South African women's still-increasing presence in local, provincial, and national institutions has inspired sweeping legislation aimed at advancing women's rights and opportunity. Yet the country remains plagued by sexual assault, rape, and intimate partner violence.
Hannah E. Britton examines the reasons gendered violence persists in relationship to social inequalities even after women assume political power. Venturing into South African communities, Britton invites service providers, religious and traditional leaders, police officers, and medical professionals to address gender-based violence in their own words. Britton finds the recent turn toward carceral solutions—with a focus on arrests and prosecutions—fails to address the complexities of the problem and looks at how changing specific community dynamics can defuse interpersonal violence. She also examines how place and space affect the implementation of policy and suggests practical ways policymakers can support street level workers.
Clear-eyed and revealing, Ending Gender-Based Violence offers needed tools for breaking cycles of brutality and inequality around the world.