Violence against women in politics is a phenomenon whose conceptual contours are only now starting to be more clearly defined.
It is a ‘problem with no name’ and of many dimensions. And it is a problem that is getting worse, with a recent Fawcett society study finding over 74% of women surveyed said they would not stand as an MP, citing abuse and harassment as reasons for not pursuing a career in politics.
The roundtable’s keynote speaker, Dame Laura Cox, gave an impassioned address for sustaining and nourishing the art of effective communication, which features in the special edition of the journal. In building on her Independent Report to the UK parliament on Bullying and Harassment of House of Commons Staff, she made several recommendations, from more rigorous parliamentary procedures to address harassment, to increasing the number of women in decision-making positions.
The ensuing workshop saw various papers addressing the issues of misogyny in political life, from the harassment of female MPs and political candidates to legislative blind spots on domestic abuse. The papers all feature in the special edition of the journal.
Publishers Wiley are making the publication free to view for a month from the date of publication.
This special issue of The Political Quarterly examines the many dimensions of this problem within the UK, focusing on how a culture of incivility and discrimination fuels bullying, harassment, and physical violence against women in public office and in the private spheres.
Anyone interested in British politics, political sociology, feminism, and feminist and political theory will find this special issue of particular importance.