Academic Reviews of “Leaving Dorian”

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“I (enjoyed) your eloquent book (Leaving Dorian). The writing was great and I loved the way you juxtaposed the leaving chapters, reminding everyone it is a process, not a single event, with the rest of the relationship. The details were all too familiar from dozens of other similar cases, many with not such happy endings. I think we need to put a much greater emphasis on the ‘safety work’ women do after they get out.” – Evan Stark, Ph.D, MSW, Professor Emeritus, Rutgers University and author of “Coercive Control: How Men Entrap Women in Personal Life”

“Linda Dynel’s Leaving Dorian is an impactful read, and one I assign regularly in my graduate Domestic Violence courses. Leaving Dorian provides my students with insights on the adversities and challenges that survivors may experience, both during and after their violent relationship. Further, Dynel’s book highlights foreshadowing life experiences prior to her relationship with Dorian, which help students understand risk factors and red flags associated with unhealthy relationships, as well as the evolution and cyclical nature of domestic violence. Assigned as the first book of the semester, my students consistently discuss and relate Dynel’s book to other class readings and material throughout the remaining semester, and frequently share that it is their favorite read of the class. It is readily apparent that Leaving Dorian resonates with them long after they finish reading the book, as it provides students with a glimpse into one survivor’s harrowing journey to escape relationship violence. In short — Dynel’s Leaving Dorian is a must read!” – Dana L. Radatz, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Criminology & Criminal Justice, Niagara University

“Linda Dynel’s gripping account of the ongoing abuse she endured while living with her now ex-husband Dorian serves as a wake-up call to all human service professionals. Not only must we conduct assessments of our clients we fear may be at-risk for domestic violence but reach out into the communities where we work.  As Ms. Dynel reveals in her book, domestic violence is insidious: victims of abuse are often not in a position to reach out for help on their own behalf. Instead, it is incumbent on professionals to become more attuned to the dynamics of domestic violence; educate other health and human service professionals to do the same; and advocate on behalf of victims for services that are adequate, appropriate, and accessible.” – Robert H. Keefe, PhD, ACSW, Associate Professor, University at Buffalo School of Social Work  

“I chose Leaving Dorian for my Domestic Violence course based on the recommendation of a respected Victimologist. I am SO glad I did. The book served as the ‘focal point’ of our entire semester, and we were able to apply all of the principles we’d discussed in class about intimate partner violence to Linda’s real experience. For my students, some of the aspects of the book that stood out were religious abuse, psychological abuse, the effect of abuse on children, and how truly hard it is for a person to leave an abusive situation. We spent an entire week of class time just discussing this book in detail. I have had several students tell me this was the most worthwhile read of our entire semester together; it is an easy and powerful read that moves at a fast pace. I am so grateful Linda wrote about her harrowing ordeal in such detail. I truly believe this book has changed my students’ lives.” – Dr. Danielle Slakoff, Assistant Professor of Criminology and Justice, Loyola University New Orleans

“The DV community owes you a huge thank you for putting yourself out there so honestly and bravely. It’s quite common and easy for people who haven’t been in a violent relationship to pass judgement, especially when kids are involved. You so effectively dispelled many of the common stereotypes, which is just so critical in higher ed. I can lecture until I’m blue in the face but it doesn’t have near the impact of a first hand account. The other piece that will be so effective is the support you will provide other survivors. It is very easy (for victims) to feel alone and to think you’re the only person this happened to. As an academic-activist, I can also say that it was very helpful to come across your book as there does not seem to have been much published from a personal account in recent years.” – Dr. Angie Moe, Professor of Sociology, Western Michigan University

“I decided to use Leaving Dorian because it humanizes topics we cover in my class.  I always cover topics pertaining to men’s violence against women, and I like to use items that help students better understand these topics in ways that go beyond the sensationalized (and depersonalized) ways in which they typically hear about them.” – Dr. James Sutton, Hobart and William Smith Colleges 

“I REALLY liked the book – found it very engaging and hard to put down, though it was also painful to read. It’s the kind of story that a LOT of women can relate to. It is a very fine contribution to the growing body of literature on this horrendous problem of intimate partner abuse.” – Dr. Maureen Hannah, NYS Licensed Psychologist and Professor of Psychology, Siena College

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