The primary aim of this article is to begin to articulate the spatiality and sociality of emotion in an action research project called Shape Your Life, a project designed to teach recreational boxing to female and transgendered survivors of violence in Toronto. In particular, the article is a theoretical and empirical examination of anger, the dominant emotional response to injustice. A case is made for a spatially engaged approach to the study of anger as a politically meaningful response to violence and social injustice in the lives of survivors. Taking the anger of survivors of violence seriously provides a spotlight on the connection between the body, social space, and emotion. The article then draws from participants’ spatialities of anger to argue that anger has deep implications for people involved in unequal power relations and that anger can be used to impel change in the lives of survivors.
van Ingen is with Brock University, Dept. of Kinesiology, Faculty of Applied Health Sciences, St. Catharines, Ontario, Canada.