The Absent Voice of Male Domestic Abuse Victims: The Marginalisation of Men in a System Originally Designed for Women
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The problematic construction of domestic abuse as a ‘gendered, heterosexual phenomenon that is predominantly physical in nature’ has served to marginalise male victims of domestic abuse (Donovan and Hester, 2010:279), and impeded them from reaching victim status (Josolyne, 2011). As such, in comparison to women, men receive less recognition as victims within society, and support services are tailored towards the needs of female victims. Relatively little research has been undertaken on the experiences of male victims of domestic abuse, and thus it remains unclear how it is best to support them. This study adopts a qualitative approach to explore the invisibility of male victims within society, and investigate the level of service provision currently available to male victims. The findings indicate that: service provision for male victims remains inadequate, particularly in regard to refuge spaces; and, perhaps more importantly, there is a lack of awareness that men can also be victims of domestic abuse, which serves to discourage male victims from seeking help. The study concludes by suggesting directions for further research, which would improve the service provision for male victims, and increase the likelihood that they will approach support services.
Wright, C. (2016) 'The Absent Voice of Male Domestic Abuse Victims: The Marginalisation of Men in a System Originally Designed for Women', Plymouth Law and Criminal Justice Review, 8, pp. 333-350. Available at: https://pearl.plymouth.ac.uk/handle/10026.1/9037
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