Sociology Speaker Series: Dr. Sue McKenzie-Mohr

Mar 1st, 2016

Nicole Power

Dr. McKenzie-Mohr Talk
Sociology Speaker Series: Dr. Sue McKenzie-Mohr

MUN Sociology is fortunate to host Dr. Sue McKenzie-Mohr, St. Thomas University for another installment of the Sociology Speaker Series. 

Dr. McKenzie-Mohr will give a talk titled: Deconstructing Trauma: The promise and perils of a concept

Friday April 1 2016 | 12:00noon to 2:00pm | ROOM A-1045 |


Since the 1980s, the enthusiasm with which trauma discourse has been embraced in scholarly, professional, and public spheres has brought important attention to individuals’ considerable suffering.  This attention is particularly significant for those experiencing forms of oppression or marginalization, since they are at heightened risk of being subjected to highly stressful incidents, and are also more apt to subsequently endure prolonged suffering due to the social contexts of their everyday lives.  As such, trauma is political in both its prevalence and consequence.  And yet, the dominant construction of trauma in the West involves a biomedical framing, which individualizes, de-contextualizes and de-politicizes the experience.  Far from benign, this construction has distracted attention from structural roots of suffering, insidious and collective forms of trauma, and intervention goals beyond ‘symptom’ resolution and therapeutic recovery.  In this talk, Sue McKenzie-Mohr will draw upon her research to highlight individuals’ accounts of lived experiences (of rape, youth homelessness, and intimate partner sexual violence), exploring both the benefits and the troubles that may be faced when framing experience as trauma.  Implications for trauma-informed practice strategies and solutions will be discussed.