Wednesday, March 27, 2013

What is Structural Violence? This is from the "USA to Uganda: Cultural Difference and Social Change" page, I did not write it. This is brilliant!

Structural violence is often defined in light of direct violence. Direct violence is an action or behavior such as fighting, killing, or physical or emotional abuse that insults the basic needs of others; structural violence indirectly deprives basic human needs through exploitation and abuse built into political, economic, and social structures and institutions. The inherent nature of and problem with structural violence is that it is so difficult to define and to grasp. Certain forms of suffering are easy to observe, but the suffering of those oppressed by structural violence is so complex and so deeply ingrained in our world's structures. Structural violence easily becomes "the way the world works" or "an unfortunate reality;" then, structures of violence are dismissed by many (knowingly or unknowingly) as too difficult to discuss, confront, or change. Paul Farmer writes: "Structural violence all too often defeats those who would describe it." Furthermore, even the victims of structural violence (and it could be argued that all are victims in one way or another) cannot entirely see how their plight is choreographed by these complex structures of inequality. Nevertheless, it is crucial to look at these structures and to break them down.


  1. As an autistic diagnosed in his early 40's, I can tell you that if you are not prepared to face what you are describing as something you wont escape and cannot handle, you'd better hide somewhere?

    Many people do just that with a secure job, same home and family and friends throughout their lives. Simple.

    Otherwise you'd better find a way to cope. Of course people hurt you. The more you try and make something of yourself the more it happens.

    I cannot even remember what I've been through. School, Poly, you name it? Incredible stuff to relate. Boo hoo me.

    Aspies. Be strong, take it on the chin and come back for more.


  2. We live in such an ableist society. It is very sad to see a fellow aspie take on that whole mentality. I think it is a form of structural violence when a person's value is so narrowly defined: we are so much more than what we contribute to an economic system, I think you make a valuable contribution, girl outside the box.

  3. Also, to that aspie that spoke above, you might be higher functioning than some other aspies but that doesn't make their struggles any less real. Not everyone can live a "normal" life, but it does not mean they are any less valuable as people.