Gendered Violence: Victim Perceptions and System Responses

A special issue of Social Sciences (ISSN 2076-0760). This special issue belongs to the section "Gender Studies".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 September 2023) | Viewed by 20972

Special Issue Editor


E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Criminal Justice, University of North Dakota, Grand Forks, ND 58202, USA
Interests: victimology; sexual assault among college students; child abuse and neglect; technology-facilitated victimization

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Gender-based violence, which is underreported in many cultures, is a global concern that leads to the creation, perpetuation, and maintenance of gender inequalities. Historically, laws governing gender-based crimes were applied only sparingly when certain criteria were met, creating “ideal” victims (i.e., virgins, the unmarried). Moreover, gender-based crimes were often treated as “personal issues” or “family matters” by law enforcement. As awareness, research, and programming surrounding these crimes has become more mainstream, researchers and advocates are still finding that gender-based violence victims hesitate to report their experiences to the criminal justice system or to remain in contact with the system post-reporting. The reasons for this reticence may be personal or directed toward the system specifically. These system concerns may be based on vicarious experiences or even misperceptions about how their case will be processed.

This Special Issue will address how gendered violence is processed by the criminal justice system. Gender-based violence may include (but is not limited to) sexual assault, intimate partner violence, stalking, and harassment. Both victim perceptions of criminal justice system processing and system processing itself—in relation to law enforcement, the court system, or the corrections system—are encouraged. Ideally, there will be similar coverage of both victim perceptions of and actual processing from a variety of cultures to highlight comparisons. Both qualitative and quantitative research are welcome.

Dr. Ashley Fansher
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a double-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Social Sciences is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1800 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • gender-based violence
  • sexual assault
  • intimate partner violence
  • stalking
  • harassment
  • victim perceptions
  • victims
  • law enforcement
  • courts
  • system responses

Published Papers (9 papers)

Order results
Result details
Select all
Export citation of selected articles as:

Research

Jump to: Review

12 pages, 299 KiB  
Article
Is It a Crime? Cyberstalking Victims’ Reasons for Not Reporting to Law Enforcement
by Erica R. Fissel
Soc. Sci. 2023, 12(12), 659; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci12120659 - 28 Nov 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1615
Abstract
Using a sample of 376 young adults (18- to 25-year-olds) who had been cyberstalked in the previous 12 months, the current study attempts to (1) understand the self-identified reasons behind cyberstalking victims’ choice to not report their experiences to law enforcement and (2) [...] Read more.
Using a sample of 376 young adults (18- to 25-year-olds) who had been cyberstalked in the previous 12 months, the current study attempts to (1) understand the self-identified reasons behind cyberstalking victims’ choice to not report their experiences to law enforcement and (2) determine if there are gender or racial differences associated with the reasons for not reporting. Findings revealed that approximately 86% of cyberstalking victims did not personally report their victimization to law enforcement. The most common reasons for not reporting included not knowing their experience was criminal in nature (53.99%), dealing with it another way (42.82%), and thinking the police would not do anything for them (32.98%) or would not be helpful (31.91%). Analyses also revealed that there were gender-specific differences in one of the reasons for not reporting. Women and another gender identity selected “Thought the police would not do anything” significantly more than men. Implications for these findings are provided. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Gendered Violence: Victim Perceptions and System Responses)
13 pages, 471 KiB  
Article
Sexual Victimization and Hypersexuality in College Women: Examining Alcohol Use as a Potential Mediator
by Ethan Marshall
Soc. Sci. 2023, 12(12), 654; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci12120654 - 25 Nov 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1176
Abstract
The past two decades have yielded a large body of literature that uncovered an unfortunate reality: sexual victimization is more prevalent than previously thought. This body of literature has also indicated a number of the negative consequences of experiencing sexual victimization, including mental [...] Read more.
The past two decades have yielded a large body of literature that uncovered an unfortunate reality: sexual victimization is more prevalent than previously thought. This body of literature has also indicated a number of the negative consequences of experiencing sexual victimization, including mental illness, substance abuse, and sexual dysfunction. Recent research has also indicated that sexual victimization may lead to hypersexuality. What has yet to be researched is how other negative consequences of sexual victimization, such as substance abuse, may contribute to elevated levels of hypersexuality. Since these behaviors are associated with experiencing future instances of sexual violence, it is important to understand the relationship between these factors. The purpose of the current study is to address this gap in the research by examining whether alcohol use mediates the effect between sexual victimization and hypersexuality. Results indicate that alcohol use does partially mediate the relationship between sexual victimization and hypersexuality, but that sexual victimization still accounts for a significant amount of variation with respect to hypersexuality. These findings indicate that sexual victimization experiences may lead some to engage in problematic coping behaviors, such as risky sexual behavior and increased alcohol consumption, which may place individuals at an increased risk of future victimization experiences. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Gendered Violence: Victim Perceptions and System Responses)
Show Figures

Figure 1

17 pages, 335 KiB  
Article
Variations in Victimization: The Relationship between Community Types, Violence against Women and Reporting Behaviors
by Ryan Randa, Sarah R. Bostrom, Wyatt Brown, Bradford W. Reyns and Jessica C. Fleming
Soc. Sci. 2023, 12(9), 471; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci12090471 - 23 Aug 2023
Viewed by 1377
Abstract
Existing research suggests that victimization risk is higher among urban residents. Violence against women is a notable exception in this trend. While the literature does indicate that rural women are at equal risk for violent victimization, it does not differentiate between types of [...] Read more.
Existing research suggests that victimization risk is higher among urban residents. Violence against women is a notable exception in this trend. While the literature does indicate that rural women are at equal risk for violent victimization, it does not differentiate between types of non-urban spaces (exurbs, suburbs, small towns, dispersed rural). We use a five-category measure of rural-urban location articulated land use to disentangle victim–offender relationship distribution using a female victim sample from the 1996–2005 United States National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS). In the most rural areas (dispersed rural locations), women are most likely to be victimized by friends or acquaintances. The proportion of women victimized by strangers in dispersed rural locations is very low. As urbanicity increases, so does the proportion of women victimized by strangers. The findings indicate that victim–offender relationships may be dictated by proximity. In dispersed rural locations, there are comparatively fewer people unknown to the victim than in central city locations. Consequently, proximity dictates that offenders in dispersed rural locations are unlikely to be strangers. The articulated land use measure ensures that the differences between types of rural and suburban locations are identified. Future research should consider the impact of proximity on rural victimization and increased specificity in rural measurements. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Gendered Violence: Victim Perceptions and System Responses)
16 pages, 393 KiB  
Article
Reporting and Help-Seeking among Sexual Minority and Heterosexual Victims of Stalking
by Jessica C. Fleming, Ashley K. Fansher, Ryan Randa and Bradford W. Reyns
Soc. Sci. 2023, 12(8), 424; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci12080424 - 25 Jul 2023
Viewed by 1289
Abstract
Given the disproportionately higher rates of stalking among sexual minority individuals, the present study aimed to explore factors that influence these victims’ help-seeking behaviors. Employing data from the United States’ 2019 National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS) Supplemental Victimization Survey (SVS), this study explores [...] Read more.
Given the disproportionately higher rates of stalking among sexual minority individuals, the present study aimed to explore factors that influence these victims’ help-seeking behaviors. Employing data from the United States’ 2019 National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS) Supplemental Victimization Survey (SVS), this study explores various demographic and psychological factors impacting help-seeking among sexual minority and heterosexual victims. Results indicate that sexual minority individuals are significantly more likely to seek help than heterosexual victims of stalking. Further exploration through logistic regression, limited to the sexual minority group, shows significant associations between help-seeking and age, sex, and emotional distress from stalking, but not race. Indicating that younger respondents, female respondents, and those experiencing an emotional impact are more likely to seek help for stalking victimization among sexual minority victims. These findings emphasize the importance of sexual orientation in understanding help-seeking behaviors among stalking victims, suggesting a need for more tailored support services for the sexual minority community. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Gendered Violence: Victim Perceptions and System Responses)
13 pages, 440 KiB  
Article
The Empirical Relationship between Procedural Justice, Police Legitimacy, and Intimate Partner Violence Experiences among a Sample of Previously Adjudicated Youth
by Sara Zedaker and Amanda Goodson
Soc. Sci. 2023, 12(6), 354; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci12060354 - 16 Jun 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1402
Abstract
The impact of intimate partner violence on procedural justice has not received much attention in extant literature. As such, the current study uses data from the Pathways to Desistance Study to examine how elements of intimate partner violence affect trust in police and [...] Read more.
The impact of intimate partner violence on procedural justice has not received much attention in extant literature. As such, the current study uses data from the Pathways to Desistance Study to examine how elements of intimate partner violence affect trust in police and perceptions of legitimacy toward the criminal justice system. Results indicated several important findings regarding the effects of intimate partner violence on procedural justice. Limitations, future research, and policy recommendations are discussed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Gendered Violence: Victim Perceptions and System Responses)
Show Figures

Figure 1

23 pages, 568 KiB  
Article
A Decade of Decision Making: Prosecutorial Decision Making in Sexual Assault Cases
by Ashley K. Fansher and Bethany Welsh
Soc. Sci. 2023, 12(6), 348; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci12060348 - 12 Jun 2023
Viewed by 2266
Abstract
In the United States, it is estimated that fewer than 30% of sexual assaults are reported to law enforcement, less than 5% will result in an arrest, and approximately 3% will result in a felony conviction. The present study examines a census of [...] Read more.
In the United States, it is estimated that fewer than 30% of sexual assaults are reported to law enforcement, less than 5% will result in an arrest, and approximately 3% will result in a felony conviction. The present study examines a census of sexual assault reports from 2012 to 2020 in a large police department in the Midwest region of the United States, considering only those cases presented to the district attorney’s office for consideration (n = 700). Victim characteristics, suspect characteristics, and incident characteristics were examined as relating to a prosecutor accepting a case for charges. Further, a series of “ideal victim” characteristics were identified and used to create an additive scale based on prior research. The most significant predictors of prosecutor acceptance in the full sample were a lack of “date rape” drugs, continued cooperation from the victim, the suspect having a prior arrest for sexual assault, and the assault being reported within 24 h of occurring. A separate model was conducted for only those cases with continued cooperation from the victim. The researchers discuss the implications of these significant factors and suggest training to change false perceptions of victims among criminal justice officials and to increase victim reporting/cooperation in cases of sexual assault. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Gendered Violence: Victim Perceptions and System Responses)
Show Figures

Figure 1

11 pages, 298 KiB  
Article
Accompaniment in the Gender and Social Discrimination of Migrant Women Victims of Gender-Based Violence: From Bibliography to Situated Key in Burgos, Spain
by Abel Merino Orozco, Miriam Calvo Ruiz, Cristina Di Giusto Valle, Gloria Pérez de Albéniz Garrote, Begoña Medina Gómez, Aida Gutiérrez García, Sara Saez Velasco and Valeriana Guijo Blanco
Soc. Sci. 2023, 12(6), 325; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci12060325 - 31 May 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1320
Abstract
Migrant women who experience gender-based violence face a framework of social vulnerability that is compounded by their status as both women and migrants, requiring specific attention in social support. The aim of this study is to understand the situation of women in the [...] Read more.
Migrant women who experience gender-based violence face a framework of social vulnerability that is compounded by their status as both women and migrants, requiring specific attention in social support. The aim of this study is to understand the situation of women in the social and health access realm, drawing from scientific literature as well as the voices of migrant women and professionals who support them, in order to establish priority guidelines for social support. The study begins with a bibliographic analysis of scientific literature on migrant women who have experienced gender-based violence, which informs six interviews with migrant women and five professionals, delving into their social needs and support requirements. The most prominent results point to the need for sustained and interdisciplinary support throughout the process of accessing healthcare and legal services. In addition, there is a call for social awareness in understanding the specific and personal needs of migrant women. Finally, educational support is required to dismantle patriarchal beliefs that legitimize gender discrimination and violence, avoiding re-victimization and acknowledging the multi-dimensional nature of women’s experiences. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Gendered Violence: Victim Perceptions and System Responses)

Review

Jump to: Research

14 pages, 309 KiB  
Review
Psychometric Test Review of the Abusive Behaviour Inventory (ABI)
by Rebecca Heron, Gracie McAndrew, Karen Parsonson and Kevin Browne
Soc. Sci. 2023, 12(7), 400; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci12070400 - 10 Jul 2023
Viewed by 2866
Abstract
This paper examines the Abusive Behaviour Inventory (ABI), which is regarded as an efficient self-report measure with demonstrated high reliability and validity. This examination aims to determine the tool’s effectiveness when screening for victims of domestic violence and present recommendations for how the [...] Read more.
This paper examines the Abusive Behaviour Inventory (ABI), which is regarded as an efficient self-report measure with demonstrated high reliability and validity. This examination aims to determine the tool’s effectiveness when screening for victims of domestic violence and present recommendations for how the device may be improved. Within this critique, the ABI is analysed through a literature review and the exploration of the tool’s development. A detailed overview of the ABI is included, and its reliability and validity are critically reviewed. Findings from the research base of this tool are presented and also discussed. While the ABI is regarded as an efficient self-report measure which has been demonstrated to have both high reliability and validity, after evaluation, implementing a structured professional judgement (SPJ) approach is recommended. This would expand the tool’s utility to include risk and safety assessment. In addition, methods and considerations for including LGBTQ relationships are introduced. Finally, implications for the ABI’s use in informing batterer intervention programs are highlighted. It is concluded that more research is warranted to continue increasing the ABI’s applicability to different intimate relationship archetypes and populations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Gendered Violence: Victim Perceptions and System Responses)
20 pages, 427 KiB  
Review
Intimate Partner Rape: A Review of Six Core Myths Surrounding Women’s Conduct and the Consequences of Intimate Partner Rape
by Caroline Lilley, Dominic Willmott, Dara Mojtahedi and Danielle Labhardt
Soc. Sci. 2023, 12(1), 34; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci12010034 - 4 Jan 2023
Cited by 17 | Viewed by 6616
Abstract
The focus of this paper is to highlight and review the evidence surrounding common intimate partner rape (IPR) myths, their prevalence in society, and identify those who are most likely to endorse such beliefs. Six core IPR myths are discussed related to misconceptions [...] Read more.
The focus of this paper is to highlight and review the evidence surrounding common intimate partner rape (IPR) myths, their prevalence in society, and identify those who are most likely to endorse such beliefs. Six core IPR myths are discussed related to misconceptions surrounding (1) women’s decisions to remain in abusive relationships, (2) why women delay or never report IPR, (3) women’s perceived motivations when an IPR report is made, (4) a perceived lack of trauma that occurs as a consequence of this type of rape, (5) male sexual entitlement within intimate relationships, and (6) whether it is even possible to rape a marital partner. This article draws together a wealth of studies and research that evidence why such IPR myths are indeed factually inaccurate and examines how victims, justice professionals, police practitioners, and legal decision-makers endorsement of false beliefs pertaining to intimate partner rape serve to hinder various justice pathways. We discuss the consequences of rape mythology in so far as they create social barriers that prohibit the reporting of rape, impact the progression of an allegation through the criminal justice system and ultimately, obstruct rape victims’ access to justice. The review concludes by considering evidence regarding the possible benefits of education interventions in reducing the problematic influence of rape myths. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Gendered Violence: Victim Perceptions and System Responses)
Back to TopTop