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CeDR Research Seminar: Andrea Hollotmotz (MMU)

Date: 7 December 2011 Time: 17.00-18.00

Venue: Bowland North Seminar Room 20

Centre for Disability Research Seminar Series

All Welcome

Speaker:Dr Andrea Hollomotz,

Title:Learning Difficulties and Sexual Vulnerability: A Social Approach


People with learning difficulties are considerably more likely to experience sexual violence than those without, and for this reason they are often described as 'vulnerable'. However, the use of this label can in fact increase risk.

In this seminar, Andrea Hollomotz will argue that the act of treating adults with learning difficulties as 'vulnerable' and in need of protection strips them of their autonomy and leaves them with fewer of the skills which are needed to protect themselves from harm.

Andrea Hollomotz will discuss a range of social processes, including sex education, self-determination, friendships, sexual relationships and social inclusion, and examine the risks and benefits associated with each. Drawing on her own research, she will illustrate how people with learning difficulties can be capable of safeguarding themselves from harm, and she will make a range of suggestions for enabling them to become better equipped at managing risk themselves.

This seminar will be useful for practitioners working with people with learning difficulties, as well as to students and academics in the fields of disability and social work.

About Andrea: Andrea is a Lecturer in Social Policy in the Department of Sociology at Manchester Metropolitan University. She came to academia from a social work practitioner background and as a result her teaching and research interests lie with social policy and practice, with a particular interest in disability. She is involved with Critical Disability Studies @MMU, which brings together a network of academic staff. Andrea's recent publications include:

Hollomotz, A. (2012). 'A lad tried to get hold of my boobs, so I kicked him.' - An examination of attempts by adults with learning difficulties to initiate their own safeguarding.Disability & Society, 27(1).

Hollomotz, A. (2011).Learning difficulties and sexual vulnerability: A social approach. London: Jessica Kingsley Publishers.

Hollomotz, A. (2010). Sexual 'Vulnerability' of People with Learning Difficulties: A Self-Fulfilling Prophecy. In R. Schuttleworth & T. Sanders (Eds.),Sex & Disability: Politics, Identity and Access(pp. 21-40). Leeds: The Disability Press.

Hollomotz, A. (2009).Beyond 'Vulnerability': An Ecological Model Approach to Conceptualizing Risk of Sexual Violence against People with Learning Difficulties.Br J Soc Work, 39(1), 99-112.

Hollomotz, A., & The Speakup Committee. (2009).'May we please have sex tonight?' People with learning difficulties pursuing privacy in residential group settings.British Journal of Learning Disabilities, 37(2), 91-97.


Who can attend: Anyone


Further information

Organising departments and research centres: Applied Social Science, Centre for Disability Research CeDR, Division of Health Research


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Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
Lancaster University
Lancaster LA1 4YD
United Kingdom

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