Frequency and Attention to Violent Behavior

Frequency and Attention to Violent Behavior. Reported abuse and neglect are much higher than in earlier eras (Gelles & Conte, 1990; Straus & Gelles, 1986), but these statistics may reflect either increased events or increased awareness and legal obligation to report. There is increasing attention to sexual abuse, including pedophilia and incest. The greater availability of shelters and the generally more serious way that domestic violence between spouses is treated have developed concurrently with a raised awareness of other family violence. Sexual assault and coercion by husbands has been recognized as abuse but is not sufficiently addressed by law or research (Christopher & Sprecher, 2000, p. 1007). The greater reporting of violence in poor and disadvantaged settings suggests greater difficulty in maintaining privacy and isolation, as well as the different resources the abuser can bring to bear in the adjudication process.

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