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Husband Battering A Serious Problem Billboards radio and TVads across the country proclaim that every fifteen seconds a women is beatenby a man Violence against women is clearly a problem of national importancebut has anyone ever asked how often men are beaten by women The unfortunatefact is that men are the victims of domestic violence at least as often aswomen are While the very idea of men being beaten by their wives runs contraryto many of our deeply ingrained beliefs about men and women female violenceagainst men is a well-documented phenomenon almost completely ignored by boththe media and society The first reaction uponhearing about the topic of battered men for many people is that of incredulityBattered husbands are almost a topic for jokes - such as the cartoon image of awoman chasing her husband with a rolling pin One researcher noted that wiveswere the perpetrators in 73 of the depiction of domestic violence in newspapercomics Gelles 1974 Battered husbands have historically been eitherignored or subjected to ridicule and abuse In 18th-century France a batteredhusband was made to wear an outlandish outfit and ride backwards aroundthe village on a donkey Langley Levy 1977 Even those of us wholike to consider ourselves liberated and open-minded often have a difficulttime even imagining that husband battering could take place Although feminismhas opened many of our eyes about the existence of domestic violence and newspaperreports often include incidents of abuse of wives the abuse of husbands is ararely discussed phenomenon One reason researchers andothers had not chosen to investigate husband battering is because it wasthought to be a fairly rare occurrence Police reports seemed to bear this outwith in some cases a ratio of 12 to 145 female victims to every one malevictim But another reason is that because women were seen as weaker and morehelpless than men due to sex roles and men on the
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