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Overview: The “Wife-Beater’s Wife” Reconsidered

  • Elaine Hilberman

Abstract

Wife-beating, although not a new phenomenon, has been largely ignored by mental health professionals. Until recently the literature and research on family violence were limited to child abuse and murder, since these categories alone were generally accepted as serious problems deserving of public attention and intervention. Although extensive research and service efforts have focused on family dynamics that foster child abuse and alcoholism, there has been inadequate recognition of the aggression that is often directed toward the wives and mothers in such families. This “selective inattention” has been noted by most contemporary researchers and writers1–3 and was documented by O’Brien’s finding4 that the index of the Journal of Marriage and the Family from its inception in 1939 through 1969 contained no references to “violence.”

Keywords

Mental Health Professional Violent Behavior Family Violence Battered Woman Abuse Woman 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© American Psychiatric Association 1980

Authors and Affiliations

  • Elaine Hilberman

There are no affiliations available

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