14,968 research outputs found

    Victims' Access to Justice in Trinidad and Tobago: An exploratory study of experiences and challenges of accessing criminal justice in a post-colonial society

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    This thesis investigates victims' access to justice in Trinidad and Tobago, using their own narratives. It seeks to capture how their experiences affected their identities as victims and citizens, alongside their perceptions of legitimacy regarding the criminal justice system. While there have been some reforms in the administration of criminal justice in Trinidad and Tobago, such reforms have not focused on victims' accessibility to the justice system. Using grounded theory methodology, qualitative data was collected through 31 in-depth interviews with victims and victim advocates. The analysis found that victims experienced interpersonal, structural, and systemic barriers at varying levels throughout the criminal justice system, which manifested as institutionalized secondary victimization, silencing and inequality. This thesis argues that such experiences not only served to appropriate conflict but demonstrates that access is often given in a very narrow sense. Furthermore, it shows a failure to encompass access to justice as appropriated conflicts are left to stagnate in the system as there is often very little resolution. Adopting a postcolonial lens to analyse victims' experiences, the analysis identified othering practices that served to institutionalize the vulnerability and powerlessness associated with victim identities. Here, it is argued that these othering practices also affected the rights consciousness of victims, delegitimating their identities as citizens. Moreover, as a result of their experiences, victims had mixed perceptions of the justice system. It is argued that while the system is a legitimate authority victims' endorsement of the system is questionable, therefore victims' experiences suggest that there is a reinforcement of the system's legal hegemony. The findings suggest that within the legal system of Trinidad and Tobago, legacies of colonialism shape the postcolonial present as the psychology and inequalities of the past are present in the interactions and processes of justice. These findings are relevant for policymakers in Trinidad and Tobago and other regions. From this study it is recognized that, to improve access to justice for victims, there needs to be a move towards victim empowerment that promotes resilience and enhances social capital. Going forward it is noted that there is a need for further research

    Modifying Group Interpersonal Psychotherapy for Peripartum Adolescents in Sub-Saharan African Context: Reviewing Differential Contextual and Implementation Considerations

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    Background: This study describes adaptation and modification of World Health Organization (WHO) recommended group interpersonal psychotherapy (IPT-G) for depressed peripartum adolescents. The adaptation process includes accommodating contextual factors and strategies to address intervention implementation barriers, such as engagement problems with adolescents, caregivers, and providers, and stigma and dearth of mental health specialists. The modifications include and adolescent relevant iterations to the therapy format and content. Methods: A multi-stakeholder led two-stage intervention adaptation and modification process integrating mixed qualitative methods were used with pregnant and parenting adolescents, their partners, and health care workers. In-depth interviews focusing on personal, relationship, social, and cultural barriers experienced by adolescents were carried out modeled on the Consolidated Framework for Implementation Research. Focus group discussions with depressed adolescents on their experiences, feedback from caregivers, partners, health workers inform focused modifications. An IPT expert committee of three practitioners, along with UNICEF adolescent officer, and mental health policy expert from Ministry of Health and representative community advisory body reviewed the adaptations and modifications made to the WHO IPT-G manual. Discussion: Integration of mental health needs of peripartum adolescents as demonstrated in the stakeholder engagement process, adaptation of key terms into locally relevant language, determination of number of sessions, and user-centric design modifications to digitize a brief version of group interpersonal psychotherapy are presented

    Enforcement of Gun Control Laws and Minority Communities: Finding the Right Balance Between Public Safety and Limiting Mass Incarceration

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    This thesis is on the enforcement of gun control laws on minorities, and whether the enforcement of those laws discriminate against them. My research question is, “Does gun control still discriminate against non-white people?” I compared New York City and South Carolina. I wanted a liberal area with strict gun laws and a conservative area with loose gun laws. Those areas provided the necessary racial breakdown. I researched the statistics of people in prison for firearm violations in these areas and other crimes. I looked at the SAFE Act that was passed in NYC, and whether minority populations in prison increased after it was passed. I analyzed data from the NYPD, the SC Law Enforcement Division, and the SC Department of Public Safety. I used data from the NRA to see which gun control laws NYC and SC have. I predicted minority populations incarcerated would increase after the SAFE Act was passed, and there would be less minority populations incarcerated for gun crimes in SC than NYC. My findings were not what I expected. There were less Black people in prison for gun crimes after the SAFE Act was passed, and about the same for other minorities. There were lots of Black people arrested in SC for gun crimes, which was much higher than other crimes. This indicates 1) the SAFE Act is not discriminatory towards minorities, and 2) minorities are discriminated against with gun laws, including loose gun laws

    Lift EVERY Voice and Sing: An Intersectional Qualitative Study Examining the Experiences of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Queer Faculty and Administrators at Historically Black Colleges and Universities

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    While there is minimal literature that address the experiences of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and trans* identified students at Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs), the experiences of Black, queer faculty and administrators at HBCUs has not been studied. This intersectional qualitative research study focused on the experiences of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and queer identified faculty and administrators who work at HBCUs. By investigating the intersections of religion, race, gender, and sexuality within a predominantly Black institution, this study aims to enhance diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts at HBCUs by sharing the experiences of the LGBQ faculty and administrators that previously or currently work at an HBCU as a full-time employee. The research questions that guided this study were 1) How have LGBQ faculty and staff negotiated/navigated their careers at HBCUs? and 2) How do LGBQ faculty and staff at HBCUs influence cultural (relating to LGBQ inclusion) change at the organizational level? The main theoretical framework used was intersectionality and it shaped the chosen methodology and methods. The Politics of Respectability was the second theoretical framework used to describe the intra-racial tensions within the Black/African American community. The study included 60-120 minute interviews with 12 participants. Using intersectionality as a guide, the data were coded and utilized for thematic analysis. Then, an ethnodramatic performance engages readers. The goals of this study were to encourage policy changes, promote inclusivity for LGBQ employees at HBCUs, and provide an expansion to the body of literature in the field pertaining to the experiences of LGBQ faculty and administrators in higher education

    Animating potential for intensities and becoming in writing: challenging discursively constructed structures and writing conventions in academia through the use of storying and other post qualitative inquiries

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    Written for everyone ever denied the opportunity of fulfilling their academic potential, this is ‘Chloe’s story’. Using composite selves, a phrase chosen to indicate multiplicities and movement, to story both the initial event leading to ‘Chloe’s’ immediate withdrawal from a Further Education college and an imaginary second chance to support her whilst at university, this Deleuzo-Guattarian (2015a) ‘assemblage’ of post qualitative inquiries offers challenge to discursively constructed structures and writing conventions in academia. Adopting a posthuman approach to theorising to shift attention towards affects and intensities always relationally in action in multiple ‘assemblages’, these inquiries aim to decentre individual ‘lecturer’ and ‘student’ identities. Illuminating movements and moments quivering with potential for change, then, hoping thereby to generate second chances for all, different approaches to writing are exemplified which trouble those academic constraints by fostering inquiry and speculation: moving away from ‘what is’ towards ‘what if’. With the formatting of this thesis itself also always troubling the rigid Deleuzo-Guattarian (2015a) ‘segmentary lines’ structuring orthodox academic practice, imbricated in these inquiries are attempts to exemplify Manning’s (2015; 2016) ‘artfulness’ through shifts in thinking within and around an emerging PhD thesis. As writing resists organising, the verb thesisising comes into play to describe the processes involved in creating this always-moving thesis. Using ‘landing sites’ (Arakawa and Gins, 2009) as a landscaping device, freely creating emerging ‘lines of flight’ (Deleuze and Guattari, 2015a) so often denied to students forced to adhere to strict academic conventions, this ‘movement-moving’ (Manning, 2014) opens up opportunities for change as in Manning’s (2016) ‘research-creation’. Arguing for a moving away from writing-representing towards writing-inquiring, towards a writing ‘that does’ (Wyatt and Gale, 2018: 127), and toward writing as immanent doing, it is hoped to animate potential for intensities and becoming in writing, offering opportunities and glimmerings of the not-yet-known

    ‘An illicit and criminal intercourse’: Adultery and Marital Breakdown in the Slaveholding South

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    This article examines divorce petitions filed by white, southern women in the nineteenth century slaveholding South that specifically cited ‘adultery’ or ‘illicit relations’ between their husbands and Black enslaved women, as a reason for seeking a dissolution of marriage. White women have until fairly recently been exonerated from blame in slavery, seen as either benevolent bystanders to the worst excesses of slavery, or at least partial victims themselves in the matrix of uneven gender relations in marriage. Yet, increasingly more evidence has shown that white slaveholding women, wielded ‘soft power’ in their own right. They manipulated their reputations as ‘good southern wives and mothers’ to win the favour of the courts, by discrediting their wayward husbands and the enslaved women with whom they engaged in sexual relationships with, in their divorce petitions submitted to the higher authority of the courts. This often resulted in their divorce petitions being granted and alimony awarded, which enabled them to support themselves and their children as single women. The court petitions thus provide vital evidence in further understanding how race, class and gender interacted, to provide a measure of agency for some white women, whilst reinforcing the constraints of negative gendered racial stereotypes for Black, enslaved women

    Building body identities - exploring the world of female bodybuilders

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    This thesis explores how female bodybuilders seek to develop and maintain a viable sense of self despite being stigmatized by the gendered foundations of what Erving Goffman (1983) refers to as the 'interaction order'; the unavoidable presentational context in which identities are forged during the course of social life. Placed in the context of an overview of the historical treatment of women's bodies, and a concern with the development of bodybuilding as a specific form of body modification, the research draws upon a unique two year ethnographic study based in the South of England, complemented by interviews with twenty-six female bodybuilders, all of whom live in the U.K. By mapping these extraordinary women's lives, the research illuminates the pivotal spaces and essential lived experiences that make up the female bodybuilder. Whilst the women appear to be embarking on an 'empowering' radical body project for themselves, the consequences of their activity remains culturally ambivalent. This research exposes the 'Janus-faced' nature of female bodybuilding, exploring the ways in which the women negotiate, accommodate and resist pressures to engage in more orthodox and feminine activities and appearances

    Towards a sociology of conspiracy theories: An investigation into conspiratorial thinking on Dönmes

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    This thesis investigates the social and political significance of conspiracy theories, which has been an academically neglected topic despite its historical relevance. The academic literature focuses on the methodology, social significance and political impacts of these theories in a secluded manner and lacks empirical analyses. In response, this research provides a comprehensive theoretical framework for conspiracy theories by considering their methodology, political impacts and social significance in the light of empirical data. Theoretically, the thesis uses Adorno's semi-erudition theory along with Girardian approach. It proposes that conspiracy theories are methodologically semi-erudite narratives, i.e. they are biased in favour of a belief and use reason only to prove it. It suggests that conspiracy theories appear in times of power vacuum and provide semi-erudite cognitive maps that relieve alienation and ontological insecurities of people and groups. In so doing, they enforce social control over their audience due to their essentialist, closed-to-interpretation narratives. In order to verify the theory, the study analyses empirically the social and political significance of conspiracy theories about the Dönme community in Turkey. The analysis comprises interviews with conspiracy theorists, conspiracy theory readers and political parties, alongside a frame analysis of the popular conspiracy theory books on Dönmes. These confirm the theoretical framework by showing that the conspiracy theories are fed by the ontological insecurities of Turkish society. Hence, conspiracy theorists, most readers and some political parties respond to their own ontological insecurities and political frustrations through scapegoating Dönmes. Consequently, this work shows that conspiracy theories are important symptoms of society, which, while relieving ontological insecurities, do not provide politically prolific narratives
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