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Journal Article


Sardina A, Fox N. J. Interpers. Violence 2022; ePub(ePub): ePub.


(Copyright © 2022, SAGE Publishing)






Over the past two decades, America taken part of a broader global trend of "memorial mania" in which memorials dedicated to remembering injustice have exploded into public space. Memorials that facilitate the centering of marginalized narratives of violence hold significant power for social change. This article focuses on one such space: The Survivors Memorial in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The Survivors Memorial opened in October 2020 and is the first public memorial honoring survivors of sexual violence. Despite the progress of the anti-rape and feminist movements as well as a variety of legal interventions designed to address sexual violence and empower, many survivors are left without a sense of justice or institutional or community recognition. Drawing on 21 in-depth, qualitative interviews with individuals involved in all aspects of the memorial project, this article documents how one community mobilized to create a space for survivors whose voices are often overlooked, disbelieved and silenced by the criminal justice system, practitioners, and communities. In focusing on how participants narrate the significance and meaning of the Survivors Memorial, this article uncovers how social, political, and local circumstances coalesced to make the Memorial possible. These factors include local leadership, the prevalence of sexual violence, the unique structure of the Minneapolis park structure, and the rise of the #MeToo movement. Interviews illuminate that participants worked to intentionally construct the Memorial as an accessible and visible space that centers on providing all sexual violence survivors with public acknowledgment of their experiences, while simultaneously engaging community members in dialogs about sexual violence, ultimately, laying the foundation for sexual violence prevention efforts.

Language: en


sexual violence; rape; survivor; narrative; #metoo; memorials; mobilization


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