Rural medical marriages: Understanding symbolic violence in the social practice of gender

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This article examines the social practice of gender amongst rural GPs and in rural medical marriages and considers Bourdieu’s notions of symbolic violence and misrecognition important elements in understanding how inequitable gender relations are sustained and reproduced. Drawing on ethnographic research conducted in rural Western Australia amongst GPs and their spouses/partners I explore the notion that gender as a structural or organising principle impacts on expectations and experiences of roles in the workplace and in the home. Compliance with conventional views of male as provider and female as primary caregiver raises questions about the advantages of conformity and the costs of challenge. Nonetheless, contesting dominant ideas and practices that do not serve the interests of non-dominant groups may well cause conflict but can lead to change.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)73-86
JournalWomen's Studies International Forum
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2008

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