Homelessness Postmodernist and Feminist Perspective

Topics: Homelessness, Domestic violence, Feminism Pages: 6 (2994 words) Published: March 5, 2012
Karen Anderson
Social analysis – Homelessness
Feminist and postmodernist perspectives

Being Homeless in Australia, what does that actually mean? The statistics show that homelessness in Australia is a growing and a concerning problem involving people from all walks of life and in all parts of Australia. This paper will examine the evidence of homelessness and analyse the media’s coverage of homelessness with postmodernist theory and then the feminist theory. The feminist perspective in the media is a view on homelessness as something that may be brought about by oppression from patriarchy, capitalism or imperialism and that women as a group need to set forth to create infrastructures to assist women in need from not just homelessness but also for rape and battered women. “Poverty, Illiteracy and homelessness are critical woman’s issues throughout the world”.(Freedman, 2006, p. 98) . The media’s postmodernist perspective views homelessness in a panoptic way, not picking only women’s issues to report on. What is homelessness? Who are the homeless? The traditional symbol of homelessness was the old man on a park bench somewhere in the city, is that still true.? This essay will attempt to answer this question. To be able to deal with the homeless, better visions of who are actually homeless and what they require needs to be investigated, to ensure social aid is provided where it is most needed.(Cortese, 2003) Issue.

Homelessness is a social problem worldwide. In Australia, it is an ever-increasing issue with numbers of homeless people growing at an alarming rate. At the last count, the homeless population was 105,000 people; close to half of these people were younger than 25 ( ref ? ) . Men made up 58% of the numbers and women 42%. (ABS, 2008) . These numbers had risen 5% since the 2001 census(ABS, 2004) . There was a concerning number of indigenous people homeless,; 17% of SAAP- (Supported accommodation assistance program) clients were indigenous, this is concerning when indigenous people make up only 2.4% of the general population (Chamberlain, 2008) . Vincent Morello believes there is also an unseen portion of homeless people and uses the 2006 census to show 44,000 young people staying with friends or relatives : “couch surfing”, and reports that this can lead to a future of prostitution and adult homelessness.(Morello, 2010) There are more families’ homeless than ever before and these people need desperate assistance to gain shelter for their children ( Ref ? ) . Mission Australia, one of Australia’s largest providers of assistance for homeless people, despairs that it must turn away 60% of them every day. Mr Hall from Mission Australia blames societies values and priorities for not building the capacity to assist the homeless after two decades of prosperity.(Hall, 2009) . Domestic and family violence has been found to be the largest contributor to homelessness in Australia (Australian Government, 2008, para 26) . In a study of Homeless people (Buhrich., Teeson., & Hodder, 1998) found that rape had occurred to half of all Homeless women and 10% of homeless men. “A serious challenge to welfare policy discourse is taking trauma and abuse seriously as a constant driver of homelessness” Robinson in (Morrison, 2009, n.p) . The Governments previous homeless assistance program SAAP is being updated: the government first released the Green Paper in 2008 – ‘Which way home’, Tanya Plibersek inviting public discussion to discover the plight of the homeless.(Australian Government, 2008b) then the white paper later in the year setting a target that it would reduce homeless by half by the year 2020.using early intervention programs, sustainable housing, economics and social participation.(Australian Government, 2008c) . Tony Abbot when interviewed said he would not support Mr Rudd’s homeless package, the reason he justifies is that the homeless choose to be homeless; using a Gospel of Mathew quote,...
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