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Unpublished Paper
Law, Social Movements, and the Political Economy of Domestic Violence
ExpressO (2012)
  • Deborah M. Weissman
This article uses the occasion of the 2012 Reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) to review the circumstances by which legal theory and social movement discourse have acted to circumscribe the scope of VAWA and the dominant approach to domestic violence. It seeks to explore the relationship between domestic violence advocacy and feminist theory of the type that has functioned as “the ideological reflection of one’s own place in society” with insufficient attention to superstructures. It argues for the re-examination of the current domestic violence/criminal justice paradigm and calls for the consideration of economic uncertainty and inequality as a context for gender-based violence. It argues that as an epistemology, domestic violence scholarship has fallen behind other fields of study due to its failure to address the structural context of gender-based violence. The Article then proposes a redefinition of the parameters of domestic violence law and presents new (and provocative) ways to think about law-related interventions to ameliorate gender violence.
  • law and social movements,
  • gender,
  • feminism,
  • criminal justice
Publication Date
February 28, 2012
Citation Information
Deborah M. Weissman. "Law, Social Movements, and the Political Economy of Domestic Violence" ExpressO (2012)
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