Handbook of Domestic Violence Intervention Strategies: Policies, Programs, and Legal Remedies

By Albert R. Roberts | Go to book overview

22
Asian Battered Women
Assessment and Treatment
MO YEE LEE

As a result of the work of feminist activists, scholars, and practitioners who have been the force behind the battered women's movement, the issue of spouse abuse has gained increased prominence in American society. The Violence Against Women Act of 1994 signifies a fundamental change in the criminal justice system and reflects the recognition that violence against women is a crime with far-reaching, harmful consequences for families, children, and society (U.S. Department of Justice, 1996). Despite the proliferation of collective knowledge and understanding of domestic violence against women and its treatment, the experience of Asian battered women has been understudied (Lee & Au, 1998; Lum, 1998). Asian-Americans are a fastgrowing group in the United States, constituting 3.5% of the overall population in 1997 (U.S. Department of Commerce, 1998). It has been projected that by the year 2050, Asian Pacific Islanders will constitute 8.2% of total population. To better understand domestic violence and provide effective interventions to stop violence in intimate relationships, it is important to produce additional images of domestic violence that capture the experiences of a broader range of men, women, and children. This chapter reviews the experiences of Asian battered women and provides suggestions for culturally sensitive and competent assessment and treatment for them. The discussion is also informed by interviews conducted with prominent Asian professionals and activists working with Asian battered women.

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