In Their Own Voices: Immigrant Arab-Muslim Women's Experiences with Interpersonal Violence in the U.S.
Research has established that the experience of immigrant women with interpersonal violence is directly affected by their multiple layers of identity. This presentation uses the analytic concept of “intersectionality” (Crenshaw, 1994) or as stated by Abraham (2000) “ethno-gender” to examine the dynamics of interpersonal violence among Arab-Muslim women immigrants living in the U.S. The paper is based on a narrative analysis from interviews with 48 battered immigrant Arab-Muslim women living in various areas in the U.S.. The analysis explores the extent, nature and effect of interpersonal violence in the lives of this group of women. It further discusses the experiences of this ethnic/religious group of battered immigrant women in terms of accessing services that are directly related to dealing and reducing the violence. More particularly the women’s assessment of services provided by law enforcement, emergency room services and the courts are presented. The paper concludes with a discussion on the similarities and differences between this group of women’s needs and those women who belong to main stream society. Policy implications are included in this concluding section.
Keywords: Interpersonal Violence, Immigrant Women, Arab-Muslim
Dr. Nawal Ammar
Professor and Dean, Faculty of Criminology, Justice and Policy Studies, University of Ontario Institute of Technology