Narratives of silence

Rethinking gender, agency, and power from the communication experiences of battered women in south india.

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Abstract

Feminist and critical scholars have reiterated the need and urgency for greater representation of the perspectives of marginalized groups in communication theorizing. This essay presents a feminist rethinking of agency, power, and gender from the standpoint of battered women in a shelter in south India. The notion of the autonomous, individual agent and the idea of power as an entity are revisited. Because the lives of oppressed women do not conform to the voluntaristic model of action, communication theory needs to problematize agency to reflect its political complexity. The narratives of battered women provide a perspective on the mechanisms of silencing by which women's subordination and limitations on their agency are achieved and maintained in a specific cultural context in India.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)303-317
Number of pages15
JournalCommunication Studies
Volume47
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 1996

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Autonomous agents
Information theory
India
narrative
communication
Communication
gender
experience
communication theory
Group

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Communication

Cite this

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