Une perspective intersectionnelle sur l'intervention en violence conjugale auprès des femmes immigrantes : les pratiques des intervenantes en maison d'hébergement du Québec

Authors: Castro Zavala, Sastal
Advisor: Lessard, Geneviève
Abstract: This thesis constitutes an analysis of intervention practices used with immigrant women victims of domestic violence (IWVDV) in shelters. The purpose of the research was to adopt an intersectional approach to explore how shelter workers in the Province of Quebec assessand choose to intervene in situations affecting IWVDV. Data collection was carried out using five focus groups and one clinical vignette to explore the different viewpoints of 33 shelterworkers in women’s shelters in four regions in the Province of Quebec (Montreal, Gatineau, Quebec City and Sherbrooke) regarding their experiences with IWVDV and their choices of intervention practices used with these women. A thematic content analysis enabled us to identify two discourses in the shelter workers regarding their experiences with IWVDV: one discourse centered on homogeneity and the other, on heterogeneity. Less present than the second, the first discourse tended to homogenize shelter workers’ views of the IWVDV’s experiences. This tendency can be explained by an essentialism gender-based view of women’s experiences. Feminist intervention in domestic violence—which is centered on the victimization of women and the domination of men and which is widely used in women’s shelters—is one explanation for the homogeneous vision among the shelter workers we met with. Our research also highlights both the positive and limiting aspects of this type of discourse. The second discourse puts more emphasis on the diversity and heterogeneity of the IWVDV. This heterogeneity can be seen as a consequence of structural oppression (laws, social policies, racism, discrimination, non-recognition of credentials), both in the countries of origin and in the host country. Our research helped us to identify in the shelter workers’ discourse a perception that the IWVDVwere more vulnerable to domestic violence. This vulnerability, according to the shelter workers, would seem to be the result of multiple forms of oppression stemming from the families, religious beliefs and cultural communities. The present thesis thus addresses issues arising from this type of discourse. Although the second discourse illustrates the complexity of the analysis carried out by the shelter workers regarding the IWVDV’s situation, this discourse remains somewhat disorganized. In terms of the shelter workers’ viewpoints about their interventions, our analysis enabled us to identify three main themes on which their discourse primarily focused: 1) the characteristics of an intervention in an intercultural context, 2) the factors affecting practices in an intercultural context, and 3) the challenges in addressing women’s empowerment. We discovered that the shelter workers recognized the different needs of the IWVDV regarding their different cultural belongings and their multiple social roles. According to the shelter workers, different strategies, particularly collective approaches, made it possible to integrate the cultural and religious dimensions of these belongings, and thereby encourage inclusion, respect, justice, and solidarity among women. A variety of factors influenced the practices adopted in intercultural contexts, in particular the language spoken, the social position, the immigrants’ status, and their immigration experience. The shelter workers were particularly concerned by the issue of empowerment in IWVDV. While the issue of “mothering” was recognized as a widespread practice when shelter workers intervened with women in this group, these same workers tended to be critical of this approach. The defense of immigrant women’s rights was also an approach widely used by the shelter workers to further the BIW’s empowerment. Regarding the adoption of an IP in interventions with IWVDV in shelters, we are able to conclude that this approach encourages inclusive practices because it takes into account a range of systems of oppression which interact in IWVDV’s lives. This perspective opens up opportunities for developing practices that draw on both micro and macro aspects—in particular, women’s identity and structural aspects—as well as reflexive practices. Use of Patricia Hill Collins’s evaluation grid shed new light on how the IP can be used in analyzing the shelter workers’ experiences and practices when working with IWVDV in women’sshelters. The present thesis also takes into consideration some of the limitations of this perspective, particularly as regards the role that gender should play in domestic violence analysis and intervention. Further intervention avenues and research topics are also proposed.
Document Type: Thèse de doctorat
Issue Date: 2020
Open Access Date: 14 February 2020
Permalink: http://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11794/38105
Grantor: Université Laval
Collection:Thèses et mémoires

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