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Positionality Statement

"The process of empowerment cannot be simplistically defined in accordance with our own particular class interests. We must learn to lift as we climb."

~ Angela Davis


As a researcher and educator, social justice lies at the heart of the work I choose to do. It informs my study designs, methodologies and interpretation of the data​. The importance of pursuing social justice also influences what I emphasize when teaching and speaking publicly.

My research experience is in examining how the White cis-heteronormative patriarchy of American culture has shaped individual responses to, and experiences of, sexual- and gender-based violence. In studying identity-based violence, the effectiveness of violence prevention programs, victim help-seeking and the incongruencies of victim blaming behavior, I often find wide gaps between what a person says they believe, how they act, and how they justify how they and others act. I believe many of these contradictions have roots in the various internalized gender, sexual and racial norms of American culture. ​

 I acknowledge that my Whiteness and education affords me privileges that others do not equally benefit from, and I seek to address this inequity in praxis as well as development of theory. On a personal note, as a woman, I have experienced sexual violence and gender-based discrimination directly, in education, the workforce, and in private life. ​

Each of these factors contributes to my awareness of, and desire to seek change, in the systemic inequalities of American society through rigorous research and public education.​

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