Feminist politics and framing contests: Domestic Violence Policy in Scotland and Wales

Nickie Charles, Fiona Mackay

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Devolution in the UK in the 1990s resulted in newly gendered political
opportunity structures for feminists seeking to influence the political
agenda and pursue ‘women-friendly’ policy outcomes. There is, however,
little work that compares jurisdictions across the UK. This paper
provides a preliminary comparison of the politics of a classic feminist
issue – domestic violence – in Scotland and Wales. We examine how, and
with what effect, devolution has opened up opportunities to promote
feminist frames and policy preferences. Despite some key similarities in
Scotland and Wales, notably, high numbers of female parliamentarians,
well-established refuge movement organizations and opportunities presented
by aspirations for a new and more open politics, there are significant
differences with respect to timing, framing and policy approaches
in each place. In particular, we argue that asymmetric devolution has
created different ‘devolution effects’ which in turn shape and constrain
framing contests with different outcomes for feminist politics and for
women.
Original languageEnglish
Article numberDOI: 10.1177/0261018313483488
Pages (from-to)593-615
Number of pages22
JournalCritical Social Policy
Volume33
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2013

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