Domestic Violence in Australia


Domestic violence denotes hostile actions that happen between individuals who are, or were, in an intimate connection in a family setting. Such actions encompass sexual, mental, and physical abuse. The definition of the types of violence, the victims and abusers, is made difficult by the numerous forms of intimate relations and occurrences in Australia (Chappell & Curtin, 2013). Though family violence is usually undertaken by the male partners against their female lovers, it also encompasses hostility against males by their female partners or aggression in same-sex affairs.

This paper centers mainly on physical abuse towards female partners in domestic settings, which is the greatest basis of family violence and is prevalent in every age group, racial background, and economic status. With respect to the classical social theory, Karl Marx makes it possible to link the source of family violence to gender inequality anchored in the society (Owen & Carrington, 2015). With the existence of unbalanced relations in families, the male partners exercise authority over their female lovers through different approaches in an effort of retaining a state of power, which marks the cause and nature of family violence.

What the Society, Government/Legislator Doing to Eliminate Domestic Violence in Australia

The society seems to be hesitant to react to the acts of domestic violence. In this regard, the female partners who are victims of sexual and physical abuse by their partners mainly choose to remain silent in cases where the perpetrators are present partners. While just about 15% of those experiencing physical abuse report the occurrences, none of the victims of sexual abuse disclose their ordeals (Roberts, Chamberlain, & Delfabbro, 2015). The Australian and New South Wales Law Reform Commission recently suggested that national and regional legislation ought to highlight that domestic violence is a cruel and threatening conduct as it compels, controls, and torments a spouse, or results in one partner being fearful.

The actions by the criminal justice system and the police force have resulted in the Australian government being commonly criticized for failing to handle family violence issues with the seriousness they deserve (Roberts et al., 2015). Low convictions and arrests are contrary to the policy affirmations that family violence is a criminal activity. The Proper response by the police force is not just crucial for the safety of the victims as it as well articulates a significant social message concerning the manner in which the society should address the vice for the welfare of the partners and their children. With the recent legal reforms aimed at strengthening police officers and the justice system in tackling family violence, the inclination towards arrests and convictions will progressively lessen such incidences in Australia.

Use of Theory to Provide a Comprehensive and More Critical Understanding

The theory of Marx centres on inequality and struggle, which are the common bases of family violence. It affirms that the manner in which the bourgeois and proletarian are reliant on one another is consistent with concerns of family violence as every partner has something that the other requires (Haggerty, 2013). While the female partner relies on her husband for the provision of the resources that he manages, the male spouse depends on the wife to cater for his needs, care for the children, and sustain the household. In most instances, the women who are victims of family violence do not have access to resources. In conclusion, the facilitation of the reaction by the police officers and the criminal justice department will play a key role in stopping domestic violence.


Chappell, L., & Curtin, J. (2013). Does federalism matter? Evaluating state architecture and family and domestic violence policy in Australia and New Zealand. Publius: The Journal of Federalism, 43(1), 24-43.

Haggerty, J. (2013). Marx and violent revolution. Retrieved, 9(9), 15-20.

Owen, S., & Carrington, K. (2015). Domestic violence (DV) service provision and the architecture of rural life: An Australian case study. Journal of Rural Studies, 39, 229-238.

Roberts, D., Chamberlain, P., & Delfabbro, P. (2015). Women’s experiences of the processes associated with the family court of Australia in the context of domestic violence: A thematic analysis. Psychiatry, Psychology and Law, 22(4), 599-615.

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