Chapter 9. Sex discourses and the construction of gender identity in Sesotho
A case study of police interviews of rape/sexual assault victims
In this chapter I examine how the linguistic realization of sex discourses in Southern Sotho draw upon cultural
sociolinguistic resources of hlonipha (respect) to reproduce traditional gendered identities. Using a sample of interviews
of female rape victims by male police officers, I show that women’s access to sex discourses is constrained by the hlonipha
culture to which to they are expected to adhere. However, when they raped, and report to the authorities, they enter into a
completely foreign discourse environment. This conflict between cultural expectations of women’s traditional discourse
(which requires avoidance of explicit sexual terms), on the one hand, and that of the legal system (i.e. explicitness for the
sake of clarity and precision of evidence) on the other, is a phenomenon which constitutes linguistic and socio-cultural
constraints that contribute to Basotho women’s failure to help bring about the conviction of rapists.
Cited by 3 other publications
. Language and Sexual Violence in the Legal System
. In The Oxford Handbook of Language and Sexuality
. A feminist critical discourse analysis of Ghanaian feminist blogs
. Feminist Media Studies
pp. 657 ff.
Sobane, Konosoang Mabafokeng
. Directives Used By Senior Female Police Officers in Lesotho: Exploring the Balance between Culturally Determined and Professional Interactional Styles
. Journal of Communication
pp. 270 ff.
This list is based on CrossRef data as of 23 november 2023. Please note that it may not be complete. Sources presented here have been supplied by the respective publishers.
Any errors therein should be reported to them.