Domestic Violence

Topics: Domestic violence, Violence, Abuse Pages: 60 (14505 words) Published: March 24, 2011


Domestic violence is one major human right abuse in Ghana. In Ghana, the prevalence of domestic violence is said to cut across all sectors of society and ages. Victims of such violence are predominantly women and children. On physical abuse only, studies have revealed that one out of three Ghanaian women has been physically abused by an intimate partner. Domestic violence is one of the most brutal consequences of the economic, social, political and cultural inequalities that exist between the sexes. Steinmetz (1987) has defined violence as “an act carried out with the intention of, or an act perceived as having the intention of physically hurting another”. According to Davies (1994), the term domestic violence is sometimes used to describe violence against women in the family while in other instances it is used as a general label covering any violation where the victim and the perpetrator have some form of personal and family relationship or have had a relationship in the past. Used in this wider sense, domestic violence encompasses any threats or acts of physical or sexual harm; economic, emotional, verbal or psychological abuse; and harmful cultural practices that takes place within the context of previous or existing domestic relationship.

The family is often equated with sanctuary – a place where individual seeks love, safety, security and shelter. But the evidence show that it is also a place that imperils lives, and breeds some of the most drastic forms of violence perpetrated against women.

Violence in the domestic sphere is usually perpetrated by males who are, or who have been, in position of trust and intimacy and power – husbands, boyfriends, fathers, fathers-in law, stepfathers, uncles, brothers and other relatives. Domestic violence is in most cases violence perpetrated by men against women. Women can also be violent, but their actions account for a small percentage of domestic violence.

Domestic violence was first established as a development issue at the United Nations Decade for Women’s meeting in Nairobi in 1985. Since then, international organizations and locally based agencies, and individual activities across the world have campaigned vigorously against abuses such as rape, wife beating, sexual slavery and harassment among others.

In spite of these efforts domestic violence is still the most common and widespread form of violence throughout the world. Studies have shown that women and children especially the girl child constitute majority of the victims. This in no way suggests that boys and men are not also victims of domestic violence. However, focusing on the larger percentage of the population, women and girls are victims of domestic violence. Jurist and, human rights experts and activists have argued that the physical, Sexual and psychological abuse, sometimes with fatal outcomes inflicted on women is comparable to tortured in both nature and severity.

When women are abused, they are left with so little confidence in themselves and their abilities that they are unable to measure up in the development of the nation. This implies that over half of the physical and intellectual capacity of the labor force is lost. Sometimes abused women are either unable to work because their husbands do not permit them or because they are suffering such severe physical or emotional trauma that work is impossible.

The effects of violence on the victim especially the married women are damaging. In some cases of physical, sexual or economic violence, it is easy to recognize the effects. In those that are psychological in nature and form, it is more difficult to recognize and know the full effect. The impacts of physical and sexual violence also have psychological manifestation, which often cause permanent damage to the victim.

Fear is the most predominant feeling that surface when working with victims of domestic violence. Fear determines their actions...

References: ❖ Ola Barnet et al. (2005). Family violence across the lifespan. London: Sega
❖ Vanessa Brocato & Dwamena-Aboagye Angela (2007). Violence Against Women &
HIV / AIDS: The Ark Foundation Ghana, Information Manual.
❖ Margaret Abraham (2000). Speaking the Unspeakable Marital Violence Among South
Asian Immigrants in the United State
❖ Eghosa G. Osaghae et al (1994). Urban Violence in Africa Pilot Studies. Ibadan, Nigeria:
IFRA, University of Ibadan.
❖ Patricia Evans (1993). Verbal Abuse Supervisors Speak Out on Relationship and
❖ Felicia Oyekanmi (1997). Men, Women and Violence a Collection Papers From
CODESRIA Gender Institute
❖ Fanny M. Cheung et al (1999). Breaking the Silence: Violence Against Women In Asia.
❖ Janet V. Lewis (2001). Sexual Harassment: Issues and Analyses. Huntington, NY: Nova
Science Publishers, Inc.
❖ Nancy A. Crowell and Ann W. Burgess (1996). Understanding Violence Against
❖ Gelless J.A. (1978). Researching the Battery Husband. Social Work and 22 NASW
❖ Kirkwood C. (1993). Leaving Abusive Partners Sage Publications. London : Thousand
Oaks, New Delhi.
❖ O Sam S. (2004). Violence Against Women in Ghana: an Analysis of Cases Presented in
the Media
❖ Tom K. B. (2002). Research Methods and Techniques of Social Research. Accra, Adenta:
Sonlife Printing Press and Services
❖ Jalna Hammer and Catherine Itzin et al. (2000). Home Truths Feminist and Influence on
Policy and Practice
❖ Domestic Violence Act, 2007(Act 732).
Continue Reading

Please join StudyMode to read the full document

You May Also Find These Documents Helpful

  • Domestic Violence Essay
  • Domestic Violence Essay
  • Essay about Domestic Violence
  • Domestic violence: Power and Control Research Paper
  • Characteristics of Partner Violence Research Paper
  • Domestic Violence Essay
  • Domestic Violence Essay
  • Domestic Violence Essay

Become a StudyMode Member

Sign Up - It's Free