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There is No such Thing as Battering.

© Peter Zohrab 2006

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The word "battery" is a technical term (a "term of art") in Law, but it can involve something as minor as brushing past someone. The word "batter(ing)", on the other hand, conjures up (in Feminist propaganda) the image of a huge, powerful man beating up a weak, defenceless woman. This word was popularised in the book, "The Battered Woman", which is reviewed by Robert Sheaffer at batwmrev.html .

There is no shadow of a doubt that Feminist theory about Domestic Violence is only interested in the aspect of the topic where women are victims -- and, preferably, men (as opposed to Lesbians) are the perpetrators. The use of the word "batter/battering" fits in with this general focus on demonising men. On the other hand, the research evidence is clear that women hit men just as much as men hit women -- see: fiebertb.html .

Dr. Charles Corry describes "battering" (on the page cresting.html) as follows:

"Battering in a relationship involves beating or verbally abusing an intimate partner over a long period of time and is aimed at controlling one's partner or children through the use of terror, confusion, and disabling the target's ability to think and reason for themselves."

However, it is clear that the term was not originally used in that sense. As Robert Sheaffer points out in his review of Lenore Walker's 1979 book, The Battered Woman,

"Another novel form of 'battering' Prof. Walker discovers is 'working late.' She describes the case of a woman who admits physically attacking her husband: 'there is no doubt that she began to assault Paul physically, before he assaulted her. However, it is also clear from the rest of her story that Paul had been battering her by ignoring her and by working late, in order to move up the corporate ladder, for the entire five years of their marriage' [p.98]. "

There is nothing in the ordinary English word batter that relates to a lengthy period of recurrent abuse. The word batter was chosen by Feminists purely because of the image it conjures up of someone very powerful (a male) dealing severe blows to a helpless person (a woman).

To establish, in a particular case, that "battering" exists, as per Dr. Corry's definition, involves assuming that one partner is a totally passive victim of this physical or verbal process. It also involves ascribing calculating motives to the "batterer". An investigator who already believed the Power-and-Control model, and was therefore predisposed towards imposing this model as a means of interpreting Domestic Violence situations, would be likely to downplay verbal and physical violence emanating from one (i.e. the female) party (as we see that Lenore Walker does), and to ascribe "control" motives to the other party.

It is an unfortunate feature of much university research across many disciplines that it involves exactly this process of dreaming up a model and imposing it willy-nilly on reality -- dealing with the exceptions as best one can, e.g. by ignoring them or finding some harmless explanation for them. However, imposing a man-hating model onto the phenomenon of Domestic Violence has real consequences for real people.

One can see from videos of Family Court processes, where they exist, how men's feelings and experiences in Domestic Violence situations are routinely overlooked -- see, for example, the page: famsecrt.html .

People who are interested in being rational -- as opposed to hysterical -- on the the issue of Domestic Violence should therefore avoid using the words "batter" or "battering" in this connection. When the Law refers to violence between people outside the home, it makes distinctions between such concepts as "common assault", "aggravated assault" (ie.assault with a weapon), "grievous bodily harm", and (in the chivalrous, man-hating country of New Zealand) "assaulting a female". These concepts are sufficient to describe violence inside the home as well -- indeed, even New Zealand's Domestic Violence Act 1995 does not use the word "batter" or "battering".

To use the word"batter" or "battering" is to reduce the debate from an intellectual level to the level of hysteria where the Feminist man-haters feel comfortable.




Peter Douglas Zohrab

Latest Update

8 July 2015