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ARTICLE |

Woman Abuse: Facts Replacing Myths

Carl C. Bell, MD
JAMA. 1986;256(11):1501-1502. doi:10.1001/jama.1986.03380110107041.
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ABSTRACT

Since family violence is a major public health problem, physicians are strongly encouraged to read this book. It shatters commonly held stereotypes about conjugal violence, most of which takes the form of woman abuse.

The author's historical overview points out how, until recently, woman abuse had been legal for over 2 1/2 millennia, which creates attitudes that pervade western society. The book provides a good review of the literature on woman abuse, covering empirical findings of various studies regarding demographics and clinical descriptions of batterers and their victims. Results on the characteristics of the assaults, intervention seeking, and treatment outcomes are also covered.

An unfavorable view of the utility of the psychoanalytic model for understanding woman abuse is given. Woman abuse is seen as being closely related to coercive control (eg, brainwashing), as both have the similar elements of the victim being a captive, confinement and abduction, projection of responsibility

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The American Medical Association is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education to provide continuing medical education for physicians. The AMA designates this journal-based CME activity for a maximum of 1 AMA PRA Category 1 CreditTM per course. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity. Physicians who complete the CME course and score at least 80% correct on the quiz are eligible for AMA PRA Category 1 CreditTM.
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