Dominating experiences: psychic and symbolic violence against Romani women in Hungary

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This chapter explores violence against Romani women in Hungary, not as individual discrimination or institutional racism, but as unconscious aggression that socializes and legitimizes violence. The chapter builds on the theoretical work of Pierre Bourdieu, who argued that there are forms of violence beyond the physical, including symbolic violence, which normalizes structural and physical violence in the repetitions of everyday speech. Through an application of theoretical contributions of the Hungarian psychoanalyst Sándor Ferenczi, the chapter introduces an additional form of violence: psychic violence, which is the unconscious denial of the subjective experiences of those imagined to be targets, imagined to be “other”. The chapter concludes with Ferenczi’s argument that in order to overcome such violence, each of us must reflect on the ways in which we might act out aggression on others, not only in terms of physical violence, but also the in ways that we speak and think.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationGendered violence/s in Gypsy, Romani and Traveller research
Subtitle of host publicationexploring dilemmas, traditions, and positions
EditorsRaluca Bianca Roman, Paloma Gay y Blasco, Iliana Sarafian, Lynne Tammi
Publication statusSubmitted - May 2023


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