Gender Aggression & Violence
“What Society perceives about violence has less to do with a fixed reality than the lenses we are given through which to see.” --Patricia Pearson, When She Was Bad: Violent Women & the Myth of Innocence (p.7)
Domestic Violence in Gay and Lesbian Relationships
Domestic Violence in Gay and Lesbian Relationships Kelly & Warshafsky (1986): 46% of gay and lesbians reported using physical aggression for conflict resolution with their partners. Brand & Kidd (1986): 25% of lesbians surveyed reported that they had been physically abused by their lesbian partners. Coleman (1990): Of 90 lesbian couples surveyed, 46% experienced “repeated acts of violence in their relationships.” Reyes (1991): 26% of lesbians reported physical, sexual and emotional abuse in their current same-sex relationship. Renzetti (1996): 22-46% of all lesbians have been in a physically violent, same-sex relationship.
Sex and Child abuse: • In the U.S., women commit the majority of physical • child abuse (Nagi 1977): • Child Abuse Perpetrators • 53.1% female • 21% male • 22.6% male & female • 78% of 583 college men who had been abused as children • were abused by females (Fromath & Burkhart 1987). • 60% of 412 male students at U. of Washington who • recalled childhood sexual abuse were abused by females. • Women also commit the majority of child homicides.
Domestic Violence Steinmitz (1977) Survey of 57 families: • 39% of husbands and 37% of wives had thrown things. • 20% of both husbands and wives had struck their spouses • with their hands • 10% of both husbands and wives had hit their spouses with • a hard object Other Studies: • 47% of husbands and 33% of wives used violence on their • spouses (Gelles 1974). • 7.8% of spousal homicide victims were husbands murdered by • wives, while 8% were wives murdered by husbands.
Study of Female homicide offenders in 6 American cities: • 30% of women who killed men had previous arrests • for assault, battery and weapons charges. • 38% had between 1 and 30 previous misdemeanor • arrests.
Gender-based explanations of violence cannot explain . . . . . . why most of those executed for witchcraft in Europe and North America during the Great Witch Craze were women, whereas most of the Pueblo Indians in the Southwest that were executed as witches by the early Spanish Conquistadors were men. . . . or why most witches among the Pueblo, Apache and Navajo in the American Southwest are believed to be men. . . . or why among the Yoruba of Nigeria, not only do most men suspect their wives of witchcraft, but most women suspect their co-wives and their mothers-in-law of witchcraft.or . . .
. . . why the role of women and their status in both the domestic and political economy changed dramatically among the Plains Indians as they moved onto the Great Plains and became increasingly dependent on mounted bison hunting. 1. Among the Sioux, the Cheyenne and other eastern tribes, the family structure changed from being matrilocal and matrilineal extended kin groups to individualized patrilocal and polygynous ones. 2. Among the western Plains Indians, such as the Blackfoot, which had previously been organized along extended patrilocal and patrilineal lines evolved male-focused independent polygynous households. or . . .
. . . or why . . . 1. 47% of the 95 societies she surveyed by Benderly were "rape-free", while 17% proved to be "unambiguously Rape-prone.” 2. The Ashanti of West Africa and the Mbuti Pygmies of the Ituri Forest are rape-free societies, whereas 47.2 rapes per 100,000 persons were recorded for the Gusii of Kenya. 3. The highest rape rate among Industrial societies occurs in the U.S. at 13.5 rapes per 100,000 inhabitants. In contrast, the incidence of rape in Japan, a more “patriarchal” society than the U.S., is far below that of the U.S. _________________________________________ SOUCE: B. L. Benderly, “Rape Free or Rape Prone” Science 82 (1982)
. . . why M. Konner reports that 57 out of 94 studies of aggression showed "statistically significant sex differences" in aggressive behavior. 1. in 52 of the 57 studies that showed gender differences in aggressive behavior,boys were more aggressive than girls. 2. In 5 of the studies, girls were more aggressive than boys. 3. In 37 studiesthere wereno gender difference in aggression.
. . . or why there was a dramatic increase during the 1970s and 1980s in the number of individuals in the U.S. claiming: 1. to have recovered memories of childhood sexual abuse by family members 2. to have recovered memories of sexual abuse by members of satanic cults 3. to believe that they possessed multiple personalities. . . . or why: 1. this was a distinctly American phenomenon 2. the overwhelming majority (over 90%) of these individuals were white middle class females.
Commonly used Aristotelian Concepts: Maternal Instinct Male Aggressiveness Machismo Patriarchal Society Human NatureMatriarchal Society
Females are capable of taking up arms . . . One-third of Columbian rebel soldiers are female. . . . and killing people
Violent Women Jenny Metcalf Pearl Hart Circle Piru Blood
Only men are expected to be prepared to die for their country. * * * Imagine what would happen if an affirmative action policy were put in place to draft only women?
Men Waiting to be Sent into Battle at Petersburg
Military Casualties in World War I (1914-1918) Belgium 45,550 British Empire 942,135 France 1,368,000 Greece 23,098 Italy 680,000 Japan 1,344 Montenegro 3,000 Portugal 8,145 Romania 300,000 Russia 1,700,000 Serbia 45,000 United States 116,516 Austria-Hungary 1,200,000 Bulgaria 87,495 Germany 1,935,000 Ottoman Empire 725,000 _______________ _________ TOTAL9,180,283 men
Over 17 million men died in combat during World War II.
Vietnam War Death Toll Combat Area Casualties Current File (CACCF) [Southeast Asia] in the Records of the Office of the Secretary of Defense CACCF Record Counts by Sex SexNo. of Records Female . . . 8 Male . . . . .58,185 _____________ ___________ Total 58,193
GENDER-RELATED BEHAVIOR Concepts Sex vs. GenderThird Genders Biological vs. Social MaleBerdache Hijras Biological vs. Social Femalefa’afafines Guevodoche Eunuchs Castrati Pseudo-hermaphroditism Institutionalized Homosexuality Patriarchal Society Matriarchal Society Uniformitarianism Occam's Razor Correlation does not prove causality. Typical does not mean "natural." A constant cannot explain a variable. Ethnobiology Dichotomous vs. Continuous Sexual Paradigm Aristotelian vs. Galilean essentialist vs. conditional Infrastructure Structure Superstructure