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Holt, Karen M., Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, School of Criminal Justice

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Dr. Holt is an Assistant Professor in the School of Criminal Justice at Michigan State University. She earned her Ph.D. in 2015 from John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York City. While at John Jay, she was involved in a collaborative project with the Federal Bureau of Investigation where she conducted research on homicides and sexual violence using F.B.I. case files submitted by the Behavioral Analysis Unit. She has examined sexual abuse in the Catholic Church and sexual victimization among traditionally stigmatized populations.  She is the Criminal Justice faculty advisor to the Strengthening Teen Relationships and Inspiring Valuable Experiences (STRIVE) program, which is a mentorship program for juveniles who have committed a sexual offense.  Her research focuses on sexual deviance and offending, deviance and identity, and sexual victimization. Her work has been published in Sexual Abuse: A Journal of Research and Treatment and Deviant Behavior.

Select Publications

  • Holt, K. (Forthcoming). Violations of Consent and Retaliatory Justice in the BDSM Community. In J.D. Stein (ed.) Asking for It: An Anthology of Consent. Riverdale Avenue Books.
  • Holt, K. (2016). Blacklisted: Boundaries, Violations, and Retaliatory Behavior in the BDSM Community. Deviant Behavior, DOI:10.1080/01639625.2016.1156982
  • Holt, K. (2014). “Sadism and masochism.” In Copes, H. & Forsyth, C. (eds). The encyclopedia of social deviance. Sage Publications.
  • Holt, K. (2014). “Fetishes.” In Copes, H. & Forsyth, C. (eds). The encyclopedia of social deviance. Sage Publications.
  • Holt, K. & Massey, C. (2013). Sexual preference or opportunity: An examination of situational factors by gender of victims of clergy abuse. Sexual Abuse: A Journal of Research and Treatment. DOI 10.1177/1079063211425690

About RCGV

MSU’s Research Consortium on Gender-Based Violence faculty and staff are dedicated to research and outreach initiatives related to ending and preventing gender-based violence and improving the community response to survivors. RCGV faculty are committed to mentoring the next generation of gender-based violence researchers by providing substantial educational and employment opportunities to undergraduate and graduate students.

Gender-based violence (GBV) is a significant and widespread social problem internationally, devastating adults, children, families and societies across the globe. It includes any form of harm that is both a consequence and cause of gender power inequities. It can be physical, psychological, sexual, economic, or sociocultural, and includes but is not limited to sexual abuse, rape, intimate partner abuse, incest, sexual harassment, stalking, femicide, trafficking, gendered hate crimes and dowry abuse. Gender-based violence intersects with race-based, class-based or religiously oppressive forms of abuse, and cross-cuts many other social problems (e.g., poverty, substance abuse, mental and physical health, crime).

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