VICTIM-BLAMING AND THE CRISIS OF REPRESENTATION IN THE VIOLENCE PREVENTION FIELD

  • Elizabeth Fast Concordia University
  • Cathy Richardson Kinewesquao University of Montreal
Keywords: victim-blaming, response-based practice, Indigenous, Métis, structural violence

Abstract

In this article, the authors apply response-based practice to highlight the ways in which victims are blamed in cases of violence. They problematize and explore the misrepresentation of violence across academic disciplines and institutional systems, including the social sciences, the helping professions, and the justice system. Fast and Richardson discuss the linguistic operations that serve to conceal violence and also to obscure the resistance of the victim, which tends to reflect the level and brutality of the violent acts. In order to demonstrate the processes of shifting blame and responsibility from the perpetrator to the victim, the authors also discuss particular Indigenous examples relating to the issue of attacks on and kidnappings of Indigenous women, and to the connections between violence, resource exploitation, and land dispossession.

Author Biographies

Elizabeth Fast, Concordia University
Assistant Professor, Department of Applied Human Sciences
Cathy Richardson Kinewesquao, University of Montreal
Métis Associate Professor, Social Work
Published
2019-02-14