Something to think about before we start:
Thank you for joining us on the course. Violence against women and girls is a topic which can evoke strong emotions.
Given the international statistical information available to us it is also likely that many of you taking this course will have either direct or indirect experience of violence against women and girls in family, interpersonal or social settings. For some of you, this may well have influenced your decision to study with us on the course. Everyone’s experience will be unique and will influence how you interpret the materials in the course.
Some of the material you may well find distressing and evocative of previous experiences in your own or others’ lives. Please remember that this distress is natural and that it is important to take care of yourself
. Sometimes that self-care will involve simply giving yourself time and space to let the memories wash over and then recede but sometimes it will be necessary to talk it over with someone or to seek support. This might come from friends or family but sometimes might need the involvement of an agency – medical practitioner, counsellor, social worker, rape crisis service, women’s aid refuge or shelter. We are unable to list the specific agencies available to offer help with these issues across national and international boundaries however it may be useful for everyone, at the outset to do a little research in your local community/geographical area to find out what services exist and how accessible these are. Useful search terms might include domestic abuse, violence against women, rape crisis, women’s aid, women’s support; other combinations will be possible and the search might give you some interesting things to think about in relation to your own community.
Please remember the above, be mindful of yourself and respectful of others
when engaging in group discussions and in responding to other people’s posts. Your personal experience is wholly that – it is unique and personal to you – and cannot be used as evidence of more general points that you may wish to make. Please only share information about yourself that you are comfortable making available in the course’s public online platform. Please be sensitive to the potential for causing distress to yourself and to others in what you say and post
during your time studying on this course.
This course is designed to stimulate thinking and ideas around violence against women and girls. It is a topic that is challenging and multi-faceted. You will be introduced to some wide sociological concepts such as gender, power and violence in order to help you make connections with underpinning theories and the lived realities for women living with violence the world over.
Each week there will be a series of short lectures, reading materials, video extracts and opportunities for online discussion. There will be quizzes for you to test your knowledge development and we will be hosting YouTube live stream events where you will have the opportunity to ask us direct questions.