Conversations Across Borders: Men and Honour Violence in U.K. and Sweden

Suruchi Thapar-Björkert
Department of Sociology, University of Bristol, United Kingdom

Ladda ner artikelhttp://www.ep.liu.se/ecp_article/index.en.aspx?issue=025;article=062

Ingår i: Inter: A European Cultural Studies : Conference in Sweden 11-13 June 2007

Linköping Electronic Conference Proceedings 25:62, s. 615-631

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Publicerad: 2007-11-27


ISSN: 1650-3686 (tryckt), 1650-3740 (online)


The media; in particular; in U.K. and Sweden has been implicated in disseminating decontexualised discourses; which define; construct and represent the ethnic minority communities (for example; the Turkish-Kurdish; Iraqi-Kurdish or Pakistani Muslims) as ‘violent’ and locate the issue of honour violence as a ‘cultural’ problem. A corollary to this understanding is that honour related violence (HRV) is conceptualised as irreconcilable differences between cultural values of some ethnic groups and the values of Western society. Sociologists and anthropologists have departed from these approaches and highlighted the prevalence of gendered and sexualised violence in the white Swedish and British populations but which is not approached or analysed in a culturalist and essentialist manner. These debates and rebuttals have placed honour violence at the centre stage of government and non-government attempts at combating gendered violence. However; one of the central arguments of the paper is that analysis on honour violence has inadvertently focused on men as ‘perpetrators’ and women as ‘victims’ of violence. This paper argues and departs from such analyses on two levels- first; in order to analyse the political and social complexity of honour violence; we need to look at the various subject positions that women as well as men occupy in relation to HRV: as perpetrators; as witnesses; victims and as combatants. Second; all measures to combat violence need to engage men. In relation to the latter; the paper will engage with the ongoing work of the Sharaf Heroes in Sweden (Sharaf Hjältar).


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