Stigma and homeless women

Document Type



Master of Arts (MA)


Social Welfare

First Advisor's Name

Steven Fjellman

First Advisor's Committee Title

Committee Chair

Second Advisor's Name

Janet Chernela

Third Advisor's Name

Hugh Gladwin

Date of Defense



Homelessness among women is an increasing phenomena. The focus of this work is to examine common experiences and explain how homeless women interpret their circumstances. The numbers and characteristics of homeless women in recent history are examined thereby establishing the group as extremely heterogeneous in nature. Erving Goffman's classic work on stigma and the levels of individual identity, is applied to the homeless condition. A number or case studies are used to further develop and explain the meaning of the homeless state to the women involved.



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