Domestic Violence as Oppression
Oppression is not a new phenomenon and it is defined in the social work dictionary as a social act of placing severe restrictions on individual, group, or institution. Typically a government or political organization in power places restrictions formally or covertly oppressed groups so they may be exploited and less able to compete with other social groups. The oppressed individual or group is devalued, exploited, and deprived of privileges by the individual or group who has more power (Barker, 2003).
Therefore, domestic violence is a form of oppression and control usually perpetrated against women and/or children and is defined by the social work dictionary as abuse of children, older people, spouses, and others in the home usually by another member of the family or other residents. The social problem in which one's property health or life are endangered or on as a result of the intentional behavior of another family member (Barker, 2003).
According to the National Crime Victimization Survey, there are more than 960,000 annual cases of domestic violence in the United States, 85% of the domestic violence victims are women, and women are eight times more likely than men to be a victim of assault by an intimate partner conservatively estimate that at least 11% of women in the United States are involved in abusive intimate relationships.
The preponderance of the evidence suggests that the experience of domestic violence varies greatly depending on demographic characteristics. For instance, higher rates of domestic violence are more likely to be experienced by Black women, women ages 16 to 24, women with children under the age of 12, and women living in lower income households.
Thus, women who are more vulnerable to domestic violence tend to have less social, legal, and economic power (Hampton, LaTaillade, Dacey, & Marghi, J. R. 2008).
African American women in particular appear to be at disproportionate risk for experiencing domestic violence. National surveys indicate that African American marriages are at significantly greater risk for violence, with rates of severe assault 2.4 times than that of their white counterparts.
Despite increasing awareness that domestic violence is a significant problem in the Black community, few studies have focused on African American women's responses to battering as well as their experience with and use of services available to battered women (Hampton, LaTaillade, Dacey, & Marghi, J. R. 2008).
In direct contrast to the slight to moderate improvements the United States women in other countries are still suffering today.
Western women have experienced a certain degree of emancipation from their traditional and narrowly defined gender roles and identities. However discrimination against women in the developing world is widespread and deep rooted. In many developing countries women are degraded, deprived and dehumanized through social practices and customs which are ingrained in...