Query from a reader: Domestic Violence Research

I’m looking for a piece of research that (I’m sure) I’ve read in a feminist philosophy text. However, I can’t find it anymore and wanted to ask your readers for help.

I recall reading about social scientists (in the US, I think) who were trying to measure the occurrence of domestic violence. When the researchers asked women if they were suffering from domestic violence, they found that the rates of domestic violence reported were extremely low (to non-existent). This prompted the scientists to alter their approach. They subsequently asked much more refined and detailed questions, and got very different results. The detailed questions included: (e.g.) whether one’s husband is (in some sense) controlling, and whether he sometimes twists the woman’s arm so that she sustains bruises and injuries. Those who reported not suffering from domestic violence went on to report being subject to these kinds of behaviours. Does someone know where this study is discussed, or its reference?

Petition to SCSU regarding sexual harassment

Southern Connecticut State University (SCSU) has an obligation to keep its students safe from professors who sexually harass, so why are they keeping Professor David Chevan on staff?

In 2011, SCSU found one of its music professors, David Chevan, in violation of its sexual harassment policy for verbally and physically sexually harassing a former student, Wendy Wyler. Watch news coverage here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zwdD1AwA__s But SCSU has not taken meaningful disciplinary action.

This is alarming considering Professor Chevan propositioned Wendy in a storage room, not allowing her to leave:

“There wasn’t a single window, and when he shut the door behind him, everything about him changed. I wondered if anyone would hear me if I screamed. I repeatedly told him no.”

Wendy was afraid for her safety because of the persistent sexual harassment of Professor Chevan. Not only that, but several other young women have since come forward to report similar behavior.

For more information and a petition, go here.

Amina quits FEMEN

Amina Sboui, the young Tunisian woman who was arrested and imprisonned for two months after publishing a topless photo of herself with the words ‘Fuck your morals’ written across her chest, has announced that she is quitting FEMEN, the Ukraine based group of feminist activists who demonstrate topless.

FEMEN’s actions, when they were protesting against Amina’s arrest last May raised much controversy. In particular, their protest gave rise to a movement of muslim women  who accused FEMEN of Islamophobia and imperialism. One claim this group makes is that one does not have to show one’s breasts, on indeed one’s hair, to be a feminist, and that women are not oppressed just because they chose to cover their heads.

Interestingly, one of the reasons Amina gave for leaving FEMEN is their Islamophobia. But far from joining the group who believes that even feminists should cover up, she posted a topless photo of herself two weeks after her release from prison.

May this serve as a reminder that there are many ways of interpreting Islam (as indeed there are for any other religion), and that just as FEMEN do not own the copyright of what it is to be a feminist activist, not all Muslims think that women should cover up.