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Gender, violence and cultures of silence: young women and paramilitary violence

McAlister, Siobhán; Neill, Gail; Carr, Nicola; Dwyer, Clare

Gender, violence and cultures of silence: young women and paramilitary violence Thumbnail


Siobhán McAlister

Gail Neill

Professor of Criminology

Clare Dwyer


Despite a growth in analysis of women and conflict, this has tended to overlook the specific experiences of young women. Likewise, in research on youth, conflict and peace, the term ‘youth’ is often short-hand for young men. Young women’s experiences are regularly absent from research and policy discourse, and as a consequence, also absent from public understanding and practice responses. In this paper, we prioritise the views of and on young women to forefront their experiences of one specific form of conflict-related violence–paramilitary violence. We demonstrate that forefronting young women’s experiences, and adopting an understanding of violence beyond that which privileges physical violence, unearths the multiple ways in which conflict-related violence is experienced. We further demonstrate how adopting an intersectional lens that prioritises age and gender can surface the specific experiences of young women, and the various ways in which these become silenced by cultures that omit, coerce, reduce and minimise.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Jun 9, 2021
Online Publication Date Jun 19, 2021
Publication Date Jun 19, 2021
Deposit Date Jun 21, 2021
Publicly Available Date Jun 22, 2021
Journal Journal of Youth Studies
Print ISSN 1367-6261
Electronic ISSN 1469-9680
Publisher Informa UK Limited
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Pages 1-16
Keywords Sociology and Political Science; General Social Sciences; Life-span and Life-course Studies
Public URL
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