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Negotiating sexual agency in marriage: The experience of migrant and refugee women

Alexandra J Hawkey, Jane M Ussher, Janette Perz
Health Care for Women International 2019 April 15, : 1-28
In this study, adult migrant and refugee women's negotiation of sexual agency in the context of marriage is explored. In Sydney, Australia and Vancouver, Canada, 78 semistructured individual interviews, and 15 focus groups, comprised of 82 participants, were conducted with women who had recently migrated from Afghanistan, Iraq, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, Sri Lanka, and South America. Women's negotiation of sexual agency was evident with respect to husband choice, disclosure of sexual desire, pleasure, pain, and sexual consent. While some participants took up subjugated sexual subject positions reflecting dominant cultural or religious discourses, many women also resisted these discourses to enact sexual agency.


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