Australia – A Land for Young Women? Exploring Young Women's Positioning in Contemporary Australian Family Violence Discourses

Bianca Johnston, Catherine Flynn, Faith Gordon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Young women in Australia experience serious risks from intimate partner violence (IPV) as a form of family violence. However, there has been a lack of attention to the impact of this on young women and, as a result, these risks are not well understood. This article critically examines existing literature, policy and research and in doing so, specifically explores the ways in which young women aged between 10 and 20 years old are represented and positioned in contemporary family violence discourses. Framed by a review of socio-political and cultural history, the paper highlights the early colonial, patriarchal foundations of Australia, which have specific implications for the challenges that contemporary young women experience in situations of IPV. With a particular emphasis on the Australian context, this article employs both an intersectional and critical feminist lens, with a key focus on the dimensions of adolescent development and youth social geographies. Focusing specifically on these dimensions, including development, gender and age, highlights the important role that feminist social work perspectives and practices can contribute to uncovering, understanding and responding to young women's experiences of intimate partner violence through policy and advocacy.

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages16
JournalAffilia: Journal of Women and Social Work
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2022


  • feminist theories and research
  • intersectionality
  • intimate partner violence
  • social work/social welfare history and philosophy
  • young women

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