Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Structural Violence - Dr. N.V.S.Suryanarayana – August 19, 2010 - Psyspeak, Human Behavior on Social Media

Violence is the expression of physical or verbal force against self or other, compelling action against one's will on pain of being hurt. Worldwide, violence is used as a tool of manipulation and also is an area of concern for law and culture which take attempts to suppress and stop it. The word violence covers a broad spectrum. It can vary from between a physical altercation between two beings where a slight injury may be the outcome to war and genocide where millions may die as a result.

"Violent behavior is defined as overt and intentional physically aggressive behavior against another person."

"Criminological studies have traditionally ignored half the population: Women are largely invisible in both theoretical considerations and empirical studies. Since the 1970s, important feminist works have noted the way in which criminal transgressions by women occur in different contexts from those by men and how women experiences with the criminal justice system are influenced by gendered assumptions about appropriate male and female roles. Feminists have also highlighted the prevalence of violence against women, both at home and in public."

The World Health Organization (WHO) in its first World Report on Violence and Health defined violence as "the intentional use of physical force or power, threatened or actual, against oneself, another person or against a group or community, that either results in or has a high likelihood of resulting in injury, death, psychological harm, mal development or deprivation."

Violence can be classified into many types; there are direct violence, domestic violence, structural violence and cultural violence.

Structural violence is a term first used in the 1960s commonly ascribed to John Galtung. It refers to a form of violence based on the systematic ways in which a given social structure or social institution "kills people" by preventing them from meeting their basic needs. Institutionalized elitism, ethnocentrism, classism, racism, sexism, adultism, nationalism, heterosexism and ageism are just some examples of structural violence. Life spans are reduced when people are socially dominated, politically oppressed, or economically exploited. Structural violence and direct violence are highly interdependent. Structural violence inevitably produces conflict and often direct violence, including family violence, racial violence, hate crimes, terrorism, genocide, and war.

Structural violence, however, is almost always invisible, embedded in ubiquitous social structures, normalized by stable institutions and regular experience. Structural violence occurs whenever people are disadvantaged by political, legal, economic, or cultural traditions. But structural violence produces suffering and death as often as direct violence does, though damage is slower, more subtle, more common, and more difficult to repair. Structural violence is problematic in and of itself, but it is also dangerous because frequently leads to direct violence. The chronically oppressed are often, for logical the world is easily traced to structured inequalities.
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Dr. N.V.S.Suryanarayana, M.Sc (Chem)., M.Sc (Applied Psychology)., M.Sc (Geo)., M.A (Eng)., M.A (Phil)., M.A (CC&E)., PGDCA., PGDEPM., PGDIPM., CFA., CPFN., Certificate in Guidance & Counseling (IGNOU)., C.Yoga & Con., M.Ed., M.Phil.(Education).

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