Stop Global Street Harassment: Growing Activism around the World: Growing Activism around the World

Front Cover
ABC-CLIO, Aug 28, 2015 - Social Science - 208 pages

Once a largely dismissed problem, street harassment is now headline news and being addressed by many international agencies and governments worldwide. This book details how a growing number of individuals, small groups, international organizations, and government agencies worldwide are working to create safe public spaces.

Everyone should be able to navigate through public spaces without facing harassment or the threat of sexual assault, yet that is a right that millions of people worldwide are routinely denied. In the United States alone, 65 percent of women and 25 percent of men experience street harassment. This book taps personal stories, research data, news stories, and information about global campaigns and grassroots action in dozens of countries to trace the growing social movement to recognize, address, and prevent street harassment. The author suggests what steps need to be taken next to help stop street harassment globally and invites readers to take action and be part of the solution.

The book addresses specific and prominent incidents of street harassment such as the mass sexual assaults of women at Tahrir Square in Cairo, Egypt; the gang rape and murder of a young woman on a bus in Delhi, India, in 2012; and the viral hidden-camera video produced by Hollaback!, an advocacy group dedicated to ending street harassment, that documents the catcalling and stalking that happens to a woman as she walks through New York City.

It documents the explosion of studies, personal story sharing, grassroots campaigns, and media attention on street harassment since 2010 as well as Global Safe Cities efforts by international organizations like UN Women and ActionAid in countries on all six continents during that time period. Attention is also paid to the ongoing lack of enforcement of laws on street harassment by police and judges. The book concludes by looking forward at remedies for the problem: education among youth about street harassment and addressing issues of consent and respect.

  • Makes a clear case for why street harassment is a human rights violation and provides evidence that illustrates its scope and status as a serious problem internationally
  • Provides a collection of studies and personal stories from more than a dozen countries on six continents
  • Weighs the pros and cons of laws intended to curtail street harassment
  • Documents how street harassment is a global problem and how individuals worldwide are taking action to create safer communities for all
  • Highlights how news stories in combination with individual outrage, community action, and online tools can lead to substantive social change

Other editions - View all

About the author (2015)

Holly Kearl is the founder of the nonprofit organization Stop Street Harassment; a consultant for entities such as the Aspen Institute, the OpEd Project, the U.S. State Department, and the UN Women's Safe Cities Global Initiative; and an adjunct professor at George Mason University.

Bibliographic information