VAW Social Change Resource Center
Power and Control Tools
The Domestic Abuse Intervention Project of Duluth Minnesota offers a series of tools to explain battering as an issue of power and control. The Power and Control Wheel was built by battered women in Duluth trying to describe their own experience with battering.
Each woman may find some tactics in common with the Duluth women, but the Wheel was never meant to list every possible behavior a batterer might use. Each woman may want to highlight different behaviors used by their batterer to create power in her relationship.
We encourage advocates to use partially blank wheels that allow women to explore the ways they experience battering.
Women have worked together to adapt the Wheel to reflect their truth. There are at least 25 adaptations of the Wheel. These adaptations also offer visions of healthy relationships. Together these different wheels show us the many faces of power and control in our lives.
We encourage women to
build their own adaptation of the wheel!
These web pages include materials based on the Duluth Power and Control
Model and a paper from a study of the DAIP conducted by Lucille Pope.
Pence, E. (1987). In our best interest: A process for personal and social change. Duluth: Minnesota Program Development, Inc. www.duluth-model.org
Social Change Resource Center © 2007, Afterwords, Inc.
Lucille Pope and Kathleen Ferraro discuss proactive feminist communities and how Duluth has developed political strategies that bridge social change with systems reform work. 2006
How the DAIP in Duluth continues to place women’s lives at the center of their philosophy and
practice. Lucille Pope and Kathleen Ferraro, 2006.
For facilitators working with groups adapting the Wheel to describe their own experience.
Outlines a process and discussion items. Lucille Pope and Kathleen Ferraro, 2006
Bonnie Brandl explains the difference between caregiver stress versus power and control as
the basis for elder abuse. National Center for Abuse in Later Life
Overview of power and control wheel, control log, definitions, impact on women, and visions
of social change from study of the Domestic Abuse Intervention Project of Duluth. Lucille Pope
and Kathleen Ferraro, 2006.
Lucille Pope and Kathleen Ferraro discuss hierarchy, oppression, dichotomous thought, male
privilege, power, and cultural factors used in Duluth explanations of violence against women. 2006
The battered women’s movement has, since its earliest days, identified battering not as an individual woman’s problem, but as a societal problem linked to the oppression of all women in our society …. We understood from the earliest days of the movement that women were trapped in violent relationships not because they had poor self-images or were in some way defective, but because of an economic system and a community that over and over again reinforced batterers’ power over women. Pence, 1987, p. 5
Power and Control Wheels
Power and Control Wheel (Original)
Relationship of Sexism to Other Oppressions
Native American Wheels