Paul L. Caron

Friday, February 3, 2023

Gondwe Presents The Life-Saving Potential Of Direct Public Financial Assistance To Survivors Of Intimate Partner Violence Today At Indiana

Nyamagaga Gondwe (Wisconsin; Google Scholar) presents Emergency Exit: The Life-Saving Potential of Direct Public Financial Assistance to Survivors of Intimate Partner Violence at Indiana today as part of its Tax Policy Colloquium hosted by Leandra Lederman:

Gondwe (2023)Intimate partner violence (IPV) is viewed primarily as a class of criminal behavior in federal policy. But the criminal justice system operates through a model of individual accountability, which means that solutions to IPV in American communities focus on education (proactive) and incarceration (reactive) as interventions.

However, public health studies on IPV suggest that the kinds of physical violence that result in arrest should not be seen as the central issue in addressing IPV. Instead, those studies suggest that physical violence should be thought of as a tool for one partner in a relationship to exert coercive power and control over the other partner. Put another way, physical violence is just one of multiple tools an abuser will use to control their partner. Other tools include emotional abuse, psychological abuse, and economic abuse.

Some studies have connected the power and control that abusers assert through IPV to patriarchal narratives of male dominance, including men’s entitlement to exert power over women. If patriarchy is a factor driving the prevalence of IPV in American society, then addressing IPV will require tamping down on the effectiveness of patriarchal tools of control. This means, in part, deconstructing the relationship between patriarchy and policy. Understanding the dynamic between patriarchy, policy, and IPV requires identifying the middle ground between private and public social/political spheres. The patriarchal social norms embedded in public policy reinforces abusive patriarchal behavior in private relationships.

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