Book Review: Gender identity, sexual orientation, and sexual assault: Challenging the myths

AuthorShanna Felix
Published date01 December 2022
Date01 December 2022
Subject MatterBook Reviews
common method of creating meaning and keeping faith despite their negative experiences. Dr. Miller
details the importance of social networks and how certain ones either helped or hindered women in
their journeys. Personal support networks such as family, friends, and churches often played integral
roles. Other social networks such as coworkers and bosses, the justice/legal system, victim advocates,
and support/advocacy groups were also mentioned as being a large part of the leaving process.
Journeys offers an expansive and insightful narrative into the process of leaving and staying out
of an intimate partner abuse situation.
Dr. Miller uses a survivor-focused approach in her methodology. She performed f‌ieldwork attend-
ing WIND meetings to understand the womens approach to overcoming IPV/A. She also conducted
interviews with a sample of 31 participants who had ended their abusive relationships and had been
living abuse-free for 5 years, obtained with purposive, convenience, and snowball sampling methods.
She uses a feminist research design, as IPV/A disproportionately affects women. Throughout the
book, she explores gendered patterns in behavior of women and abusers. Dr. Miller uses a qualitative
methodology to capture survivorsexperiences through their own narratives. Although survivors
stories often share common themes and patterns, every case of IPV/A is individualistic, and survivors
create meaning and develop resilience in their own ways. Dr. Millers sample primarily consists of
women from WIND, and a small weakness may arise in that some survivors prefer support-style
groups as opposed to advocacy and educationfocused groups like WIND, and a subset of women
with different experiences may be missed. Future research might explore similarities and differences
between victim and survivor identities, and differences between women who prefer support-focused
to advocacy-focused groups, or vice versa. This book, because of its survivor focus, does not address
why abusive partners do what they do and is unsuitable for someone looking into causes of IPV/A.
Dr. Miller cites relevant sources throughout the book to support the themes and patterns she dis-
cusses that emerge in situations of IPV/A. Her work contributes to the literature on IPV/A by pro-
viding an organized account, through survivorsnarrative, of the process of being involved in, to
leaving and staying out of an abusive relationship and the challenges that accompany each stage.
Her work focuses on survivorsmethods of f‌inding support, meaning, and resilience, as well as
the factors that help and hinder them along the way. Journeys is an in-depth look into IPV/A and
is educational and informative for scholars interested in IPV/A, survivors of IPV/A, friends and
family of survivors, and anyone who is interested in learning more about IPV/A. This book
would work well in classes focused on domestic violence, victimology, womens issues, or
gender and crime. It provides both an expansive and detailed understanding of the leaving and
healing process, and the many challenges that encompass, for survivors of IPV/A. Dr. Miller pays
respect to survivors, their stories, challenges, and victories through her book and contributes to
the literature on domestic violence and intimate partner abuse through detailed accounts of the after-
math of abusive relationships.
Schulze, C., Koon-Magnin, S., & Bryan, V. (2019). Gender identity, sexual orientation, and sexual assault: Challenging
the myths. Boulder, CO: Lynne Rienner. 235 pp. $79.95 (hardcover), ISBN 978-1-62637-778-3.
Reviewed by: Shanna Felix ,Georgia State University, Atlanta, GA, USA
DOI: 10.1177/0734016819884099
In Gender Identity, Sexual Orientation, and Sexual Assault: Challenging the Myths, authors Corina
Schulze, Sarah Koon-Magnin, and Valerie Bryan discuss the results of their mixed methods study
about the lives of members of the queer community (i.e., gender and sexual minorities). The
524 Criminal Justice Review 47(4)

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