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Report on lesbian violence : the hidden face of domestic violence Brown, Karena

By: Brown, Karena.
Contributor(s): National Collective of Independent Women's Refuges Inc | New Zealand. Department of Social Welfare. Family Violence Unit | University of Canterbury. Department of Socioology.
Material type: materialTypeLabelBookPublisher: Wellington, New Zealand Family Violence Unit, Dept. of Social Welfare 1995Description: 45, [12] p.Subject(s): COMMUNITIES | CULTURAL DIFFERENCES | DOMESTIC VIOLENCE | OFFENDERS | VICTIMS | INTIMATE PARTNER VIOLENCE | LESBIAN | LGBTIQ | NEW ZEALANDDDC classification: 362.8292 BRO Summary: This report is the culmination of two separate pieces of work concerning lesbian domestic violence. The first was a project begun by the Lesbian Refuge Workers Network and funded by the Family Violence Unit, Department of Social Welfare, in 1991. The project subsequently lapsed but was resurrected by the author as part of an Honours degree at the University of Canterbury. The original study involved semi-structured face-to-face interviews with an unspecified number of women who had been either lesbian domestic violence abusers or survivors. Questionnaires were also sent to women's refuges and other organisations providing support services to lesbians. The information from the questionnaires had been summarised and the interviews transcribed. The author analysed 14 of the original interviews, four with abusers, eight with survivors and two with refuge workers. She focused on the following questions: What does the refuge movement offer lesbians who have been abused by their partners? Do lesbians who have been abused feel they are able to seek help within the refuge movement? Is the 'lesbian community' in which they live supportive of them? What help is available for women who abuse? Some women chose to go to refuges to get the help they needed to escape from violent relationships, but not all women received the same degree of assistance. The author considers that traditional gender theory and homophobia are partly to blame for this and for keeping lesbian domestic violence hidden. Much of the theory relating to domestic and family violence perceives it solely as a male problem. The author argues the prevalence of domestic violence within homosexual or heterosexual relationships is similar, and is an issue of power and control. Homophobic prejudices within society at large mean that it is difficult for members of a minority group such as the lesbian community to acknowledge that the problem of lesbian violence does exist, and to ask for and receive support for either the abuser or the recipient of the violence. The author advocates continuing research into the area of lesbian domestic violence through discussions with women in abusive relationships, those who work in the domestic violence area, and members of lesbian communities, to discover why this issue is kept hidden and what can be done to address the situation.
Item type Current location Call number Status Date due Barcode
Report Report TRO 362.8292 REP Available A00670049B
Report Report TRO 362.8292 REP Available A0067009AB

This report is the culmination of two separate pieces of work concerning lesbian domestic violence. The first was a project begun by the Lesbian Refuge Workers Network and funded by the Family Violence Unit, Department of Social Welfare, in 1991. The project subsequently lapsed but was resurrected by the author as part of an Honours degree at the University of Canterbury. The original study involved semi-structured face-to-face interviews with an unspecified number of women who had been either lesbian domestic violence abusers or survivors. Questionnaires were also sent to women's refuges and other organisations providing support services to lesbians. The information from the questionnaires had been summarised and the interviews transcribed. The author analysed 14 of the original interviews, four with abusers, eight with survivors and two with refuge workers. She focused on the following questions: What does the refuge movement offer lesbians who have been abused by their partners? Do lesbians who have been abused feel they are able to seek help within the refuge movement? Is the 'lesbian community' in which they live supportive of them? What help is available for women who abuse? Some women chose to go to refuges to get the help they needed to escape from violent relationships, but not all women received the same degree of assistance. The author considers that traditional gender theory and homophobia are partly to blame for this and for keeping lesbian domestic violence hidden. Much of the theory relating to domestic and family violence perceives it solely as a male problem. The author argues the prevalence of domestic violence within homosexual or heterosexual relationships is similar, and is an issue of power and control. Homophobic prejudices within society at large mean that it is difficult for members of a minority group such as the lesbian community to acknowledge that the problem of lesbian violence does exist, and to ask for and receive support for either the abuser or the recipient of the violence. The author advocates continuing research into the area of lesbian domestic violence through discussions with women in abusive relationships, those who work in the domestic violence area, and members of lesbian communities, to discover why this issue is kept hidden and what can be done to address the situation.

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