Understanding Domestic Homicide

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UPNE, 1999 - Social Science - 289 pages
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This groundbreaking examination of murder among intimate partners considers domestic homicides in all their guises -- not just those occurring between sexual partners but the killing of children, parents, and siblings as well. Unlike previous studies of domestic killings, which focus on statistical findings, the work illuminates the complex factors that motivate intimate partner murders.

Drawing on extensive documentary sources and field research, Neil Websdale unearths the case histories of some 300 homicides involving family members and frames them within their interpersonal, familial, situational, and cultural contexts. He explores the kinship systems of various cultural groups (African American, Latino, Caucasian, and Asian American), discusses types of social and gender oppression, and explores the nature of families that experience domestic homicide. He also examines how these murders are covered by the media and looks at social policy initiatives designed to reduce such incidents.

By exploring the cultural patterns and the intricate workings of power struggles revealed by these cases, Understanding Domestic Homicide expands one's understanding of such disconcerting crimes.

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About the author (1999)

For Neil Websdale, a Northern Arizona University professor in criminology and criminal justice, the power of education extends far beyond the classroom. For nearly 20 years, Websdale has worked to educate students, law enforcement officials, and policy makers about better ways to prevent domestic violence. One of the key ways in which he does this is by helping to establish domestic violence review teams, which use a systematic approach for analyzing domestic violence in order to prevent future occurrences. In his work, Websdale focuses on collaboration and education: attempting to mitigate the negative effects of domestic violence requires an informed group effort.

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