Literature Review on Domestic Violence

Topics: Domestic violence, Violence, Child abuse Pages: 7 (2308 words) Published: April 17, 2013
What Makes a Person Violent: Literature Review
Since the beginning of the human race, domestic violence has been present. However, it was not until recent centuries that people began to look at it as a crime. To many people, in many cultures, domestic violence was seen as not only acceptable, but necessary in some situations.

In a study conducted by Hines and Saudino (2002), domestic violence in close, intimate relationships is a country wide problem within the United States. The last nationally conducted survey found that an estimated 16 percent of married Americans experienced domestic violence within the previous year. That means that approximately 8.7 million couples have been affected by domestic violence (Hines, Saudino 2002). Information also indicated that out of the couples that experienced domestic violence, 3.4 million received severe injury. However, this is a problem that reaches far beyond our shores. This is a crisis that has plagued nations all around the world.

Among various studies, the majority of research focuses on the social learning theory, physiological factors, and alcohol on a person’s likelihood of becoming an offender of domestic violence. Social Learning Theory

In recent years, studies involving domestic violence have placed the spot light on the power of being socially learned in violent behaviors. Within the criminal justice field, the domestic violence theory suggest that abuse is a behavior that is taught and picked up from learned experiences within the persons family or society in which they were, or are surrounded (Kernsmith 2006). The study of Intergenerational transmission has become one of the most popular theories to domestic violence (Corvo 2006). In a study done by Kernsmith (2006), a written survey was given to only English-speaking people, that were patients in prevention programs throughout Los Angelo’s County , California. Amongst the fifteen centers chosen to participate, 52.6 percent of those who responded were men and 47.4 percent of those who responded were women. The study considered different variables including whether or not the participant had ever witnessed or been a victim of domestic violence. The results found that about 74 percent of the participants had witnessed some form of domestic violence as a child. Of those, 70 percent said that they witnessed emotional abuse and 61 percent witnessed physical abuse. In addition to witnessing violence, 68 percent of the participants admitted to being victims of child abuse themselves. Of those, 64 percent reported emotional violence and 53 percent reported physical violence. Domestic violence within previous relationships was also prevalent; around 60 percent reported being victimized by a previous partner. According to the findings in Kernsmith’s (2006) experiment, a high number of the participants that were examined learned their abusive demeanor through previous experience within families of domestic violence. This study also found fewer that 3 percent of the participants admitted to never being exposed to domestic violence, including that of emotional or physical childhood abuse. These same participants said that they had never witnessed any form of sexual violence or domestic violence within their family of origin. This study found that the impact of assault of any form as a child has a huge impact on an individual as an adult. A journal article by Hines and Saudino (2002) says that within a lifetime, on average, fifty percent of all male and female Americans will be victims of aggression from their intimate partner. They proclaim that the most popular explanation for the conveyance of domestic violence must be awarded to the social learning theory. One of the most accurate theories as to why people choose to be violent in their adult years is due to their exposure to violence as a child (Hines, Saudino 2002). Hines and Saudino (2002) also mention that in the earliest studies performed to measure...
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