The personal is structural: ending violence against women by re-creating the academy
Jennifer Wies (Ball State University)
Hillary Haldane (Quinnipiac University)
Paper short abstract:
Anthropology is practiced across varied sites, however, the main locus of its social reproduction is within the academy. This paper explores sexual misconduct to understanding the constraints in anthropology to address and respond to sexual misconduct demonstrates the potential for re-creation.
Paper long abstract:
Anthropology is practiced across varied sites, including non-governmental organizations, healthcare systems, policy areas, development agencies, corporate and industrial business settings, and many more domains. However, the main locus of its social reproduction is within the academy. To consider how one can imagine anthropological inquiry and engagement differently, university-based anthropologists must interrogate the structures (physical, policy, and otherwise) that contextualize and shape the pedagogy, theory, and practice of our discipline. This paper explores sexual misconduct as a key locus for understanding the constraints on our discipline, as well as how addressing and responding to sexual misconduct demonstrates the potential for re-creation. Through an analysis of community-level sexual misconduct responses (including case studies from the non-profit sector, higher education, and the Society for Applied Anthropology and the American Anthropological Association), we examine the experiences, policies, and processes of sexual misconduct responses and prevention across three sites within higher education- the frontlines, institutions, and the discipline- to point to the possible transformative futures for our community. We question the acceptance, refusal, and adaptability of sexual misconduct policies and practices, drawing clearly from the anthropological commitment to local perspectives, voices, experiences, and structures. As anthropologists across the globe call for change to the often sexist, racist, and ableist approaches to education and training, this paper cautions against "quick-fix" solutions and refocuses our efforts to anthropology's strengths- holism and ethnographic studies.