• Gender Variation in Asylum Experiences in the UK: The Role of Patriarchy and Coping Strategies

      Healey, Ruth L.; University of Chester (Research Centre for Identity and Migration Issues (RCIMI), 2010-09-01)
      Previous work suggests that female asylum seekers and refugees have more constraints on their actions than their male counterparts, as structural forces from the country of origin are reproduced in the host country. This paper explores the use of structuration theory in interpreting the impact of gender upon asylum seeker and refugee experiences in the UK. The experiences of, and coping strategies used by 8 male and 10 female asylum seekers and refugees from two different cities are analysed. Their experiences are examined in relation to different patriarchal forces. In comparison to the males, differences are apparent in the level and types of agency of the female asylum seekers and refugees. Within this study certain types of patriarchy are reproduced in British society particularly at the household level, whilst individuals are also influenced by institutional patriarchy within the wider society. The variation in experiences found here suggests the need for policy to recognise the heterogeneity of these groups, so as to provide the most appropriate support for individuals.