Saturday, April 4, 2009

Behind Closed Doors in White South Africa: Incest Survivors Tell Their Stories

The intent in this book is to tear away the veil of secrecy that surrounds incestuous abuse in white South Africa by presenting five in-depth personal accounts of this heinous form of sexual exploitation as told by the survivors. Each of these accounts includes an analysis of important incest-related issues raised by the survivor's story. Another objective is to explore the connections between the often cruel sexual exploitation of girls by their white male relatives and the brutal exploitation of black people by white men in South Africa.

Praise for Behind Closed Doors:

"The case studies in Behind Closed Doors are remarkable for detail, insight and communicative prose; masterpieces of the ethnographic literature. Students were blown away. Although based in South Africa, Behind Closed Doors says more about incest in America than any book I can recall."

-- Professor Lee Bowker, Professor of sociology at Humboldt State University and author of several books on battered women

"Behind Closed Doors is a horrible but gripping account of the incestuous abuse of girls at the hands of their fathers, stepfathers and other male relatives. At the end of each woman's story the evil of this crime is unspeakably clear."

-- Trish Beaver, reporter for the Sunday Tribune, South Africa

"Russell, who was born in South Africa, breaks through the wall of secrecy surrounding incest in that community, and explores the night-follows-day relationship between repressive patriarchal politics and family structures, connecting the sexual exploitation of young girls by their white male relatives to the brutal exploitation of black people by white men during apartheid."

-- Lauren Sandler, Ms. Magazine

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