Submission note: A thesis submitted in total fulfilment of the requirement for the degree of Master of Arts [to the] Department of Social Inquiry, School of Humanities and Social Sciences (Crime, Justice and Legal Studies), College of Arts, Social Sciences and Commerce, La Trobe University, Victoria, Australia.
The feminist conceptualisation of gender inequality has influenced many studies concerning violence that occurs between two intimate people. However, there has been little research focused on South Sudanese-Australians, especially men as victims, interveners, or perpetrators of domestic violence. South Sudanese-Australian families, in general, encounter challenges during their settlement period, and these can be worsened by the perpetration, victimisation and witnessing of domestic violence. South Sudanese-Australian men are caught between two cultures: Australian and South Sudanese. They are generally included in mainstream, culturally and linguistically diverse, or ‘African communities’ domestic violence studies without consideration of the diversity of African cultures, languages and practices in Australia. This thesis distinguishes this group by aiming to examine the relationship between masculinity and the perpetration of and response to domestic violence in the South Sudanese community in Greater Melbourne. It will explore their past traumatic experiences in a war and refugee camps, and their experiences of social inequalities in the host country Australia. It further investigates the suitability and accessibility of current prevention and perpetrator services, intervention programs, and the roles South Sudanese-Australian men play in negotiating their masculinities and involvement in matters of domestic violence within their community in Victoria. This thesis objective is to provide a clearer model of the challenges faced by South Sudanese-Australian men in their roles as victims, perpetrators and interveners in the field of domestic violence. The thesis adopted the use of gender-based theory and critical race theory while employing the use of qualitative research to collect semi-structured in-depth interviews with participants. What is compelling about this thesis is my subject position as a South Sudanese woman who seeks to provide more accurate information on the perceptions of the South Sudanese community on the problem of domestic violence in order to more effectively understand and respond to the issue.
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