Silenced Suffering: The Need for a Better Understanding of Partner Sexual Violence

T. K. Logan, Robert Walker, Jennifer Cole

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

67 Scopus citations

Abstract

This article has two overall goals. First, to examine the current state of sexual violence research to highlight several shortcomings in the knowledge on partner sexual violence. Second, to describe several factors to consider in future research to facilitate a more in-depth understanding of partner sexual violence. Shortcomings of the research on partner sexual violence include (1) overreliance on dichotomous yes/no representations of sexual violence experiences; (2) lack of, or inadequate documentation of the scope and nature of partner sexual violence; (3) inadequate ways to account for impairment of consent under different circumstances; (4) difficulties in discriminating unwanted from nonconsensual sexual activities; and (5) limited information about the role sexual violence plays in the larger context of coercive control. In order to facilitate a more in-depth understanding of partner sexual assault, there is a need (1) to better understand the scope and nature of partner sexual assault and (2) to better understand the role partner sexual violence plays in coercive control. By improving the measurement of this phenomenon, victims, researchers, practitioners, and those involved in the justice system might be better equipped to respond to sexual violence among intimate partners.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)111-135
Number of pages25
JournalTrauma, Violence, and Abuse
Volume16
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 19 2015

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© The Author(s) 2013

Keywords

  • cultural contexts
  • domestic violence
  • sexual assault

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Applied Psychology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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