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The Politics of Child Sexual AbuseEmotions, Social Movements, and the State$
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Nancy Whittier

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780195325102

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2009

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195325102.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 06 May 2021

Turning Tides

Turning Tides

Countermovement Organizing, “False Memory Syndrome,” and the Struggle over Scientific Knowledge

(p.133) 6 Turning Tides
The Politics of Child Sexual Abuse

Nancy Whittier (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

This chapter looks at countermovement organizing, focusing on the False Memory Syndrome Foundation (FMSF). It highlights the struggles over the social construction of knowledge that came with the rise of the FMSF and its allies, and analyzing the political and cultural reasons for the movement's gains. It traces the frames used by the FMSF and analyzes the success of the frame emphasizing “memory science” and the unreliability of “recovered memories.” The chapter discusses the countermovement's tactics and its coalitions across the political spectrum, including with conservative, anti‐feminist, and progressive groups. It argues that the social construction of knowledge is an important part of social movements.

Keywords:   False Memory Syndrome Foundation, countermovement, memory science, Victims of Child Abuse Laws, VOCAL, sociology of knowledge, recovered memories, framing, therapy, coalitions

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