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Chapter 13

PSYC 3020 Chapter 13: PSYC 3020 Chapter 13

Course Code
PSYC 3020
Dan Yarmey

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Chapter 13 331-353 Domestic
Violence and its aftermath is a major focus of forensic psychology; developing assessment and
intervention programs for victims and offenders
Typically occurs in private settings
Historically it was tolerated and not subject to legal sanctions
I Caada, little attetio as paid to it efoe the ’s
Unfortunately is still common
Types of Violence and Measurement
Physical (hitting, stabbing, burning etc.)
Financial (restricting access, forcing complete financial responsibility, theft of paycheques)
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Emotional (verbal degradation, threats on family members/pets, isolation, unwarranted
accusations of infidelity)
Measurement: Conflict Tactics Scale (CTS), Straus, 1979
18 items measuring how they resolve conflict Myths (Box 13.1):
Domestic violence is not a common problem
o Because of the private nature and shame/embarrassment associated it is difficult to get
an accurate number In Canada, about 1 in 8 women are abused
o Highest is women between age 15 and 25
Only heterosexual women get battered. Men are not victims, and women never batter o Men
can be victims, women can be batterers, even in same-sex relationships
When a woman leaves a violent relationship, she is safe o Most dangerous after separation o
75% of spousal homicides occur after
o Abusing partner is losing control
Alcohol and/or drugs cause people to act aggressively o Is often present, but not what causes
o Blaming takes responsibility away and can prevent person from changing
Maybe things will get better
o Once violence begins, it usually gets worse without some kind of intervention
Study found that within community and university students, males and females commit equal
amounts of violence
Men are more likely to under-report than women
CTS is criticised:
o Itodutio; espodets ead No atte ho ell a ouple get alog, thee ae ties
when they disagree, get annoyed with the other person or just have spats or fights
eause the’e i a ad ood o fo soe othe easo. The also use a diffeet
as of tig to settle thei diffeees. “oe aguets ae ot peipitated 
violence and therefore the respondent may not report that
o Does not include full range of potential violent acts sexual aggression
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o Likely that different results would be found if acts such as kicking, biting and punching
were not combined into one item
o Does’t take ito aout diffeet oseuees for the same act by men and women
o Does not assess motive; offensive violence treated same as defensive violence
o Items may be interpreted differently depending on the gender of the respondent
Revised to CTS2 included and discluded some items
Intimate Partners: A Risky Relationship
1993 51% of women reported at least one incident since age of 16
2004 6% of men and 7% women experienced physical and/or sexual assault
o Year preceding, 2%
Women report more severe forms of violence and were more likely to report to police
Dating violence in universities: median across all countries studied was
29.8% for all assaults o 5.8% serious assaults, 21.5% secually coercive acts o Canada
was in the lower half of countries surveyed, about 1 in 5
o Canada has higher rate of sexual coercion
Theories of Intimate Violence
Some belief that patriarchal society contributes to the domestic assault of women by men
Smith (1990) distinguished between social patriarchy (male domination at the social level) and
familial patriarchy ( within the family)
Study: Yllo and Straus (1990) compared rates of spousal abuse across American states with
the degree to which each was characterized by patriarchal structure; male-dominant norms had
much higher rates
Patriarchy influences the development of individual expectations about the appropriate level
authority within intimate relationships
Social Learning Theory Bandura, 1973
Dutton (1995) applied to spousal violence
Explains aggression; origins of aggression, instigators and regulators
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