More than one in three women in the United States has experienced rape, physical violence, or stalking by an intimate partner in their lifetime. Luckily, many are able to escape this life—but what happens to them after? Journeys focuses on the desperately understudied topic of the resiliency of long-term (over 5 years) survivors of intimate partner violence and abuse. Drawing on participant observation research and interviews with women years after the end of their abusive relationships, author Susan L. Miller shares these women’s trials and tribulations, and expounds on the factors that facilitated these women’s success in gaining inner strength, personal efficacy, and transformation.
Written for researchers, practitioners, students, and policy makers in criminal justice, sociology, and social services, Journeys shares stories that hope to inspire other victims and survivors while illuminating the different paths to resiliency and growth.
Susan L. Miller is Professor of Sociology and Criminal Justice at the University of Delaware. She is the author of After the Crime: The Power of Restorative Justice Dialogues Between Victims and Violent Offenders and Victims as Offenders: The Paradox of Women's Violence in Relationships.
"The enormity of violence against women means womanhood cannot be understood without hearing how girls and women make sense of pain long after their escape from these damaging relationships. Miller’s work lets us hear these missing voices as they remake their lives, often drawing strength from harrowing experiences. Journeys also powerfully documents the ways that the criminal justice system fails girls and women. A must read."
—Meda Chesney-Lind, Professor, Women’s Studies, University of Hawaii at Manoa
"We picture survivors of intimate partner abuse in moments of crisis. What we don’t see is what happens to them after violent relationships end. In telling the stories of long-term survivors, Miller reveals that world. This insightful, moving book is required reading for anyone interested in helping survivors thrive after violence."
—Leigh Goodmark, author of A Troubled Marriage: Domestic Violence and the Legal System
"In her important book, Miller reveals the courage, tenacity, resistance, and even the humor displayed by survivors of intimate abuse in their journeys toward safety and recovery. This is a lively account of the powerful transformations women undergo in the aftermath of abusive relationships."—James Ptacek, editor of Restorative Justice and Violence Against Women
"Once again, Miller has written a highly readable and analytically impressive book that is a true exemplar of feminist criminology. Answering the question, "What happens after?" she gives voice to women who have survived intimate partner violence and abuse. Through their searing testimony and her ability to translate their lessons of resilience into policy reform proposals, she does a service to research and activism."
—Rosemary Barberet, Professor, John Jay College of Criminal Justice
"Journeys is a powerful analysis of the dynamics of abusive relationships and how long-term survivors construct meaning from their experiences. Miller’s sociological lens on resilience and post-traumatic growth sheds light on the social structures and institutions that challenge and shape women’s pathways to recovery. I urge policy makers, especially, to carefully read and follow Miller’s policy recommendations."
—Marjorie S. Zatz, author of Dreams and Nightmares: Immigration Policy, Youth, and Families
“Miller’s careful analysis offers a heartbreaking but ultimately empowering look into the lives of women who are long-term survivors of intimate partner violence and abuse. This book makes an important and much-needed contribution to the academic literature, yet the engaging writing style makes it accessible for a wider audience of students, practitioners, and policy-makers.”—Amanda Burgess-Proctor, Associate Professor of Criminal Justice, Oakland University