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NCJ Number: 200106 Find in a Library
Title: Evolution of Domestic Violence Policy Through Masculine Institutions: From Discipline to Protection to Collaborative Empowerment
Journal: Criminology & Public Policy  Volume:2  Issue:2  Dated:March 2003  Pages:319-328
Author(s): Faith E. Lutze; Megan L. Symons
Date Published: March 2003
Page Count: 10
Type: Issue Overview
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This essay analyzes the criminal justice response to domestic violence as a patriarchal approach within a gendered institution and traces three main stages of criminal justice policy on domestic violence.
Abstract: Power differences that exist between the victim of domestic violence, her abuser, and the State ensure that the victim of domestic violence is not fully protected from abuse. The authors argue that historical patriarchy within the institutions that are charged with protecting victims of violence has undermined women’s safety in their homes. Three main stages of criminal justice policy regarding domestic violence are presented. The first stage, male privilege and the right to discipline, encompassed a time when men were considered justified in punishing their wives within their homes; the criminal justice response was to do nothing. The second stage, male power and the right to protect, was characterized by legislation aimed at protecting battered women; policies that mandated arrest in cases of domestic violence became widespread. The authors contend that we are on the verge of beginning the third stade, called the collaborative empowerment stage. Criminal justice policy is slowly bending to allow the use of social services in the treatment of both the victim and the offender of domestic violence. The authors argue that this more holistic approach toward reducing domestic violence is a step in the right direction in terms of empowering victims and placing participants on more equal footing. The authors suggest that the emerging strategies focus on equalizing the power of social service agencies and the police in order to better effect social change. References
Main Term(s): Criminal Justice System Response to Victims
Index Term(s): Battered wives; Criminal justice system policy; Legal remedies for battered women
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