The survivor master narrative in sexual assault
SAGE Publications Inc.
School of Law and Justice
This article is based on data drawn from 90 Victoria Police operational files covering the period 2004-2008. Several thematic responses by sexual assault survivors are described as forming a master narrative of “identity shock.” It is argued that the “minor/serious” sexual assault legal distinction is meaningless to survivors and conceals a shared felt experience. It is also argued that sexual assault is fundamentally a “public issue” of betrayal of citizen trust—not just a collection of “private troubles”—and that effective resolutions require more than individualized therapeutic and criminal justice measures. © 2015, The Author(s) 2015.