Self-Defense, Retaliation, and Gender: Clarifying Motivations for Physical Partner Violence

Abstract

The motivations behind intimate partner violence (IPV) have been a controversial topic. It has been suggested that women’s use of IPV mainly occurs in the context of self-defense (Saunders 1986). However, men also report perpetrating IPV in self-defense (Harned 2001; Makepeace 1986). This article differentiates self-defense from retaliation and reviews findings regarding these motives for perpetrators of IPV. Self-defense motives are common among battered women; however, undergraduates and arrested perpetrators often report other motives. Women do not consistently report using violence in self-defense more than men do. Clinical and research implications are discussed and existing self-defense measures are critiqued.

DOI: 10.1007/s10896-016-9874-3

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Cite this paper

@article{Leisring2016SelfDefenseRA, title={Self-Defense, Retaliation, and Gender: Clarifying Motivations for Physical Partner Violence}, author={Penny Ann Leisring and Hannah L. Grigorian}, journal={Journal of Family Violence}, year={2016}, volume={31}, pages={949-953} }