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This content is taken from the The University of Sheffield's online course, Supporting Victims of Domestic Violence. Join the course to learn more.

A quick note about language

Over the past few decades, various terms have been used to refer to the topic of our course. These include domestic violence, domestic abuse, wife abuse, spousal abuse, wife battering, and wife-beating.

In this course, we will use the terms Domestic Violence and Abuse (DVA) and Intimate Partner Violence (IPV).

DVA is a gender-based crime, but it can happen to anyone

We will also be referring to Violence Against Women (VAW) and much of the focus of this course is on women’s experience of abuse from male perpetrators.

Men, women and transgender people in straight, gay or lesbian relationships can all perpetrate and experience DVA. However, it is important to recognise that DVA is experienced disproportionately by women and perpetrated predominantly by men.

The violence that women experience is more repeated and systematic, more severe and more likely to result in injury or death. Men, as current intimate partners or ex-partners, remain the most common perpetrators of IPV.

We welcome people of all genders to this course and hope that the tools and resources that you will find here will be applicable to anyone living with DVA and to those supporting them in a personal or professional capacity.

How does gender affect our behaviour?

One of the main themes of this course is gender. Specifically, how the notion of gender contributes to the issue of domestic violence and abuse.

We started the course by looking at how gender impacts on an activity that many of us do every day - walking.

On the next step, we’ll take a closer look at the impact that gender has on our behaviour towards those around us.

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This article is from the free online course:

Supporting Victims of Domestic Violence

The University of Sheffield