Comment 75191

By Undustrial (registered) - website | Posted March 12, 2012 at 16:22:30 in reply to Comment 75141

This is exactly what I'm talking about. Outside of my friends who work for women's shelters, I really don't know that anybody understands how bad and widespread this is, even in relatively prosperous countries like ours.

A LOT of women and children are murdered in our society, and far more live for years with regular violence. Generally by family and lovers. These cases have far too much in common to be random - they happen at far higher rates to poorer or racialized victims, for instance. It clearly has not only the effect of making the victims subservient to the perpetrator but also acts a little like a terrorist attack to any other women in the area, forcing them to limit their speech, actions and movements "just in case".

While I'm not the biggest fan of Stephen Pinker's latest book (Better Angels...), it's definitely worth perusing. His discussion of murder in western societies is really fascinating - very few murders are actually committed for reasons like theft or hatred - most (~90%) are committed for reasons of "justice", at least as seen by the murderer. A cheating spouse, a wild kid, "shaming" the family, etc, are far more common reasons to kill someone than wanting their wallet. Or, in other words, honour and perceived morality have a hell of a lot to do with most murders in our society.

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