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Violence against Women in Kentucky: A History of U.S. and State Legislative Reform

by Carol E. Jordan

Availablecloth$40.00s 978-0-8131-4491-7
Availableepub$40.00s 978-0-8131-4494-8
Availableweb pdf$40.00s 978-0-8131-4493-1
480 pages  Pubdate: 06/03/2014  6 x 9  64 b&w photos, 2 figures, 5 tables

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For more than two centuries, Kentucky women have fought for the right to vote, own property, control their wages, and be safe at home and in the workplace. Tragically, many of these women’s voices have been silenced by abuse and violence. In Violence against Women in Kentucky: A History of U.S. and State Legislative Reform, Carol E. Jordan chronicles the stories of those who have led the legislative fight for the last four decades to protect women from domestic violence, rape, stalking, and related crimes.

The story of Kentucky’s legislative reforms is a history of substantial toil, optimism, advocacy, and personal sacrifice by those who proposed the change. This compelling narrative illustrates, through their own points of view, the stories of survivors who serve as inspiration for change. Jordan analyzes national legislative reforms as well as the strategies that have been used to enact and enforce legislation addressing rape and domestic violence at a local level.

Violence against Women in Kentucky is the first book to look at the history of domestic violence and rape in a state that consistently falls at the bottom of women’s rights rankings, as told by the activists and survivors who fought for change. Detailing the successes and failures of reforms and outlining the work that is still to be done, this volume reflects on the future of women’s rights legislation in Kentucky.

Carol E. Jordan is the executive director of the Office for Policy Studies on Violence Against Women at the University of Kentucky and holds faculty appointments in the departments of psychology and psychiatry. She is a coauthor of Intimate Partner Violence: A Clinical Training Guide for Mental Health Professionals and Women and Victimization: Contributing Factors, Interventions, and Implications.

Jordan situates legislation on violence against women in the larger political context and brings together the issues of rape, stalking, and intimate partner abuse, which are too frequently discussed in isolation. This interesting and informative book provides an overview of the research on domestic violence and catalogues the legislative accomplishments of activists in Kentucky over the last forty years. -- Leigh Goodmark, author of A Troubled Marriage: Domestic Violence and the Legal System

Violence Against Women in Kentucky is a beautifully written, meticulously researched history of violence against women social policy at the state and national level. Ms. Jordan deftly weaves together the stories of grassroots efforts and legislative reforms to show how the people of Kentucky and the nation have come together to address this public health epidemic and criminal justice system crisis. -- Rebecca Campbell, professor of psychology, Michigan State University

Jordan, who calls on her knowledge and experience in the field, presents a well-researched look at legislative progress and more. -- Kentucky Monthly

Jordan, who calls on her knowledge and experience in the field...presents a well-researched look at legislative progress and more. -- Kentucky Monthly

For those who work with or study the victims and/or offenders of these crimes in Kentucky, this book is an indispensible resource that will provide them with a clear understanding of how we got to where we are. -- Criminal Law and Criminal Justice Books

[The book] succeeds admirably in its goal of chronicling the laws and legislative changes that are its focus.
[. . .] [Jordan] gives a nice overview of the unintended consequences of some of the earliest reforms in those arenas, such as mandatory arrest laws in cases of domestic violence. In general, the book will be very useful as a sourcebook to other Kentucky activists on these issues. -- Journal of Southern History

Carol E. Jordan’s study of domestic violence, rape, and stalking reforms in
Kentucky is a timely book that addresses the struggles encountered by grassroots and formal advocacy groups in achieving legislative victories. -- West Virginia History

Jordan brings together discussions of domestic violence, stalking, rape, sexual abuse and harassment, murder, and psychological and emotional abuse. Using records from both the Kentucky House and Senate and personal interviews with activists, legislators, and victims of violence, Jordan has assembled an impressive chronicle of legislative changes over the past forty years. [. . .] This is the greatest strength of the book. Jordan’s chronicle of legislative reforms in Kentucky is thorough and detailed. -- Register of the Kentucky Historical Society