Torture and Torturous Violence

Transcending Definitional Boundaries of Torture

By Victoria Canning

Published

Jan 1, 2023

Page count

176 pages

ISBN

978-1529218435

Dimensions

Imprint

Bristol University Press

Published

Jan 1, 2023

Page count

176 pages

ISBN

978-1529218428

Dimensions

234 x 156 mm

Imprint

Bristol University Press

Published

Jan 1, 2023

Page count

176 pages

ISBN

978-1529218442

Dimensions

Imprint

Bristol University Press
Torture and Torturous Violence

There is growing recognition that torture is very narrowly defined in domestic and international laws, and that the endemic nature of psychological and/or sexualised violence against women is not adequately recognised as torture.

Concretely defining torturous violence, this book offers scholars and practitioners a nuanced way to critically reflect on how torture is defined, and the implications that narrow definitions may have on survivors. Drawing on over a decade of research and interviews with psychologists and women seeking asylum, it sets out the implications of social silencing of torture in its narrowest sense, and torturous violence more broadly. It invites us to consider alternative ways to understand and address the impacts of such endemic physical, sexualised and psychological abuses.

Victoria Canning is senior lecturer in Criminology at the University of Bristol. She is currently co-coordinator of the European Group for the Study of Deviance and Social Control, associate director in Border Criminologies at Oxford University, and Trustee of Statewatch. She researches violence, harm and torture, and has worked for more than a decade on migrant rights and women’s rights. She is co-creator of the Right to Remain Asylum Navigation Board (with Lisa Matthews), and her first monograph Gendered Harm and Structural Violence in the British Asylum System won the 2018 British Society of Criminology book prize.

Introduction: Why ‘Torture and Torturous Violence’?

1. Outlining the Definitional Boundaries of ‘Torture’

2. ‘Wandering Throughout Lives’: Outlining Forms and Impacts of Torture

3. ‘I wouldn’t Call it Torture’: Conceptualising Torturous Violence

4. Sexualised Torture and Sexually Torturous Violence

5. Experiential Epistemologies: Embedding the Lived Experience of Women Survivors

6. Unsilencing

7. Addressing and Responding to Torture and Torturous Violence