Domestic Violence Essay

2334 words - 9 pages

The United States office on violence against women defines domestic violence as, "a pattern of abusive behavior in any relationship that is used by one partner to gain or maintain power and control" (United States Department of Justice [USDOJ], n.d., ¶ 1). The violence includes threats, intimidation, physical, emotional, or psychological actions used to persuade the partner (USDOJ). At one point in history chastising and battering one's wife was socially acceptable. With the women's movement views changed and abuse became illegal. Laws now include violence against women, children and elderly. President Clinton, in 1994, signed the Violence against Women Act. This paper will discuss domestic violence throughout history and the impact on society. The use of relationship education before violence occurs as a preventive measure will be discussed. Education for professionals to assist victims will also be examined. Ultimately victims will understand how to avoid abusive relationships as well as how to protect his or her loved ones from abuse. Although, even with education unwise choices are made, this paper will discuss how to assist the victim. Assisting the victim results in additional concerns for the victim about the fate for the abuser, the paper will also discuss these concerns and solutions.HistoryThe domestic violence dates back to the very beginnings of history. Tracing domestic violence through courts of law provides insight into the movement from what was once seen as the acceptable practice of chastising to the battering of a wife. In the late nineteenth century, as women's rights movements became more prominent, the laws that had allowed domestic violence to become socially acceptable. Laws of "chastisement" were applicable to married couples for hundreds of years and "chastising" a woman physically is an acceptable means of providing chastisement. Blackstone, considered an authority on domestic chastisement, was quoted as saying, " By the old law, a husband might give his wife moderate correction ... but it is declared in black and white that he may not beat her black and blue, though the civil law allowed any man on whom a woman had bestowed her hand, to bestow his fists upon her at his own discretion. The common people, who are much attached to the common law, still exert the privilege of beating their wives ... and a woman in the lower ranks of life, if she falls in love with a man, is liable, after marriage, to be a good deal struck by him." This is an example of what was acceptable in 1869. Today domestic violence is considered an abhorrent crime but the history of domestic violence is long and socially acceptable.Domestic violence is an umbrella term that encompasses intimate partner violence, violence against elders, caretakers, children (even grown children), and other family members (Bloom, 2008). Domestic violence aka battering, interpersonal violence, and family violence have become more commonly known as intimate partner...

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