Place-based understandings of ‘risk’ and ‘danger’ through a gendered lens – experiences of sexual violence in a deprived coastal town in the UK

Aniela Michelle Wenham*, Hannah Joy Louise Jobling

*Corresponding author for this work

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Foregrounding the voices of young women in a deprived coastal context in the UK, this paper explores the intersection of place, class, gender and marginalisation. Drawing upon participatory qualitative research, the paper focuses on the following key themes: (1) how young women navigate perceptions of ‘risk’ through the everyday realities of the locale, (2) experiences of sexual violence and abuse (3) and finally, how normative depictions of ‘risky behaviour’ correspond to the accounts of women’s (sexual) agency. By rooting the analysis of place-based inequalities through a gendered lens, the findings help illuminate the complex relationship between structural context and the regulation of gender and sexuality. The paper also draws attention to the structural factors that reproduce class-based stigma for people who are deemed ‘at risk’ in places that are characterised as ‘left behind’. In doing so, the paper provides alternative agendas for policy and practice that aim to support young women who experience place-based marginalisation.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of Youth Studies
Early online date21 Nov 2023
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 21 Nov 2023

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© 2023 The Author(s)

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