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Strategies for Social Change$
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Gregory M. Maney, Rachel V. Kutz-Flamenbaum, and Deana A. Rohlinger

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780816672899

Published to Minnesota Scholarship Online: August 2015

DOI: 10.5749/minnesota/9780816672899.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM MINNESOTA SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.minnesota.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of Minnesota Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in MNSO for personal use.date: 21 September 2021

The Politics of Coming Out: Visibility and Identity in Activism against Child Sexual Abuse

The Politics of Coming Out: Visibility and Identity in Activism against Child Sexual Abuse

Chapter:
(p.145) 7 The Politics of Coming Out: Visibility and Identity in Activism against Child Sexual Abuse
Source:
Strategies for Social Change
Author(s):

Nancy Whittier

Publisher:
University of Minnesota Press
DOI:10.5749/minnesota/9780816672899.003.0007

This chapter discusses the relationship between identity strategies and social change by looking at studies on activism against child sexual abuse. It analyzes the concept of “coming out” in theorizing the relationship between collective and individual identities and movement strategy. Coming out is a movement strategy that includes public identity disclosure, internal group definitions of collective identity, and emotion-laden individual transformations of identity. The chapter emphasizes two main points: first, collective identity cannot be fully understood without the knowledge of individual identity; secondly, collective and individual identities are closely related to the state and to other social movements as well as to larger cultural themes. Coming out then becomes a way of connecting identity disclosure to social change, much like racial or ethnic pride.

Keywords:   sexual child abuse activism, identity strategies, social change, coming out, identity transformations, collective identity, individual identity, identity disclosure

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