The Battered Woman and Shelters: The Social Construction of Wife Abuse

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Editorial Reviews

Using ethnographic data of shelters for battered women, from the perspective of the workers, shows how standardized images of abuse social services, and the workers' interpretation of their intervention into clients' lives. Paper edition (unseen), $14.95. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (
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Product Details

Table of Contents

Introduction: Social Problems Work and the Study of Wife Abuse 1
Ch. 1 Collective Representations 13
The Collective Representation of Wife Abuse 14
The Collective Representation of the Battered Woman 21
The Collective Representation of Shelters 29
Summary 38
Ch. 2 Schemes of Interpretation and Practical Experience 41
Social Problems and Moral Stances 42
Interpretive Schemes and Practical Experience 47
Summary 53
Ch. 3 Collective Representations and the Formal Organization of Shelter Work 57
Collective Representations and the Organization of South Coast 58
Collective Representations, Administrators, and Workers at South Coast 62
Collective Representations and Organizational Decision-Making 68
Summary 69
Ch. 4 Identifying the Battered Woman 71
The Practicalities of Client Selection 72
The Practicalities of Identification 78
Categorizations and Justifications 82
Commonsense Interpretations, Categorizations, and Justifications 90
Summary 92
Ch. 5 Transforming Clients 95
Interpretive Schemes, Organizational Structure, and Identity Transformation 97
Constructing the Battered Woman 101
Supporting the Battered Woman 104
The Activities of Support 107
Summary 112
Ch. 6 Making Sense of Shelter Work 117
Troubles and Disappointments 118
Making Sense of Interpersonal Troubles 125
Practical Sensemaking and Failures to Neutralize Troubles 132
Making Sense of Success 136
Summary 141
Ch. 7 Social Problems Work and the Reproduction of Public Problems 147
Appendix: Data and Data Collection at South Coast 167
Notes 173
References 201
Index 213
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