Monday, May 30, 2016

Can Women Defend Themselves?

My second book develops a theory on our evolved survival mechanism and the survival process based on the integration of fight-or-flight, stress, and emotion theory (among others). The chapter I'm currently working on is using the theory I have developed in order to better understand women's self-defence teachings and improve thereon. The issue I'd briefly like to look at in this post is the question, can women defend themselves?

To cut a long story short I'll refer to Professor Jocelyn Hollander's article, ‘Challenging Despair: Teaching About Women’s Resistance to Violence’.
For example, women successfully resist at least 75% of all attempted sexual assaults (Bart&O’Brien, 1985; Gordon & Riger, 1989; Ullman 1997); in other words, they escape, they stop the violence, and they protect themselves as much as possible. Rozee and Koss (2001) note that attempted rapes are in fact instances of successful rape avoidance; sadly, these stories are rarely reported in the media (Riger & Gordon, 1981), which focus on sensational cases of extreme violence. ... On the individual level, in other words, there is considerable evidence that many women resist violence, and they do so successfully.

 Of course women can defend themselves against men's violence. Nature didn't leave them unprotected in a potentially dangerous world. Nature developed a highly sophisticated and comprehensive survival mechanism over millions of years which has proved extremely effective over that time period, as the studies and statistics above attest.

What is of more interest is, women can and do defend themselves against men's violence without the aid of any women's self-defence training nor the aid of a man (as the cultural cliche of a damsel in distress being rescued by a man suggests). This fact, as Hollander explains, is mostly ignored by all those interested in violence against women and the prevention thereof.

Stay tuned.

1 comment:

  1. Looking forward to reading the rest John. Interesting perspective in terms of attempted sexual assault being successful defence as opposed to a failed attack. Puts emphasis on what the victims/survivors are doing well.


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