Most people are unaware of researched statistics claiming loud and clear that females are as violent as males. As a matter of fact, females are as violent as males not only in marital relationships but also in adolescence (Hines, Brown, & Dunning, 2007, p. 63; Holtzworth-Munroe, 2005). It was the feminists that had widely disseminated the idea that only women are battered in marital relationships (Hines, Brown, & Dunning, p. 71). Research shows that wives also act violently toward their husbands even though the latter are capable of causing more physical harm in abusive relationships (Ward Jr.
& Muldoon, 2007, p. 340). After all, abusive wives typically “throw objects, slap, kick, bite, and punch,” whereas abusive husbands “are more likely to strangle, choke, and beat up their partners” (Ward Jr. & Muldoon, p. 340-341). But, wives who are arrested for domestic violence tend to imitate their abusive husbands in incidences of violence (Ward Jr. & Muldoon, p. 338). What is more, female violence is on the rise (Chmelynski, 2006, p. 8).
There are increasing numbers of females being arrested for almost all offenses, “including aggravated assault, simple assault, burglary, larcenytheft, motor vehicle theft, vandalism, weapons, liquor and curfew/ loitering law violations” (Vaughn et. al. , 2007, p. 36). According to feminists, in particular their theory of power and control, men are socialized to assume that they have the right of controlling women (Ward Jr. & Muldoon, p. 359). This leads men to act violently toward what they believe is the weaker sex.
Furthermore, it has been asserted by feminists over and over that females behave violently only in self-defense. It is males who attack them first (Hines, Brown, & Dunning, p. 63-64). These assertions are not entirely baseless, however. Females were known to be less violent than men in the past (Holtzworth-Munroe). Holtzworth-Munroe reports, Twenty-five years ago, according to statistics which were compiled by the U. S. Department of Justice at that time, for every 10 boys arrested for assault, there was only one girl who was arrested on that charge. Today, however, the ratio is 4 to 1.
(Holtzworth-Munroe) So now it is not only husbands but also school authorities who must be wary of female violence (Holtzworth-Munroe). Feminists state that women are usually the victims of crimes of violence (Ward Jr. & Muldoon, p. 359). But, feminists ought to develop new theories of power and control now that statistics reveal that the rise in female violence far exceeds the rise in male violence. In fact, between 1978 and 1996, “there was a 47% increase in the rate of violent crimes committed by females. Violent crime rates among males decreased by 26%” (Vaughn et.
al. , p. 36). Female violence in adolescence tends to be more severe than male violence although males tend to inflict the greatest number of injuries on women in abusive marital relationships (Holtzworth-Munroe). According to Kimberly Sebeur, director of 50 Strong, a program developed to support black adolescent males in succeeding at the Martin Luther King, Jr. , High School in Georgia, It’s worse when girls fight because they won’t stop; they have to be physically overtaken by someone who’s stronger than they are… With boys, you can say ‘OK, that’s enough, break
it up,’ and that’s the end of it. Girls will fight right to the death. (Chmelynski, p. 8) What is more, research has shown that females who act violently in marital relationships do so also against males in stereotypically masculine professions, for example, military, firefighting, and law enforcement. Professors, doctors, lawyers, architects and engineers are victims of female violence to boot. Even politicians have not been spared (Hines, Brown, & Dunning, p. 66). Holtzworth-Munroe reports on a research that found that there is a higher number of females than males who initiate violence.
Hines, Brown, & Dunning report on several studies that found that women do not act violently in self-defense alone. Rather, the majority of women participating in these studies stated that their reasons for acting violently toward their male partners included anger, confusion, revenge, jealousy, and attempts to dominate (Hines, Brown, & Dunning, p. 64). Apart from the research mentioned by Holtzworth-Munroe, there have been various studies to examine whether females are more likely than males to initiate violence (Hines, Brown, & Dunning, p. 64).
Hines, Brown, & Dunning write that violence appears to be “human problem,” as these studies reveal equal numbers of females and males as initiators of violence (p. 64). Of course, females can be as violent as males. Regardless of reasons for the increase in female violence, the fact remains that adolescent males and females are equally violent, and wives commit acts of violence against their husbands as much as the latter act violently toward them. Perhaps it is feminism that has raised female awareness to the point that females do not consider themselves the weaker sex any longer.
Then again, men may cause greater physical harm to women even if girls are more physically aggressive than boys. References Chmelynski, C. (2006, Dec). When “Mean Girls” Turn to Violence. Education Digest 72(4):8. Retrieved Apr 5, 2009, from Academic Search Premier. Hines, D. A. , Brown, J. , & Dunning, E. (2007). Characteristics of Callers to the Domestic Abuse Helpline for Men. Journal of Family Violence 22:63-72. Retrieved Apr 5, 2009, from Academic Search Premier. Holtzworth-Munroe, A. (2005, Dec). Male Versus Female Intimate Partner Violence: Putting Controversial Figures into Context.
Journal of Marriage and Family 67(5). Retrieved Apr 5, 2009, from Academic Search Premier. Vaughn, M. G. , Newhill, C. E. , Litschge, C. M. , & Howard, M. O. (2007). Cluster Profiles of Residentially Incarcerated Adolescent Females: Violence and Clinical Mental Health Characteristics. Advancing Quality in Residential Treatment. Hawthorne Press. Retrieved Apr 5, 2009, from Academic Search Premier. Ward Jr. , R. E. , & Muldoon, J. P. (2007). Female Tactics and Strategies of Intimate Partner Violence: A Study of Incident Reports. Sociological Spectrum 27:337-364. Retrieved Apr 5, 2009, from Academic Search Premier.