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Distributed for University of British Columbia Press

The Domestic Assault of Women

Psychological and Criminal Justice Perspectives

The Domestic Assault of Women relates social and criminal justice policy to empirically tested social psychological theory about the causes and effects of wife assault. Donald G. Dutton argues that only by understanding the psychology of both the aggressors and the victims of wife assault can we generate informed social and criminal justice policy. By linking the psychological factors that support assaultive habits to police arrest policy and subsequent treatment, Dutton shows how police/therapist intervention can interrupt assaultive behaviour and prevent recidivism.

348 pages

Table of Contents



1 History and Incidence of Wife Assault

2 Explanations for Wife Assault: Psychiatry, Sociobiology, and Sociology

3 The Social Psychology of the Wife Assaulter: The Theory

4 The Social Psychology of the Wife Assaulter: The Research Studies

5 The Abusive Personality

6 Effects on the Victim

7 Traumatic Bonding

8 The Criminal Justice Response to Wife Assault

9 The Treatment of Wife Assault

10 The Future




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