​Domestic violence within refugee families: intersecting patriarchal culture and the refugee experience

Author(s) James, Kerrie
Title Domestic violence within refugee families: intersecting patriarchal culture and the refugee experience
Source The Australian and New Zealand Journal of Family Therapy; (Plenary address, Thirtieth Australian Family Therapy Conference Sydney); September 2010; Vol 31; issue 3; pp275-284.
Date 2010
Document type Conference paper
Coverage Australia
Summary In this paper the author discusses the intersections of culture, gender and trauma in domestic violence. The role of culture in sanctioning violence against women is explored and it is emphasised that culture is not experienced in the same way by all people within it. From the author's experience, migrants and refugees in Australia may have difficulty accepting the different laws in the new country. The second part of the paper discusses the challenges experienced by refugee men and women, including war and civil conflict, the refugee journey, and resettlement. The final section offers guidance to responding to domestic violence in families and communities, both family therapy responses and community responses. It is suggested that advances in reducing violence in refugee communities will be best achieved through focusing on a particular community and working with men's and women's groups and their identified leaders. In conclusion the author advises that domestic violence is not simply a gender issue, but a violation of human rights.
Keywords Refugees; migrants; domestic violence; culture.
Topic Domestic violence