POWER-CONSCUIOUS APPROACHES TO ADDRESSING SEXUAL VIOLENCE ON CAMPUSES
Sexual violence on college campuses has received increased attention over the past few years. Unfortunately, the majority of scholarship and media attention to campus sexual violence focuses on response and policy, rather than prevention. Further, most scholarship does not examine the lived experiences of survivors of sexual violence. Most scholarship and media attention centers cisgender, heterosexual White women at elite institutions. An ahistorical perspective about sexual violence results in ineffective scholarship, policy, and prevention efforts related to sexual violence. Through several projects, Dr. Jessica C. Harris and I are working to complicate the conversation about sexual violence on college campus by re-centering historically marginalized groups and providing an historical foundation from which educators, scholars, and policy-makers might make more-informed decisions.
Our forthcoming book, Intersections of Identity and Sexual Violence on Campus: Centering Minoritized Students' Experiences (Stylus), includes 12 chapters by a variety of scholars who take a critical perspective on addressing sexual violence among various student groups, including transgender and queer students, women of color, and students with disabilities.
My contributions to this book examine the role of historical and contemporary activism in sexual violence movements. In one chapter, I examine an historical context of anti-sexual violence activism, with a focus on the role of Southern Black women in movements to address sexual violence at the intersections of race and gender, arguing that contemporary activists may benefit from a more nuanced understanding of our collective histories to address sexual violence. In another chapter, with Jess Myers, we examine contemporary campus activists' understanding of power and identity in campus-based organizing through an intersectional lens.
Additionally, Jessica Harris and I have explored the ways rape myths are perpetuated in campus-based newspapers and campus-wide Clery emails. We presented a poster at ASHE on this topic.