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Domestic Violence in Relation to Economic Class

Cecilia Valle
Sociology 001, Dr.Thea Alvarado

History of the institution

No set definition for Family, however the substantive definition of the family is
based on blood, or shared genetic heritage. As well as law, meaning social
recognition and affirmation of the bond including marriage and adoption.
Stable Features and Functions of the family according to sociologist William F.
Ogburn are:
Reproduction- replace dying members to maintain society
Socialization- transition children into societal norms, values, language of their culture to a child
Protection- Protection and upbringing of children
Regulation of sexual behavior- Although sexual norms change over time, whatever the time
period or cultural values of a society, the standards of sexual behavior are defined in the

Domestic Violence and Intimate Partner Violence

Domestic Violence is violence or abusive behavior involving violent abuse by a
spouse or domestic partner
It is not limited to partners that are married or limited together, which is why
domestic violence can include dating violence and intimate partner violence
Women ages 18-34 are at risk of being victims of some form of domestic
About 1.3 million women and 853,000 men are physically assaulted by an
intimate partner in the United Stated per year

Societal Views on Domestic Violence

According to the U.S. Department of Justice, a study found that the public sees
domestic violence as a common problem
Half of all men have used violence toward an intimate partner
Only a small percentage of the population believe that violence is appropriate,
and a larger percentage believe there are circumstances where domestic
violence is justifiable
86% in a study found that hitting a spouse was always wrong

Domestic Violence Power and Control Wheel

The Duluth Model of Power and Control Wheel
represents the ways in which a domestic
partner can manipulate and control a spouse
It demonstrates the ways in which a partner
uses coercion, intimidation, emotional
abuse, isolation, children, and economic
abuse against a victim.

Domestic Violence by Economic Class

Although there are domestic cases among all classes, there are statistics that
can show that lower income families are more likely to become victims of
domestic violence due to economic strain
Domestic violence rates in low income families is five times greater than those
in high-income households
A study done in Trinidad showed that the prevalence for domestic violence
occurred in low income households
The study also showed that middle and upper classes had more access to
resources such as counseling and medical support

Domestic Violence by Economic Class cont.

The number of intimate partner violence reports by Race/Ethnicity shows that a
majority of hispanics and blacks, which reflect that low income and poverty ridden
communities have more cases of domestic violence.

Improving lives of Domestic Violence

Training to help social services identify Domestic Victims and reluctance of
victims to report
Domestic Violence Survivor Assessment tool used to help healthcare providers
and abused women in guided counseling
Studying the costs of intervening, a current study that is being pursued at
Harvard School of Public Health
Studying the Long-term Health Care Effects of Domestic violence, another
current study being done in Seattle Washington
In addition to these newer methods, Domestic Violence awareness is another
key concept in spreading support systems for victims

Social Perspectives on Domestic Violence

Both the Functionalist Theory and Conflict Theory can be applied to the issue of
domestic violence to better understand
The Functionalist Perspective views society as interacting parts that function
together to maintain balance
The Conflict Perspective argues that there is a dominant group that asserts its
power over another in order to maintain a state of balance
The Feminist Perspective is an extension of the conflict perspective and can be used to analyze
gender inequalities

Functionalist Analysis
The family provides social and economic balance to society. Families contribute
economically by working and contributing to society and they are intended to
have children and raise them in order to keep the balance through
When there is an economic imbalance within the family, for example a period of
unemployment, the functionalist would theorize that domestic violence is the
result of this imbalance
Men commonly occupy instrumental roles within a traditional marriage between
a man and woman, when the man cannot occupy this role, domestic violence
can be a result

Conflict Theory and Feminism

Family is an institution that does not provide equal roles between men and
women, and in many cases of domestic violence resources are not shared
Financial freedom for the victim of domestic violence is limited by their abusive partner

Domestic Violence is the assertion of power of one partner over the other. When
the head of household loses a job or is going through an economic hardship
and the woman is the only source of income, there is a rise in domestic
The Feminist perspective can also be applied to cases of domestic violence.
When a husband or partner feels threatened by the economic success of their
partner, it can lead to cases of domestic violence.
The Power and Control Wheel demonstrates ways in which a male partner

Works Cited
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Hirschel, David, Ira Hutchison, and Meaghan Shaw. "The Interrelationship Between Substance
Abuse And The Likelihood Of Arrest, Conviction, And Re-Offending In Cases Of
Intimate Partner Violence." Journal Of Family Violence 25.1 (2010): 81-90. Academic Search Premier. Web. 19 July 2016.
Krebs, Christopher, et al. "The Association Between Different Types Of Intimate Partner
Violence Experienced By Women."Journal Of Family Violence 26.6 (2011): 487-500.
Academic Search Premier. Web. 19 July 2016.
"Applied Theory Of Domestic Violence Sociology Essay." UKEssays. N.p., n.d. Web. 25 July 2016.

Carlson, Bonnie E., and Alissa Pollitz Warden. "Public Opinion about DomesticViolence." (n.d.): n. pag. National Institute of Justice.
Web. 24 July 2016.
Tjaden, Patricia, and Nancy Thoennes. "Full Report of the Prevalence, Incidence, and Consequences of Violence Against
National Institute of Justice. National Violence Against Women Survey, n.d. Web. 25 July 2016.
Kass-Bartelmes, Barbara. "Women and Domestic Violence." : Programs and Tools That Improve Care for Victims. Agency for
Healthcare Research Quality, n.d. Web. 25 July 2016.
Rawlins, JM. "The Prevalence of Domestic Violence within Different Socioeconomic Classes in Central Trinidad." West Indian
Journal. The University of the West Indies, n.d. Web. 25 July 2016.