Towards Trangression

From Vision, Violence, and Voice: A journey from liminal to transgressive spaces by Stephanie Urso Spina:

What one does first and foremost is survive the trauma — to persist in spite of it. Then one works (perhaps for a lifetime) to process it, often in uniquely personal ways. Thus, it remains a part of one’s history, one’s self. Some after-effects of trauma will always be with me but I suspect that most of these are common, although possibly in a lesser degree, to the fortuity of having been born female. For example, I startle more than most at loud noises or sudden movements. Until a few years ago, I went to great lengths to avoid traveling alone at night, even if just a short drive to the local grocery store. I remain hyper-vigilant, but given the proclivities of the society we live in, that is more likely prudence than psychogenic pathology.

 The point is that the goal is not to transcend trauma but to endure — and not without cost. Proteanism recognizes that the pain and despair never completely disappear. It is not an effort to “fix people,” but to understand them in all of their complexity so that we may demystify the role of society and better understand the practices that construct our sense of self, other, and “reality,” and thereby fix our inappropriate social structures instead. In order to do this, we must challenge the legitimacy of the hegemonic order. We must create “becoming spaces” (Derrida, 1981, p. 27) where we can think, speak, and act in ways that both mark and transgress imposed limits; where we can disrupt the dominant discourse and so reconstruct it. Sexual abuse is not an isolated phenomenon or private event. It is woven into our social fabric. It is a public issue. It is our anger and our outrage, not our silence, that will hold society accountable and provoke change.

Read the whole article here at Radical Psychology


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