Comprehension of social violence, particularly domestic violence, necessitates understanding power and its manifestation in social relationships. Domestic violence shows gendered power inequities and demographic inequalities across society. Domestic violence jeopardizes the victim’s safety, health, or well-being, has a detrimental influence on individual and social resilience, as well as the ability to create and sustain vibrant communities. Individuals are also subjected to psychological trauma due to forced separation from family, community, and culture, the deterioration of social structures and the creation of emotionless, insensitive institutions rife with abuse and neglect. This paper addresses domestic violence and power imbalances in social circumstances via the glasses of Fawcett (2007) and Menzies and McNamara (2008) before considering how these perspectives relate to my thoughts and values.
Fawcett’s (2007) chapter examines definitions and explanations of domestic violence and assesses the relationships established between violence and abuse. It acknowledges that domestic abuse can be between directly or indirectly related family members and intimate partner violence. Nonetheless, the chapter defines domestic violence as violence between partners or former partners. It includes violence committed by men against women, women against men, and violence committed in same-sex relationships. The chapter holds that intimate partner violence is a global problem that affects everyone, and it reflects power imbalances and demographic inequalities in social interactions. Social services helping victims of violence, especially women, should respond to women empathetically. Successful techniques include zero tolerance campaigns and engaging fathers who have been domestically abusive in safety planning. The chapter concludes that further study is needed to understand how gendered power discrepancies cause intimate partner violence in certain situations but not others and how this can be done without reverting to traditional pathologizing explanations.
Menzies and McNamara (2008) argue that it is necessary to understand current violence and abuse in the context of Aboriginal people’s history and traumatic experiences resulting from unjust and repressive state policies and practices to design suitable remedies. They illustrate this by examining the evolution of child welfare legislation and procedures in the Australian state of New South Wales (NSW) across time and the traumatic legacy they left from colonization to the present. According to the chapter, Aboriginal Australians have far greater sexual assault, marital violence, and child maltreatment rates than the overall community. It references the Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission’s Bringing Them Home Report to illustrate the adverse effects of violence and family separation. The chapter says that comprehending the past and present traumatic impacts of assimilation policies and practices on Australia’s Aboriginal people is vital if real action addresses the violence and abuse legacies that are still apparent today.
From personal knowledge, violence demonstrates social power inequities based on gender, money, ethnicity, influence, and other demographic categories. In this regard, I agree with the bulk of the comments stated in both chapters, but some of them look biased, especially in Fawcett’s (2007) chapter. Fawcett (2007), for example, claims that mandatory reporting puts pressure on women rather than addressing male violence; however, the author overlooks the fact that the legislation was designed to reinforce the moral obligation on every adult citizen, not just mothers, to care for and protect all children from abuse and harm. Furthermore, the phrase tends to suggest that only men commit violent crimes. Aside from that, the articles agree that is minorities, the weak, and those unable to advocate for themselves are victims of violence. As a result, combatting any violence or abuse involves a structural strategy spanning from law to public awareness to ensure that everyone understands the harmful effects of violence, resulting in a less tolerant society.
Fawcett, B. (2007). Women and Violence. In B. Fawcett & F. Waugh (Eds.), Addressing violence, abuse and oppression: Debates and challenges (pp. 7-16). Routledge.
Menzies, K. & McNamara, L. (2008). Towards healing: recognizing the trauma surrounding Aboriginal family violence In B. Fawcett & F. Waugh (Eds.), Addressing violence, abuse and oppression: Debates and challenges (pp. 38-54). Routledge.