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Untangling the concept of coercive control: Theorizing domestic violent crime

Walby, S. and Towers, J. S. (2018). Untangling the concept of coercive control: Theorizing domestic violent crime. Criminology and Criminal Justice, 18(1), pp. 7-28. doi: 10.1177/1748895817743541

Abstract

The paper assesses three approaches to domestic violence: two that use the concept of ‘coercive control’ and one that uses ‘domestic violent crime’. These are: Stark’s concept of coercive control; Johnson’s distinction between situational couple violence and intimate terrorism, in which coercive control is confined to the latter; and that of domestic violent crime, in which all physical violence is conceptualised as coercive and controlling. The paper assesses these three approaches on seven issues. It offers original analysis of data from the Crime Survey for England and Wales concerning variations in repetition and seriousness in domestic violent crime. It links escalation in domestic violent crime to variations in the economic resources of the victim. It concludes that the concept of domestic violent crime is preferable to that of coercive control when seeking to explain variations in domestic violence.

Publication Type: Article
Additional Information: This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License (http://www.creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/) which permits any use, reproduction and distribution of the work without further permission provided the original work is attributed as specified on the SAGE and Open Access pages (https://us.sagepub.com/en-us/nam/open-access-at-sage).
Publisher Keywords: Coercive control, Crime Survey for England and Wales, domestic violence, domestic violent crime, gender, violence
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HN Social history and conditions. Social problems. Social reform
H Social Sciences > HQ The family. Marriage. Woman
Departments: School of Arts & Social Sciences > Sociology
URI: https://openaccess.city.ac.uk/id/eprint/21542
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