Women (2010) for its advanced approach on gender violence, the legal framework has proved insufficient and deeper sociocultural changes are needed. This book presents, in this respect, groundbreaking investigations in the realm of politics, activism, and cultural production that offer both a complex picture of the agents involved in its transformation and a nuanced panorama of initiatives that subvert the normative framework of recognition of victims of gender violence. As a result, the book chapters articulate a construction of the victim as a subject that reflects and acts upon his/her experience and vulnerability, and also adopt perspectives that frame accountability within the representational tradition, the community, and the state.

“This collection builds an arresting account of the configuration of gender violence in modern Spanish contexts, but it also proposes a conceptual reconfiguration. Gender violence and reactions to it are opened up from a series of disciplinary perspectives, acutely drawn together by the editors in an exemplary introduction. Activism, creativity, genuinely critical theory, and a progressive, often queered feminist politics traverse the collection. With the majority of the research originally conducted through the medium of Spanish and focusing on crucial case studies and sites of resistance in Spain, the collection brings to the English-speaking scholarly world new and exceptionally significant material that would otherwise be less well known.”—Chris Perriam, Professor of Hispanic Studies, University of Manchester, United Kingdom; Member of the Editorial Collective of the Journal of Spanish Cultural Studies and of the Editorial Boards of the Bulletin of Hispanic Studies, Studies in Spanish & Latin American Cinemas and Contemporary Hispanic and Lusophone Cultures

“This multivocal collection offers a nuanced account of the social rituals of normalization that set the conditions of gender violence and make it possible, ‘ordinary,’ and ultimately silenced. In delving into the intricacies of normative gender violence, the book interrogates the discursive matrices of gender and violence, as well as of the entrenched construction of gender-and-violence, including female victimhood and the paternalistic snares of recognition. Locally grounded and self-consciously situated, it powerfully reconsiders the current critical field of gender violence/power and its epistemological premises by suggesting new feminist conceptions (at once theoretical and political) of transformative critique and responsibility.”—Athena Athanasiou, Professor of Social Anthropology and Gender Studies, Panteion University, Greece; Co-author with Judith Butler of Dispossession: The Performative in the Political