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Violence In The Family

R. Gelles
Published 2003 · Psychology

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During the last quarter of the twentieth century, violence in the family was transformed from a private trouble and an issue obscured by selective inattention to a social problem that receives increasing professional, public, and policy attention. We now know that violence in intimate relationships is extensive and is not limited to one socioeconomic group, one soci­ety, or one period in time. We recognize the social, emotional, economic, and societal costs of intimate violence. We are aware of the constraints on the victims that limit their ability to protect themselves and their dependents. Although there are numerous controversies among researchers, practitioners, and policy makers about how to best conceptualize and respond to the problem of violence in the family, one consensus has been reached—there is evidence that virtually every type and form of family and intimate relationship has the potential of being violent. Researchers and clinicians have found violence and abuse in every type of intimate relationship. Thus, although the title of this chapter is “Violence in the Family,” the scope of chapter examines violence and abuse in intimate relationships.
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