Title

When Two Fields Collide: An Examination of the Assumptions of Social Science Research and Law Within the Domain of Domestic Violence

Author ORCID Identifier

https://orcid.org/0000-0002-3463-5704

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

1-1-2003

Publication Title

Trauma, Violence, & Abuse

Volume

4

Issue

1

First Page

3

Last Page

21

DOI

10.1177/1524838002238943

Keywords

domestic violence, feminist critique, law, policy, research

Abstract

Feminist theorists in law and the social sciences have questioned the appropriateness of using the methods of their disciplines as tools for bettering the lives of women who have experienced domestic violence. The authors begin with a brief review of the major feminist critiques within these two domains. They explore the assumptions on which both are based and provide examples of how well-meaning attempts to use these disciplines in the area of domestic violence have fallen short of their goals. They then show how the problematic assumptions of both disciplines may be worsened when research on domestic violence is done within the context of the criminal justice system using the example of the mandatory arrest experiments. They conclude that research and the law should come together only under conditions where feminist critiques are taken seriously and the perspectives of women who are the victims of these offenses are placed at the center of the work. © 2003, SAGE Publications. All rights reserved.

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