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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 134984 Find in a Library
Title: Conjugal Violence: Changing Attitudes in Two Northern Native Communities
Journal: Community Mental Health Journal  Volume:27  Issue:5  Dated:(October 1991)  Pages:359-373
Author(s): D Durst
Date Published: 1991
Page Count: 15
Type: Survey
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This article reports the findings of case studies of two Arctic communities and compares their responses to family violence before and after oil and gas development.
Abstract: The communities are situated in the center of the recent exploration for hydrocarbon resources in the Beaufort Sea and have experienced the direct social impacts of this industrial activity; they thus provide an excellent opportunity to analyze the relationship between industrial development and family violence. The research applied a model developed by Blishen et al (1979) specifically for northern communities. The model analyzed the community's social processes and functioning on a continuum from "communitarianism" (social integration) to "privatization" (social isolation). This research collected data that compared conjugal violence before and after development and explored how persons would respond to family violence and where they would go for help to address the problem. The analysis found that the communities had different levels of communitarianism and privatization before hydrocarbon development accelerated. After development, both communities experienced increased responses to family violence that were both communitarian and privatized. Previous to development, the respondents tended to avoid situations of family violence, and when confronted with it, they often did not know how to respond. The findings indicate that conjugal violence has been present in native communities for a long time and that native communities can and have successfully taken community-based action to address the problem. Findings indicate that social-work intervention that focuses on the community at large can have a positive impact on attitudes and community-based action. This study challenges professional helpers to broaden their strategies to include innovative community-based approaches. 1 table and 31 references
Main Term(s): Domestic assault
Index Term(s): Eskimos; Industrialization; Socialization
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