This book chapter argues that the consequences of conflict and post-conflict sexual violence have often been misunderstood. Typically research has conceptualised the effects in terms of an individual manifestation of psychological trauma and physical injuries. The corresponding responses have therefore often been confined to a medical model. This book chapter, based on research carried out with survivors of conflict and post-conflict sexual violence in Liberia, former child abductees in northern Uganda and women and girls bearing children from rape in eastern DRC, argues for an alternative understanding and response. First, it views conflict and post-conflict sexual violence as gendered, that is, women, men and children all endure these experiences, and their responses are different. Second, it believes that beyond the individual's trauma the impact of conflict and post-conflict sexual violence affects whole communities and identities. Third, it recognises a strong desire for justice and social support amongst survivors whose fulfilment is vital to their recovery. Fourth, it recognises high levels of resilience among survivors. In the light of these perspectives, the article argues that for conflict and post-conflict responses to be effective they must go beyond a purely individualistic and medical conceptualisation of needs. Rather they have to be holistic in nature. This includes being gendered, culturally sensitive, addressing justice and social support as well as health needs and building upon the resilience of sexual violence survivors and their communities.
|Title of host publication||Sex Crimes: Transnational Problems and Global Perspectives|
|Editors||A.R. Ackerman, R. Furman|
|Publisher||Columbia University Press|
|Publication status||Published - 2015|
Bibliographical noteThis chapter is not available on the repository
- sexual violence
- eastern DRC
- northern Uganda.