What is the city for women?: the effects of fear and gender on the use of urban and suburban public space

Smith, Sarah (2006) What is the city for women?: the effects of fear and gender on the use of urban and suburban public space. BA dissertation, University of Portsmouth.

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    Crime and its associated fear are very topical issues. In academia, this has been studied in terms of the use of public spaces, primarily within an urban setting. This has been found a highly gendered phenomenon, argued by feminist geographers as a social construction, along with gender itself. This independent study aims to consolidate this previous work by researching the experiences and opinions of women who use public spaces in an urban and suburban context. The study identifies key areas of interest which are all deemed of importance, either in theoretical knowledge or in everyday life. In researching these theoretical standpoints and studies, it investigates the deeper societal issues regarding gender, space and the public private dichotomy and then questions whether these are still applicable in the contemporary field of geography. Using these particular concepts, it employs primary qualitative research from �the field� to expand on the central aims and objectives with reference to participant emotions and attitudes towards fear and the avoidance of public space. It also researches the effect of urban design and the justification of fear with regard to other societal constructs such as age, motherhood and temporal differences. The themes by which these results are grouped indicate the important features of public life as discovered in the research. In conclusion, it is argued that there is no easy solution to all of the problems affecting public space, but that the opinions of the general public should, at the very least, be considered in urban design practices to ensure such spaces are liveable and accessible to everyone.

    Item Type: Dissertation
    Departments/Research Groups: Faculty of Science > Department of Geography
    Depositing User: Jane Polwin
    Date Deposited: 20 Jan 2011 12:47
    Last Modified: 28 Jan 2015 11:13
    URI: http://eprints.port.ac.uk/id/eprint/228

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