Critique of the "Battered Woman Syndrome" Model
Battered woman syndrome - Wikipedia
In , Governor William Weld modified parole regulations and permitted women to seek commutation if they could present evidence indicating they suffered from battered women's syndrome. A short while later, the Governor, citing spousal abuse as his impetus, released seven women convicted of killing their husbands, and the Great and General Court of Massachusetts enacted Mass. These decisive acts brought the issue of domestic abuse to the public's attention and left many Massachusetts residents, lawyers and judges struggling to define battered women's syndrome. In order to help these individuals define battered women's syndrome, the origins and development of the three primary theories of the syndrome and recommended treatments are outlined below. In fact, Dr. Lenore Walker, the architect of the classical battered women's syndrome theory, notes the syndrome is not an illness, but a theory that draws upon the principles of learned helplessness to explain why some women are unable to leave their abusers. Therefore, the classical battered women's syndrome theory is best regarded as an offshoot of the theory of learned helplessness and not a mental illness that afflicts abused women.
Battered woman syndrome and intimate partner violence
Sally J. Scholz Villanova University sally. However, it may also contribute to the violence of the battering situation. In this paper, I explore some of the implications of the Battered Woman Syndrome for domestic violence cases wherein an abused woman kills her abuser.
Coined by psychologist Lenore Walker, she proposed the term to describe the psychological condition of women who endured repeated traumas at the hands of an intimate partner, including the coping or survival skills a victim would develop over time to live with abuse. Bobbitt was acquitted. In , Barbara Sheehan killed her husband, claiming he severely abused her throughout their marriage. She, too, was acquitted after a battered-woman defense was used.