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 Les femmes trouvent normal de frapper leur conjoint

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Nombre de messages : 190
Date d'inscription : 15/04/2006

MessageSujet: Les femmes trouvent normal de frapper leur conjoint   Mer 26 Juil - 17:28

Survey finds male abuse approval

More than half of women questioned at a Glasgow university said they approved of wives hitting their husbands.

The Glasgow Caledonian students were among 6,500 women surveyed from 36 universities for an international study into attitudes on domestic violence.

Of the 200 women, 60% said it was acceptable for women to hit their husbands while 35% admitted assaulting their partner.

A total of 8% admitted injuring them - the highest rate in the study.

The injured men suffered bruises, cuts or broken bones.


Among European students, only English women were more likely to have carried out assaults, with 41% admitting that they had punched or kicked their partners.

We need make the same 'big deal' about violence by women as we do about men who behave violently

Murray Straus
Report co-author

However those inflicting injury was less than in Scotland, at 5%.

Just under a quarter of those in Scotland admitted there were occasions when it would be acceptable for a husband to slap his wife.

Worldwide, more than 4,800 female students approved of assaulting their partner and 2,000 admitted to pushing, shoving, slapping, throwing objects and twisting their partner's arms or hair.

The findings, printed in the Sunday Times, will be published next month in the European Journal of Criminology.

'Bottom line'

Professor Murray Straus, co-author of the study, told the paper there was a need for better rehabilitation programmes for women with violent tendencies.

"This study raises questions about why there's so much violence between partners whether they're married, cohabiting or dating," he said.

"The bottom line is that we need make the same 'big deal' about violence by women as we do about men who behave violently."

In recent years, the Scottish Executive has spent hundreds of thousands of pounds on raising awareness of domestic abuse, including a helpline for victims which received more than 20,000 calls in 2005 - an increase of 38% on the previous year.

David Smith, honorary professor of criminology at Edinburgh university and editor of the European Journal of Criminology, said he found the results "surprising".

"The number of women who admit to assaulting men is interesting as it's well known that men are more violent than woman."

Story from BBC NEWS:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/pr/fr/-/1/hi/scotland/glasgow_and_west/5092100.stm

Published: 2006/06/18 12:39:05 GMT

© BBC MMVI

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/scotland/glasgow_and_west/5092100.stm


Dernière édition par le Mer 26 Juil - 17:42, édité 2 fois
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Date d'inscription : 15/04/2006

MessageSujet: Re: Les femmes trouvent normal de frapper leur conjoint   Mer 26 Juil - 17:32

Hommes Victimes de Violence

Extrait de La Presse : Philippe Mercure
La Presse, Montréal, Dimanche, 07 Août 2005


546 000 hommes victimes de violence conjugale au pays. Statistique Canada a récemment dévoilé des chiffres qui sont venus déboulonner un mythe : celui voulant que, dans un couple, c’est toujours monsieur qui agresse madame. Taboue, voire risible, la violence faite aux hommes n’est pas prise au sérieux. Résultat : si les ressources pour les femmes violentées et les hommes violents abondent, l’inverse n’est pas vrai. Portrait d’une réalité aux multiples visages.

« Quand les policiers ont débarqué, j’étais en train d’étudier tranquillement. Ils ne m’ont jamais demandé ma version des faits. Ils m’ont menotté et amené au poste. Ça a été un grand choc pour moi. »

Harcèlement, chantage, mensonges, insultes. Par peur de briser sa famille, Missiliyo, 29 ans, a enduré l’enfer. Jusqu’en juin dernier, lorsque les policiers, au lieu de lui passer les menottes, l’ont reconduit chez un amis avec sa valise. Ils avaient enfin compris que l’homme n’était pas violent : c’est plutôt sa femme qui le harcelait.

Forcé de quitter sa maison, sa femme et sa petite fille de 3 ans, l’étudiant en pétrochimie a finalement trouvé refuge à la Maison Oxygène, où il tente de réorganiser sa vie. Attablé à la cuisine communautaire de l’établissement, il a accepté de raconter son histoire à La Presse.

« Déjà, en Afrique, ma femme avait des comportements inadéquats. Elle m’insultait, insultait ma famille. Des choses que tu ne veux pas entendre, qui me blessaient beaucoup. » En s’installant à Montréal en 2003 avec sa femme et sa fille, Missiliyo espérait que les choses changeraient. En vain. Son épouse, raconte-t-il, rentrait à des heures impossibles, négligeait son enfant, fréquentait d’autres hommes.

C’est lors d’une soirée où Missiliyo insiste pour avoir des explications que sa femme appelle la police pour la première fois. En voyant son mari menotté et emmené par les policiers, elle comprend tout le pouvoir qu’elle a au bout des doigts. « Je ne peux même pas compter le nombre de fois où elle a appelé la police. Chaque fois que j’essayais d’avoir une discussion avec elle, elle composait le 911 ou menaçait de le faire. C’était du vrai chantage. Il fallait tout le temps que je me méfie d’elle. »
La situation durera plus d’un an. « Je me sentais responsable de ma femme et de ma fille, je ne voulais pas partir », explique le jeune homme. Et les réseaux d’aide ? « Je ne savais même pas qu’il y avait des recours. »

La Maison Oxygène est le seul centre au Québec qui héberge les hommes en difficulté conjugale et leurs enfants. Capacité d’accueil : sept pères, avec ou sans enfants. Nombre d’hommes victimes de violence conjugale au pays, selon un rapport de Statistique Canada publié à la mi-juillet : 546 000.

Yvon Lemay, coordonnateur de la maison, affirme qu’il refuse jusqu’à deux pères par jour depuis la douzaine d’années qu’il travaille à l’organisme.
« C’est un peu plate quand des travailleurs sociaux t’appellent et te disent qu’ils ont un père avec un enfant dans la détresse la plus totale qui ne sait pas où aller, et que la seule chose qu’on peut lui dire c’est : Ben, on n’a pas de place, alors vas-y mon gars, ne te suicide pas et bonne chance », dénonce-t-il.

La forme de la violence conjugale a un sexe

Alors que les hommes encaissent des coups de poing, se font mordre
ou lancer des objets, la violence dirigée vers les femmes demeure
plus grave.

Mais peu importe comment elle se manifeste, la violence physique est presque toujours accompagnée de violence psychologique :
c’est le cas pour 99 % des femmes victimes et 98 % des hommes.


Au cours des cinq dernières années, 6 % des Canadiens qui avaient déjà été mariés ou avaient vécu en union libre ont été victimes de violence conjugale ; presque autant que les femmes, chez qui le taux s’élève à 7 %.
Cette violence est souvent psychologique.

« On voit beaucoup de dénigrement, de harcèlement », explique Yvon Lemay. Mais il arrive aussi que les partenaires passent de la parole aux actes. Et là, la violence a un sexe. Selon Statistique Canada, les hommes se font plus souvent mordre, gifler ou frapper par leur partenaire que les femmes. Ils sont aussi plus nombreux à encaisser des coups de pied et à se faire lancer des objets

La victime est…

> Menacée ou
se fait lancer un objet
Hommes : 15 %
Femmes : 11 %

> Poussée, bousculée,
giflée
Hommes : 34 %
Femmes : 40%

> Mordue, frappée
avec les mains,
les pieds ou un objet
Hommes : 34 %
Femmes : 10 %

> Battue, étranglée,
menacée avec
une arme à feu
ou un couteau
Hommes : 15 %
Femmes : 25 %

> Agressés sexuellement
Hommes : peu fiable
Femmes : 16 %

Source : Statistique Canada


Les victimes féminines restent cependant deux fois plus nombreuses que les victimes masculines à subir des blessures durant les disputes conjugales, trois fois plus susceptibles de craindre pour leur vie et deux fois plus susceptibles d’être victimes de plus de 10 épisodes violents.
Ceux qui connaissent ce secteur, eux, jurent avoir vu des hommes dans un piètre état.
« J’ai vu des fourchettes plantées dans les cuisses, des yeux au beurre noir. Un jour, un gars de 6 pieds 2 pouces bâti comme une armoire est arrivé ici tout égratigné, en sang. Il s’était littéralement fait déchirer son linge sur le dos », raconte Yvon Lemay.

« Les femmes compensent leur différence de force musculaire – car en moyenne, il existe une différence de force musculaire – en utilisant des objets. Vaisselle, couteau, tasse de café, rouleau à pâtisserie. J’ai même déjà vu un homme avec l’empreinte d’un fer à repasser sur le ventre », raconte Yvon Dallaire, psychologue et auteur du livre La violence faite aux hommes – Une réalité taboue et complexe.

Selon Yvon Lemay, il faut aussi arrêter de croire que la violence sexuelle n’est que le lot des femmes.
« Des gars qui, par manque de confiance en eux, vont accepter de se laisser faire des choses par une femme pour ne pas la perdre, ça existe probablement beaucoup plus souvent qu'on pense », croit-il.
C'est que les hommes sont plus portés à cacher la violence dont ils sont victimes que de l'étaler au grand jour. « Demander de l'aide est très difficile pour un homme. C'est un aveu d'impuissance. Et les mots impuissance et gars, ça ne va pas très bien ensemble », dit Yvon Lemay.

« Quand on parle d'hommes battus, on trouve ça risible. On est encore porté à croire que l'homme, parce qu'il plus gros, est plus méchant, et que la femme, parce qu'elle parait plus fragile, est une victime », croit quant à lui Yvon Dallaire.

Une attitude que connaissent bien les résidants de la Maison Oxygène. « Les gens trouvent ça drôle, c'est sûr. À l'école, les gens me demandent : Tu retournes dans ta maison d'hommes battus ? », dit Missiliyo.

Le tabou, par contre, ne frappe pas que les victimes.
« C'est tellement honteux, c'est tellement difficile pour les femmes d'admettre qu'elles font des choses comme ça. Ce n'est tellement pas beau ! Ce qui est valorisé chez une femme, c'est l'image de la douceur. C'est pour ça que c'est si difficile. »

Marise Bouchard est psychothérapeute. À la Maison de la famille de Québec, elle donne un atelier intitulé La femme et son agressivité. Une agressivité qu'elle connaît bien : elle-même a agressé ses partenaires lorsqu'elle était plus jeune, allant même jusqu'à menacer son conjoint de l'époque avec un couteau alors qu'elle n'avait pas encore 20 ans.
« À un moment donné, je me suis rendu compte qu'il y avait quelque chose qui ne marchait pas avec moi. Et je ne voulais pas passer ça sur le dos des autres. » Armée de livres de psychologie populaire, Mme Bouchard a alors entrepris un long travail sur elle-même. « J'ai travaillé pendant 15 ans toute seule de mon bord », confie-t-elle.

Si Marise Bouchard a réussi à maîtriser seule sa violence, ce n'est pas le cas de Sylvie Turgeon.
« Sans les groupes d'entraide, j'aurais tué quelqu'un. C'est très clair dans ma tête, tôt ou tard j'aurais tué quelqu'un. C'est comme traverser un boulevard les yeux fermés : tu ne peux pas toujours être chanceuse. »
« Quand je buvais, la paranoïa s'emparait de moi. La jalousie, raconte-t-elle. Je faisais des crises, j'ai battu des gens, j'ai sauté sur eux. Il y en a que j'ai presque heurtés en voiture, j'ai brisé leurs objets. Des choses terribles. »
Dans son cas comme dans la plupart des autres, croit-elle, des problèmes d'alcool et de drogues étaient étroitement mêlés à celui de la violence. Une affirmation qui trouve écho dans les données de Statistique Canada : les personnes dont le partenaire est un grand buveur - au moins cinq consommations plus de cinq fois par mois - risquent six fois plus d'être victime de violence que les autres.
« La dernière fois, je faisais des plans pour tuer mon conjoint. Là, j'ai eu peur. Je suis allé dans un centre de crise et je leur ai dit : Si vous ne faites pas quelque chose, il va y avoir un meurtre dans le journal. »

Cette violence des femmes, Marie-Andrée Bertrand aussi la connaît bien. La criminologue a écrit un livre, Les femmes et la criminalité, où elle dévoile des chiffres troublants. En 1976, les femmes étaient accusées d'un crime sur 10. Un quart de siècle plus tard, cette proportion a presque doublé. Bref, si la criminalité en général diminue, les femmes, elles, commettent plus de crimes qu'avant. Et ces crimes sont plus violents que par le passé.
Mais la réalité de la violence conjugale envers les hommes est si peu ancrée dans les mentalités que même la grande spécialiste s'est laissée prendre. L'année dernière, Mme Bertrand a pris connaissance des chiffres montrant la parité des plaintes de violence conjugale envers les hommes et les femmes.
« Je n'y ai pas cru. J'ai même contredit publiquement une étudiante qui avait présenté ces chiffres lors d'une réunion scientifique. J'ai été obligée d'aller aux sources et de faire mon mea-culpa », avoue-t-elle, tout en tenant à préciser que les conséquences de la violence demeurent plus importantes chez les victimes féminines que masculines.
Selon la criminologue, les hommes dénoncent plus la violence conjugale qu'auparavant, car « la fragilité est maintenant avouable. Et parfois, ça paye de se déclarer victime », souligne-t-elle en mentionnant les avantages juridiques ou financiers de la dénonciation. « De la part des hommes, c'est un grand progrès. Car nier cette violence, c'est risquer de rester dans la même situation, et cela cause des dommages considérables. »


http://www.colba.net/~piermon/SocioHommesVictimesViolence.htm
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MessageSujet: Re: Les femmes trouvent normal de frapper leur conjoint   Mer 26 Juil - 17:35

Spousal Abuse Rages on Behind Closed Doors
Study finds most victims report only once

By Joan Delaney
Epoch Times Victoria Staff Jul 20, 2006

A new study indicates that only 28 percent of domestic abuse victims
call the police for help, and that men are only half as likely to
report the abuse they receive than women
.

Based on incidents that occurred between 1995 and 2004, the
Statistics Canada report found that spousal abuse that is brought to
the attention of the police is less likely to escalate to more
serious forms of violence.

This is the first time that Statscan and the Canadian Centre for
Justice Statistics used police reports to analyze the patterns and
characteristics of spousal offenders. Released last Thursday, the
report also took into account data from a 2004 General Social Survey
on victimization.

The report found that victims of spousal abuse tend to seek help
more often if the violence is witnessed by children, and that
Aboriginals are more likely to involve the police than their non-
Aboriginal counterparts. Statscan also said that victims of abuse
aged 35 and older were less likely to call the police than those
aged 15 to 24.

Ellen Campbell, founder and Executive Director of the Canadian
Centre for Abuse Awareness, says there are many reasons why people
remain in abusive relationships, including an inability to act due
to low self-esteem, a lack of financial resources, a reluctance to
uproot children-or they're simply afraid to leave. She says many
victims tend to have been abused as children, which leaves them with
a much higher level of tolerance for abuse as adults.

"When they finally do leave there's tremendous guilt and fear, and
unless they really get a strong support system in place, and unless
they get some real good therapeutic help, they'll lots of times go
back," says Campbell. The study also showed that women are twice as
likely to report spousal abuse than men, something Earl Silverman,
Program Coordinator with the Calgary-based Family of Men, calls
the "John Wayne persona"-men are strong, and should be able to deal
with abuse.

Silverman says another reason men report domestic abuse less than
women do is because the police often misunderstand the situation and
end up arresting the man-the victim of the abuse. He says he's heard
from male victims of domestic violence who have been told by the
police that if they call again they'll be arrested for causing a
nuisance.

"The perception of the police is that men are bigger and stronger,
so the man should be able to handle it and not rely on the police to
come to the rescue," says Silverman.


The report says that while women are more likely to experience more
serious forms of spousal violence than men, both sexes were equally
likely to contact the police when the violence became very serious.
He also notes that alcohol or drugs are involved in 80 percent of
domestic violence in which the police are called.

While Silverman has been trying for 15 years-without much success-to
persuade the Alberta government to provide funding for a shelter for
male victims of domestic abuse, Campbell doesn't see that happening
in Canada any time soon. But she is hopeful that more funding will
be made available for men's support groups, because the prevalence
of abuse by women against men is rising, and "there are no services
for men at all."


The report found that while 50 percent of abuse involved physical
force, weapons were used in only 12 percent of incidents. Of the 52
percent that sustained an injury in violent domestic altercations,
over 90 percent were minor injuries. Four percent incurred major
injuries and less than 1 percent of the injuries resulted in death.

A related 2005 Statscan report said that Aboriginal women were three
times more likely to experience spousal violence than non-
Aboriginals. Beverly Jacobs, President of the Native Women's
Association of Canada, says that one of the many reasons Aboriginal
women may be reluctant to leave an abusive relationship is that
women living on reserves lose their right to the home if the couple
separates, because provincial matrimonial laws don't apply on
reserves.

Jacobs says that in the case of Aboriginal women, there are "a lot
of layers of violence at every level" for various reasons, which
have an impact on personal relationships. She said those fleeing
abusive relationships often end up moving to urban centres where
they live in poverty and continue in a cycle of violent
relationships. As far as victim support services on reserves goes,
Jacobs says it varies based on the "health of the community."

"We're actively wanting to deal with the issue of violence so that
our communities are healthy," says Jacobs. "Because in most of our
communities Aboriginal women are the backbone of our communities,
and if they're healthy and they're teaching their children about
their roles and responsibilities, then the children will be healthy.
That's the cycle we want to see, and the strength that comes from
that."
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MessageSujet: Re: Les femmes trouvent normal de frapper leur conjoint   Mer 26 Juil - 17:38

Women more likely to be perpetrators of abuse as well as victims

Filed under Research, Education, Family, Law, Gender on Thursday, July 13, 2006.GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Women are more likely than men to stalk, attack and psychologically abuse their partners, according to a University of Florida study that finds college women have a new view of the dating scene.

“We’re seeing women in relationships acting differently nowadays than we have in the past,” said Angela Gover, a UF criminologist who led the research. “The nature of criminality has been changing for females, and this change is reflected in intimate relationships as well.”

In a survey of 2,500 students at UF and the University of South Carolina between August and December 2005, more than a quarter (29 percent) reported physically assaulting their dates and 22 percent reported being the victims of attacks during the past year. Thirty-two percent of women reported being the perpetrators of this violence, compared with 24 percent of men. The students took selected liberal arts and sciences courses. Forty percent were men and 60 percent were women, reflecting the gender composition of these classes.

In a separate survey of 1,490 UF students, one quarter (25 percent) said they had been stalked during the past year and 7 percent reported engaging in stalking, of whom a majority (58 percent) were female.

Although women were the predominant abusers, they still made up the largest number of victims in both surveys, accounting for 70 percent of those being stalked, for example.

The reason more college men weren’t victims may be that women in the study did not exclusively date them, preferring men who had already graduated, not yet enrolled in college or chose not to attend college at all, Gover said. “It shows that students who are perpetrating these attacks aren’t just targeting other students on campus,” she said.

It also is possible that some of the physical attacks women claim they are responsible for are actually acts of self-defense, Gover added. “Maybe some of these women have been abused by their partner for some time and they’re finally fighting back,” she said.

Recent studies on domestic violence suggest that whereas in the past victims might have felt trapped in violent situations, today’s women are more likely to understand they have options instead of putting up with mistreatment, she said.

“I think we may also be seeing sort of a new dynamic in dating relationships in terms of women feeling more empowered,” she said. “They recognize they don’t have to be in a dating relationship forever. They can get out of it.”

Child abuse was the single biggest determining factor for men and women becoming perpetrators or victims of either dating violence or stalking, Gover said. Even if one never personally experienced abuse, witnessing violence between one’s parents as a child increased the likelihood of stalking or being stalked as a young adult and it made girls more susceptible to becoming victims of dating violence when they grew up, she said.

The survey found that men and women who were abused as children were 43 percent more likely than their peers who were not mistreated to perpetrate physical violence and 51 percent more likely to be victims of physical violence in a dating relationship. Violent acts included kicking or slapping, pushing or shoving, punching or hitting with a hand or object, slamming someone against a wall and using force to make a partner have sex, she said.

Sexual risk-taking – the age when survey respondents first had sex and the number of sexual partners in their lifetime – was another important risk factor, but surprisingly, attitudes toward women made no difference, said Gover, who did her research with Catherine Kaukinen, a University of South Carolina criminology professor, and Kathleen Fox, a UF graduate student in criminology. Some of the findings were presented at the American Society of Criminology annual meeting in November in Toronto.

The study also was among the first to look at psychological abuse. Examples included preventing partners from seeing family or friends, shouting at them and using threats to have sex. Fifty-four percent of respondents reported being psychologically abusive, and 52 percent said they were victims of this type of behavior. Women were more likely to be psychologically abusive, with 57 percent saying they were perpetrators versus 50 percent of males.

Shelley Serdahely, executive director of Men Stopping Violence, in Decatur, Ga., questions the validity of studies showing women are more violent. “Women might be more likely to get frustrated because men are not taught how to be active listeners and women feel like they are not being heard,” she said. “Often women are more emotional because the relationship matters a lot to them, and while that may come out in a push or a shove or a grab, all of which are considered dating violence, it doesn’t have the effect of intimidating the man.”

-30-

http://news.ufl.edu/2006/07/13/women-attackers/
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MessageSujet: Re: Les femmes trouvent normal de frapper leur conjoint   Mer 26 Juil - 17:40

Extrait:

*It is interesting to note that the out of 828 people surveyed three had to seek medical assistance for physical injuries - two were males !!!!





Domestic Violence and Mental Health

Link for research: http://www.chmeds.ac.nz/research/chds/publications/2005/272.pdf


8 February, 2006

Latest research from the long-running Christchurch Health and Development Study (CHDS) at the University of Otago’s Christchurch School of Medicine and Health Sciences, calls into question conventional thinking about domestic violence between partners, and its effects on mental health.

This study by Professor David Fergusson, published in the Journal of Marriage and Family, surveyed 828 males and females at 25 years regarding violence between partners and the impact on mental health. The violence recorded ranged from psychological abuse to serious physical attack.


“In broad terms the results provide a challenge to the dominant view that domestic violence is a ‘women’s issue’, and that it arises predominantly from assaults by males against females,” says Prof. Fergusson.

“In fact, what our findings suggest is that amongst young adults, men and women are equally violent towards partners, in terms of the range of acts of domestic violence examined in this study.”

The research shows the range of violence committed by men and women is similar, and that both men and women engage in serious physical attacks on their partners. The consequences of this domestic violence in terms of injury and psychological effects are also similar for both sexes.

The findings confirm other overseas studies that violent partnerships are more likely to be associated with psychosocial problems relating to childhood adversity, mental health disorders and other life course difficulties.

“Domestic violence tends to occur in those relationships which have a wider psychosocial history of disadvantage and difficulty,” says Professor Fergusson.

The research shows that domestic violence also has an impact on the mental health of those involved, even when other background factors, which might result in mental problems, are taken into account. With increasing exposure to violence there is a greater likelihood of mental health problems developing in both men and women.

Disorders such as depression, anxiety and suicide are between 1.5 and 11.9 times higher in those people who experience domestic violence than those who don’t.

However, Professor Fergusson says this study suggests the need for a broadening of analysis of domestic violence away from focussing on male perpetrators and female victims, to examining violent couples who use aggression in their relationship.

“This points to family policies that encourage couples to work together to harmonise their relationships and to overcome the collective adversities they face.”

Professor Fergussion says we need to understand why studies of community samples such as the CHDS usually show an absence of gender differences in domestic violence, whereas other sources dealing with severe violence, such as Women’s Refuge or police complaints, report a predominance of male perpetrators. “The best way of doing this is to study a large sample to examine the frequency of common co uple violence involving mutual assaults and the frequency of more severe forms of domestic violence,” he says. This study only applies to young people, and domestic violence tends to decrease with age.

The research was funded by the Health Research Council, the National Child Health Research Foundation, the Canterbury Medical Research Foundation and the Lottery Grants Board.

For further information contact:
Professor David Fergusson
Christchurch Health and Development Study
Christchurch School of Medicine and Health Sciences, University of Otago
(03) 372 0406 (03) 352 1476 (h)
david.fergusson@chmeds.ac.nz

http://www.chmeds.ac.nz/newsevents/dom_violence.htm





Other links;
http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/ED0602/S00017.htm
http://www.otago.ac.nz/news/news/2006/08-02-06_press_release.html
http://www.stuff.co.nz/stuff/0,2106,3565985a11aT,00.html
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MessageSujet: Re: Les femmes trouvent normal de frapper leur conjoint   Mer 26 Juil - 17:48

Paper presented at conference on Trends In Intimate Violence Intervention, sponsored by the University of Haifa and New York University. New York University, May 23, 2006.

DOMINANCE AND SYMMETRY IN PARTNER VIOLENCE
BY MALE AND FEMALE UNIVERSITY STUDENTS





Abstract

The study investigated the widely held belief that violence against artners in marital, cohabiting, and dating relationships is almost entirely perpetrated by men, and that when women assault their partners, it has a different etiology than assaults by men. The empirical data on these issues were provided by 13,601 university students who participated in the International Dating Violence Study in 32 nations. The results in the first part of this paper show that almost a third of the female as well as male students physically assaulted a dating partner in the 12 month study period, and that the most frequent pattern was mutuality in violence, i.e. both were violent, followed by “female-only” violence. Violence by only the male partner was the least frequent pattern according to both male and female participants. The second part of the paper focuses on whether there is gender symmetry in a crucial aspect of the etiology of partner violence -- dominance by one partner, The results show that dominance by either the male or the female partner is associated with an increased probability of violence. These results, in combination with results from many other studies, call into question the assumption that partner violence is primarily a male crime and that, when women are violent, it is self-defense. Because these assumption are crucial elements in almost all partner violence prevention and treatment programs, a fundamental revision is needed to bring these programs into alignment with the empirical data. Prevention and treatment of partner violence could become more effective if the programs recognize that most partner violence is mutual and act on the high rate of perpetration by women and the similar etiology of partner violence by men and women.


Murray A. Straus
Family Research Laboratory, University of New Hampshire
Durham, NH 03824 603-862-2594 murray.straus@unh.edu
Website: http://pubpages.unh.edu/~mas2
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