Unwanted Sexual Attention in the Night-Time Economy: Behaviors, Safety Strategies, and Conceptualizing “Feisty Femininity”

Gunby, Clare; Carline, Anna; Taylor, Stuart and Gosling, Helena (2020). Unwanted Sexual Attention in the Night-Time Economy: Behaviors, Safety Strategies, and Conceptualizing “Feisty Femininity”. Feminist Criminology, 15(1) pp. 24–46.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1177/1557085119865027

Abstract

Almost nothing is known about “unwanted sexual attention” and women’s navigation of it when in bars and nightclubs. Using focus group discussions, this article addresses that gap. It develops knowledge of the behaviors that constitute unwanted, the safety strategies used to manage them, and examines how these practices underpin gender performance in night-time spaces: environments renowned for the dilemmas they pose to women. We then use these data to develop the concept “feisty femininity” to highlight a neglected form of femininity that overtly resists unwanted encounters. This femininity can arguably play a role in efforts aimed at ending gendered violence.

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